Wonka, embracing your ‘wonkness’ to realize your dream.

Before Willy Wonka was a wonderous and whimsical chocolatier, he had a rough childhood with bitter bullies and wavering self confidence.

Wonka, Official Trailer, Warner Bros. Pictures.

If Willy Wonka was in your school, he’ll be the wierdo with few friends, the nerd who knows things nobody cared about, and the kid who tried but just couldn’t fit in.

‘Charlie and the chocolate factory’, out of which the movie Wonka stems from, is a beloved tale about Willy Wonka, known for his delectable delights, wittiness and authenticity. While the previous movies focused more on Charlie, the recent movie ‘Wonka’ gives us insight into the iconic character’s back-story.



In the beginning, Wonka was met with lots of judgment and lack of support. He often stood out from the crowd, for his out of the world ideas and quirkiness.

Wonka never give in to society’s tethers of what’s acceptable and held steadfast to his authenticity, self belief and conviction, to actualise his dreams. There’s however a price to pay in doing so. And often that could include withstanding bullying and ostracism.

GIF via Tenor

Navigating bullying

Feeling out of place and not having proper support for our individuality and personalities may be relatable to some of us.

What did Wonka do? He turned to people such as Oompa Loompas who showed him compassion and stood by him.

Oompa-Loompa: “You should stand up to those bullies. Give ’em the ol’ one two.”

Should you ever find yourself in a situation where you feel cornered and helpless, approaching a trustworthy figure such as a student leader, teacher or a counselor, would be the first step to addressing the issue and the bully.

IMG via Deadline

Self-Fulfilling Prophecy

While physical bullying is apparent, psychological bullying can be subtle and even perplexing for some of us.

Sometimes when we get affected by sarcasm and negative comments, we are told by others ‘not to be so sensitive’.  While we should not buy into the hurtful words said to us, we should recognize and address the hurt and the offense that has been inflicted on us.

When the hurt is rationalised, we could end up believing that the negative words are true about us, allowing self-fulfilling prophecy to set in.

An example of Self-fulfilling prophecy is when we believe that we are useless because someone keeps tellin us that we are. Subconciously our minds believe it, we stop working hard, our work performance drops thereby reinforcing the belief that we are really useless.

It’s important to keep clear boundaries from nasty people and surround yourself with people who encourage us and would share the truth in a loving and kind manner. Being with people who accepts us for who we are will help us to build a stable sense of self and a positive self-concept and esteem.

GIF via Tenor

Self-limitation and esteem 

For many of us, bullying may not be the underlying issue for us not realizing our best potential. Sometimes, our perceived sense of who we are and what we should be capable of results in self-limitations.

Charles Horton Cooley created the term ‘looking glass self’ to explain how our self concept is based on how others view us. A past failure to meet self imposed standards or comparison to unrealistic ideals that we see on social media can tamper with our self-esteem and self-belief.

While we should challenge the labels that others try to place on us,  what we also need to do is to silence the negative noise in our minds about ourselves.

Here’s how you can build positive self-esteem.

  1. Be aware of your strengths, values and beliefs.

  2. Think of a positive point about yourself with every negative comment that you hear. Here’s how you can reframe negative comments.

  3. Build a supportive and encouraging network

  4. Do positive self-talk. Practice forgiving yourself if you’ve really made a mistake

  5. Set yourself bite-sized challenges to reach your goals and celebrate every win.

  6. Practice self-care.



IMG via @movies.verse ig

 Wonka’s mother: “Everything good in this world, started with a dream. So you hold on to yours.“

Dream that Wonka dream.

Some of the worlds most innovative ideas have come from society’s misfits. From Galileo, DaVinci to present day Zuckerberg and Musk, each of these famous and successful people have once been in the shoes of Willy Wonka. Click here to read about famous people who beat the odds to realise their dream.

If you feel like your dreams don’t fit in with any given and recognisable path, it could mean the path hasn’t been created yet. So, embrace your ‘wonkness’. You were made different for a special reason and purpose. Press on and create that chocolate that the world has yet to taste.


Creating destiny


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