Sometimes…

Sometimes you have invested so much time, effort and passion into something that you can’t bear to see it in shambles.

We pick up the pieces, running around trying to glue it back together. Refusing to see clearly that it’s time to let go. That it’s time for it to be history.

Photo source- https://pin.it/7gcjpq77imzpfc

Your efforts to maintain things that are clearly not working anymore will leave you drained, angry and frustrated. I know your sweat went into it, I know you gave it your all. But sometimes things don’t work out the way you had hoped for.

Life is like a blank book and you’ve got the pen to write your story. If it becomes necessary to scrap that page or chapter, by all means, do so.

Sometimes it’s okay to start again. It really is.

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I need your love.

When you’re seen as the strong person, the one who doesn’t need anyone, they pass comments on how independent you are and how you can face the world just fine. It makes it difficult to open up when you feel like life is caving in on you and you can barely breathe with the pressures of life suffocating you.

There were times I was constantly overwhelmed and would wake up with my heart racing for no particular reason. I exhausted all the tricks in my ‘self care’ kit yet nothing worked.

What kept me going was others’ belief in me. Their kind words, their support and sometimes just their mere existence. This always managed to work the magic.

Photo Source: https://pin.it/4x2n5rfztfylue

I would tell myself that if all these people see this in me then it must be true. I’m strong, I’m doing amazing and I’ll get through this. I nursed myself with their love and support.

It is in these moments that I knew with certainty how indispensable support and love are. You should be able to motivate yourself but it is incomparable to having a personal cheerleading team- rooting for you, dusting you off when you fall and helping in anyway possible.

Yes, you’re strong but allow yourself to be helped and loved. There’s no shame in that. You need all the love you can get!

Piecing it together.

Younger, I always wondered how houses were built. It was something that I was fascinated with. Were they moulded somewhere and then fixed on the land? How were they transported since they’re so huge? How were they so stable?

Till date the idea that there are so many cables beneath the floor that give us power is fascinating to me. Of course I came to later realise the various intricate processes involved. Then it all began to make sense.

The foundation is the most important level in building a house. It needs to be as solid as they come. Failure to ensure that spells doom. An imminent calamity. Your grounds do have to be graded and well prepared before this.

Then come the other processes- framing, fixing windows and doors, roofing, electrical and plumbing works, others in between to complete the building then you begin furnishing to your taste.

Now to do almost anything in life, you need to prepare the grounds and put up a firm foundation. Before you can proceed with the clear hope of finishing without any avoidable mishap. There are certain occurrences you can never plan for. They just happen and you need to work your way around them.

Whether it’s your career or work life, a relationship with a friend, family or partner, if your desire is to see it thrive you need to have a solid foundation. You need to prepare the grounds and that will mean doing your research, getting the necessary materials, mental preparation, accepting and letting go of certain negative traits, willingness to be honest, focus, strong sense of discipline.

These will prepare your grounds, then you can begin to build what you have envisioned with consistency, patience, resilience, love, hardwork, a teachable personality, respect, discipline and a strong sense of direction and focus.

If you do not prepare your grounds and put up a rock-solid foundation, you’re bound to fail at many things. If you do not plan anything or put maximum effort into the things you want, you will suffer an avoidable loss.

If your foundation is solid- you can weather any adversity that comes your way. Even if the structure crumbles, you can always raise it again after recouping.

Keep it burning

Trying to start a fire outside
The full blast of the winds against the matchstick
Fast forward…
6 matchsticks and an unlit heap later
You bring cardboards to shield the heap from the whirls of the wind
Huddled over, you strike the matchstick and leave it to fall on the heap
Bright red-orange flames rise up
Burning, consuming anything in its way
Beautiful…a sight to behold!
The warmth, you can feel from a safe distance
Knowing longevity is not an ally
The focus is now; to burn bright and orange for as long as the wind permits
For surely, its life will be snuffed
And what now is cold would never give warmth.


Life is like the wind…in constant motion. It is not going to stop for you because you are young or tired or unprepared.

Your life is the heap that you need to ignite. What is it that you love, you are good at?What are the things you have always wanted to do? What lessons have you learned from a past mistake?

You have heard this time and over but : Tomorrow is not promised. The fire lasts as long as the wind permits it. As long as you breathe do not quench your fire, do not dim your light. Do as much of what you love for as long as you can.

If you are having difficulty setting your plans in motion…like setting the heap ablaze. Or even keeping your heap lit up, get yourself some shields. Surround yourself with people who want to see your fire burning hot and bright. Who will help you weather the tantrums of life. Seek counsel in all your endeavors.

People who will protect you while making sure you achieve your targets. The heap needs the cardboards to be protected from the winds thus the use of the cardboard. All the same, there must be enough space for aeration.

And when your fire seems to be dying prematurely, feed it gasoline. Don’t let it quench way before the winds make their decision.

When you are ablaze, like the fire lights up anything in its path, let people that encounter you be affected by your fire.

There’s so much warmth you have to give. Do not be afraid to burn bright red-orange.

Life’s Little Lessons by Ndidi.

A Little Too Late

Imagine this:

You have gone hiking alone. At the start of the journey, you had the company of other hikers so you thought to yourself, ‘this is pretty easy’. Someone is sharing funny stories and you are all laughing. You are not so focused on the trail you are to follow. Everything seems to be going smoothly.

Then

Halfway to the peak of the mountain, you begin to feel the toll of all the climbing and narrow escapes of falling. The other hikers continue. You are dog-tired. You don’t feel like finishing the journey. You begin to wonder if it is even necessary. If it will be worth it. You begin to come up with all manner of excuses just to make yourself feel justified for wanting to quit.

But

You are halfway done. You are almost there, almost at the peak. You have come this far-so far. After all the toil, the sweat and the bruises from all the times you tripped; giving up now means it was all for nothing. You are in a dilemma. To give up or to go on.

Giving up may seem like the better alternative when you are worn out and plain tired of all the obstacles that have come your way. Giving up after coming that far means you will have to go back the same route you came and will have nothing to show for it. You would have gained nothing but pain and bruises.

So…

Why not use that moment to rest and reflect? Regain some energy, reignite the fire that in the first place made you set out on the journey. Push forward with renewed strength and a fresh approach. What did you do wrong that made your journey so difficult and wore you out so badly, can it be avoided? Were you running where you should have walked? Did you finish all of your water before even starting the journey?

In that moment of wariness, train your mind to be calm and self-reflect. Evaluate the journey thus far; instead of choosing the ‘easy’ option of quitting alongside thoughts and blame sharing. Why didn’t any of the hikers wait behind with me? Why didn’t they try hard enough to convince me to continue? You need to remember that you came on this hike alone. You were lucky to have had people around in the beginning but each and every hiker was on their own journey with their own goals as to when and how to reach the top. You will not always be fortunate to have people with you.

Instead

Motivate yourself with these words: ‘I did not come this far just to quit. It is a little too late for that’

Because

The view is beautiful from the top. Believe me, you would be glad that you held on. That you persevered. Upon getting to the top, you will realize that you have been transformed into what you could only have wished for. You will be more resilient, open to change, and understanding.

Life’s Little Lessons by Ndidi.

Embrace the process.

Only last year, I started playing a phone scrabble game ‘words with friends’ and I got very good at it. I am a quick learner and I like to believe I have an ease with the English language. Within a short time, I was a worthy opponent. After I had gotten a hang of the game, I used to lose honorably- if you get what I mean. However, I began to feel a tad bit disappointed when I lost. I felt I was good enough now. I had played solo games, challenges and with other more experienced people. My sole aim was to win come what may. I was so blinded by the desire to prove to my friend who introduced me to the game that I was the better player. This often left me creating more opportunities for my friend to win the game. I would focus on scoring high points and capturing the next available TW OR TL (triple word or triple letter) and in the process expose myself to more loss.

In a bid to prove myself as the better player, I made so many rookie mistakes. I did not consider the fact that my friend had more experience and it would take a lot of practice to have the upper hand in majority of our games. Instead of taking advantage of the opportunity of playing an experienced person, I had become blinded by a thirst to win. Needless to say I lost many of those matches. At a point, I wanted to give up and stop playing the game all together. I am glad, however, that I did not. With each game, I get better.

Often times, we put ourselves in such impossible positions. Ambition is great but humility should be preeminent. Willingness to go through the process must be the mindset. Set high targets for yourself but do not forget that it will take time. You will stumble at first and the top may seem a million miles away; but you need to keep going. Pay attention to the points where you stumbled, learn from your past errs, and keep on pushing. Most importantly, do not compete with anyone. What you see and are envious of is a result of so many underlying factors you may never know. There is no one size fits all formula for greatness.

Life’s Little Lessons by Ndidi.

Same conditions, different results.

My mother planted some windbreak by our wall- ten of them all on the same day. We had all totally forgotten about them because they were outside and we hardly used that route. One evening while we were sitting in one of the porches, we realized that only six of them have sprung up past the height of the wall. Six out ten, planted on the same day in the same soil and subjected to the same conditions. Later in the week, I had the rare chance of using that route and I saw that one of the windbreaks was about half the height of the wall. It looked like it had great chances of surviving and making it past the wall.

Such is life. We may all have gone to the same schools, born of the same parents, or had the same opportunities. Logically, it may seem that we are all supposed to be at par in terms of achievements and success in life. Many, like the three trees, will fail despite the fantastic opportunities at their disposal due to sheer lack of determination or some other factors. Some will be like that one tree that never gave up. They may not be on the same level as their peers but slow progress is still progress. And then there is the six trees that made it past the wall. It is worthy of mention that all six are not of the same height. Despite having attained success, some will still be more successful than others.Photo source- https://images.app.goo.gl/YYEWnEhJGZ65y7wX8

If you do not make great use of the opportunities at your disposal, you will surely wither and die like those three trees. Your life will be an unfulfilling one and every plan, dream, goal of yours would not come to fruition. If you are at the stage where you feel you are neither here nor there, like that one tree. Remember that the view is lovely at the top and absolutely worth it. Continue growing and remember that everyone’s journey is different. You may be the last to pass the wall but may me the tallest standing tree when you get there, who knows? Giving up is not an option. To those who are past the wall, remember the toil it took to finally enjoy the view from up there. Do not get complacent, learn every day. Remain humble and let some of your leaves fall to serve as mulch for those to come after you. Make the journey a much bearable one because you more than anyone know how hectic the journey to the top is.

Life’s Little Lessons by Ndidi.