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I woke up this morning to a message from a friend of mine ‘You have to watch Survivor’s Remorse SO3E08, it’s the one!’.

Thankfully for me I’d taken a much needed day off, so was easy enough to watch it immediately.

The last few episodes of Survivors Remorse have been so enlightening, dealing with important issues such as colorism, circumcision etc, in such a way that reminds me why I want to create content. So I was eager to watch this episode.

I watched the entire episode wondering where the amazing message or insightful commentary was going to come in. I didn’t get it, they were just negotiating a contract. Being an entrepreneur – and so is the said friend – I thought the message was on how to negotiate a contract, how your kind deeds are remembered for positive negotiations etc. (It is kind of true). I got to the end and then had the ‘aha’ moment.

There were great nuggets of insight in the negotiation process, but the biggest were self worth and trust.

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The last few months have really tested my belief in myself and what we (my siblings and I) set out to do. I found myself angrier than usual at everything. We met people that we thought would be great to join our team and they turned the jobs down. I took it personally. Did they not know how much they would learn? Did they not know the fantastic work we get to do, even if it’s not always publicly visible? I was crushed.

In the meantime the online views on my talkshow were getting lower each week. I couldn’t understand it, but I was also focussed on how to push my main business forward. I just couldn’t focus on the talkshow at that point, but it was equally crushing that it didn’t seem to be resonating the way I would have liked it too. Didn’t help that a few days later I met someone who purposely sought me out to tell me everything that was wrong with my show. Don’t get me wrong, I can take constructive criticism, but there was just too many other things going on – you know that quote about being nice to people because you don’t know what they’re going through, at that point, I truly understood what it meant. I thought I was at my breaking point.

That experience taught me something. As much as I’m critical of celebrating mediocrity, and boy is there a lot of mediocrity in Zambia, you have to respect the effort, and remember most people are doing things with small budgets and doing things with no experience, in industries that are in infancy stages. While I hope they know it can be better, I know and understand how tough it can be to chase your dreams, especially in this environment.

But back to Survivors Remorse. The episode reminded me to remember how much I have achieved and that while I still have a ways to go to where I’m trying to get, I can’t lose focus on my path. People, circumstances and more, will come into your life to test you, but when you reconnect with who you truly are, embrace your greatness, all of that is water off a duck’s back.

You have to believe in yourself. Not because no one else does, but because so many people, people you may not even know, believe in you, are watching you, are rooting for you. Your actions do enable others to walk through the doors you open, to follow their own dreams. But it all starts with you believing in yourself first. Use that inner strength to weather the bad storms, because it is true, the darkest hour really is before the dawn (or after the rain, the sun comes out), learn to dance in the rain and ride out the storm (OK, I’ve thrown in pretty much every cliche I can think of, but it’s true, and I can’t emphasis this point anymore!). You don’t need anyone to validate you, you are enough. If your regular cheerleaders aren’t around, be your own cheerleader!

So no matter what you might be going through, don’t break, but do take time to regroup, recalibrate and remember your goals. Namaste (I bow to the divine in you)

I’ve put myself on a shopping ban, not because I really wanted to but because people were saying my shopping was excessive.

I disagree. I’m a very focussed shopper, I see what I want and I buy it. I actually hate shopping, so it’s rare than you’ll see me shopping for hours, that’s only if I end up with the real shopaholic – Mwitwa. That girl can shop! And she really enjoys it!

My real problem is that I’m a spendaholic. I feel the need to spend money. Before I’d spend money going out (drinks on me for everybody!) or buying food (ha! and I wonder how I put on all the weight). But then I looked around and thought I had nothing to show for the money I earned. Really stupid, in retrospect.

So that’s how my interest in shopping started. It started with cute dresses from H&M, and DP, then I moved up to Zara, and then Karen Millen. As I earned more money I started wanting the things I saw on TV, or the stuff that R&B and rappers talked about (really a big mistake). When I bought my first pair of Jimmy Choos, I felt a high, you couldn’t imagine. I felt like my hard work was paying off. What little girl doesn’t dream of a pair of Choos. Because I’m the classical kind of girl, I wanted Choos more than I wanted the more trendy and fashionable red bottoms of Christian Louboutains.

Ever since then I’ve craved that high again, and I only seem to find it when I get a high-price item. But my friends think I spend excessively, so I got to the point where I don’t tell them what I’ve bought and hope they don’t open my closest when they come to my house!

I do find it frustrating that people question my spending habits, but if I’m not putting it on a credit card, then why can’t I buy it? I like buying these designer or expensive items because it does give me a sense of pride, that I’ve worked this hard and have this purchasing power.

But more recently I’ve had another lightbulb moment. It’s all well and good to have this stuff for my own personal pleasure, but how is it helping my personal net worth?

Recently I bought my first car – a Landrover (a Freelander actually) – second hand, but I was still so chuffed, felt quite grown up. I got it because of my move to Zambia, need wheels, unlike in London which has a relatively good, but frustrating public transport system. And that led me to thinking, if I can get a car, I can get a house!

Now that I’m focussed on getting my first house in Lusaka, I do have to kerb my spending, but every once in a while, I slip but I’m trying to be strong. It’s also hard when shopping for expensive goods gives me so much pleasure! I have to try and focus on the pleasure I’ll get from shopping for accessories for my house!

In 2011, I hope more people will stop listening to these songs and think buying the Gucci, Prada and the Louis is important and start focusing on increasing our personal net worth.

I’d like to say that I have been super busy on my route to discovering my personal legend, sadly that wouldn’t be true. I have been dreaming about my personal legend more than actually trying to walk the route to it. I guess this is what so many people do, why so few people truly find success, spending more time day dreaming than doing.

My personal life is run very differently from my professional life. But since I am somewhat successful in my professional life I have decided to apply some techniques that have made me successful. The most obvious one being planning. Ok, I’m not so great with planning, but I’m getting there. I figured now, more than ever I need a plan, at least a short term one.

To add to my organisation, or to take that first step in my planning, I signed up for the project management software tool, Huddle, managing your life is like managing a project after all. If you know what the goal is, you can figure out the steps to get there. SImple right?

If only. But I believe a step, any step, is better than none. So I’ve created a spreadsheet, I’ve done a document with comparisons and a checklist. It’s not all that I need, but it’s a start. And that’s the important thing to remember. There will be detours. The sofa will feel better than going out in the cold, the TV show will be more inviting than reading that book that will guide you. The detours aren’t going anywhere, we’ll have to try to resist them, but when we don’t, we can’t beat ourself up about it. At least you made a start. Of course the more detours you take, the longer it’ll take to reach your goal, your personal legend.

Tomorrow is a new day and a step in the direction of this personal legend of mine. I can’t wait.