Thursday Two-Liner #45

Stop hating yourself for everything you aren’t

Start loving yourself for everything that you are

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Relax… Refresh… Revive

Truth is I wanted to blog about this topic some months ago when I declared a “no-chores day” for myself. What’s a no-chores day? It is simply a day I decided I would do no chores! Hehe. Yup! No chores… Now, the difficult part was not about getting The Hubs to actually agree to this. Nah, the difficulty was actually following through and not giving in to my natural organising, take-charge, super-mom-super-wife-do-it-all tendencies! It was hard, I tell ya! But I did it and it was nice to actually put my feet up and do nothing 🙂

So why did I not blog about this blissful experience before today? Well, life happened and I quickly fell back into my normal busy, 24hrs-is-not-enough routine. However, I just had a chat with my cousin who is currently enjoying a break from all the chores and craziness and decided it would be great to dig up the desire to blog about this important topic.

Whilst this is not just peculiar to the women folk, you would agree with me that it seems like all we do is take care of everyone but ourselves. Do I have a witness? Or maybe I should speak for myself (and my cousin)… Life feels like a roller coaster most of the time. There’s my family to cater to – a very active almost 2 year old and a husband to take care of, meals to plan and cook, school runs to do, chores to oversee (if you are finicky like me 🙂 ) PLUS a career … Errr it doesn’t look like much now that I have typed it out, but believe me it’s a lot and there are days when I get so tired and disillusioned.

But what’s a girl to do?

Well, I’m no pro at this but allow me share a few tips that have worked for me

  • Always maintain an attitude of gratitude: Works like a charm for me! When Kiki begins one of her tantrums or I find The Hubs clothes ON the laundry basket (instead of actually being IN it), I just remind myself of how grateful I am to have them. I also remind myself of the many other times they bring me joy. This helps my mood and reorders my murderous thoughts…
  • Ask for help: If you are a perfectionist like me or you feel like things are not done right unless they are done by you or to your specifications, then this tip is for you. I try to tell myself that I am not Wonder Woman, that it is OK to allow The Hubs help me with some chores. So what if the indomie he cooked doesn’t taste the way I like? Nobody ever died from soggy indomie, abi?
  • Take some time off: If you can, give yourself like 1 hour me-time. Well, this is easier said than done sha and I am still working on this particular tip. For example, when Kiki is napping, instead of rushing off to attend to neglected chores, I can catch up on that reading I abandoned or I can listen to some music or engage in something refreshing. Not poring through social media o, well except if that relaxes you (doesn’t work for me). The Hubs and I have also explored the angle of sending Kiki for sleepovers at her aunt’s. This also allows for me-time and/or we-time 😉

I have discovered that for all the times I was stressed, my family suffered the consequences. I became grumpy, grouchy and moody which rubbed off on my family and set the wrong tone for our home. I have come to realise that as the wife and mother, I set the tone in my home. The Hubs and Kiki would rather have a happy and loving wife/mother and a messy house than a spotless house with a grumpy and nagging wife.

relax-penguin

 

 

 

 

 

 

So how do you relax, refresh and revive? Please share 🙂

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It’s all in the view…

On Tuesday evening I was on my way to Kiki’s school to pick her and I was running late. All the traffic demons had come out to play and Lagos traffic was showing itself as usual. I suddenly remembered a sitcom I used to watch as a child. Rent-a-ghost. Who remembers it? The Rent-a-ghost peeps could disappear by just squeezing their noses. I desperately wished I could just squeeze my nose, disappear from all the mad traffic and magically appear at Kiki’s school

Heaving an exasperated sigh, I looked out the window to see a gala hawker briskly selling to hungry commuters. The guy was handling his business like a pro and a huge grin was on his face. He was obviously happy to be making sales. His mood was the complete opposite of mine. He was in no hurry to rush off to attend to any pressing business. As a matter of fact, that traffic jam was his office. It didn’t matter that there was no fancy mahogany desk in sight, he was earning his daily bread right there and then.

A single word came to my mind. PERSPECTIVE

Here I was cursing the traffic but the guy was blessing it. I was fervently praying that the traffic jam would ease up but the guy was hoping it lingers. See? Perspective…

This made me think of how many opportunities I may have unknowingly overlooked all because they came wrapped up in challenges and difficulties. Sometimes, when faced with challenges, our first reaction may be resistance because let’s be truthful, nobody likes stress, nobody enjoys difficulties. So it’s natural to back up a wall when faced with same.

I don’t know if it would have been possible to view the menacing traffic in a cheerier light… maybe, maybe not… but what I do know is that most times situations that present themselves to us usually come bearing options and most times we choose unconsciously, more like unthinkingly… There are usually different perspectives to situations…

Ha… there’s that word again… PERSPECTIVE… let’s break it down, shall we? *switches windows to consult Google*… Aha! Perspective means a mental view or outlook, i.e. a way of perceiving or looking at a situation.

What does this tell me?

It tells me that I have the power to choose the way I wish to view situations. I have the power to choose how to see or regard any circumstance I encounter in life. If a perspective is not working for me, if it threatens to drown me in fear and negativity, I have the power to change my perspective and thus swim and float on positivity and possibilities…

So at work, when assigned a task you have zero experience in, instead of embracing the perspective of impossibility why don’t you open up a world of possibilities by viewing the task as one that can add a feather to your career cap?

So you grew up in a dysfunctional home? Your parents’ marriage was not the best model for you and it marred your views on marriages which is perfectly understandable. But the fact remains that great marriages do and still exist. Instead of holding on to your marred perspective, why not learn from your parents’ bad marriage…learn how to have a bad marriage…learn what to NOT do if you want a good marriage. Sounds simplistic? Well, I believe it’s really that simple if you change your perspective.

I believe the way we view situations and life in general determines our thoughts. Our thoughts then determine our actions and behaviours. Our actions and behaviours then cumulate and produce our habits which then produce our successes or failures.

Here’s hoping we choose wisely…

But first of all, let me know your perspective on this post 🙂

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Thursday Two-Liner #44

Believe in yourself and all that you are…

Be your own biggest cheerleader

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Thursday Two-Liner #43

If it is important to you, you will find a way

If not, you will find an excuse

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Lessons learned from a bride’s ruined dress…

I was in a Financial Modelling training and was feeling like a fish out of water with all the Microsoft excel jargon flying over my head. To kill the boredom, I logged into Instagram and began absent-mindedly  scrolling down the pictures on my home page. However, a particular post by Bellanaija weddings got my attention. It was about a bride whose wedding dress was ruined just 5 mins before she was due to walk down the aisle… yeah you heard me right, 5 mins!

The dress was a very beautiful tulle and silk dress (probably very expensive too). The gist is that an overzealous videographer in a bid to get a good angle of the dress mistakenly hung it on an emergency sprinkler and within minutes the dress was ruined by sewage water! Wow! I cannot imagine how the bride felt. It was reported that she broke down weeping. Me sef that was reading the story felt like crying. I tried to imagine the same thing happening to me on my wedding day… *shudder*.

But you know what? The lady still got married that same day (after being consoled by her mom and fiancé). She wore iro and buba and also wore the veil she would have used for her gown (somebody say trendsetter!!!). Her husband wore agbada… and they exchanged their vows and were pronounced man and wife… If a roll call of married women is made today, she would be on that list (notwithstanding the drama surrounding her wedding ceremony). Now this was possible because all the important elements (read “important elements” as “bride, groom and officiating minister”) for the wedding ceremony were available. That the bride wore iro and buba instead of a sparkling wedding dress didn’t stop her from becoming a wife that day.

I learnt so many things from this situation…

I learnt that there are things I give my attention to that really do not matter. That focusing on the urgent can make me neglect the important. That the energy and resources spent on trivial issues can be channelled to cogent matters

I just wonder what would have happened if the bride had decided to postpone her wedding because of the ruined dress. True, she may have gotten married on a later date in a wedding gown, no doubt… But really, would wearing a wedding dress have made her more of a bride/wife?

So I asked myself, “Lahmeet what are you focusing on?”

Is spending all my time and energy at work with none left for my family really wise? Which is more important when push comes to shove? Or should I wait until then to choose?

Having a fancy and glamorous wedding bash is great. But is it really worth being in debt for? Will it make sense for me to start my matrimonial journey hiding away when angry creditors come calling? How about saving all the money I would have used to throw that wedding bash for my future kids’ education or something? Or maybe investing it? Which is more important- the wedding or the marriage?

OK, my colleague just bought the latest Peruvian weave and my eye is chooking and I am longer throating for it. But at the same time, my rent is due. Please my people, advise me. What should I do? Shebi I should just buy the weave? My landlord will allow me owe him till next year- he’s a nice guy. I know I would have to figure out how to pay the enormous rent next year but I will cross that bridge when I get there…

Or when faced with a rude shop attendant that totally lacks basic customer service skills, what should I do? Shout and hurl insults at her? And then she would probably serve me with her own verbal venom and we would both get down and dirty with fists flying… Would I leave with my dignity intact?  Or would I regret not choosing the “a soft answer turns away wrath” route?

We make choices every day and the options available are a mix of the urgent and the important, the necessary and the unnecessary, the useful and the useless… It’s just like sieving flour for baking. The aim is so separate what’s needed (the flour) from what’s not needed (the stones). We all have a mental sieve which works just fine in separating the urgent/important, useful/useless and necessary/unnecessary. I think the problem is that sometimes we tend to choose the urgent over the important, we overlook the useful and settle for the useless or we busy ourselves with the unnecessary and become too drained to attend to the necessary…

So, I ask you- What are you focusing on?

 

fill your heart with what's important

 

 

 

 

 

May all your dreams come true… xoxo

Share your thoughts below 🙂

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Thursday Two-Liner #42

Sometimes you win

Sometimes you lose learn…

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