Long post alert. 🙂 About a year ago I was at a girls’ mentoring camp in Nairobi (doing my PR job), where working with an exceptional lady Dr. Susan Mboya, we had brought together over a thousand high school girls and introduced them to young Kenyans in various professions with the capability to influence, so they could have conversations regarding career, lifestyle and life in general. One girl asked one of the mentors, (it was actually media personality Grace Msalame) “how do you measure substance?” The topic was self-esteem and self-discipline, where Grace had indicated that self-esteem will come from having a life of substance. Which I found to be such a brilliant observation. That question made me wonder briefly about the dynamics of self-esteem, self-discipline and personal standards but didn’t think much of how important it was to answer it. Until recently, going through social media got me wondering how many young people out there are still confused about career or general life choices, struggling with their standards between what’s easy and what’s right. I mean these days the illusion of young people seemingly achieving everything without having to work so hard is the norm. And this is one topic that may rub some people the wrong way, but well it has to be said for the sake of guidance. No judgement, to each their own, but the young may need a little push in the right direction. So let me take the responsibility to speak up. In fact based on the nature of messages I’ve been getting from young girls lately, I think someone will benefit. After all I promised that this year I will be open to suggestions and inclusions and this post is one of such.
In a world full of mediocrity, be exceptional, someone said. But it can be difficult to keep your standards as a young person when the world has become so superficial and radical about everything, including wealth, fame and recognition for the unexpected. Do I sound judgmental? Don’t mean to. Hear me out. Our society has bred a menace of self-entitled people who believe that they deserve to have stuff handed to them when they ask for it and immediately they need it because so and so has it, without doing jack squat. Making it, and making it fast has become the real end game. Of course it is OK to be ambitious but this generation needs to understand that your focus needs to match your ambition. Don’t just think you are going to sit pretty, look glam for the gram, ditch school and somehow have everything you have ever wanted handed to you on a silver platter. Those who told you so, or acted like that’s what happens in their lives lied to you, and the earlier you realize that the safer you will be. Else in no time you will be creating a gofundme account to pay rent like a certain millennial I recently read about. Seriously what happened to standards people? Secondly, wealth is great, everyone wants it, but the value of your life cannot be pinned to it. Because if that happens then we will have a world full of wealthy vessels devoid of humanity. And don’t get me wrong. On the contrary it is a good thing to not worry about money, so you can then direct your energies to making a difference. Funny thing is that people leave a legacy because of the lives they touch and not the material possessions they accumulate. So being rich is great, but secondary.
My two cents? Choose a way of life that best shows the world what you think of yourself. Have a plan on how you are going to feed yourself while at the same time feeling good about what you do. Because it is possible and millions of people do it. Feel good about influencing the right way. Teach, guide, inspire someone where you can. Change a few lives man. Don’t put yourself in questionable situations and think that it’s Okay to always be on the defensive about your life or who are. Because that kind of negativity no matter how ‘strong’ you call yourself finally gets to you. If you cannot exude positive vibes around other people, you are killing your psyche day by day. And there will be a time when all you will need is to feel that your life meant something, that you changed something for another person, that you made a difference. And unfortunately it will be too late. So begin now when you have a chance. Seek a path that you cannot imagine your life without, something that warms your heart, nourishes your soul, and defines your humanity. A life that you are truly proud of. Think, is my life’s work worth something to someone other than myself? And this is not just for the people starting out in a career or school. It is a chance for anyone to try again and do it right this time. Everyone makes mistakes (I know I have made my fair share). But the beauty of life is that it is never too late to take a breath, begin again and be awesome!
So today’s outfit being part of the shop your closet challenge with the help of Stylebook App is inspired by the women of substance who have been reading this blog. Strong, focused, goal diggers who have taken responsibility for their lives and for society. Women who have dared to take the long and hard road and chosen to influence the right way while continuing to stay grounded and exceptional. I thank and celebrate you.
As always thank you for reading (especially this long post) and stay elegant. xx