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Volume 01 Issue 08: Value Equation

Have you defined your success? Success means different things to different people. One person’s success is not another person’s success. What does success mean to you? You must define your success statement to know what it means to you specifically. If you have already defined your success, what are you doing to attain it? Success is not a matter of chance; it’s a matter of choice. It’s not something to be waited for; it’s something to be achieved. To succeed we must have specific goals to aim for. Goals are the steps we take along the way to attain our success. There must be things that you want to accomplish in this lifetime; things that you want to make a difference in; contributions that you want to make. How will you know you have accomplished them unless you set your goals? The tragedy in life does not lie in not reaching your goal. The real tragedy of life lies in not having a goal to reach for. Anthony Gitonga, in Pathway to Purpose, emphasizes this thought. “When set, goals determine our pathway of navigation to success. In the absence of goals there’s no desire to make a difference. What do you really want to do? Write it down, then go for it!”

To know your goals you must self reflect. Take time to critically self reflect. Self reflection raises self awareness. It is in the process of self awareness that we discover what we value. Success is uncovered in the diligent pursuit of the things that we value. To help you discover what you value, ask yourself the following questions;

 

  • Where do I spend my time?
  • Where do I spend my money?
  • Where do I spend my energy?

Do the things that you value come together with the way you spend your time, money and energy? Your value equations determine how you spend your time, money and energy. For instance, if you say you value your family, qualify it by assessing the adequacy of your time and energy that you spend on and with your family. It is worth noting that every time you say “yes” to one thing, you say “no” to another. For instance, every time you give in to an extra hour of sleep beyond what your body requires, you automatically say “no” to engaging in an activity that would develop you. Every time you say “yes” to working late you say “no” to spending time with your family. Whenever you do this, consider the value the thing you said “no” to would have given you had you chosen it. Knowing what we value leads to self choice and action. Self action leads to self discipline, self mastery, self leadership and subsequently, success. Once you define what success means to you, come up with clear activities and clear disciplines that you must do every day to achieve your goals.

Lillian Chebosi

 

Volume 01 Issue 07: Charisma in Greatness

Listening to the speeches of the likes of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, US President Barrack Obama, Our Prime Minister Raila Odinga, we may be drawn to interpret that leadership is only for those with charismatic abilities. You may look at yourself and admit to having no pinch of charisma and subsequently disqualify yourself from greatness. That on the grounds that you can’t draw a crowd’s attention to yourself, you cannot be great. But what really is charisma? Is it standing at the podium and speaking to people? Real charisma is not about impressing people but being other people minded. Dr. Martin Luther King’s historic speech “I Have a Dream” was not about impressing people but the expression of his deep felt commitment for the freedom of his people. It is not charisma that makes you great. It is your gift. Everybody is charismatic when operating in their gift. When you do that which you love to do, that which you were built for, that which you passionately relate to, you cannot help it but be charismatic. The honors is then to get in touch with yourself and identify your gift. There’s that one thing that gives you the greatest satisfaction when you do; that you do with ease/naturally; and that you can be the best at. When you discover it, you will realize that you too are charismatic whenever you get an opportunity to operate in it. The Bible reiterates that your gift will make room for you and bring you before great men. Doesn’t it then mean that we receive the most fulfillment, recognition and reward when we operate in our gift? Due to the dynamics of life it is a given that we do not operate in our gift all the time. But it certainly would serve us well if we took every opportunity to maximize the times we operate in our gift.

Lillian Chebosi

 

Volume 01 Issue 06: Money is won or lost at the habits level

Today I am inspired by the merry go round idea that many ladies relate to as a savings group or Chama. Most of us have been in a Chama at one point or another for purposes of contributing a set amount of money per a set cycle of time. The money collected in a particular Chama sitting is given to the one whose turn to receive has matured. Let’s say you are in a Chama of ten women and you contribute 1,000 shillings a month, nothing substantial on your budget, but a worthwhile saving none the less, as far as you are concerned. You are number 10, so after contributing for ten months, you receive 10,000 shillings from the Chama. What do you do with this 10,000 shillings? Do you invest it or save it for future investment? Or do you immediately transfer it to your spending pool, treat yourself, buy something for your house? Do you buy an appliance for your kitchen and feel you have made a great investment? But think about it. Is this really an investment? Were you really saving when you contributed that 1,000 shillings a month if this is how you end up spending your receipt?

Savings is money which leaves your hand and doesn’t come back. We save when the money we have set aside is somewhere growing. It is the act of your money leaving you permanently for growth. Are your habits winning you money or losing you money? Of importance is not the amount you save but the savings habit you cultivate. You can be a millionaire in habits by doing things that will create you millions. Your wealth is measured by the number of days you can live at the same standard of life today after retiring from active work. How wealthy are you today? How many days would you be able to live at your current standard of life if you retired from active work today? The more you save from your daily earnings the more wealthy you are. Experts advice we save 30% of our earnings every day. Save a minimum of 10% for emergencies, a minimum of 10% for charity/community and a minimum of 10% for investments daily.

Emergency savings is important for the day when nothing else is available. It should grow to an equivalent of at least 12 months of your living expenses. Emergency savings is strictly your money. It is not for meeting other people’s emergencies.

Investment savings is for growth. It’s the money you set aside, invest somewhere to earn you passive income. This is the money that works for you.

Charity/Community savings is the pool of money you set aside daily for givings. It sorts out social costs such as funerals, weddings, other fundraisings and givings to relatives and friends that otherwise catch us unawares and throw our budgets into disarray. Lock givings out of this pool to a maximum of 10% of your daily earnings. Once the pool is exhausted at any given time, discipline yourself to give zero, otherwise any more givings on this eats into your remaining 70% float for spending, and if you are a Christian, 60% since out of the 70%, 10% belongs to God (tithe). Eating into our remaining 60% for spending is what gets us into trouble, isn’t it?

Lillian Chebosi

 
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Volume 01 Issue 05: Master Yourself

We imagine leadership to be for those at the top, not us. But what does it mean to lead? In simple terms, to lead means to give direction, to show the way, to influence others, to empower others, to develop others, to positively affect others and so on. Like me, if these are things you want to do, then you want to be a leader. But the reality check is that unless you can do these things for yourself, for instance give yourself direction, influence yourself, you can’t be a leader. You must master yourself before you can master others.

Where do we start?

 

  • Stand for what you believe in and act as if what you do matters.
  • Think for yourself. Believe in your own ideas. Determine what your values are and stick to them. Know what you stand for and live by it. Build your competence around your areas of interest. This will enable you to give your own opinion even if it’s different from that of others.
  • Don’t let the fear of making mistakes hold you back. When you make them, don’t waste your mistakes. Use them as stepping stones to take you to the next level.
  • Keep the promises you make to yourself. If you say you will do something, do it.
  • Quit making excuses for yourself. Overcome the problems you encounter to get the things you want.
  • Start where you are. Quit waiting for the day you will do great things. Begin by doing small things in a great way.

Leading is taking pride in the things that you do – John Bird, Author of How to change your life in 7 steps.

As we go along the road of personal growth and development, we realize that what gives the most fulfillment is what we do in the service of humanity. This is indeed what leadership is all about. Greatness is about serving others. As we master ourselves, we discover our place of service. We get clarity on the things we want to influence others in; what we want to empower others to do; the skills we want to develop in others. We get clarity on the areas we want to lead others in.

Lillian Chebosi

 

Volume 01 Issue 04: Personal Renovation

I was thinking of how depending on our personalities, we hold on to things that no longer serve us, things that basically belong in the trash bin. Some of us hold on to the first bank accounts we opened when we got our first jobs even when they are inefficient and have been outgrown by our needs. For some its furniture, clothes, and if you are like me, you may still have your exercise books from college. We renovate our houses and offices from time to time; and sometimes we do a wardrobe makeover to give ourselves a new look. But what about personal renovation? Just like renovating a house adds value to it, there certainly is value addition in taking time to take stock of our lives every now and then, if only to keep us on track on our journeys of personal growth. We have seen buildings under renovation covered up with sisal bags or iron sheets and when the covers are removed we marvel at the transformation the building has attained. Depending on where you are, it may be time to put up a mental sign that you are under renovation.

Is it time to build a better you? In evaluating your relationships, make a list of people who;

 

  • You want to emulate;
  • Inspire you and how they inspire you;
  • Are toxins to flash out;
  • Are hindrances/obstacles in your life
  • Are distractions/a waste of time
  • Are friends you want to hold on to

 

It’s not just our relationships that need renovation from time to time. Personal renovation has to do with all areas of life. Part of it is our finances, the things that we value, our habits, our lifestyles, our health, the way we spend our time, our preoccupations, the list is endless. Consider asking yourself the following questions reflectively;

 

  • Which areas of my life do I need to mend?
  • Which areas of my life do I need to repair?
  • Which areas of my life do I need to restore?
  • Which areas of my life do I need to fix up?
  • Which areas of my life do I need to refurbish?

Then take action. Become a better you.

 

Lillian Chebosi