Committing To Life

Committing, Celebrating and Growing through Life


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The Knowing

“I respect the man who knows distinctly what he wishes. The greater part of all mischief in the world arises from the fact that men do not sufficiently understand their own aims. They have undertaken to build a tower, and spend no more labour on the foundation that would be necessary to erect a hut.” – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

I took a random journey today of looking at my earliest facebook posts from when I was 19. I just wanted to delve in my younger mind and ascertain whether I have always been the way I am. I couldn’t help but giggle and go ‘wow’ at every post because even at that age, I was as opinionated and sure of what I want as I am now.

What made me giggle and gasp was actually the rage and aggression I had developed because I was always intent on fighting and preserving myself from being tainted by external things. What was I fighting? I’m not really sure but I sure am glad that I was born a fighter because I wouldn’t have made it here otherwise. But, what I can say is from the day I started writing which was around the age of 10 years, I had realized that life was one huge battlefield and that I had to figure out just what it was that I wanted and making it clear to everyone who I interacted with.

My first song, which I wrote at the age of 10/11 was titled “broken dreams”. What did I even know about disappointment and broken dreams? I could perhaps relate it to the fact that I desperately wanted to be a “rock star” but my mother swiftly dismissed that yearning. I’m glad though, because she shielded me from a lot of exploitation and uncertainty because I know now that I would not want to be a guitar-wielding girl with a raspy voice. I’ve built a very different image from that.

I have had many people tell me that I am far too opinionated and just 2 days ago I had breakfast with one of our Director’s and she was shocked that I had found my purpose. Looking back though, I acquainted myself to my ‘reason for breathing’ at a very young age. I just needed to grow and learn more about life to hone it, which I am still doing.

It reminded me of the words of Johann Wolfgang van Goethe that have been comfortably saved in my phone memo for a while. I am nowhere near where I ought to be and I am not even close to the woman my late grandfather always said I would become but at least I know what the end goal is.

A lot of people trudge along life trying to live up to other people’s expectations and wishes because they just aren’t very sure. I would rather say ‘not sure’ than ‘don’t know’ because each of us is born with a true knowing of just what we are and what we want to become – its only more obvious in our younger years.

Knowing ourselves shouldn’t be a complex journey of embarking to sacred mountains with Shamans to tap into “Self”. Self is not so far, Self is in the very breath you inhale/exhale, comfortably embedded in every heart beat. Finding who you are simply requires blocking out all external opinions and studying just what makes you tick (happy) and tock (upset).

In my life journey I have made mistakes and gotten involved in things that were not really part of my tick but the tock they sparked redirected me towards my passion: The Engineering Degree I dropped, The relationships I fled, The thoughts I dismissed etc. All very necessary ‘tocks’

A lot of our mistakes and frustrations stem from building a foundation that is too weak/wide/thick for the structure we actually desire.

My passion (part of it) is learning just what makes people tick and the materials that their dreams are made of. I have no doubt that I’m still young and still have much more to learn but the end game in my mind will never alter.

You need to know yourself well before you attempt to build knowledge about the world and even attempt to fix it.

The amazing thing about life is it accommodates our mistakes and the universe is always eager to redirect us. Just be open to learning and growth. Its never too late! πŸ™‚

As we begin a new week tomorrow, be aware of the emotions and thoughts that your surroundings trigger. Make your breaths valuable by channeling them towards your passion. I’d love to hear your thoughts on this one.

Quote: “We worry about what a child will become tomorrow, yet we forget that he is someone today.” – Stacia Tauscher

Stay Committed.
πŸ™‚


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Words and Scars

A thought hit me the other day. I think it was a week ago. I thought about all the christians I had interacted with in my life and the non-christians I’d interacted with who flinched when I mentioned ‘church’. Their reasons were constant throughout, regardless of age, sex, race, they all gave me the same response: “I don’t like christians and I don’t like church because I don’t want to be judged.”

In the beginning I dismissed it as utter ignorance because I thought heck! The rules are there, just adhere to them. I had never been judged by a christian because I was too young. There is only so much that life revealed to me before I was, let’s say, at the age of 22. Which was only a year ago.

The purpose of this post is not to dissect the realities of church and human beings. That is a massive debate that I will not even stir up today. The purpose of my post relates to the thought that then hit me a week ago.

I thought to myself: the bible is truly poetic. Especially in the way it has depicted the ‘Enemy’. It is either too poetic or we as people are not interpreting it correctly. The “Enemy” ie. The Devil, is depicted as a monstrous and scary spirit (of which he is) but he is also small, non-intimidating and strategic in his moves. He is so slick in ways that we don’t even realize that he is as easy to breathe in and let out as oxygen.

As people we focus so much on depicting what is heinous and disgusting in another person that we forget that the mere act of judging is the enemy’s work.

If you have something bad to say about everyone and anyone then you need to press pause and do a routine check on your thoughts. If you don’t know someone’s story from birth to the present then don’t even utter an opinionated word. Words are powerful & most of the time we don’t even hold the rights to utter them in enormous weights. Speak words that build or don’t speak at all.

I have suffered from all sorts of insecurities in my younger years. From weight issues (even though I have never even been overweight in retrospect) to merely feeling like my nose was too big. My journey of moving from a young girl raised in a single-parent home with various struggles, to being a working young lady and student at 16 taught me a lot of resilience and the self-sufficiency it taught me showed me just how much strength and tenacity I had. It taught me to never bring people down because I know what being stuck in the grips of depression feels like.

But as I grew older, especially in the previous year I found myself being hurled at with the most atrocious words. From being mocked because I was raised by a single mom (so apparently that means I have male issues) to being told I am self-absorbed.

There were many times I wanted to take my own life but the thought of what it would do to my mother shattered me. The thought of how she took care of us even in the darkest hours before the dawn that never even came. I was extremely humbled by her love and strength. I still am – it brings me to tears. A lot of the decisions I have made have been centered on pleasing my mother. Not in the moment, but definitely in the future that I am building. But my tenacity and focus is simply translated as “overly ambitious” and “self-absorbed” to people that do not know my story.

The worst thing you could do as a man would be to compare a woman to another woman when each person ultimately bears different burdens and their own insecurities and fears. It is unmanly and it is disgusting.

I would rather bite my tongue and have my silence mistaken for sulking than utter words that break another human being. The devil does not reside in the knife, or the gun, or the killer’s heart, or the rapist, or the criminal, or the gay/lesbian, or the fornicator, or the drunkard. The devil resides comfortably in our thoughts and our tongues.

The process of healing from words is a hard and necessary process. Before you say something think about what scars it will leave on another person’s soul. And, before you accept someone’s judgment as “your truth”, go back to your purpose and journey and re-commit to your life.

THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK AND BEYOND: Do a routine check on your thoughts and understand before you speak. Love yourself enough to care about the world your life is immersed in.

QUOTE: “Be kind to yourself and others. Come from love every moment you can.” – Chopra Foundation

Stay Committed.
πŸ™‚


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Are You Part Of Someone Else’s Strategy?

I love how we make excuses. I love how we complain about our current state of life but make zero changes in our daily routines because ultimately, if we desire change then we should start making changes in the way we act. They say “stupidity is repeating the same action, expecting a different result.” – how many of us are any wiser?

I had a conversation, a couple of days ago, with a partner of a colleague at a social event we had. He asked me a question I tend to avoid a lot of times. He asked me this: “What is stopping you from implementing any of your plans, dreams or business ideas?” My answer was simple: “I am lazy and I am scared.” Now I’m not usually that honest, I tend to delve into detailed explanations as a writer but I guess we have the glass of wine I had to thank for my transparency that evening.

I have always thought to myself: “I will do X when I have more cash flow and more experience” ; “I will complete Y when I have a car” ; “I will start planning Z when I have more time.” All these excuses being absolute cowardly ways of escaping any way in which I can work towards my dreams.

When I talk about dreams I’m talking about the aspirations beyond the normal mundane drone of every day life. To some people the daily mundane is the dream, no offence (I hope I am far from right on that front) but to some people the dream stems beyond that to silent moments spent pondering over the ultimate life in our solitude.

So I love how we make excuses, how we have majestic dreams and yet ‘complement’ them with below-average decisions and actions. You may not have enough “capital” yet to put into your business but if a potential investor walked up to you with enough capital would you have your business plan accurately drafted and researched? You may not have the ‘time’ to put work into your passion/hobby/initiative but if you could substitute 2 hours spent infront of the television with 2 hours of research and practice would it not make a difference & sharpen your strategy?

I know it is easy to say, I know because it is a battle I too am fighting right now but it can be done

Alvin Toffler said: “If you do not have a strategy, you will be part of someone else’s strategy.” I respect this man a lot so I do take his words seriously, especially because they are so true. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to wake up at 40 and realize I spent a good part of my best years to thrive, being part of someone else’s strategy.

Hope you’re having a great week and that this has caused you to ponder over your dreams and act on them a little.

Quote: “Hope is not a strategy.” – Timothy Wilson

Stay Committed.

πŸ™‚


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Failure is not Fatal

I knew I had grown the day I realized that failure didn’t mean the end, I knew I had learned a lot when I understood that success ultimately separates quitters from those who persevere. One of my biggest fears used to be failing and I would flinch at the thought of being embarrassed by not being “good” at something.

As I grew in this Life thing, I realized that sulking from failure ultimately holds you back. That’s what the drawing board is there for, its there for you to go back to and improve, coach and re-design yourself and your plans when things don’t pan out as expected. The worst thing you could do would be to stop trying and ultimately hold yourself back from everything you deserve and are capable of.

A week ago on 16 May I had my driving test which I was unbelievably nervous about (that fear of failure is still there). It did not go well, 4 minutes into it my legs were shaking so badly and I was so scared that I went forward instead of back. Long story short, I swallowed my pride and scolded at my tears to “please stay out of this one!” I had to book for another test date and my eyes had to be clear for the eye test. Much to my delight and fear (simultaneously) I got a test date for the following week. So here I was granted a second chance to clear my head, dismiss the fear and decide to succeed – fast.

In that whirlwind of emotions that I was currently immersed in, I decided that should it go well I would write about failure in my next blog post. So here I was with one week to go to my test date knowing that 1) I need to pass and get a licence, I do need a car of my own don’t I? and 2) if I don’t pass then I’ve ruined my next blog post. Talk about pressure!

Well here I am posting about rising from failure so 24 May was a very happy afternoon for me.

I could not get my licence in high school because my mother couldn’t afford to pay for my lessons, so I spent the last couple of years trying to sort out my own finances to get it. It (the licence) always being last on my priority list because food & survival was at the top.

It helps that its something that we HAVE to have (unless you’re really a fan of frustration & taxis). But what about the things we can delay for years? How about we apply the same sense of urgency to everything we would like to achieve? Whatever it is that is a mission to achieve and accomplish for you right now: take it back to the drawing board, if its worth it and you want it you’ll find a way.

Whether its your exams (the season has arrived), a project, a work-related initiative, a new job, a relationship that is crumbling, a weight-loss goal and whatever else you are faced with right now that had failed or is threatening to fail: take it and yourself back to the drawing back. Work, improve, research, counsel with those wiser than you & most importantly persevere.

Wishing you all a fantastic week.

Stay committed & if you have a great experience to share re. Rising above failure I’d love to hear about & I know someone else there needs it too.

πŸ™‚


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Hard Hearts & Soft Minds

Firstly, I do apologize for the inconsistency in my posts & I appreciate every one who has subscribed to my blog πŸ˜€ thank you, receiving that email every time you press “follow” makes me want to write every day & make a difference in some way in your hearts/minds.

I really value routine and order but applying it here, I’d have to suppress an idea when it wants to be born and have to draft it & stare at it for days till I’m “allowed” to post it or simply post something mundane because I HAVE to post something. So, there’s a time & place for rules and order, and unfortunately my blog is linked to my thoughts so really, order cannot reside here. πŸ™‚

I posted a discussion last year on healing titled: Becoming That Which We Have Killed. Basically I discussed what happens when we don’t forgive the monsters we conquer. I want to discuss again, another result of not forgiving ourselves and those that we disagree with on our life path. “Disagreement”, covering a multitude of sins such as “betrayal”, “judgment”, “hurt” and their cousins…

There is a bitter residue that pain leaves. It leaves resentment, it leaves scars. It leaves a lot of ugly slime that needs to be cleaned away. The predicament always arises when one tries to figure out ‘how’ to clean up the mess life has made of you. So quite often, we will cover it up with a pretty carpet and pretend that somehow science will allow it to vanish through reverse osmosis (or some beautiful reaction) back into the ground.

The result though is usually quite far from that. We will either become what we are trying to fight off or we will simply carry the hurt and become enslaved to it and it will change us.

Something that will surely shock anyone who has read half of my blog posts, tweets, facebook updates is that I too, struggle with cleaning up the mess. So even though I seem quite ‘clued-up’ on the process: I internalize a lot of things. So that’s been my tiny project lately: an internal clean up because at some really naΓ―ve point in my life I decided that the minute I am hurt I will become hard. I thought: I will harden my heart & dismiss every “weak emotion” that even dares to come up. Not a smart theory, Socrates should’ve warned me about this in one of his theories.

So, in the process all that happens is that your brain becomes soft. As you harden your heart & build concrete walls around your soul, you leave your mind barren & confused because it is really unnatural. It relates quite closely to the phrase: “hurt people hurt people.”

Hurt people, hurt other people because they are weak. They have not cleaned up the mess in their hearts & so they walk around with false bravado. It really is a scary philosophy that we follow as human beings: celebrating steel-walls of human beings & labeling them as ‘strong’ and, mocking the fragile people that DARE to even shed a tear, when the latter are ultimately the strongest of our Human species.

So what does one have to do: Confront the hurt. Stand up to the pain. Release the resentment & be real with yourself. Soften your heart & reinforce your mind because ultimately, strength is seen through humility and forgiveness. Also, be gentle on yourself because it takes time but also be firm because it shouldn’t turn into a pity party.

The strongest people that I have come across in life are the one’s with the most forgiving and beautiful hearts: πŸ™‚ and they know who they are, one is my gorgeous friend who has a blog titled “Daughter of A King” you will find it in my “blogs I follow” section. If you’re a single mom or even just a woman in need of guidance on forgiving & healing through God’s word, I’d urge you to read it.

I learn so much from the graceful people that are around me. I’m grateful for that.

QUOTE: “The stronger you become, the gentler you will be.”

Life is Amazing,Stay Committed.

πŸ™‚

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Change: Growing through it

I’ve decided that I will start sharing the inspiring pictures/quotes that I come across (whether you make them your avatar/wallpaper – place them anywhere where you’re bound to see them constantly throughout the day) and you may share them with people that might need them. I got this one from (@Addictd2Success)

Socrates is definitely my favorite philosopher. In grade 9 (high school) I decided that I wanted to grow up & become a philosopher. That did not really pan out but I am constantly learning from Socrates, Plato & the likes. There is a wealth of wisdom to be gained from the great late thinkers of the world. Don’t make it just something ‘fun’ to read: apply it to your life.

Don’t fight the old. Embrace the new and grow through it. Change is inevitable.

Have a great week ahead.

πŸ™‚
Stay Committed.

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Nurturing Networks

If you had told me about the importance of networks 4 years ago I would’ve frowned. Perhaps even pouted, flicked my hair & told you that you were absurd.

No, I was not ‘stuck up’ or overly prudent back in my much younger days, I was just so sure of what and who I am. I really believed that all that I needed to make it in life was within. (You may chuckle, I was much more naΓ―ve then than I am now) Once again, I learned how far I was from the truth two and a half years ago during my gap year which I took after two daunting years of Engineering.

What I have learned between that gap year and now (as a working lady & a student) is that we really are not islands as individuals. We form an intricate web of individuals that can build and guide one another. And, if we are not directly building and guiding the next person, we are surely a resourceful link to a well of wisdom that will enrich that person.

Timothy Wilson (@TimothyWilson) said: “If you don’t want to be a leader learn to be a link, you can connect people correctly with positive experiences that will impact them.” He tweeted that a day ago & it really resonated with my belief that there is something amazing in each person: whether you have an amazing story to tell, a wealth of knowledge to share, strength to guide or simply a link to positive people and experiences: you matter. And, if you matter then the next person does too. Value.

I could go in depth about how I have seen the value of networking & nurturing relationships but that in itself, would be a separate testimony. I never really bothered with nurturing relationships or giving people a chance to enter into what I call “my sacred private space”, until I learned that I am not an island.

An awesome article that I read this evening on the forbes website (one of many, as I have become addicted to their informative articles) really resonated with me as a young woman trying to establish her career and life. It is so important that we learn to lay down a solid foundation and have direction. It is even more important to align ourselves with like-minded people and ‘wiser’ people that can guide us.

The article can be found on this link: http://t.co/uiAvj3acM9 and it was the catalyst of this post.

Sure, its a Saturday evening in South Africa and I am having a ‘moment’ about career advice.

Robert Kiyosaki said: “What you do in your spare time defines your level of success. It’s late on a Sunday night and I’m looking at deals. What are you doing?”

So I guess my love for writing, people and sharing wisdom on how we can build and commit to our lives better is that important to me. What’s yours? Respect your passion & be a great link. Commit to what you want & remember that life is amazing, the power to unleash that lies in your hands & don’t forget that you’re part of a huge network of like-minded individuals.

Have a great weekend.
πŸ™‚

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