Friday, 8 May 2015
There comes a time in a woman’s life were she has to decide what kind of woman she wants to be despite everything happening around her. Despite what she’s done and what she failed to do. I called those periods Shock Period. When unexpected events occur simultaneously and everything seems like it’s tumbling down around you. At those moments you realize that you’re stronger than you thought. In the process of picking up and rearranging the pieces in your life you begin to find hidden treasures in yourself, things you never knew were there in the first place.
Rejection is a painful thing, but it’s also a good thing because it makes you look within yourself. To find out different dimensions of whom you are. It makes you want to be more and grow more, to have something to offer the world. It makes you humble. With humility you can’t take God’s grace on your life for granted. You should work extra hard and smart to be anything you want to be. My parents would always say, “You really have to shine your eye and put your eye on the ground to survive in this world”. That expression makes so much sense right now. They were trying to tell me, I shouldn't leave my head in the clouds, I should bring it down, be realistic and aware of my surroundings. This shouldn't stop me from pursuing my dreams but I should be rooted in solid values.
So how are you going to have your feet on the ground and reach for the stars simultaneously? You have to grow, you really have to grow. You have to have a really strong foundation to balance out the heights you aspire to reach. Take note, you’re going to look like a weirdo because more people would rather tread on easier paths. You have to have strong adaptability skills, to weather any climate presented to you. You’re not going to see eye to eye with everyone and that’s okay. You have to take care of your body, mind and spirit, because balance is going to be a very important area of your life, every area of your life has to be fed and nourished. Like an Iroko tree, you would stand out.
So ladies, naivety isn't cute, neither is it a virtue, shine your eye!
Thursday, 2 April 2015
It takes a certain privilege to talk about vulnerability, the way Brene Brown talks about it, like it’s the answer to all life’s problems. I come from a country were ideas like, vulnerability, human rights, women empowerment and appreciation of fine arts is a privilege. The ideas mentioned are all true proofs of social class, not wealth but class. You may have lots of money, but decide to live in a hut; walk barefooted or eat with your hands. It doesn’t make you a humble wealthy person; it means you fear that the food may run away if you waste time with utensils.
Most people believe that the deciding factors of true class boils down to three things, skin complexion, gadgets and accents. Skin complexion; bleaching because having a dark complexion means that we stand under the blazing sun all day but we need to look like we just got out of an air conditioned car going into our air conditioned homes. Accents; there are only two people that have the right to have American or British accents. If you were borne and breed or if you have dual citizenship from any of the stated nationalities, other countries don’t apply. With that being said, how come no one comes back with an Indian, Chinese, Germany or Arabian accent after 4 years of schooling but develop Yankee and Janded accents after 2 weeks of vacation? Gadgets; owning a phone, laptop, tab, worth more than 3 months of your salary is only advisable when you know it’s going to yield profit, if it’s just a loss, which is always the case, then you’re just being stupid.
Vulnerability isn’t just a privilege but something you have to work very hard for. You must be strong, very strong, you must beat all odds, shame the doubters before you begin to realize that you have to slow down, let people in, seek advice, ask for help and be humble. My mother always told me, God reminds over achievers, great men and women of industry that they are human by making them ill. Your system shuts down and stops functioning properly when it’s been worked to its limits without proper care. You have to burn, before you burn up and after burning up, using everything that is within you, then you earn the privilege of vulnerability.
Wednesday, 25 March 2015
I was once told, “If you do what you love, you’ll never have to work a day in your life”. What so wrong about working in the first place? I wish I were told, “If you work really hard and smart, you’ll never be in want a day in your life. You may be overwhelmed with work, tried and pulled in so many directions, but you’ll find fulfillment in ways you can never imagine.
Anything worth doing should be done well. In order to do anything well, there must be a significant amount of stress in your life. I recently watched a Ted Talk about the benefits of stress and the summary of the talk was, “Stress becomes courage, when you consciously acknowledge the fact that it’s a health part of the human experience”.
So stop looking for what you’re passionate about, jumping from one thing to another. Stop being confused as hell, while your mates are married with kids.
List down your priorities in life and state them proudly, because being honest with oneself is the best thing you can do for yourself. Ask yourself if you are willing to go hungry for your passion. Also ask yourself if you’re willing to sacrifice your family’s comfort and security for your passion. There is nothing wrong with being passionate about something, but passion might not be enough to put food on the table and send your kids to school.
So if you’re in your 20’s, (PS. There’s still hope for you if you’re not), stop spending all your time trying to find yourself. Find yourself, but don’t let it consume you, because you have an entire lifetime to figure yourself out. Start being productive and pick yourself up from whatever ill mode that consumes you because we are all uncertain and confused we just got better at hiding our insecurities.
Sunday, 22 March 2015
Hi, I don’t know if you remember me, anyway I've been reading your timeline, tweets, snap chats and watching your YouTube videos and it's really interesting that you've come to the point where you've had enough of the 'nonsense'. I've gone through this stage, even though it wasn't extreme and I never label myself as an atheist, I would call myself an open minded seeker. I just had to ask questions. I know you have this urgent need to expose the 'phonies', and call it as it is, but you seem a bit vindictive. It's painful thinking about how the Word of God was used to make us do whatever they wanted, the contradictions, the battle between right and wrong. The guilt, don't get me started on the guilt, the sense of duty versus what actually has to be done, lol. After my moment of self-awareness, I didn't blame religion or anyone, I blamed myself. I still believe in God. But the funny thing about this white supremacy thing is, atheism is kinda like Christianity when we worshiped deities.I've learnt to keep on seeking and reaching knowing that my relationship with God isn't dependent on any man or institution. P.s, I commend you for your bravery; don't let hate and resentment be the driving force of this journey to self-enlightenment, the joy of self-realization should be your driving force. God bless
Thursday, 12 March 2015
Life is a garden, God the gardener and owner of our individual gardens which he gives to us. God places little exciting treasures like Easter eggs, potted plants, beautiful vases and ornaments. They always blend with our gardens, so we don’t really notice them, but when we do, we ask ourselves, why we didn’t notice it all along. Oprah calls these little moments Ah Ha moments and that’s the perfect way to describe them. I discovered one recently.
Like Magic, Beauty and Perfection are both illusions that only become real based on how good you are as an Illusionist. We must master this, take hold of it and never let it go. It’s draws people in, while the real work is done without their prying eyes. It’s done effortlessly, with precision and a lot of practice. People might laugh, stare and wonder, why you’re feeling yourself these days, but if you do this well enough, with sleepless nights, tears and hunger, you will find perfection and no one would ever question your powers. So do your squats and don’t let boys be mean to you. Suck in that belly and wear that corset because Lord knows that, even Beyoncé wears six pantyhose to keep everything nice and tight.
Watch that makeup tutorial on YouTube and contour like a pro, because even Starlets look like monsters without makeup (Charlie Thereon). Read that book and go for that seminar, because having an intelligent conversation actually requires you to have something intelligent to say. Don’t you dare let anyone hear you cry or see your massacre running; we have pillows and water proof makeup for a reason. Pray, confide and complain to God, because we can’t have silly bitches saying shit about us.
The beautiful thing about great illusionist is the fact that only the great ones would see the flaw and get the trick. It might take time but you’ll definitely find like-minded souls who take pride in their craft. They may be lovers or friends but never friends with benefits, because those things don’t exist. The fun thing about being a great illusionist is finding a great partner to put on the most magnificent shows with.
Sunday, 22 February 2015
I remember about 13 years ago I had my first Barbie doll. She had long beautiful black hair, a flat toned tummy, and beautiful large hips and oh, she always had make-up on. I strongly believed that and like most naïve kids that would look just like her when I grow up.
I don’t look like her, at all. In today’s world, one of the most popular topics to discuss is “health, fitness and looking good”,. When I discuss fitness with a friend who in my opinion looks super-hot, she’d always tell me how much she hates her lower abdomen and I’m not exaggerating when I say she looks like a model. I’m even guilt of saying things like, ‘how can Beyoncé look like that after having a child and I’m over here like, I love cake’.
Nigerians are catching up to the fact that being healthy and fit is the way forward. I even had a discussion with my workout partners about fitness. We came to realize that the beer industry would start failing, gardens would start shorting down business even though it’s one of the best businesses in Nigeria second to Pastoring (we’ll leave that for another day). ;)
It’s all well and good when everyone is fit and healthy but when everyone is trying to get an idea of perfection that doesn’t really exist, well that’s when the problem begins. Someone once told me the reason why women in general workout is to please their men, I told that person, I work out because I know the image of myself I’m trying to create, I work out for myself. Wait a minuteK. Is that right?
According to Wikipedia, physical exercise is any bodily activity that enhances and maintains physical fitness and well-being. So it doesn’t have to do with your physical appearance right? Let’s go on, it is performed for various reasons including strengthening muscles and the cardiovascular system, hoarding athletic skills, weight loss and maintenance, as well as the purpose of enjoyment.
So just 1/5 of the benefits of physical exercise is associated with physical appearance and it didn’t mention that it was going to give you a celebrity's body, because let’s be honest, that body isn’t even real.
So why is having the perfect body so important and who came up with this idea of what is perfect and what isn’t. In a blog spot called ‘Pretty’, I discussed the concept of beauty and how it came about. In a prehistoric artwork called The Venus of Willendorf the vital organs in women were exaggerated and the not so important ones were poorly represented. Being in the 21st century life imitates art(check out Nicki Minag's Pink Friday cover and the picture of The Venus of Willendorf, you see what I'm talking about. Unrealistic versions of ourselves are created through photo shop or permanently through plastic surgery. The concept of the perfect body is impossible to obtain, even though you are ready to dedicate the amount of time, energy and money that goes into creating that body. It is impossible to get that exact body because most of the pictures we see have been photo-shopped and airbrushed. Ps, please take a good look at Kris Jenner during the earlier periods of KUWTK and the most recent ones.
I write this because I’ve taken note of some particular trends in the western world and how Africans or Nigerians have blindly followed in their footsteps, instead of avoiding the negative we just copy everything we see. Yes everyone is becoming more health conscious and eating right, but some of us are getting that “perfect body” through dietary pills, restricting consumption of particular food groups and starvation. We weren’t created to eat neither were we meant to eat some of the crap the western world has label as food. Rather food is just a fuel created to be eating moderately.
To be in any type of business there has to be a need, or want to meet the demands of the consumers. So a problem has to be created before the cure is. Obesity, diabetes, heart disease and a hand full of other problems were created through fast food and the solutions to these problems are dietary pills, workout equipment, surgery and health care. Let’s take Rob Kardashian as a case study. He’s the only Kardashian who seems to have had more problems than the others; he becomes anti-social and less successful as KUWTKs gets more popular. A large part of this reason is because he’s gained a lot of weight. His sisters have even found junk food under his bed and to top it all off he’s been suffering from depression. He wears black clothes all the time, he hardly makes appearances on the show, he’s even had problems with Kim a number of times where she calls him lazy and fat. He didn’t even attend her wedding just because of his weight problems. People like Rob represent the before picture on ads while people like Kim represent the after picture on ads.
I see Nigerians growing too body conscious to the point that they beginning to have poor body image. Body image is an idea of how see ourselves based on our exposure to the media, or our definition of beauty despite what everyone thinks is beautiful. A part of me feels that we may not have a problem with body image because we have more important issues to worry about. But like most problems we have, which were caused by westernization it may just start. So ask yourself, why do you exercise, why do you have certain eating habits, what is your definition of being fit and healthy, what is your definition of beauty and have all these notions been positively or negatively influenced by the media.
Saturday, 7 February 2015
From the day I made a conscious decision to be a writer. I had started cheating myself and only finding ways to help my futures followers by neglecting myself. The purpose of this writing business was to speak without having anxiety about sounding like a fool. I wanted to experience the act of simply expressing myself without the pressure of impressing or offending anyone. I’m losing that, every day. Sometimes I hear so many voices and I know it’s because I’ve been trying too hard to refine my writing and make it appealing to attract a great following. The consequence of this was near Paranoia, because my thoughts, at least some of them, were denied an outlet, an environment to grow and flourish. Instead my thoughts were bottled up in my head and were growing into an ugly creature, something I couldn’t recognize. I have come to release that everyone needs an outlet, a platform to express oneself truly, without fear of judgment.
I have had encounters of men coming up to talk to me, pretending like they know me from somewhere, all in the name of starting a conversation. When I set them straight, they walk away without an atom of shame, like they expected it. While taking walks, I would pass by newsstands and see groups of men addressing this and that issue, never buying a newspaper. They would speak with so much authority, you would think that they that thoroughly analyzed every sentence in that paper. You would also think that they had gone further to make their own research, involving the paper’s headline. This occurred in the afternoon, when the sun’s intensity is at its peak. I always ask myself why these men are more than willing to suffer under the scorching sun all in the name of having their voices heard.
But you would find that there are people that are not so keen to verbal self-expression. I was one of those people; at least I thought I was. Self-expression doesn’t have to be verbal, like what you wear, your body language, your taste in interior design, even your food choice says a lot about you. Introverts or generally quiet people tend to express themselves more than their louder counterparts, the extroverts. They don’t rely on verbal communication alone, because they feel that it wouldn’t be enough to express how they truly feel. So even when an introvert tries to express themselves it becomes more and more difficult to understand that person because, there are so many layers and puzzles hidden in just that one person. I say this because I am an introvert and I tend to do this a lot, I do not speak for every introvert, but this is what I have observed in not just myself but others like me.
I want to be understood, but yet I fear that my flaws and weaknesses can be used against me. So I released my thoughts not in way that can be fully understood but to the point where I can justify that I have expressed myself. Well that’s something I had to learn to grow out of cause there was no point of me secretly wanting a relationship and acting like I don’t want people around me. There was no point of crying myself to sleep asking myself what was wrong with me and putting up a brave face like I couldn’t be bothered. I also didn’t want to be exploited for my openness and nativity, because I have lived the two worlds of openness and secrecy. I had to find balance; I had to find a way of not giving so much of myself and yet, I had to be able to express myself.
Self-expression makes me understand why social media is not just thriving but powerful. It was created for the purpose of true self-expression. But now it has become an avenue for showing off, for showing which people have the coolest gadgets and clothes, to see who’s more flawless, who has the more fabulous life. It’s a playground where we all wear pretty little masks, where we lose ourselves behind that mask. Neither becoming what we wish ourselves to be and never really who we once were because perfection is impossible (at least this worlds idea of perfection). In the end, we become a distorted version of ourselves and the whole purpose of social media is defeated. In fact, the complete opposite starts happening because instead of knowing who we truly are through self-expression we turn ourselves into something else, something we can never understanding or recognize.
So my dear readers we have to be honest in all things, especially with ourselves. Don’t bear your soul to the world, because we live in a very wicked place. Instead express yourself, in a way that can help you know yourself more and in the process of self-discover you may also encourage others in this journey by simply being true to yourself. Do not use effects and highlights to create a new that does not exist.