I recently celebrated my birthday. For me, this day is the beginning of another year. I take time to think about and appreciate what I have achieved, failed to achieve, or achieved partially. I also take time look ahead and plan.
I’m not one to usually tell people how to live their lives, but well I’m three plus decades on this earth and old people are allowed to spew some wise words every so often. So here goes;
On career– It is a great thing to have one. It is also great to be considered a professional and to be good at what you do. Invest in yourself professionally, read books and journals, take short courses, join a professional society, volunteer your skills and learn new skills. Never stop learning.
The tricky bit though is whether or not you enjoy what you do. This is the difference between looking forward to the next work day or waking up and sitting in your bed debating or dreading going to work. I have no silver bullet. But the reality though is that bills will not wait for you to be happy in your job.
On finances– You have got to have a relationship with money. Preferably a positive relationship. If you’re married or have a partner, you’ve got to talk about money honey. You have got to respect the power of money. It can give you untold freedom, note I did not say happiness. One thing I have learnt is the time value of money, saving whatever you can, however little every day/week/month/year will go a long way. But you have got to have a plan, you cannot just save and have no plan.
Try this, imagine yourself at 60…where would you like to be? What would you like to be doing? What kind of life would you like to be living? Now work backwards and make that money work for you. I know it is easier said than done, but it can and has been done. I enjoy reading Centonomy and Rookie Manager on personal financial matters.
On passions- Pursue them. I am genuinely passionate about interior décor and this blog is one way I embody that passion. It has been challenging to fit this passion into everyday life, especially the projects, but I do indulge every chance I get and it makes me so darn happy!!
On family and friendships– This is what gives my life colour and flavor!! I once had a boss who asked me to choose family over career. It was an easy choice. Invest in these relationships. They are what is left when everything else fades away. Many movies/series and books and articles and speaking to older people have made me realize this. I am currently reading When Breath Becomes Air and so far, it has forced me to question my existence and think about death and dying. We are all dying, it’s not if, but when (don’t stone me. It’s a fact). So what should we do when we are living? What does a life of purpose for ME look and feel like?
On health and fitness- I remember a time when I would eat whatever I want and still have a fine waistline. This becomes a fallacy the older you grow. One week of bad eating and it is written all over your body like a tattoo!! Add having a baby to that equation. So I practice moderation. I ensure to eat healthy most of the week and have a cheat day on Saturday or Sunday (more often than not both). To exercise at least thrice a week and have physical activities lined up on weekends (walks, hikes, runs, cycling, yoga). Be active. Do activities you enjoy, even running after children can be a good work out! I fall off the wagon every once in a while, but I always get back up!
Here is to my new year and to a bigger and better DIY NYumbani!!
Have you got any wise words to share? Comment!