Self confidence and self esteem are touchy subjects that most of us prefer to sweep under the carpet. The truth is, each person struggles with some insecurity in one form or another. To get what we want, we have to get over the barriers we set for ourselves and reach out. This is why learning on how to boost your confidence and self esteem is really important. For example, you must have read books or quotes by Dr. Seuss at some point. Known for his brilliant children’s books, Dr. Seuss refused to meet children for the longest time. He didn’t feel confidence enough to face his audience (kids!) yet we continue to recite “Oh the places you will go’ to date. Eventually, he worked on his confidence enough to meet his adoring fans and was surprised that they didn’t even notice how nervous he was.
Oh, have you watched Wonder Woman yet? I loved it! The movie gave me a reason to talk about saving yourself.
We spend most of our 20’s trying to figure out what we want to do with our lives.
When in our early twenties ( or late teens these days), we can’t wait to be done with Uni so we can get good jobs and be independent: Pay our own bills, get into nice nightclubs without being ‘frozen’ at the door, afford nice shoes….and the like. Oh, the naivety!
After getting jobs and getting paid meager salaries (lucky you if you got a great job straight out of college) we encourage ourselves that in our 20’s we work to learn not to earn (there’s some truth to this).
However, no one likes being broke, and after some time, we are looking for a way out to a better career, better relationships, and better hustle.
We all experience some low moments at some point of our life. It may not be rock bottom, but you were feeling pretty low due to some event in your life.
Some causes of low moments are:
When you are jobless or in between jobs and you don’t feel so sure about where you’re headed. This comes with some anxiety, stress and uncertainties especially revolving around your finances. Joblessness can also cause you to experience low self worth. On the brighter side, it gives you some time to your hand. If you had saved enough to keep you going for a while, you can use the time you have to focus on something else.
Do you sometimes get that anxious feeling even when you cannot trace its cause? Most of the anxiety feelings we have are caused by thoughts in our minds, which are sometimes just that, thoughts. We worry about things that have not happened, and may never happen.
Don’t get it wrong, anxiety is an important emotion in every human being. It warns us of impending danger and makes us careful. On the other hand, it is not healthy being anxious at all times. Anxiety can be caused by irrational thoughts, obsessive thoughts, fear, fatigue and uncertainties. Thoughts are termed as irrational if:
- They are unfounded,
- They get in your way and keep you from reaching your goals
- They lead to self defeating or self depreciating behaviour,
- They distort your reality, creating an nonexistent reality
- They lead to unhealthy emotions, such as excessive anxiety.
Branding lessons from Beyonce
Let’s face it, Beyonce is not the most talented soul out there (Sorry Beyhives), we have heard better talents, better vocals, better music and a lot more. But then again, look at her, she is Queen Bee. She is adored, her music is catchy, her albums are waited for and talked about for days, her dance routines are used as work-out motivators and much more. I was particularly pained when Adele won a Grammy award for her 25 Album and dedicated it to Beyonce, saying she deserved to win. I mean, why are we even putting Adele and Beyonce in the same sentence? Adele sings to my soul.
So what makes Beyonce, despite average talent, the Queen she is that is so desired and many want to be her? Branding! Beyonce is a branding genius. That is what she is, not a musical genius. Beyonce has branded herself into making us thinking she is the best, her fans, almost are convinced she is the best. Here are some branding lessons we can learn from her. Continue reading
Unfortunately, as I had written before, most of us tend to think that leadership comes with a position. The only power that we have over those we lead is positional power. Because one is a manager or a supervisor, you quote comfortably; I am in a leadership position.
I have come to learn that leadership is all about influence. By influence, you have to make people to willingly follow you, even when you are not using power or rewards to gain this influence. John Maxwell suggests that, to find out if you are an influence, try leading a group of people in a voluntary program where there are no rewards at all and you cannot use positional power as well because the program is voluntary and you cannot fire them.
Leadership is therefore all about people, besides making money for the organization. As a great people leader, you have to learn to influence, motivate and inspire people to meet the set goals. When you are leading a demotivated and uninspired team, there is dormancy; people have to be pushed to work and as a result the entire work scene becomes like that of flogging a dead horse. Continue reading
Why most of us don’t see ourselves as leaders
John Maxwell noticed that when he announced free leadership training open for all, in organizations or universities, only a few people signed up for it. When he followed up, he found out that most peole did not view themselves as leaders and were quick to say, “ah, this training is not for me!”.
Unfortunately, this is the kind of mentality held by many people. Some do not think they can be leaders while others think that a leadership position is not something they want to be associated with. This is because of the picture painted by our community regarding leadership.
Here in Kenya especially, leadership has been mainly painted as political leadership, which is associated with lies, insults, lack of integrity and a lot of not so admirable traits. Besides those who are interested in political leadership, you’ll find a lot of people turning down any opportunity they are given to lead others, say in the work place unless it is an official appointment.
The one thing we forget about leadership is, you do not have to be in a position of power to be a leader. We tend to think that once you are appointed manager at your work place, where you have to make decisions, it is the only time you will be required to portray leadership skills. When you think about it, you are a leader in many ways than you can imagine; When your siblings come to you for advice, when you have kids and you want them to become sane humans in the future, when you are appointed the head of your chama, when you organize your friends for a social gathering or when you emerge as a group leader during a group discussion in schools or seminars; among others. Continue reading
I love motivational quotes and stories. If you follow me on social media then you know that I’m big on sharing quotes that I’ve come across. There have been arguments on whether motivation actually works; be it intrinsic or extrinsic motivation. I like engaging in self motivating activities, anything that keeps my energy level up.
Let me ask you, how do you feel after making yourself pretty to attend a fun event? How do you feel when somebody compliments you? Great, right? The same way a compliment boosts your mood is the same way motivation works. While there have been arguments questioning the effect of motivation on performance, there have been theories to prove on the effects of motivation.
Before I get to it, I’d like you to take a while and think of some force you believe in. Say for example, religion, the universe and such. A religious person will tell you prayers work. A person who believes in the universal rule will tell you that it works; whatever signals you send to the universe you get back the same. We could spend hours arguing on what works and what does not, depending on what we believe in, but the bottom line is, these work because they believe in their power. Continue reading
“The worst enemy to creativity is self doubt” – Sylvia Plath
Most times, we don’t get what we want, not because it is unattainable, but because we doubt ourselves. Self doubt is something a lot of people struggle with. The truth is, self doubt is standing between you and your goal, and if you don’t work on that, it could make you a life you do not love.
Here are some of the reasons you may be experiencing self doubt;
Do you over think everything that you do? That is, before you make any decision, you churn it in your head over and over and then end up labelling it as not good enough? Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying you should not give things a thought before you make logical decisions, but doing it too much makes you start doubting it. This is how irrational thoughts happen. You think so much about something such that they end up becoming negative thoughts and worries. Worry will never get you anywhere. It will only give you doubt and keep you from doing whatever it is that you really want to do.
“Worry is like a rocking chair: it gives you something to do but never gets you anywhere”
― Erma Bombeck