Welcome to the home of lessons
#Lesson20 ~ One thing at a time
I know that doesn’t sound like the way life is but this is my experience. Focus on one thing at a time and do it well. When you are good at it start the next thing…rinse and repeat.
I was the queen of multitasking and I thought I was doing well but as I got clearer about what I want to give to life, I realised I wasn’t doing anything to 100% or getting 100% out. So I began to cut back and manage the pressure and viola, my work changed.
Focusing gave me clarity and the ability to really be present in life and connected to the world around me. I can take a moment to recharge seated outside in the evening listening to the night life, cooking or doing dishes in the kitchen just feeling the water and listening to the clang of the dishes.
Doing one thing at a time increased my ability to deliver quality. Yes, I am on several projects but every one of them gets it’s tasks done in a specific sequence. Sequencing allows each one to get the right quality and impact. It also means that every so often I am not available on one side.
It has taken me some time to crack but oh what a joy it is to be back to impact by doing one thing at a time.
#Lesson19 ~ Track the process ~
My paraphrase of Habakkuk 2:2 is, ‘…write the vision make it plain that those who come later will know what to do.’ This part is down by most of us. Very few of us look back, forward and sideways to keep on track.
Tracking means sitting with yourself and looking at your life deeply to ask critical questions and answer honestly. Note where you started or are starting. Know where you are going and measure progress often. As you look at your life it will become clear that there’s a pattern, there are clusters, there are triggers, and there are common responses and recurring limiting beliefs. It also identifies places of growth and accountability needed as well as people to connect to or let go of.
I know it could be challenging but when you understand that tracking helps deeper growth, it becomes a place of growth. Many of us don’t look track so we are unaware of our blind spots or our great wins. Tracking brings peace when you can see the growth and get the help you need.
Track yourself and rise higher every time
#Lesson18 ~ Reach out ~
What do you do when people you know go underground? When that person went mute, did you look for them? When a friend loses someone they love, how do you respond? When life changes for many people around you what do you do?
We all reach out at the beginning and are there comforting and condoling then when we think things are ok, we go away. When we lose a loved one, our habit as a people is to be there for the days up to the burial and then we go back to our lives forgetting that those grieving have just started the journey.
When a friend has disappeared for a while, reach out.
When a neighbour is super quiet, reach out.
When you know someone who is grieving, reach out.
When you think about someone a lot, reach out Reach out because it isn’t always easy to ask for help if it isn’t offered. When someone comes to your heart and mind, offer the support you sense they need. Be the support to others that you would like to receive. Reach out and make a difference in others lives and your own life will be richer and deeper than you could ever imagine
#Lesson17 ~ Try Something New ~
I was working a project across town and I needed help and recruited some young men from my locality. They were the best and brightest in their group and were keen to conquer this project.
Our first stop was breakfast in a nice restaurant and they all realised the menu items were foreign. The next surprise was the intensity of the security check followed by the restrictions of access around the venues. The final straw for them was the cars and gadgets they saw and the conversation around them.
One of them said to me, ‘I thought I knew, but today I discovered I know very little. Please teach me.’ The rest chimed in the affirmative.
We began the long process with table etiquette, guest relations, work ethic and commitment. Though I don’t see many of them anymore, I have watched two use the simple things taught that week so well in other areas.
Their eagerness to learn and try new things, has resurfaced in this season as I think about how much life has & continues to change. I reaffirm my choice to try something new because the old way is no longer applicable.
#Lesson16 ~ Always do your best ~
Last year in the middle of a very challenging event, I found a moment of light. We were moving delegates to breakout rooms when I noticed a senior government officer looking stranded. I walked up and offered to help & as we walked together, she asked if we’d met before. I said yes & explained the circumstances of our meeting just under 10 years ago.
She smiled then said, ‘I remember you and your team. Your work was always so good & I can see you still do.’ The truth is, we were really struggling to keep things afloat that day because of things beyond our control but I was doing the best I could to keep calm. Her words were the fire I needed to press on.
There will be challenges along the way. There will be days you want to give up. There will be failures, lost opportunities, rainy days, muddy roads, dark nights, empty seats, no transport or hot, lonely times.
Nonetheless, do your best every time.
Hold the tray even if your hand is shaking.
Smile even if the tears are threatening.
Call out for help even if you can’t see anyone.
Do your best, no matter what is happening. It will always pay off.
#NoExcuses #NoLimitation #unsettled #personalgrowth #personalleadership
#Lesson15 ~ Your life counts ~
This was my birthday week and I had a lot of time for reflection. It was interesting reading the messages shared from all angles so i began to track the words used to describe me and some of them blew my mind.
There is a girl I am working hard to become through my process and there are definitions only God and I know meaning I haven’t shared them with others yet they began appearing on the TL. Some were even as new as the day of the birthday and someone pops up with them. I begun to see the spaces where my work on myself is making impact.
The thing that blew my mind though was a call I received. A gentleman I had met two years ago as I helped a friend buy a car, called to ask for assistance to find food during this season. We had started talking because he noticed my car is manual and he expected that I would be driving automatic because i am a girl (story for another day). He asked me candidly, ‘If you don’t help me, who will?I didn’t have cash to send to him immediately but in a few days things resolved themselves.
Please understand that your life is not and will not be in vain because there is a space on this earth shaped just like you. There are needs your life must answer and a story it must tell. Focus on knowing yourself & becoming the best version on you as you avoid useless shenanigans.
Your life counts, Be the best you can be
#Lesson14 ~ Remember who you are ~
This morning, I had a conversation with a friend and she blew my mind. We met in high school and went on to the same university and to date she still calls me her head girl (story for another day). What struck me most was her explanation that it is the influence I and the fact that she still looked up to me for the strength to keep going.
Very often we don’t understand how sharing our lives with people including the challenges, makes life manageable. The challenges make us better and stronger people and so it is important to share that we may encourage others.
Remember who you were created to be
Remember who you are created to become
Remember who you created to touch
Remember you are masterpiece, one of a kind, special delivery, unique, you are and always be the answer to a very specific question.
Remember who you are and live it out every moment, day, week, month and year
Remember who you are!!
#Lesson13 ~ Trust the process ~
Several years ago, we hit crisis point in our business and just to survive we closed the office & moved home. It was a tricky shift but it worked out well.
I went back to work for a bit and when my assignment was done I came back to my home to restart life and shift careers. It took lots of adjustments because I’d got used to working with people and loved the regular money in the pocket.
Looking at how things are now, I realise I’ve been in training for this season for a while. I have been able to help people adjust to this season & find balance. It’s been challenging to have so many people in my space.
I’m now thankful for everything that happens & always asking
- How does my perspective need to shift today?
- What do I need to see different?
- What can I learn from my process so far?
#Lesson12 ~ You are not alone…keep walking ~
This week I shared a bit of what I do with an associate & it began the most intense discussion ever.
We knew each other from before but life & its challenges didn’t allow us to work together. We met at an event & agreed to chat yet by the time we spoke the need I was to help meet was already filled.
As the conversation shifted to other matters, we found a mutual interest in & calling to the next generation from different sides of the spectrum. There were so many similarities it took my breath away.
I was breathless because my journey has been very private & personal. I have spent the last three or so years talking & listening to the next generation, asking hard questions & getting shallow answers. It felt like no one understood my interest or rather madness; then I met someone who has been on a similar journey & just when we each have something to offer, our paths cross.
Understand this…Nothing in your path is in isolation or useless.
Just because no one understands your path now does not negate it. Keep walking because the people aligned with you are also in preparation stage & you will all become on time and meet the need you were created to meet.
#Lesson11 ~ Take action now ~
It is very easy to get distracted, overwhelmed or discouraged when things are at a crossroads. It is important to make a choice and move on no matter what.
I have never been in an investment group aka chama and I always said I wanted to join one. It’s been 10+ years since that discussion begun in my mind but the needs were too extreme every time I tried.
Fast forward to 2019 and I knew this was it…do or never speak about it again. I still didn’t know what when or where, I just knew the year wouldn’t close without me joining. After months of looking to Jim avail, a group formed right in my circle and I just couldn’t believe.
Terms are strict and the tone of the leadership firm; only serious people wanted. Ha! 🤭 Then it happened…Doubt and it’s cousin Fear appeared jumping, dancing, kicking and screaming all around me until that’s all I could hear.
Then the still voice within said, “Join.” “I don’t have the money,” I said fearfully “I will provide,” he responded and went on to stipulate the amount to commit to. With my heart in my throat I registered and joined, still trembling but certain this is the ONLY path.
Every month provision has been miraculous & unexpected. I have learnt several things:
1. Pupose – Be sure of the reason for your life – provision follows assignment
2. Direction – Hear and understand the path you will follow – a clear path gives grace
3. Move – act with & on what you know
4. Believe – nothing happens unless you stand firm on the possibility
Understand that once you MOVE & OBEY the next instruction comes. Get up and make that move right now.
Actions speak; words merely whisper ~ Edward Mungai~
This week hasn’t been perfect but I’ve learnt a lot. Of key importance was kindness.
I went to the supermarket after a long day with a long list. At the veggies section, I was trying to fit my sukuma, managu, dory and spinach back in the trolley when the attendant pulled a box from under the table for me. The ladies around wondered because we are often told to get boxes at the counter…I was stumped.
At the check out counter, the cashier said hi as she started running my bill & the packer smiled politely. When I asked for cartons (I didn’t have bags) he recognised me & beamed, said happy New Year & apologised for not recognising me before. You see, I was wearing a hat so it hid my face.
I am picky about cashiers & packers because I have a way I like my purchases packed (story fir another day). In the last few years, this gentleman has often been paired with one or two of my favourite cashiers (yes I have favourites) & gets my preferences.
The cashier was shocked at the sense of camaraderie that’s been built over time through greetings & conversation. In a previous shopping trip we left our bread and he followed us out to the parking.
This day service was meticulous, packing was careful, laughter in plenty ending with an offer to take my shopping to the car.
Kindness brings out the best in us & people. Kindness changes the world & brings joy.
Be kind to people because you never know what is going on in their lives.
A little kindness will give hope to the broken heart, joy to the discouraged, strength to the weak.
Be kind: one day you will be glad.
#Lesson9 ~ Press on
This week I have doubted my ability to accomplish many times. There were so many challenging variables all at once that my mind got confused. In several cases it was easier to throw in the towel & walk away.
Yet the question remained, “Give up then what?” Often it is easier to give up, give in & walk away because of the amount of work needed to keep dealing with every weight & challenge that comes. However, dealing & pressing on is the only option.
Why press on?
1. The answer is on the other side of the challenge
2. You are guaranteed growth by going through
3. The lessons learnt will be the supports in the new season.
How do you press on?
A. Admit there’s a daunting challenge in the way
B. Analyse & catalogue the details, pros & cons
C. Determine the next step or set of steps then take them
D. Tell someone what you are doing & ask for help
E. Start with what you know & the rest will unfold
It is possible, just keep asking & walking
This week I met an amazing set of lady farmers who are passionate about sustainability, quality, growth & community.
What has stayed with me is that as they were building a very specific organisational culture, they had many challenges. It took hiring & letting go off 42 drivers to find the right fit. Driver No. 43…got it, applied it, practised it, believed it, lived it & taught others to do the same.
They are tenacity personified…the ability to hold onto something & not let go: being very determined.
Was hiring & letting go easy? No. Was it tiring? Definitely! Yet it would have been more difficult to have a poor culture as they worked to become the best they could be than to keep trying & working, so they kept on till no 43.
What dream has been placed in you that must become? What path are you pursuing for the good of mankind? What mountains are in your way?What must you overcome to soar?
1. Just because things aren’t changing doesn’t mean they never will
2. Keep working until you become the dream or attain the goal 3. Keep the goal in sight but adjust & iterate every move
4. Hold on tight, find support
#Lesson7 – Be adaptable
This week has been super flexible and fluctuating. I had a meeting set, cancelled, reinstated, cancelled and reinstated. Talk about adjusting plans. I dropped the young king🤴 in school and told him I wasn’t going out but 7 minutes later as I got back home, the meeting was on & I had an hour to prepare.
I had plans to follow a national event so was really disappointed at first. All the same I begun getting ready as I followed matters on line. I was fascinated about the event precision but my life and mind had to shift to thrive.
The ability to shift is important to peace of mind. It would have been easy to get upset and blame people for poor planning and miss the big picture or shift & suddenly understand the importance of being adaptable when we reached our destination. The changes were based on availability of team members as well as a test of our resilience to remain committed to our assignment.
I advocate for planning yet, it is important to remain flexible and adjustable as we walk in life. Set a firm goal but be flexible about the route to the goal. If one way isn’t working, find another route. If you keep getting stuck, stop, assess, deep dive, identify the challenges, resolve, shift direction and keep moving
#Lesson6 – Pursue Consistent Growth
A few days ago, an old habit that I thought I had kicked showed up & took me by surprise with the ease I restarted it. I had walked away from it because there was no value in it but one day, one thought led to another I ended up back there. I didn’t even understand how I got here without notice. It is easy to settle in life when things are going well and forget to track the things that are changing, have changed or never do things that demand you grow.
I must remember I’m in the process of becoming, growing expanding so I must keep working & walking. Things can creep up on us & make us change when we aren’t tracking our growth so it must be planned & pursued. I must plan, position myself, ask and work on it. I must deliberately choose to read, ask, be accountable & follow instruction. What is pursued is achieved and that is my path.
It is ok if you don’t see similar growth in me. Our paths are different so we will not grow the same way or at the same rate. I will continue growing; I will ask you to join me just remember it’s your choice to grow.
Meanwhile, I will pursue consistent growth and invite you to join me
#Lesson5 ~ I don’t know that much
It is easy to say that the 40+ years I have lived have taught me a lot in terms of work, faith, family, community etc. and that is true. However, it is also true that life around me is super dynamic and changing every day, actually, every moment.
There are so many new things around me or apparently old things that have new dimensions, options, applications. There are careers, styles, social media sites, cars, colours, trends and a long list of items that didn’t exist a few years ago and were unimaginable.
I must accept I don’t know that much, resist the urge to say I know the way things should be and hold onto the past. I must remain stable in goal, opinion and direction but flexible in method & application, remembering that daily a new idea, concept, methodology, focus etc. arises and I need to understand parts of it.
In the face of changes around me I accept i don’t know much then remain humble, focused, flexible & hungry to deep dive, learn, question, test, reengineer, test, improve, reengineer and keep on that track…a learner, a seeker, a giver, a plant growing towards the sun.
#Lesson4: Ask for help
This week has been intense with lots of work and I got a little stuck. My mind wasn’t moving as fast as I needed to so work was slower than I expected. .
On the day it looked like I would make good progress, we had a technical failure on the power line serving my area so no power all day. 😢😢😢😢😢. This just compounded the time I hadn’t been productive and time was lapsing.
As panic set in I realised it wouldn’t help me much so I calmed myself down and chatted my Papa (yes, I’m Daddy’s girl) and my senior brother. It was totally interesting how their seemingly detached questions opened different perspectives to me and allowed me to see a new way out.
Realise that if you don’t know what to do, sitting there staring at the wall willing an answer to come will not help. Ask for help.
Ask someone you trust to be honest with youAsk someone who knows more than you Ask the person your gut says callAsk for help before panic sets in.
There’s nothing wrong with asking for help and if someone thinks it’s foolish to ask, make a note of them and never go back there ever. .
“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.Matthew 7:7-8 NKJV .
#Lesson3 – BeStill
We are taught to be busy all the time; never an idle moment for an idle mind is the devil’s workshop. I also agree that idleness is a key to lost time, so I would never advocate it. Yet my life is teaching me that I need to just stop a little more every day and experience #stillness.
To be still is to learn to be settled in my heart and mind in a way that my body can find deep lasting rest. Every day I need to find moments to sit in silence and reflection to reconnect with God, myself and the world around me.
Being still is helpful because:
- It allows my mind and body to reconnect
- It allows me time to think deeply
- It enables me to truly rest & recalibrate
- It makes me more productive
Stillness will mean different things for different people. For me, it is moments of silence in the morning, moments of deep breathing in the afternoon and sitting outside on the sun in the evening. Take time to be still and thrive.
#Lesson2 – Keep learning; keep asking
I learnt to drive when I was 18 and one thing I loved doing was finding out where roads led to. I would fuel the car, get on the road and see where it went. This allowed me to know ways to traverse the city and avoid traffic bottlenecks.
In 2016, I started a new position across the city from me and part of my preparation for work was to drive all potential routes in both directions so I could map the best one. The options were many because of the construction of the Southern Bypass, Kibera by pass and other roads in between.
I wouldn’t have known these routes if I hadn’t heard people talk about them and been daring enough to get on the road and drive them and in time I was confident about the journey.
This week it has been clear that even as I have lots of experience, there’s still a lot I don’t know because the world around me is changing. These changes demand constant learning.
I have definitely realised I must:
- Never assume or think I know it all
- Remain teachable
- Ask questions
- Consistently seek knowledge from the right source
- Ask, listen, study, choose, apply, assess…rinse and repeat
Lesson #1 – Be Deliberate
We never have enough time, energy or money therefore our choices must be deliberate.
On new years day, three generations of us took a drive to Thika to see my aunt and uncle. It was as impromptu as can be but life shifting all the same. It was interesting to see language barrier and generation gap work together so seamlessly.
I also discovered I actually understand a lot of Kamba (yes, I’m part Kamba).