With today being the last day of 2015, I thought to share with you a profound and pertinent message, written by one of my favorite authors, Paul Coelho. I found it both insightful and I hope you do too.
Read below and have a pleasant New Year in advance:
One always has to know when a stage comes to an end. If we insist on staying longer than the necessary time, we lose the happiness and the meaning of the other stages we have to go through.
Closing cycles, shutting doors, ending chapters – whatever name we give it, what matters is to leave in the past the moments of life that have finished.
Did you lose your job? Has a loving relationship come to an end? Did you leave your parents’ house? Gone to live abroad? Has a long-lasting friendship ended all of a sudden?
You can spend a long time wondering why this has happened.
You can tell yourself you won’t take another step until you find out why certain things that were so important and so solid in your life have turned into dust, just like that.
But such an attitude will be awfully stressing for everyone involved: your parents, your husband or wife, your friends, your children, your sister.
Everyone is finishing chapters, turning over new leaves, getting on with life, and they will all feel bad seeing you at a standstill.
Things pass, and the best we can do is to let them really go away.
That is why it is so important (however painful it may be!) to destroy souvenirs, move, give lots of things away to orphanages, sell or donate the books you have at home.
Everything in this visible world is a manifestation of the invisible world, of what is going on in our hearts – and getting rid of certain memories also means making some room for other memories to take their place.
Let things go. Release them. Detach yourself from them.
Nobody plays this life with marked cards, so sometimes we win and sometimes we lose.
Do not expect anything in return, do not expect your efforts to be appreciated, your genius to be discovered, your love to be understood.
Stop turning on your emotional television to watch the same program over and over again, the one that shows how much you suffered from a certain loss: that is only poisoning you, nothing else.
Nothing is more dangerous than not accepting love relationships that are broken off, work that is promised but there is no starting date, decisions that are always put off waiting for the “ideal moment.”
Before a new chapter is begun, the old one has to be finished: tell yourself that what has passed will never come back.
Remember that there was a time when you could live without that thing or that person – nothing is irreplaceable, a habit is not a need.
This may sound so obvious, it may even be difficult, but it is very important.
Closing cycles. Not because of pride, incapacity or arrogance, but simply because that no longer fits your life.
Shut the door, change the record, clean the house, shake off the dust.
Stop being who you were, and change into who you are.
Culled from Paul Coelho’s Blog: http://paulocoelhoblog.com/2015/12/27/closing-cycles/
Image credit: www.interstaff.com
December is finally here! I can’t believe that it has been almost 5 months since I wrote my last blog post. “Where has all the time gone?” I keep asking myself.
You would remember in my last post I wrote about the crowdfunding campaign for my new novel, “Twisted in a Positive Way”. The campaign was successful and even though I didn’t hit my funding target, through the campaign, I was able to generate a lot of publicity and interest for it. It was finally published and is available for purchase on Amazon in both kindle and paperback format in the UK click here to buy, and the US click here to buy .
I would like to use this opportunity to say thank you once again to everyone who pre-ordered and spread the word on the campaign. I am humbled by all the feedback I have received so far. One of the funniest feedback I received was from a reader who said that she was quite cross with herself for leaving the book at home for one day and couldn’t wait to get home to continue from where she stopped.
If you have read the novel, please feel free to leave a review on Amazon website stating that you purchased the book through the crowdfunding campaign by clicking here.
Moving away from the subject of my novel, I had a discussion earlier this week with my friend who I would call John. Let me tell you a little bit about John.
John is a nice guy, has a good job working in one of the essential services here in England. He earns a very decent salary, has a nice two bedroom house and drives a good car. To everyone, John lives a comfortable life.
In reality, John is not a happy man because he feels he is overweight. This feeling has affected his ability to speak to women and has caused him to lose his confidence because he feels that they would not find him attractive on account of his weight.
Now, in the time I have known John, I have never really noticed the extra pounds. All I see is a nice, funny, hardworking and blessed young man.
When I got home that night, after my meeting with my friend, I pondered how we humans seem to constantly be obsessed with our idea of perfection. Like John, we think about the things we feel are not perfect in our lives and end up forgetting all the wonderful things we have going for us.
The TV and print media have not helped with this, every day we are bombarded with photo shopped bodies and filtered images subtly telling us what we should look like. Even when we are not are not trying to look like the models and characters on TV, we find ourselves sometimes comparing ourselves to our friends and colleagues.
Thinking about this reminded me of a story I heard years ago. A young man had sought a job for months and finally he got his dream job with the exact pay he wanted and was so happy. He called all his friends and told them of his news and they all congratulated him. He continued in this state of happiness until he spoke to one particular friend. This friend like others, congratulated him and asked him how much he was to be paid. Out of curiousity, he too asked his friend what his salary was. After the phone call, his mood changed because he realised that his friend was making more than him. The fact that he had sought this job for months did not seem to matter. He was no longer happy about it.
Perhaps it is time to stop this neurosis and start recognising all the numerous blessings we have. Whenever you find yourself thinking those gloomy thoughts, consciously stop yourself and instead, think of three things in your life which you are thankful for and dwell on those things instead. They may not be massive things. You could even be thankful for the nice cup of tea you just had, knowing that someone out there is craving for just that and cannot get it. Perhaps you could be thankful for the fact that you just had a nice hot meal knowing that someone out there would gladly swap places with you if they had the opportunity.
Now, I am not saying that you should adopt a lackadaisical attitude to life and not seek self-development and improvement, what I am saying is that it is better to take these steps towards improvement from a place of gratitude having it at the back of your mind that there is no such a thing as perfection.
Thank you for reading and please feel free to leave your comments. I look forward to reading them.
Image credit: jarofquotes.com
I have found that my life has been so fast paced these past few months, probably because of the work I do and a couple of other personal projects I have embarked on, one of which I would announce when the time is right.
So I woke up, first thing I did after stretching endlessly was to bring out my phone, checked my messages and emails, wrote out my to do list and toggled on to Spotify. I thought about what song would be perfect for a relatively lazy saturday and decided to listen to “He lives in you” by Lebo M. I don’t know how many of you know about the song but it was one of the sound tracks of Walt Disney’s “The Lion King”.
Now this song may not sound too special for those who have watched the movie. I myself watched it every Christmas as a kid. I remember those days, my cousins and I would sit in the large sitting room of my Uncle’s house in the village and watch the Lion King. No matter how many times we watched it back then, we just could not get enough of the cartoon.
So here I was listening to a song I was not unaware of but the difference between when I used to listen to it as a kid and this morning was I opened my heart to the message within the song and I must say it was glorious. When the song finished, I put it on repeat and felt a wave of inspiration hit me.
As I continued to listen, I began to consider how much we miss, how much beauty, inspiration, opportunities to receive and give love we miss because we are all so busy.
At this point, the song had finished playing and it was starting again, my eyes went to the purple orchid sitting in its white vase on my window. The orchid in itself requires little water to blossom. It is one of the most low maintenance plants I know of, yet it remains a source of beauty, a lesson in beauty even in imperfect conditions.
I began to consider other everyday living things like the ant which depending on where you live, could be a source of nuisance. However even ants, as little as they are, teach us lessons on hard work, cooperation and most of all strength in unity. If you have ever watched ants attack and move a piece of sugar, you would know what I am talking about.
As I thought about this, my eyes spotted some soil on my boots which now left a little brown stain on my cream coloured rug. On a regular day, I would have been cross at the prospect of having to clean the stain off my rug but now, in this moment I considered that this soil was a part of a larger collection of soil whose purpose was to provide food for humans, along with thousands of living creatures all over the world.
I had a few other thoughts which I would not like to bore you with but my point is, you can experience a more positive and fulfilling life when you open your heart to all the beauty and lessons around us. We normally miss these sources of inspiration because we are either too busy or too focused on our problems.
I have always been a firm believer that one those not have to wait till a special day in the week to go to a special holy place to receive inspiration or answers to life questions. Sometimes the answers we seek are and have always been all around us.
All we need to do is open our hearts to receive them.
Have a fulfilling weekend
I know that a number of people who come across this title would wonder what I mean by the title. Years ago, I read the book, “Retire Young Retire Rich” by Robert Kiyosaki where came across the concept.
This has to do with the kind of words we say to ourselves. I found out that when one makes a statement such as “I can never have enough money” or “I can never be rich” or “I can never be happy” that these statements are actually lies because they are not based on actual facts. They have not been to the future to confirm that they can never be those things, so basically, they are lying.
This same principle applies to a situation where one makes a statement such as “I will be very rich in future” or “I will pass my exams” or “I will be happily married”. They have also lied.
However, the truth is that anything you say about yourself will eventually become a reality in future. This means that these lies you tell about yourself, if told over a long enough period of time, would eventually come true. This is because those words are planted in your mind and begin to affect your actions and your future is a result of your actions based on the words you have spoken to your mind.
So when one makes a statement such as “I cannot have enough money”, what happens is that the person’s mind picks up the message of poverty and transmits it to the brain and it sits there, such that when an opportunity to make money arises, the mind shuts off itself from this opportunity thus causing the person to remain at that same level of poverty or perceived lack of prosperity.
The same applies to when a person makes a positive statement such as, “I will be very rich”, the person’s mind picks up the message and the brain continues to work out ways for the person to become rich such that when an opportunity to make money arises, the brain immediately picks it up and the person takes advantage of the opportunity.
Taking all these into consideration, I believe that it makes a bit more sense for me to live a great life which has come about through the telling of positive lies I have told in the past about my future than to have a life filled with pain and sadness as a result of negative lies I may have spoken into my future.
I am not saying that telling lies with the intent to deceive is good, but when it comes to our future, we should watch the words we use because our words do become a reality.
Just as Christians believe that the world was created through spoken word, we as humans have this immense power in our spoken word because we are a product of the superior intelligence that created the world.
Telling great lies in practice is very easy and costs very little, if anything. However, its benefits are amazing as it helps to shape our future and keeps us in a great mood.
So my advice is this, next time you feel down and negative thoughts fill your mind, just watch yourself and spot when those negative lies are about to pop out of your mouth. Stop yourself and consciously choose instead to speak positively.
Make positive speaking a habit and watch your life and your outlook about life change for the better.
The inspiration for this post came to me about 3 months ago.
I was on my way to work having got on my regular train into the city. However, on this day, the weather was not very friendly and as a result, my train got delayed. As you can imagine, there was a mad rush of people whom I suspect also had delayed journeys, milling into the centre, trying to make a dash to their destinations.
As I walked on, I got to a set of traffic lights, pressed the button and stood there, with my headphones on, slightly oblivious to my immediate environment, while waiting for the traffic light to turn green. I was getting particularly engrossed in “Drifting” by Enya when I was jolted into reality by a loud scream and the blaring of car horns.
Naturally, I pulled out my headphones from my ears and looked in the direction of the noise and all I saw was a woman running across the road. In her mad rush, she had crossed the road and just narrowly missed being hit by a car.
Of course everyone was relieved that she didn’t get hurt and some older people shook their heads but the funny thing that happened was that about 10 seconds later, the light changed to green for pedestrians to cross and the rest of us crossed the road.
As I carried on walking past shops on my way to my office, so many thoughts crossed my mind. I kept wondering what would have happened if this woman in her blind haste had been hit by the car. “What if she had waited for about 10 more seconds?”. I believe she would have crossed the road in a much more comfortable manner without having to put herself at the kind of risk she did.
This got me thinking about life in general, “Are we too hasty to go from where we are to where we want to be?”. “Do we in our haste to achieve goals, blindly rush off going after opportunities and taking decisions which in hindsight turn out to be a big mistake?”.
I have seen so many instances where people have rushed off to quit their jobs or relationships based on the promise of an amazing new position or partner elsewhere, only to find out that they may have been better off if they persevered a bit or left after giving it a bit more time and thought..
This is not to say that anyone should stay in an environment that constantly robs them of their joy. My point however is that, perhaps if we gave our actions a bit more thought, we would pursue these new opportunities in a more organised and strategic way which usually have a higher chance of success than if we dashed out like the woman, endangering our lives in the process.
Are we making hay even before the sun shines? Think about it…
Image credit: shutterstock.com
“When you grow up and learn a few things, you are no longer afraid of letting go… no longer afraid of the unknown” – Beyonce
I found this quote on the Facebook page of one of my secondary schoolmates and added my bit to the original quote, which now goes thus;
“When you grow up and learn a few things, you are no longer afraid of letting go… no longer afraid of the unknown and that’s when magic usually happens.” – Chika Efobi
The idea for this post came to me about 6 months ago when I was “spring cleaning” my room. Those who are close to me would know I am a kind of hoarder. Hoarder, not in the sense of not being able to bin/ let go of personal items, but in the sense that I tend to keep personal items such as jewelry, shoes, etc. in their original packaging and in cases of items I use more often, I save their boxes in case I need them in future for moving house etc.
On one hand, the practice means that most of these items are in near-perfect condition with resalable value for if/when I want to sell them on eBay or give out to family/friends. On the other hand this means that my personal space is always filled with boxes of varying sizes, occupying space, marking time for when I decide to get rid of the items. This has gone on for years and sometimes I end up forgetting that some of the items even exist until when I actually need them.
So on this day, six months ago, I decided to take on the task of de-cluttering my personal space and what a task it was! Boxes got thrown out, pieces of jewelry got rearranged and old shoes went. I even found a box for a pedometer, which I hardly use (I wonder what I was saving that one for…lol).
When I finally finished clearing out the boxes, I looked round my space and it felt airy, clean and light. It certainly smelt a bit better too! (not like my space smells…hey stop that thought!) People who have ever de-cluttered would know what I mean.
This got me thinking about life in general, “Are there people we are holding on to that do not necessarily add value to us?” Do we have friends and people in our lives that do not do anything for us but take up space and crowd our lives with unhelpful words, drama and negativity? Are we holding on to someone similar to that pedometer box which did absolutely nothing for me? Perhaps this is the time to let go, cut them off or even let them know how they could start adding more value?
Perhaps, the first step could be to have an honest conversation with yourself, after which you should be able to identify which friendships and relationships, which you should cut off to make your life less complicated and more beautiful.
Don’t get me wrong, this process is not in the least easy. It may seem painful, especially if you have convinced yourself over a period of time that you need these friendships/relationships but trust me, once you have done this exercise, you would experience some kind of peace which passes all understanding.
I hope you have a fulfilling week.
Image credit: http://www.simplify101.com/
Recently, I have been concentrating more on posting quotes which I have found to be inspirational and not written anything more personal. However, yesterday, a friend of mine referred to a post I made two years ago on an old blog I used to run. I had actually forgotten about this post but her comment caused me to read through it and I was amazed at how much the key message still applies. So I thought to repost here…
I hope this inspires you as it inspired my friend.
20th October 2011
It has been close to 4 months since I last wrote in my blog. In this period, I have succeeded in completing some crucial coursework, completing my dissertation for my masters program and doing my viva (defence of the dissertation). I have also joined a network marketing program, that has paid off real well (that is gist for another post) and lost some weight.
More important than all these accomplishments are some important life lessons I learnt during this period. One of which I would share with you today.
A number of us are familiar with optical illusions, one of which is in the picture above. This picture is a fusion between a young woman and an old woman. A couple of people see just the young woman wearing a hat with her face away from them while other people just see the face of a really old woman. Whichever category you fall into does not change the fact that both views exist.
Life is exactly like that. Most times we look at a situation from a particular perspective without realising that a different perspective very different from what we see exists. An example that readily comes to mind is a personal experience of mine.
Some months after I arrived into the United Kingdom, I was very desperate for a part time student job that I could combine with my studies, due to the fact that my resources were dwindling at an alarming rate. I kept applying and applying but got the same polite rejections. Finally, I got a call from a company for an interview. I was so delighted and prayed so hard for it to work out. I went for the interview and did very well. I was invited to a trial shift but I was told by the manager that I needed to go for another one, as he was not sure if I was up to the standard. 3 trial shifts after, I was told that I could not be employed for the role. At that point I was already tired and a bit devastated because I had put in a lot of effort and I felt the job was for me. I had no choice but to move on.
Two days later, I got a call from another company that I had applied much earlier in the year. I had actually forgotten about that application because I didn’t get a call when I expected. I was invited to an interview and I was offered the job two days after the interview. I must say, that the job I finally got was a much better one with a slightly better pay package, better working conditions, free outfits etc. I was amazed at how things worked out. I had been so focused on the view of the other job that I did not step back consider other views.
Right now, you may be gunning for something that is causing you a lot of pain because it does not seem to be working out. It may seem to you that you have to be on that path or no other. Have you considered stepping back a bit to think that just maybe, you are not on the right path and that a more rewarding path exists elsewhere if only you decide to adjust your view? It could also be that you are on the right path but you are just wearing the wrong shoes, i.e. using the wrong methods to solve the problem. This life is really not as difficult and complicated as most of us make it out to be.
Every single situation has more than one view to it. We just need to step back a bit and look within for it.
Till you read from me, have a blessed weekend.
Image credit: coolopticalillusions.com