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Keep moving, Keep trying, you will make it eventually!

I really love my apartment and I believe my friends and family love it too. It has this beautiful nature reserve feel with rabbits and peacocks constantly gracing us with their presence. Sounds great neh! But there is a slight problem; the network coverage at my place is horrible!

When I first moved in I was so frustrated! Receiving and making calls was a nightmare and to top it all accessing Facebook and Instagram was mission impossible… I remember I had to constantly move around the house to find a spot where the coverage was strong enough. In other days if I had a really important call, I would go to my car and sit there for hours just to have a conversation.

But the good news is I don’t struggle as often as I did before. I’ve managed to find two spots, one in my lounge next to the TV and the second one is on the right corner of my bed. Lesson I learnt through all this?  Our lives and dreams are like that struggle I had/have with my network coverage; you have to keep trying until you find what works for you. I don’t know how many stories I have heard of successful people who tried 99 times and on the 100th time their breakthrough and success finally came.

I think about my own recent case, after applying to various institutions and being rejected, I finally got into one of the best universities in the world. This is even better than what I had initially thought and wanted. It’s true when they say sometimes God’s response is not No but Not Now. But we will never miss what he has already destined for us.

My enjoy life tip is this: Just try again and again and again…after all history teaches that consistency is the mother of success…

The heartache of expectations…

I think India Arie rightly stated it when she uttered the words “…I am not my hair; I am not this skin; I am not your expectations no no…” As I was cooking and humming some melodies in my kitchen, I had one of those reflective moments about life. I thought about some of the people I had encountered and some of the decisions I had made.

All of a sudden it hit me!  I realized that most of my disappointments in life, had come from relationships where I had expected too much from people.  Having expectations is a part and parcel of every relationship.

Think about it, at work our bosses have expectations of us to deliver and do great work. We also have expectations that they in turn would be supportive and guide us accordingly, so that we deliver. When one feels their expectation is not being met that can cause a lot of unhappiness. In our relationships with our friends and partners, we often get disappointed and hurt if somehow an expectation is not met.

I have had fights with friends and family, because they had expected me to say something in a particular situation or do something and I didn’t do it. I just really think sometimes we live life measuring people with our own individualized scales. How accurate those scales are, I don’t know?

Just because you think I must do or say something, doesn’t mean I think the same thing and that’s okay because we are different people.

As people, sometimes we are really not diligent in terms of how we handle our hearts…we lay it open anyhow, and we wonder why we get heartaches. We have to be diligent with protecting our hearts, after all, the issues of life flow from it.

Am I suggesting that you go through life without expectations?! No! Not at all. All I am saying is, we have to learn somehow not to let our hearts get rooted in unrealistic expectations.

My enjoy life tip is this: Just live your life fulfilling God’s will. Look to HIM and don’t be so overly concerned about noticing everything people do or don’t do, about what they say or don’t say…live with a heart full of joy!

 

Role model…but why?

I was watching the national lottery show and a particular rapper, who recently rose to fame in South Africa was on. And of course he had that rapper swag thing going on wearing his sunglasses in studio. At the end of the show they asked him to say a message to encourage the youth as a role model.  “Ah! Fascinating stuff I thought to myself”. It wasn’t what he said that fascinated me because honestly I don’t remember much of what he said…

What fascinated me was the thought of how society overly admires people in the media (actors, singers, soccer players, televangelist, etc.) sometimes even boarding on the bridge of “worship”.

I remember watching Michael Jackson concerts and Justin Bieber concerts and marvelled at the millions of women shedding floods of tears even to a point where some of them would collapse out of sheer excitement.

It’s so amazing how we place so much emphasis on famous people to a point that if they make a mistake (which they entitled to make as human beings) the world is shattered.

The one question that I have always asked is, yes we love them and yes they are great at what they do, but, why the exalted status of being deemed role models?

Is it because we see them through the lens of the “electric box” that they are deemed role models?  Are we not responsible for creating “false realities” with our young people? We have fed them the notion that they should only look to be like the people they see on their television screens.

It’s true that most of the people we see on our television screens are doing the things they love, but at the end of the day, they are also “working” for their bread and butter just like the rest of us. We have millions of ordinary men and women who make significant contributions to society and most of them, the world would never know. Now don’t get me wrong, I really love some famous people as well and I celebrate them, but, when someone makes a mistake I don’t live my life shattered because I acknowledge that everyone is playing their part in this lifetime.

I really think we should rethink the concept of excessively exalting famous people to being role models and I think it’s time that we all acknowledge that somehow everyone is a role model to somebody and that we all ought to live our lives with a consciousness that whatever we do in life we are passing the baton for the continual development of humanity.

 

I would rather stand out than fit in…

It’s so interesting that when we talk of peer pressure we often use it in the context of teenage hood. But I would like to argue that if you think peer pressure is a thing of the past, well think again my friend!

The thing is, when we mature into adulthood peer pressure is a bit different then how we experienced it as teenagers. When we were teenagers our friends really knew how to persuade us into doing things and we would succumb because of the overwhelming pressure to fit in.

When we become more crystallized in our different lives in adulthood the pressure to succumb is more a battle of ideologies.

This was sparked as I recalled various conversations I have had with different people and some of my friends. If I am honest also, I have been in situations where I didn’t truly stand up for an idea I knew deep in my core was right and was what I believed in.

Sometimes we are caught in those moments where you the only one in a gathering who shares a particular viewpoint and the people amidst make it seem like their viewpoint/s are progressive and yours is primitive or stupid. Truth is as individuals we generally subscribe to different value systems and in some cases we may divert to similar value systems. But what I have found is that when your ideas are not part of the norm, you are considered “Judgemental”, “Primitive”, or even “Closed-minded” in your thinking.

I will give an example, some of my friends and I embarked on a journey of purity and we have made statements such as we have chosen to wait again and we will give our bodies to our future spouses. What surprised me is the contestations this statement received from women.

Women would argue that this is a traditionalist or religious mentality and that as women we ought to rewrite the requirements of history and make certain ideologies socially relevant for our time. We are told that as women we should own our sexuality.  I have no objection to this statement but I love the point Sarah Jakes made when she said “a lot of women have become Masters in sexuality but Novices in intimacy”. And she captured the very essence of my heart. I am not looking for a quick in and out sexual experience…I want deep intimacy that translates into worshiping God through my body with my husband.

I think I am coming to a point where I really don’t care what anyone thinks about the choices I have chosen to make. I will not compromise my heart in order to fit into society’s socially approved or relevant boxes. If I am to be called a religious zealot or be misunderstood, then so be it. After all history teaches us that it is the revolutionaries and the non-conformists that change the world.

I often echo that in a world full of norms I want to be an outlier. It comes as no surprise that when you become an outlier in your standards you will make others uncomfortable. As people we can put ourselves under pressure to impress the next person by trying too hard. We “lie” and compromise our hearts because we fear that telling the truth may make others feel uncomfortable.

Even when it comes to my dreams some people have so easily expressed their opinion about how life doesn’t work the way I think. Well let me say this, If you want to limit yourself based on what you see and have been exposed to…by all means go ahead…but please don’t stand in my way as I dare to dream the impossible dream!

My enjoy life tip is this: Stand! I am not saying stand still and not be progressive but I am emphasizing that Stand for that which you know is right, stand for your dreams. Your dream is not for everyone but for someone and that someone is YOU! So please even if you standing alone…please Stand!

 
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