Rich People Spend Lots of Money

The title of this blog post sounds obvious, doesn’t it? However, this was a revelation for me this week; not because I didn’t know this before, but because it sank deep in my soul in a way that it hadn’t before.

I am doing a leadership course at the Harvest Institute and part of the tasks in this course is to self-fund a trip by air to Nairobi for the Fearless Summit. This comes with looking for your own accommodation and food, in addition to paying for the summit itself. In between, there are many other small things you may need such as toiletries and whatnot. I tend to think of the details. I wished this was the only extra thing apart from tuition fees for the course but no – it isn’t! In addition to this, there are costs for publishing and printing a book, royal gifting, transportation for the monthly classes, and so on. When you add up all the money needed, it could easily end up around 6 million UGX.

My strategy coming in was to do my best to economize as much as possible and hope for as much miracle money as possible to be able to meet the financial obligations. However, God wanted to teach me something else. His agenda was to teach me abundance. 

That is why when I received the poster below, there was an inclination towards signing up for it. I dismissed this inclination though because I felt I could do this on my own – book the ticket, look for accommodation etcetera. Later in that same week, I interacted with a friend who said she was paying for this package. She spoke about how convenient it is and the fact that one wouldn’t have to hassle. She also reassured me that the people organising are trustworthy and legitimate. She actually told me the name of the founder. My inclination towards this increased. However, I did not commit to it. photo

A few days later, God further prodded and directed me because that week, someone else shared a testimony with me about their experience with Speke & Grant. He had used their services last year for the very same summit and was so impressed. He had absolutely no bad thing to say. I still didn’t commit immediately.

I waited. I told God that the bills were high and I didn’t know whether I shouldn’t just hassle it out and save about 200,000 UGX or slightly more by doing my own bookings and follow-up. Then He highlighted to me that the rich live in convenience and abundance, which my friend had alluded to.

I still tarried. Then, He reminded me that this year I had committed to breaking the back of a poverty mindset for good. He said, “But what kind of money do you think the rich spend? You are scared of spending 6 million but the rich spend lots of money!”

I was stunned! It hit me that if I’m going to become rich, I’m actually going to have to spend WAY MORE than I currently spend, rather than way less, in the name of “economizing”. The point is, spending huge sums of money should not be something that scares me! Why? Because I am rich and the rich spend lots of money!

You can now see why it was a revelation for me. I have since then committed to the no-hassle package, despite not having a cent towards the package yet. I am perfectly peaceful about it too because I know I am rich and that whole package is already provided for.

Furthermore to this, our lead pastor did a teaching on “the blessing” and my attention was drawn to Abraham, in the bible who had a prosperous household of thousands. Clearly, his “bills” weren’t small.

My attention was also drawn to some of the most powerful cars I admire on the roads. I often feared to even look too long at these cars because, in mind, this was ” a thing for those people”. One day while I was riding on a boda boda, a sleek black car that looked like a range rover was turning the corner ahead of me. I was thinking about how expensive that car is, along with all related bills such as fuel and maintenance.  And God whispered in my ear, “That’s normal for a rich person.” I could swear that something within me vibrated. I could see that the poverty mindset was being challenged! 

In conclusion, the rich spend lots of money. Of course, they do not spend it unwisely, or they wouldn’t be rich in the first place; but the truth is, they don’t think cheap and they don’t compromise convenience and efficiency over a few bucks. 

I am rich and I spend lots of money wisely. The same applies to you. 

With love and sincere desire that you be released too,

Keziah.

WEEDING

For a long while, I didn’t understand what God was doing and why I seemed to oscillate around the same area even when I thought I was making progress. And then God revealed to me during season 21 that He has been weeding the garden. See, there are many things I needed to unlearn and get a new revelation about in all areas of my life: areas where complete forgiveness had not yet taken over, and areas where I simply needed to learn new truths.

 

One of the things that happened in this oscillation season is rebuke. God has been rebuking me in love about certain things and oh, have I disliked it! Very much! And yet, I know that He is my God and loving daddy so I’ve been like a kid that has been spanked, who goes into a corner to sulk and returns almost immediately to be comforted by the same parent that spanked them. I’ve done so many things in the past that I know were stupid, some out of pure ignorance and some out of stubbornness, and mistrust of my daddy. And yet He has waited patiently knowing His child well, knowing that she has to grow.

 

I have come to a place of surrender. I know that this Christian walk is a place of continual surrender so I do not claim to have it all figured out. I know the weeding journey is still on-going as I unlearn certain things and awaken my mind to new truths. I know I may still not be happy in certain areas where the weeding is happening. And yet, here I will stay, in my daddy’s arms because I know that there is no other place for me. Here is home. Here is love. Here is the very best place. Here I will grow daily in Him. Here I am daily manifesting more of what He created me to be – A PRINCESS, DAUGHTER OF THE HIGHEST KING.

 

God will not allow you to go to the next level with old mindsets. He will wait patiently as you unlearn and relearn certain things before promoting you. THE WEEDS ARE NOT WELCOME IN YOUR NEW GARDEN. He will not let it happen, and He won’t allow this, because HE LOVES YOU!

 

There is no room on the next level for certain defeating attitudes. He wants your acceleration to be unhindered.

 

With love,

Keziah.

NB: Featured Image is from mountaintoplawn.com and this blog does not claim ownership of this image.

The InsomniART Knight

His name is Emmanuel Mawero, otherwise known as the InsomniART Knight. I met him in Architecture school at Ardhi University in Tanzania. He joined three years after me but guess what? It wasn’t his first first-year in Architecture school. He had studied Architecture before in a Kenyan university and had been discontinued, not in his first or second or third year but in his repeat-third-year. Now, Architecture school is already hard enough. It’s also rather long: five years in most universities. At the time he was discontinued, his mother had just bought her car, his younger brother Roy was in college and his younger sister had just joined high school, so they had already spent quite a bit.  Part of Emmanuel’s school loan from HELB, the Kenyan loan board had been set apart for helping with the home expenses and then suddenly after these events, it wasn’t there anymore.

He says, “The thought of mum taking up another loan to help with my fees at ARU was too much, considering Roy was also in college. Looking back, I’m in awe of how far God brought us.”

God has indeed brought him from far because he not only went back to first year of Architecture school and completed all five years, he has also bagged over three years of working experience and has completed his Architecture registration. See, for those that don’t know: after Architecture school, one has to get a minimum of two years work experience and sit a fresh set of exams before they get registered to practice officially. So basically, this whole process is longer than what medical doctors go through. And yet his was almost twice as long.

Having the setback in his life meant he got the opportunity to achieve most things after his previous classmates, such as graduation, work, even marriage. That delay seemed to have slowed him down. But he didn’t give up.

He currently works for EDG & Atelier Ltd. He is also a fine artist and writer. You can follow him on Instagram and Twitter. (https://twitter.com/InsomniartK and https://instagram.com/insomniart_knight). To go to his facebook, click here.

I’m so proud to call him my friend.

Emmanuel’s story inspires me so much because it is a story of grit, of persistently pursuing that which you are convinced God has assigned you to, despite the challenges. 10 years after being discontinued from his first ARCH school, he’s achieved so much and even surpassed people who were ahead of him, despite having to start all over and “losing time”.

NEVER GIVE UP! Be faithful with your journey and assignment. (The text in the first image embedded was written by him.)

Keziah Elaine Ayikoru

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Living in the How of Now

If you must live, live purposefully.

Live wholesomely.

 

Don’t waste your days dwelling in the unknown tomorrow.

If you do, someone else, your days, might borrow.

 

Live in the now.

Live in the how.

 

If you must breathe, breathe happily.

Life is not meant to be lived grumpily.

 

I am speaking to myself too, you see

I have been living in my tomorrows

And dwelling on my yesterdays

 

So I was seldom in the moment

Letting today’s joy pass me by

Letting yesterday’s pain cripple me

 

I have lived in the now too

But what if I always did?

 

What if you and I were to pause

Not project or postpone but right this second repose

Find rest, find refreshment in simple words transferred

From my mind to yours

In a heartbeat, you, feel what I feel

Drawing from anything these words instill

In this instant you and I can live together

 

For once this instant is gone

It is gone forever.

 

And in the coming minutes, breathe on, live on.

For if you must breathe, breathe gladly

If you must live, live delightedly.

 

Not waiting for the accomplishment of your dreams

Not waiting for the end of the storm

But right here, right now

Stop and smile

Breathe in, breathe out

Live in the how of now.

 

While wondering what to post today, I reflected on my own recent activities and “busyness” and how we often get so caught up in doing activities that we often forget to just be fully present wherever we are and take in the moments as they are. More than this, we forget to enjoy life and pick something positive from every moment. It is true that not every moment will be pleasant and yes there are moments where enjoyment is extremely hard. It is natural to feel both the ups and downs but it is not natural to dwell forever in those moments.  To dwell on something is a choice. To choose a perspective about something is also a choice and depending on our chosen perspective, we can turn negative things into positive. I’m sure you’ve seen two people who are in the exact same position and the only difference is in the perspective and choice made to either overcome or be subdued by the situation. We can, by choice, make the most of every situation.

Most importantly, when you have happy moments, enjoy them with everything in you. Laugh, roll on the floor.

Be truly present with your loved ones. Enjoy them.

And finally, to live in the how of now wherever you are and whatever you are doing, give it your all and your best in that moment. That is how you empty yourself of your purpose, dreams and destiny – by being your best, always. So whether you are relaxing with family, at your job, in your business, at a wedding or at a funeral, be present. Always ask, what positive light can I add to this moment? Be love, be wisdom, be encouragement, be strength. Be JOY – a quality of contentment that remains unchanged in and out of season.

Live in the how of now.

Have a joyous and life-filled week.

With love,

Keziah.

P.S. Feature photo by Daniel Msirikale.

NOELINE KIRABO’S STORY part 1

IMG_1134Noeline is an author, writer, motivational speaker, life coach, career mentor, trainer, social entrepreneur and business development consultant. 

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It was a cloudy and threatening-to-rain day when I made my way to Kalerwe to the Kyusa offices. Noeline’s directions were precise to the dot and I got to the right office without any hiccups. Okay well, almost no hiccups. I almost went toward the wrong door until I spotted the Kyusa poster on the first door. Her welcome was warm. She sat next to an open window that showed an overgrown wild bush in the neighbouring plot. I had looked forward with anticipation to chatting with this vibrant young lady. Seated opposite her, I started asking her some questions. Her answers flowed like a river and her joyous laughter was plentiful.

Tell us a bit about your background and early childhood

“I was born in Jinja, then we relocated. I grew up in old Kampala for the biggest part of my life. It was an urban slum community and quite an experience because from a young age I got to see people hustle. I saw the challenges that people go through, the suffering and pain, the vulnerability and young girls becoming pregnant and eloping. That is where my connection comes from when it comes to community work because these are things I’ve seen and experienced. It is not something I read and researched about.

I was very sickly growing up so I had my own dynamic. On one side I was very fragile while on another side I was very adventurous so the combination was a big twist for many people. You either knew one side or the other side so my mum would go to school and argue how her daughter is purely innocent and the teachers would look at her with a you-have-no-idea-what-your-daughter-can-do look. I was quiet and reserved yet quite naughty. You’d walk into class and think ‘it can’t be her’ and yet everything tells you ‘it must be her’.” She laughed. 

“Also, because I was sickly, I was exempted from many things such as punishment and the hard work. So at some point I took the same laissez faire attitude with my academics. I knew that even if I flunked, it wouldn’t be such a big deal. This went on until either P.5 or P.6, when I was forced to repeat a class and that was a wake up call for me.

I was taller than most of the people in my class so it was on that basis that my sister insisted I don’t repeat because it would kill my esteem. She advocated for me to change schools. At that time, I was in Mengo primary and I was moved to Bat Valley primary. It was at that point that I woke up and improved my academics. I wanted to prove myself and I realized that if I just put in a little effort, I’d actually get stuff done. I was very good with the Arts. Mathematics was my biggest challenge, (laughs) I guess still is, but I’ve come a long way.

WhatsApp Image 2018-04-01 at 11.23.38For secondary I was put in Wanyange boarding school and that was a whole other experience because being sickly, away from home and having been pampered all my life, there I was. I had cousins in higher classes who watched out for me but that was my transition into independence, just learning to be able to stand. At first I became a bully then I outgrew it. I would get people to do stuff for me. Then I found my way into a leadership space though sadly at first, I used that to still get people to do stuff for me. Then I think it’s in my A level that I got to really serve and not to just get people to do stuff for me.”

 

Curious, I ask her what sparked that urge to change and use leadership for real service.

“I’d grown up in church all my life but it’s at that point that I became really serious with God. It was during my senior 4 transition. My mum fell sick and it’s in that moment that my faith meant more to me than anything. By the time I got to A-level I was really grounded and that’s what changed my perspective. I’m now a leader not to get privileges but basically to empower and mentor other people. I was a head girl and head of scripture union fellowship in my A-levels.”

How did your journey proceed after high school?

“After I did my high school, I passed and was admitted to university as a private student. I was super excited. However, I realized I wasn’t able to go to university. Mum was sick and going through chemotherapy. There was no money for university. I was brought to a place where I had to drop out not because I was daft or I didn’t want to study but because of matters out of my control. So that put me on a totally different path. To build my first CV, I did a number of online courses and that’s how I got a job which gave me formal training.”

What inspired you to get up and move forward from that discouragement of not being able to go to university?

“During that time I spent a lot of time with my mum in hospital taking care of her. Cancer, as a disease in Uganda was only starting to get on the rise and the perception toward it was similar to that of AIDS whereby it was assumed that when you get it, you die. But interestingly, my mum refused to die and it is something she verbalized. She said ‘I refuse to die’ and it would annoy me like crazy because I thought that it was her fate due to the general perception. A year later my mum actually pulled through and she is one of those cancer survivors that has no side effects…for me that was a miracle and the fact that she said she refused to die and that she needed to see her grand children, it was proof that her will kept her alive. So that’s where I picked the will to push for my dreams, to know that no matter where you are, you can actually push against the tides. I had seen her practically do it.

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I had wanted to be a journalist or lawyer so at that point I asked myself what it was about those two professions that I loved. I realized it was that I wanted to speak for the vulnerable and bring justice in some way. So I started reading very wide and realized I was more interested in humanities and that took shape for me. I hate it when people are marginalized and I want to do my part to make a difference everyday.”

So how and when did you start the different initiatives that you run and what was the progression from one to the other? Did it all happen at once?

“Definitely not all at once. My very first initiative was Kyusa which I started in 2014. I left my last formal employment in 2012 and took a gap year in 2013 where I got a scholarship to go to India and do a course in social entrepreneurship. That helped shape the idea of what I wanted to do and this led to the launch of Kyusa, my first organization that I started from scratch. It’s been an experience and it was my first baby.

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In 2015, I started getting offers from people who wanted me to do consultancy or training for them that didn’t fit within the Kyusa framework. This led to the birth of Newen consults, a company I started in partnership with a friend. Newen Consults does personal and business development consulting. Kyusa still remained my main focus though.

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Around that time, I was mentoring and coaching young women and there a was period when seven women approached me for personalized coaching and mentoring around the same time. I knew that it would be a stretch for me. I prayed about it and that gave me the idea to do group mentoring. After that group mentoring pilot, there were people on the wait list already. This gave birth to the New Generations Mentoring program. This program was branded under Newen Consults. This has been running since 2016 and now we are in the fifth cohort. It’s been an amazing journey.

While doing business consultation, one of the things that bothered me was how there was little space for faith as a woman within the different business transactions. It was this that led me to read and research about “Kingdom Business” and interestingly there was not so much information about it. I had questions like at what point do I tithe as the business? At what point do I uphold my faith in business? Is there room for it because I can’t be one person and then another when it comes to business. So for a year we had this whatsapp group where we basically discussed business as women. We talked about tithe, prayer in business, sharing the gospel with workmates and so on. The network itself just grew over time. It’s not something that I woke up and decided to do. However, because I had started the initiative, I came on board as the founding president. We structured and registered it as the Christian Women’s Entrepreneurship Network and put in place a committee that runs it. This took effect in 2017.

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Next in 2017 when I wanted to do my book launch for Find Your Significance, I published my book under Newen consults and now in addition, we offer this service as well as nurturing and training upcoming young authors and helping them launch their books.”

zcamera-20171216_102506I had more questions and there is much more wisdom to be gleaned from Noeline. Let’s drink in this knowledge together slowly and fully. The second part of this interview will be published next Sunday on this same blog.

I believe you are looking forward to it too 🙂 .  

See you next Sunday. 

Best regards,

Keziah.

The Process Matters

Have you heard the saying, “The end justifies the means”? It is commonly used to excuse an erroneous process of achieving something, claiming that all that matters is the end product. How true could this statement be?

Well, in Robert T. Kiyosaki’s book titled Increasing Your Financial IQ, he says, “…the process is more important than the goal”. He argues that the process is what refines a person’s mindset and enables them be able to achieve a certain goal.

Furthermore, Bishop T.D. Jakes in one of his sermons said, “We want promotion without process.” He spoke about a prevailing microwave generation that desires quick results without the strenuous journey of growing and building, and yet it is the process we go through that enables us to mature and place ourselves in paths of significance, where we can finally achieve impact, holistic success and worthwhile recognition where it is due.

I also believe that holistic success relies heavily on a correct process. There are no shortcuts. But what is a correct process?

First, a correct process requires a certain dying to “self” so that a new and bigger thing can be born. John 12:24 says, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it produces much grain.” This means you may need to unlearn certain habits and learn new ones. You may have to move to a new location, change the company you keep, and so on. The basic principle is making a big shift in your mind so that you are open to new ways and new possibilities. It is leaving behind old things for new things. This dying to self is not a one-time thing for success is not achieved in one go but rather a continual process that requires sensitivity to the seasons of life, so that you make decisions with wisdom within season.

In addition, a correct process inspires growth and builds character. There is an element of overcoming challenges by solving puzzles. The victory rests in perseverance and endurance. Romans 5: 3-4 says, “…but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope.” While a shady and dubious process such as bribing your way through may attain you the final goal, it will most likely leave you with little to no growth or true fulfillment. What’s more, you won’t even have the confidence to confidently share your journey for fear of being discovered. Let us instead adopt a problem-solver’s mindset and perseverance with the right attitude.

George Matthew Adams, an American newspaper columnist and founder of the George Matthew Adams Newspaper Service, once said, “ Character is greater than talent, genius, fame, money, friends – there is nothing to compare with it. A man may have all these and yet remain comparatively useless – be unhappy – and die a bankrupt in soul.
” We are building character when we tackle different challenges and endure the process faithfully without taking shortcuts.

In addition, a correct process involves a form of good mentorship directly or indirectly. I have never heard of a happily successful person that said their path did not include a precedent in the form of a person or a word. Either, they watched and learnt from a successful person’s path, listened to guidance from that person or read wise advice from an article or story. There is always a guidance factor whether it is a one-on-one close-knit mentorship, or a learning of good practices from different places. Sometimes mentorship happens by accident but a wise person will seek it out actively.

One of my favourite all time quotes is by George Matthew Adams.

He says, “There is no such thing as a ‘self-made’ man. We are made up of thousands of others. Everyone who has ever done a kind deed for us, or spoken one word of encouragement to us, has entered into the make-up of our character and of our thoughts, as well as our success.”

The journey is the most important part of our aspirations for it molds us. I know the process may be frustrating and many times we may be tempted to give up. However, let’s hold firm knowing victory lies on the other side of the challenge. Let us actively enjoy the process it will take for us to arrive at our due promotion.

Have a beautiful week ahead.

Regards,

Keziah.

NOTE: Most of the images used on this blog currently, are downloaded from the internet through random searches. Where an image source is not acknowledged, this blog DOES NOT claim ownership of it and we therefore acknowledge alternative ownership. Thank you.

29 at 29

This 4th December, 2017, I turn 29. As I countdown the minutes, I reflect on a few lessons I’ve learnt. These are the 29 that came to mind this cool evening. I’m still learning, still growing, getting wiser and stronger. A happy birthday to me. Have a great read.

  1. Keep God at the center. I must keep my focus on Him, His character and who I am in Him, keeping grounded and rooted in His faithfulness, peace and abundance. All else follows this.
  2. Family is prime and friends are a special kind of family. It is true what they say – blood is thicker than water. I really thank God for my family. They have shown me what it means to be family. It is a special kind of unconditional setting where one can find acceptance and support in every kind of circumstance. We aren’t perfect but we are family and that’s what truly matters. And then there are friends – the people who don’t have to love you but they do anyway and go above and beyond to be there for you. Friends are a special kind of family and I should always treat them specially for they have chosen to love me.
  3. Self matters. This is a lesson that I am still learning. It is so easy to get caught up in work and errands and leave little to no time for myself. I need to schedule time for dates with me where I treat myself or just relax.
  4. Rejection is not a confirmation of failure. You simply need to get back up and try again elsewhere or at a different time. Most people who have had some level of success have also tasted some level of rejection. I’ve applied for a number of programs I haven’t been accepted for and yet I have also applied for a number of programs that I have been accepted for. So, move on or try again later. Try and try some more. The only sure failure is when you haven’t tried at all.
  5. Great things are rarely achieved in isolation. Build valuable networks. You know how they say your network is your net-worth, there is truth to this. The solutions one seeks will more often than not come from within ones already built network.
  6. Hard work never killed anyone. My mum keeps telling me this and I can testify that no matter how many nights I have stayed up working or how much effort I have had to apply to certain things, I am still alive, still growing, still learning and getting better everyday. Some say work smart, not hard. I think smart work does not eliminate the need for hard work but it simply makes it better and more efficient. So, work hard and smart!
  7. Use what you have. No matter how much or how little you have in terms of resources, you’ll probably still feel you need more. I’ve learnt to look at my present circumstances and create solutions around my available resources. If I do this, I learn that I actually have more than I thought I did.
  8. Discipline is key in order to get things done. I’ve learnt that it’s important to free myself from clutter and focus on what I have set out to do. Commitment is a word that goes very well with discipline. One has to be committed to their family, friends, plans and goals. Without discipline, you won’t finish much in life. Excuses stink. My friend just told me this, this evening when I didn’t post my article on time for the third time. When he said it, “ouch!” was my first reaction but there is so much truth to this. If something or someone is important to you, you’ll find ways to meet your commitments. Period!
  9. Be sensitive to changing seasons. It is crucial for me to be sensitive to seasons as they come and go so that I am never pining for something outside its season. I have wasted a lot of time “crying” for things that are to be fulfilled in future such as marriage. In contrast, I have also spent too much time crying over the spilt milk of a season past such as a failed relationship. However, I have found that when I simply focus on the season I am in and do my best to get the best out of that season, I am more fulfilled and happier.
  10. “When someone shows you who they are, believe them”. This is a quote by the late Dr. Maya Angelou. I have learnt to stop waiting for people to change or expecting them to. If they change, they will find me wherever I am and we will pick it up from there. However, I will not wait on people on the basis of their latent potential alone. If someone shows me who they are, I will believe them. This does not mean I don’t have faith in people. I do. I will simply not have certain expectations of others when they don’t have those expectations of themselves to begin with.
  11. Wait it out. When faced with a tough decision and I am in doubt, more often than not, the right decision is to wait to out until I have clarity over which direction to take. I need to avoid making decisions in haste or panic.
  12. Perception can change yellow to black and viceversa. How we perceive things has the power to change a rainy day into a sunny day and viceversa. My ability to keep the right perspective determines how I make use of any situation. Last week I had a bad experience with a client. I could have easily given up but instead, I chose to view the experience as a lesson that could help me propel forward. I did my best and came out victorious. The end product was a happy client and a wiser me.
  13. I am unique and that is a potential, not a disadvantage. In the past, I struggled with the aspects that make me unique, wanting instead to fit in and perhaps be more acceptable communally. I learnt though that stifling my various unique abilities prevents me from truly living in abundance of all I can be. I owe no one an explanation of my uniqueness. However I owe my God and myself an explanation and accountability for all my unique qualities, how they’ve grown and impacted others.
  14. People matter more than what they can or can’t do. Treat all people well and with respect. Human beings are flawed and prone to err. People have disappointed me but they still matter. When one disappoints me, I can choose to look at that act they did in isolation for eternity or I can choose to have a well-rounded perspective and endeavor to still maintain peace between us. Maintaining peace does not mean I have to make them my best friend. It simply means I need to forgive and give grace still. Sometimes, in the case of the ones close to me, getting past a wrongdoing can even stand to bring us closer.
  15. Ask for forgiveness. This is one of the most basic and yet most powerful lessons I have learnt. Saying sorry when I’ve wronged someone is priceless and acts like a pain balm on a wounded area. It provides a conducive environment for emotional wounds to heal.
  16. Knowing myself is paramount for me to choose the right direction and path for my life. In addition, knowing myself is not a one-time activity but rather a life-long process. There are things I will love and do for a season and others for lifetime. Self-discovery is a journey I have grown to love and be an active participant of.
  17. Depression is real but it can be actively overcome. I’ve been depressed a number of times for different reasons. The first step in getting over it is simply admitting the depression and then actively finding a positive solution that works in that season and time. I don’t think there is a one-size-fits-all solution but being cognizant of a depressed state helps one choose to step out of it. It’s like wearing a dirty cloth and acknowledging it is dirty so that you can change. Some will deny that it’s dirty, others will accept the dirty cloth as their fate but one has to choose to change and I chose to not be depressed.
  18. Negative feedback can be good. Being in design fields, my work is constantly subject to critique. I have learnt that the people who out-rightly tell me the things that they do not like are the ones that have pushed me outside my comfort zone to grow and perfect my craft(s).
  19. Someone who has to lose you in order to appreciate you, may never truly value you. This needs a longer post for elaboration but in short, someone who truly knows your value in their life, will not need to lose you first and if they do, they’ll run back quickly to apologize instead of sauntering back with laxity. I have learnt this the hard way.
  20. Be authentic. With all the pressure that this world holds, one must still stay true to oneself and share their true selves with others. Being real and authentic about my thoughts and experiences makes me more relatable. I have found that there is less pressure when I am simply being me and sharing different facets of my life in the most genuine way I can. I let people know that I have struggles but I also let them know that I have great victories. Every human being is dynamic and multi-dimensional. It is therefore pretentious to project only one side or a false image altogether.
  21. I am my own brand. Wherever I go, I am my own brand. I have learnt that every detail counts, right from the words that come out of my mouth to the hairstyle I wear. The way I look and speak says something about me and it is foolishness to think that it doesn’t matter. We live in a world where the way a person perceives you starts on the outside. It is therefore my job to project the right image and give people a good “brand experience” of myself.
  22. All the talent in the world is irrelevant if it doesn’t meet an actual need. I have learnt to find ways to use my talent to serve someone in some way. I believe God did not give unique abilities to people for self-gratification only. The bigger purpose for talent, in my opinion, is that we would have something uniquely special to offer our communities.
  23. Be proactive. The best gift we have as humans is the gift of choice and I think the worst crime a person can do is to deprive others of their right to choice. Being proactive means you understand that you are ultimately in control of your life. You are responsible for the way your life turns out so instead of being passive and reactive only, be proactive. Go out and seek the opportunities you need. Seek ways to change your circumstances if you are not pleased with them. In the times I have been proactive, I have gained a sense of control and power over my circumstances.
  24. Opportunities follow purpose. Great opportunities usually follow people who are walking in their purpose and excelling. I have made it my mission to ensure that I am always walking in what I believe is my purpose whether I am writing an article or designing a building etc. Purpose, to me, is not an element that exists in isolation on some utopian level. It is a down-to-earth reality that can create a positive difference in everything I do.
  25. It’s not all about money. It’s important to give back to people and to do favours for people with no monetary expectation just like others do the same for me. Not all of life can be counted in monetary terms and non-monetary value is even more important ultimately.
  26. It takes time. Success rarely comes instantly, Big dreamers like me want to “conquer the world” metaphorically speaking. However these big dreams take time to mature. A lot of work and perseverance has to go in to them.
  27. Gratitude is the right attitude. Being grateful for what I have gives me positive energy and surprisingly attracts more blessings into my life. Gratitude attracts a higher altitude!
  28. I have to have faith in me. Self-doubt is one of the things I have to overcome in order to move forward and move beyond my self-imposed limitations. Having faith in me has set my sight beyond my present circumstances for I have faith in what I can do and where these abilities will take me. Therefore when I encounter a temporary setback like I often do, I simply remind myself of that faith and I am then able to pick up the pieces and move forward.
  29. Be present and enjoy the journey because life is real art. It is said that art is an imitation of life. That tells me that life, itself, is actually the most authentic art. I am responsible for making a great art piece out of my life! This is an on-going lesson and I will end with this poem I wrote a while back that says it quite aptly.

Living

If you must live, live purposefully.

Live wholesomely.

Don’t waste your days in the unknown tomorrow.

If you do, someone else, your days, might borrow.

Live in the now.

Live in the how.

If you must breathe, breathe happily.

Life is not meant to be lived grumpily.

I am speaking to myself too, you see,

I have been living in my tomorrows

And dwelling on my yesterdays

So I was seldom in the moment

Letting today’s joy pass me by

Letting yesterday’s pain cripple me

I have lived in the now too

But what if I always did?

What if you and I were to pause

Not project or postpone but right this second repose

Find rest, find refreshment in simple words transferred

From my mind to yours

In a heartbeat, you, feel what I feel

Drawing from anything these words instill

In this instant you and I can live together

For once this instant is gone

It is gone forever.

And in the coming minutes, breathe on, live on.

For if you must breathe, breathe gladly

If you must live, live delightedly.

Not waiting for the accomplishment of your dreams

Not waiting for the end of the storm

But right here, right now

Stop and smile

Breathe in, breathe out

Live in the how of now.

© copyright

Keziah Elaine Ayikoru

 

The Know Yourself Sequels: Wrap-Up

How do multipotentialites manage to keep up with everything? The last two posts gave suggestions of how to manage various interests and activities and thrive.

From speaking to some multipotentialites, one thing is very apparent – you can’t do it without a schedule.

You can’t get very far without scheduling your different activities. We need to be intentional about how we spend our days and we need to have a plan in advance. You may not have every little detail worked out to the last T but have a rough sketch in the least. It is best to plan your whole week out at the beginning of the week and then make adjustments where necessary as the week proceeds. In line with keeping the end in mind, know what you want to achieve from all your activities in your long-term vision. This will help you have a clear focus and avoid you getting sidetracked.

A friend, who prefers not to be named, does business development at Deloitte full time and in addition, he is a writer. I asked him how he manages to find time to write.

He said, “It is a deliberate decision for which I create time. Writing matters to me…”.

He writes either early in the morning, or on his commute home from work. If you refer to the last post, you will notice that writing has been built in as a routine activity and slotted into a part of the day he sees best fit for this activity.

More to schedules, you need to rest, and put rest into the schedule too. Without rest, you’ll experience burnout. Our human bodies work like machines. At some point, they need to be repaired and refreshed.

In your planning, it is important to have SMART goals with grand and small milestones. Celebrate even the small milestones attained because they will give you energy to propel forward.

As a multipotentialite, you need to remember that your various interests and abilities are a unique asset to you. If you learn to harness all your “super powers” and thrive in every area, you become an even bigger asset to yourself, your community and the world at large.

According to Emilie Wapnick, a multipotentialite who gave a very popular TED talk on multipotentiality, here are a few benefits of being a multipotentialite: synthesis, rapid learning and adaptability.

Synthesis refers to the ability to merge different fields to come up with one new field. We can draw from our various interests and come up with new innovations at the intersection points of all our interests.

Rapid Learning refers to the ability to easily and quickly learn something new. She says multipotentialites are not afraid of beginning new things because they are often beginners when learning a new skill or venturing into a new area of interest. They are keen to soak up knowledge and learn.

Adaptability is a key ingredient for a multipotentialite because they need to morph easily and put on their various hats. Currently, my every week requires me to be a blogger, writer, architecture lecturer, fashion designer, business owner and director. I must morph from one to the next seamlessly. I have committed to these, in this season and must see them through on a consistent basis.  I regularly wear some of my other hats when the need arises however within my current season, the ones mentioned are my main focus.

To wind up, this has been a very engaging and fulfilling series for me. As I mentioned in my first post, watch or listen to Emilie Wapnick’s TED talk. It was a very big eye-opener for me when I first watched it. Here is the link https://www.ted.com/talks/emilie_wapnick_why_some_of_us_don_t_have_one_true_calling

Thank you for reading.

Wishing you the very best in your eclectic and unique pursuits.

Keziah.

NOTE: Most of the images used on this blog currently, are downloaded from the internet through random searches. Where an image source is not acknowledged, this blog DOES NOT claim ownership of it and we therefore acknowledge alternative ownership. Thank you.

The Know Yourself Sequels: The Third One-SEASON

My church, Worship Harvest-Jazzville, is amazing. I am ever so grateful that in this particular season of my life, this is the place and space where I go on Sundays to do some “garage time” as we call it.

We usually have a time in the service where you can talk to a leader and pray over anything. Perhaps over two months ago during this prayer time, I went to one of my church pastors with a matter I felt I needed prayer for. I told him I needed prayer for direction because I want to accomplish a lot since I have a number of varied interests and ventures. I needed to know how to do everything in the time I have. He asked why I was so concerned about time.

To which I said, “I am concerned because I feel I am lagging behind in certain areas and it’s hard to focus on everything at once.”

He gave me advice I’ll never forget. He said that God, who gave me all these abilities and interests is not worried about time. He made no mistake in giving me all the gifts I possess and has a purpose for all these gifts. What I simply need to be cognizant of is doing things within the right season. I should therefore ask God what season I needed to be in. Knowing the season would help determine my focus more.

I am grateful I received that advice. God is a God of seasons. He accomplishes different things in our lives at different times. The pieces of the puzzle come together eventually, in beautiful and wondrous ways. He knows the end picture. We need to simply walk in obedience and trust every season.

If you are a person of multiple interests and talents, knowing what season you are in, helps you focus on the right thing at the right time. It would have been severely damaging for me if I had started my fashion business in my fourth year of Architecture school when my fashion ‘light switch’ went on. My priority at that time and in that season was to excel in my Architecture school. I am glad I stayed on that path. Excelling in Architecture school opened up very significant doors in the next phase of my life after school. I got my first official job because of that excellence. And that job allowed me to think independently and grow even more. It is within the duration of that job that I started my fashion start-up on the side. My very first clients were my workmates. It is within that job that I concretized my love for both Architecture and Fashion design. The point I am making is staying focused on achieving the goal of the season you are in will ensure that you successfully move to the next season. Each time you learn something new, you are growing. It is important to highlight that all you willfully learn, even when it may seen unrelated will serve to make your overall unique story even more beautiful. The dots will connect even better than you could ever imagine. I know of a practicing lawyer who runs a successful interior design and landscaping business. Isn’t that amazing? Her story is unique and so is yours.

In my experience, I have learnt that different seasons come with different demands. I would like to classify, in my own way, some of the general seasons that I feel exist in any venture.

Inception: In this stage, your idea is conceived. You discover you have a love for something and that you can do it, and would like to pursue it further.

Incubation: This is the period when you are getting ready to launch your venture. A lot of research and planning goes on in this phase.

Launch: This is self-explanatory. It’s when your venture, whatever it is, has kicked off and is no longer just an idea on paper or in your mind.

Practice & Growth: This phase is characterized by a lot of movement. You are moving your venture forward by actively practicing it. Many unforeseen circumstances may arise in this phase. The key is to persist and stick it out.

Excellence: Here, one has achieved their goal and is moving even higher to greater things.

*Pause and Reflect: I really wouldn’t call this an independent season in itself. This is the time for you to reflect on your progress and hit reset or refresh if need be. There are times when things may not go as you planned. It is okay to pause and reflect. It will give you fresh momentum to proceed.

Different ventures have different seasons and they may overlap. You may be in the incubation period for one of your ventures while you are in the practice & growth period of another. For example, my inception stage for fashion happened in my fourth year of Architecture school, when I was already on the path towards a career in Architecture.

In addition, some ventures may have concurrent seasons. I currently lecture Architecture part-time. It’s a recent development. I do this while I continue to practice and grow my fashion business. They are both in the practice & growth stage.

To know what you need to be doing, and when you need to be doing it, sharpen your sense of recognizing the season you are in and learning the lessons that need to be learnt in that season. Excelling in that season is your key to moving to the next season.

BE IN SEASON.

I’ll end with the words of King Solomon in Ecclesiastes, “There is a time for everything.”

Next time, we’ll look deeper at how to lay strategies to accomplish your varied interests.

Until then, with love, Keziah.

NOTE: Most of the images used on this blog currently, are downloaded from the internet through random searches. Where an image source is not acknowledged, this blog DOES NOT claim ownership of it and we therefore acknowledge alternative ownership. Thank you.