The lessons of 2012.


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If there is anything I have learnt over the past few weeks, it’s that you cannot
move forward into a new year if you cannot appreciate the goodness and the
challenges of the previous year.

As the end of 2012 draws closer, I reflect on the events of the year and I stand hearty saying it’s been a hell of a ride. There was laughter, tears, good times, bad times and above all, lessons learnt. There were times the tide of life would hit so hard that I thought I couldn’t handle it, but I am glad I went through what I went through because it opened my eyes to my naive mentality of life. There are no regrets, since some mistakes cannot be retracted the best a person can do is to look at life from a different perspective and focus on becoming better.

I could write down 101 lessons that the joys and challenges of 2012 have taught me, but I will only note down 12, and hopefully they will also change someone’s life.

1.) Life is a cycle, when something happens in our lives and we do not resolve it, the same test will keep reoccurring until we learn to handle it the best way and retract from the same mistakes.

2.) Regardless of the mistakes you make you have to forgive yourself, work on change and stop being so hard on yourself.

3.) True happiness stems from the inside of us. You have to love yourself wholly so you can be able to love others.

4.) People will always talk, whether you do good or bad. Its what people do. But its not about what they say, but about how you respond. Do not hold on to anger and do not take things personally, just focus on what’s best for you and make yourself a better person.

5.) You should never have to hold on to someone obsessively, regardless of how good they are because if you’re a great person yourself, they will be too busy trying to hold on to you, and the job will be effortless if its mutual.

6.) It’s good to take care of someone, and even better when someone takes care of you, but its always best when you both take care of each other.

7.) No one can ever walk in your shoes, literally speaking, whatever path you choose in life, people may walk in the same direction with you, but they can never walk for you.

8.) They say that you can do nice things for people and they merely turn a blind eye but as soon as you do a mistake they never forget…But a lesson here is that when a friend makes a mistake, never forget all the good things they ever did to you.

9.) Always make time for the people you love. Your presence is valued more.

10.) If God is all you have, then you have everything. Seek Him first, and everything else will fall in its perfect place.

11.) Before you leave a relationship, remember it’s not only about the things that the other person did, you may also have contributed to it and those issues will still follow. Always find the root to every problem. You cannot escape the work you need to do on YOU!

Finally, and this is my best one….

12.) When you think you are doing the right thing, yet your intuition/inner man tells you that it’s the wrong time, believe without a doubt that you are doing the wrong thing. The Bible says that God has made everything beautiful in its own time. (Ecc 3.11)

So as 2013 unfolds, I ask you to reflect and challenge yourself on the lessons you have had, the deep understanding you had about the world surrounding you and the changes that you have gone through.

What have you done and why have you done it?
What friendships or relationships have you formed? Are they contract-based or unconditional?
Did you die to your selfish needs or was it just “I want” all the time and never thinking about other people?

Whatever route you took, you have no one to blame but yourself for the choices that you made.

Do not enter into 2013 so casually.

Don’t just say “New year, New me”…Evaluate!!!

Do an assessment of where you have been in the past and learn to make changes.
Speaking from experience, I have come to understand that through the wrong choices made in the past, sometimes we cannot just wipe the slate clean within a day or two, or with just a change of mindset. But actions and effort play a big part. You’ve got to walk the talk!

Character, self esteem and integrity will then soon pick up.

I heard this reflective quote from my pastor once in a service, that when you are born, you come into this world with 2 pillows…1 for pain and the other for pleasure. Which one have you used so far in your lifetime? Exhaust the pillow of pain in your early days and use the pillow of pleasure in your later days. It’s all about sacrifice. Pay the full price by sleeping on the pillow of pain, then one day you can sit back and relax and rest on the pillow of pleasure. Your willingness to sacrifice is the prove of the value that you place on the object/person/situation.

In a nutshell, nothing comes easy.
Think about the quote, “The bigger the future, the bigger the Enemy”.
We all face temptation in life, but your zeal to overcome that temptation and commit to sacrifice, will determine your big reward waiting for you. What you achieve becomes a legacy.
START NOW…

 

Reflections on values

OK, so this is life, you are born,  raised by your family, some single, some extended and some, the whole community. You are brought up, until the point where you are released into the world and this same world starts teaching you certain things that maybe your mother or your aunties were not brave enough to teach you. Well, that is for the ones who do not have a dad around to tell their little girls about the world’s not so merry-go-round. Or for those that their moms are too busy trying to make ends meet that they lack time to advice their daughters. But for some, it’s not that they don’t have that sufficient time, they just lay back and fail to teach their children important values and principles, and in this, they just wait for the world to teach them.

Like it is said on the last ever series of friends ‘The Last One’, I could identify with “The one where she lays back”, or maybe it is “The one where we both live our separate lives”. Two categories? Wow, that is a plus. I say this because, dear mothers who lay back probably assume that as their children grow up, they shall become wiser and learn about the strife and storms of life. Or better still, when they live separate lives, it is because the parent-child relationship is not so close,  because from a child’s young age, they have always seen each other maybe after he or she comes back from school in the evening or after the parent comes back from work. This makes it like a 1 way street. You never catch up with each other, or walk side to side. Never spend time together to enhance the bond or just to talk just in general.

This doesn’t mean these mothers love their children any less, it just means that their own mothers did not pass on the same morals to them so in turn, they felt like they have nothing offer to their kids. I do not hold anything against the mothers, or the fathers who were never there for their children and as much as it rings in my head almost everyday, I would advice anyone in this situation to try not to make it their driving force in life’s challenges. In fact, it should be a motivator and a lesson learnt, to better themselves as they grow up to be mature adults and to make a difference with their children.

You see I  love my mother and grandmother very much. But sometimes I just wish that there were some things that they could have taught me as I was growing up. Things that I can proudly be able to pass on to my children in the future and start the sentence with “My mother once told me” or “Your grandmother taught me this when I was a little girl”. When i say things, i do not just mean the basic how to be happy or who to be happy with lessons, I mean the inmost, underlying ancestral traditions and what they stand for in our community. But then again, maybe they weren’t taught either like I said earlier on.

But believe it or not, if there is one thing that I have learnt from my mother, it is that no matter what your mission in life is, you should always work hard for it and most of all, never forget where you come from, because everywhere you go, tradition is different. And if you lose sight of who you are, who you were brought up as, then what tradition will you give your children?  I guess one time in the years to comes i will at least be able to tell my daughter or my son the value of working hard taught by their grandmother, although it wasnt in a ” come sit down let’s have a chat” way, but as a by the way, or in the middle of a lecture for doing wrong.

It doesn’t matter whether we speak a different language from our parents, or whether we can speak the language but not fluently. I believe tradition emerges from the heart rather than what you speak. It is the overall morals of life, what you believe in, how you do things, how you carry yourself out, how you handle the storms in your life and the happy times too. Tradition is you. Most of all, Who brought us in this world and has been taking care of us and giving us the driving force to move forward even when life gets tough, giving us hope, blessing us, guiding us. God, is our tradition.

So even if I feel that I came from a not so close family, that meets up 3 times a year to have a family barbecue, or to celebrate  Christmas or Easter together, I can still say that love was transcended and through the model of family it has been, I have been able to pick on the positives as well as the negatives and I know I will carry on fine with my children in the near future.

FAMILY plays a big part in molding our upbringing and the values we hold, especially in unconditional love. There’s a life quote that says that all relationships such Friend, Boyfriend, Girlfriend, all have an E.N.D at the end…but family has an I.L.Y meaning I love you. That is somewhat true. But even with that said, if we are not fortunate enough to be in the picture perfect kind of family, we shouldn’t  lose our values and morals of a human being. We should still hold our ground and know how our response and reactions affect different people around us. As the world revolves and time passes by, we shall eventually form our own families, so we should have something positive to give them that they can pass on to the next generations.