The Corona Pandemic and 8 Lessons to Learn

Hey guys, I have been away for some time. And you may have asked yourself at some point where I disappeared to. But that shouldn’t bother you much today. I will talk about the Corona pandemic today.

Well, I got into freelance writing projects and other brick and mortar engagements. These have kept me off this blog for a while. 

Not that I got disinterested in writing, reading, and also coding- a recent interest lately. 

Let me guess, you could be asking yourself what I’m reading now. Well, I have 3 books that I’m reading concurrently. But what has touched me most is one by Robert Uttaro. 

He narrates on rape survivors’ cases that many never get to know about. That’s a story for another day. 

I can almost hear you thinking what is my endpoint. 

We are facing unprecedented times brought about by the Corona Virus–COVID-19. There is a concerted effort by governments the world over to contain the virus.

Precautionary Measures in Place

Many have put precautionary measures in place that are now obvious at the fingertips and lips of every sane human being. 

A few to mention include:

  • Washing your hands with soap and running water for 20 seconds.
  • Sneeze and Cough on a flexed elbow, handkerchief, or tissue paper.
  • Maintain social distancing, and avoid crowds.
  • Drink lots of water to keep your throat moist. 
  • Avoid the handshake. 
  • Sticking to plastic money, mobile money while avoiding cash transactions.

Now, this is important. 

What lessons can we draw from the Corona pandemic hitting the world today?

  1. The Corona pandemic hitting the world is not the first and the last. Several others came with death in their wake and vanished. So Corona is there for a season and will soon disappear. 
  2. It’s not a disease that is tied to a particular race of people. So it’s not about a “Chinese virus” but a world pandemic that is threatening to sink planet earth.
  3. Health starts with you. So make sure you always maintain high hygiene levels. Exercise. Eat well and always go for routine checkups whether or not there is Corona pandemic. 
  4. Love is good, but the ones you love can be your downfall. Take care to not inflict your family with the virus.
  5. As human beings, we can give ourselves everything but not life. The creator, God is the only giver of life. Having neighbors is good but always know your boundaries and learn to say NO. 
  6. Always have some savings around for such unprecedented times. 
  7. Catastrophic problems unite the world and make it go round.\
  8. You can be flexible enough to work from home. This is my next post. Stay tuned.

Final Thoughts

World governments are facing hard times in containing the COVID-19 virus. And some with better resources are giving support to other governments. Case of China and Italy. 

The country’s economies will feel the bite. It has forced mainstream businesses to close to avoid overcrowding. 

But guess what your health is more important than the many things you are worried about. Just make sure you are staying safe and never say die. 

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Landing a Job Today is Easy with these 7 Tips

landing a job
landing a job |Image courtesy: practicalmoneyskills.com

Is landing a job a familiar phrase, or it arouses feelings of anger in you? And you are just thinking about how much of a loser you have become.

You have been burning the midnight oil drafting C.Vs only for them to end up in a dustbin.

Well, it’s not like I have a job to offer you now but I’m here to walk you through this and perhaps if not possibly make you land your dream job. Or at worse, get a job towards that trajectory.

Landing a Job: The Status Quo

More than ever, literacy levels are up and high. Institutions of higher learning are churning out graduates in various fields into the job market.

Unfortunately for them, it’s one of the worst times to seek employment. Corporate Kenya is ailing and job cuts by companies are a common trend today.

Neither are the employed any safer. Pay rise and promotions are becoming rare by the day.

More than ever, literacy levels are up and high, institutions of higher learning are churning out graduates in various fields into the job market. Unfortunately for graduates, it’s one of the worst times to seek employment.

It’s no longer a surprise to be hit by worrisome newspaper headlines. They are now part of the trending news.

Why Kenya is trapped in a debt spiral

Alarm as 388 Kenyan firms dissolved in 6 months

Kenyans with Ksh 100,000 in bank fall to thirteen year low

All these a clear indicator that the Kenyan economy has seen better days.

Companies are tightening their budgets by the day as a measure to stagnate the wage bill. This is also to help safeguard their profit margins.

Some have never recovered fully from the aftermath of bungled elections in 2007. Brick and mortar corporations and organizations like Posta Kenya are on the brink of extinction.

The digital era now strides colossally in the communication space.

Unlike in the ’70s and ’80s when fresh graduates would be in the payroll system a few days after graduation, the situation today is one to be pitied.

As the cliche goes, tarmacking and gambling are the norm today as the youth resort to unethical methods of sustaining their livelihoods. How then is landing a job something achievable in the status quo?

If you are still with me, that’s great. It’s time to cut the chase and hit the nail on the head.

Job Warfare

You need to understand that this is not a surefire strategy that is guaranteed to land you a job today.

However, chances are that it will give you a fresh perspective of things and help you towards changing your fortunes.

The job market today is no longer about sending resumes but building connections through networking. So, the number one secret to landing a job today is to

Network

Network by building reliable connections that guarantee you results someday.

Linkedin is a suitable site to start you off. You want to have a strong profile that lists your skill set and work experience that will make potential employers come knocking.

Volunteer

You lose nothing by choosing to volunteer. Some have volunteered for organizations like the RED CROSS and got to land lucrative job opportunities.

Referrals

This is more or less like leveraging on your connections to sell you to potential employers they know.

Once you make them aware of your key competencies, it would be easier for them to sell you to the best opportunity available.

Skill-match your CV

Tailor-make your resume to suit the skills and experience a potential employer is looking for.

Sending a blanket cover letter and resume to potential employers is a guaranteed way to making sure that you land no job.

The takeaway here is to make sure you create a resume that matches the skill set an employer is looking for.

For instance, a banking experience would be irrelevant in the medical field.

Avoid Being Choosy

Yes, I know you are a computer scientist from a reputable university. But just because someone is offering you a job out of your field is not enough reason to throw it down the drain.

Often, life will hand to you what you don’t want before you get what you want.

Grab that first opportunity and use it as a leverage to network, and build meaningful connections.

Their pay may be meager, but over time it’s bound to increase. It’s no longer a secret that some top company employees first began as casual workers in their organizations. Start with the end goal in mind.

Consider Self-employment

If you are a technician, a chef, a plumber, or painter you can as well self employ yourself and build yourself a business that will help employ other people. These skill sets are rarely taught in Kenyan universities but in polytechnics and tertiary institutions. Find a skill your hand can do.

Make yourself Valuable

I know you have a degree or a master’s in a given field. You are very proud of it but hey! Education is just part of the endless learning process.

You never stop learning and researching unless you want to expire sooner. Always make yourself relevant in your field of specialization. You can do this by attending workshops, conferences, and studying more.

Bottom Line

In searching for a job today, it’s not only about writing the perfect C.V. Focus your energy on building meaningful workplace connections. You can be sure this will be a significant investment that will pay off someday. Follow the tips we offer you today and it won’t be long before you stop filling a loser. Share this with a friend and encourage someone on the path of landing a job.

A Call to Integrity in Society

integrity

What is your definition of integrity? And do you think integrity is something achievable or a mere pipe dream? For the society to embrace integrity, it calls for personal responsibility on your part and mine. The call to integrity fast starts with you.

Once you get the gist of it, you have the responsibility of transferring it to your family. Family is the smallest unit of a society. From the family units, we can transfer integrity to the entire society fabric.

A Friend’s Testimony on Integrity

A wonderful friend whom I will call Jack once visited a learning institution armed with tender documents to seek a hand in the tender bidding process.

Jack was born in Western Kenya but lives and makes his ends meet in Nairobi. Apparently, it wasn’t his business venture applying for the tender deal but his uncle’s.

Jack was helping his uncle by dropping the application documents for tender at the designated institution.

Jack walks into the institution in the mid-morning hours at about 9:00 AM. At the office where he is to submit the tender documents, he finds a line of other tenderpreneurs also lined up hoping to get a share of the pie.

A Doctored Tender Process

One by one, each person gets to go through the due process. Once they verify your documents, down you deposit your tender documents and off you leave.

Like the lawful chap he is, Jack stands at the queue patiently till his turn comes. But he keeps having this eerie feeling something isn’t right.

Given the social person he is, Jack immediately strikes a conversation with the tender officer and it suddenly hits the roof like they had known each other for ages.

The Call to Integrity Dilemma

Well, the typical Jack is known for being curious about things and about everything.

Deep down, Jack feels the tender bidding process could all be a formality. He thinks the tender board will issue the tender out unilaterally to one applicant.

All this is an internal monologue running in his mind until he pops up the question of the day to the tender officer.

And on Jack goes, “Do you think the tender application process is fair and transparent?” The tender officer responds, “What do you expect?” He pauses. “Do you expect it to be fair?”

He continues to which Jack responds to the contrary. Frankly, the tender officer gives Jack an answer to suggest that life is all about cutting corners and if you aren’t cutting any, then you are at the tail end.

Until we see the call to integrity as a personal responsibility, we shall not achieve the war on eradicating it from society.

To drive his point home, the officer pauses to Jack a question, “In campus, weren’t their guys who used to cheat during exams?” 

Jack responds in the affirmative but says he wasn’t among them. The officer then shoots him a question of comparison.

“Where are they and where are you know?” Jack smiles at the question and maintains an honest path. Whatever their level of success or affluence they have, Jack insists he would still walk the honest path.

In the mainstream media, news is not just news if it’s not bad news. For instance, dishonest headlines that affect our integrity have bedecked our news headlines in the recent past.

Some headlines the media bombard us with include:

Government failing to halt upsurge in graft”

Rotich Corruption case a first in Kenya”

“US blames corruption for slowing down foreign investment in Kenya.”

For such a great nation like Kenya to lower down her values to this level, one is left wondering where the rains started beating us. Are our religious leaders zealous on the call to integrity in the society today.

For such a great nation like Kenya to lower down her values to this level, one is left wondering where the rains started beating us.

It’s only in 2017, that a report by Transparency international classified Kenyans as “willing to pay bribes to access key services.”

The Integrity Issue in Society

In our daily living, life floods us with many opportunities to lie, cheat, and steal.

Unfortunately, moral values in our society today have decayed to the point of someone selling you meat laced with inhumane chemicals without having a pricked conscience.

Today, the maxim is: steal, cheat, and lie as long as you don’t get caught. It’s like something only becomes wrong when you get caught.

The milk vendor lies right to your face about how fresh their milk is. What about the cloth sewer who gives you empty promises on your cloth material?

It has suddenly become very easy to speak the white lie without blinking an eye.

What of the contractor who promises you pure gold on your building project only to deliver shoddiness?

The dishonest culture is getting so deep that even the few good left are made to appear bad. Nevertheless, we should not relent to our call to integrity in society today.

Similarly, promises nowadays are emptier and unfulfilled that any other time in history.

What makes men today to find pleasure in being dishonest, lying, and give promises they know they wouldn’t deliver. 

Well, you could say they cutting corners to make ends meet, evade a tax regulation or they are on a get rich quick scheme. Above all else, they want to protect their interests.

A Biblical Perspective

Whatever background you come from or philosophies you hold onto, allow me to shift your perspective about the larger issue surrounding honesty and integrity.

In the Bible, we had the nation of Israel that was once enslaved in North African country called Egypt.

And when the good Lord had delivered them and set them free from their captors, they began their journey to the Promised Land.

After much turbulence, oppositions and wars, the Israelites finally settled in the promised land.

The Lord began setting new rules that would define and govern the birth and beginning of a new nation called Israel. 

That said, the Lord set 10 commandments for them. From the commandments, we see that the element of cheating, lying, and stealing do not fail to arise. Committing adultery, stealing, and bearing false witness against thy neighbor were all forbidden.

Regrettably, society has got all these upside down. I know we are not living in a perfect world. Neither are Christians the only people in the world.

However, the bottom line is, there have to be guiding principles that dictate or govern the moral fabric of society.

For instance, if we get down to the using the Bible as our centerpiece, Jesus questions a dishonest steward in Luke 16;11-12. “So if you have not been trustworthy in handling worldly wealth, who will trust you with true riches?  

And if you have not been trustworthy with someone else’s property, who will give you property of your own?

Admittedly, if Christ were to ask this question again, a majority would fall guilty.

The Million Dollar Call

It’s high time we reevaluated our values and be honest. Another verse you would want to put into perspective is in the book of Luke 10:16.

“Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much.”

“Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much.”

What is it you are looking for in life and you have less of it? The wisdom Christ dispenses here is that if you are faithful in the little, you have or in your stewardship over a little of something, he will entrust you with much more.

My utmost appeal goes to our leaders and civil servants entrusted with enormous public resources.

To the producers of goods and services and to every person who values personal relationships that we can make a fundamental change towards the honest path.

Supporting the truth, even when it is unpopular, shows the capacity for honesty and integrity. Steve Brunkhorst 

Final Words

Cutting corners could be the easiest thing to do. This is especially true when most of your friends and acquaintances have fallen short of the integrity bar. But I believe you are with me on this. Let’s push the integrity bar higher. The call to integrity is everybody’s responsibility.

Father’s Responsibility

fatherhood

Where did Father’s Miss the Mark?

The question is not rhetorical. It needs answers. What is the father’s responsibility? Because many sons and daughters in society today lack fatherhood love.

On a local television program, I listened with empathy as young people lamented about the lack of a father figure in their lives.                                             

It’s clear that many youths are asking plenty of questions about their fathers. Well, this begs the question when did men abdicate thier fathers’ responsibility?

Of the hundreds of participants who took part in the program, a paltry 20% acknowledged the presence of a good father in their lives.

The remaining 80% lamented on their absentee fathers. Numbers don’t lie.

My Childhood Experience

Growing up, I knew my father to be the best in the world. Being the teacher he was, discipline was the number one virtue he instilled in us.

To top that up, he was there for all of us, including my siblings and I. He endeavored to educate every one of us up to university level.

Similarly, dad would not spare the rod when he had to put it to good use. Well, at that young age, I felt this was an unfair punishment.

More disturbing was the fact that we could all carry the blame for the mistake of the one mischievous chap and get an equal number of lashes.

The Fruits

Going back down the memory lane, I now see why dad had to instil discipline in us. Over the years, I have reaped the fruits of being disciplined in my life. Not necessarily to the authority figures in my life, but my personal life as well.

If there is one thing I’m grateful to dad for, it’s the culture of reading he nurtured in me.

By the time a man realises that maybe his father was right, he usually has a son who thinks he is wrong

Charles Wadsworth

Reading and writing became part and parcel of my life at quite an early age. If I remember, countless are the days I read the long outdated “Hallo Children” English course book for lower primary.

I also read a lot of short novels such as the “Moses series” and in there the so-called Mukibi Institute of the sons of African gentlemen by Barbara Kimenye. God rest her soul in peace.

Getting out of bed, even before breakfast, I could get down to reading out loud whatever material was at my disposal.

Dad would be there to admonish me to go on. Isn’t this what you would call a father’s responsibility?

Dad would be there to admonish me to go on. Isn’t this what you would call a father’s responsibility?

All newspapers that dad bought and read could ultimately find a way into my hands.

Train your Child at an Early Age

In the Bible, we read about training a child on the way he should go, and he will never depart from it.

Today, I’m a living testimony of the statement above. I read a myriad of materials on end.

The Amazon Kindle app is now an excellent companion. Still buying books in there and counting.

I’m currently reading “The Man in the Mirror” by Patrick Morley and my next book in line is “Money Master the Game” by Tony Robbins.

One common informal saying goes that if you want to hide something from them that don’t read, hide it inside the pages of a book.

I don’t know whether this is true for a fact, but many find it difficult to focus on a book for hours.   

I have been through school. One thing I have realized about life is that you don’t study it by going to school but through personal reading.

Consider this, or else you are losing it.  To master life, study it by reading the great minds of the men and women who lived before you.

To master life, study it by reading the great minds of the men and women who lived before you.

Irresponsible Fathers

That said, lately, the trend of irresponsible and absentee fathers is becoming common.

Not only is it a warring trend but a bomb that has exploded already. From the program that aired live on TV, the speakers in attendance put it clear to us that there are three types of fathers about the fatherhood crisis.

Children today are victims of being “under fathered,” “misfathered” and “unfathered”

Under fathered to mean little of dad at home, always at work. He only shows up for a short time and leaves.

Going by the research done on fathers, many participants lamented on the fact that their dads could only spend 18 minutes or less with their families.

About being “misfathered,” many talked about the lack of parental love, a dad who is abusive, violent, and uncaring.

Just like the first two, “Unfathered” participants complained about not knowing their dads.

In all these scenarios, society needs to ask some tough questions regarding fathers and what is becoming of young men who have not experienced the presence of a father in their lives. If they lost their dads at a young age because of death, this is an all different case.

Are Mothers to Blame?

Is it possible that mothers could also be a contributing factor to the lack of a father’s responsibility?

Take, for example, mothers who cannot reveal the identity of their husbands to their children. Such actions by mothers could stem from the fact that they may have gotten the child in question in a harrowing way, like rape.

Alternatively, the father may have neglected the upbringing of the child.

Parents have a responsibility of taking care of their kids emotionally, mentally, and physically and more so in the ways of God.

Nonetheless, I will talk about Jonathan Edwards. He is an 18th century American revivalist preacher.

He gives an excellent example of what it means to be a great father and a parent at large.  

Tracing his children and grandchildren, the American Educator A.E Winship, discovered new statistics about the descendants of Jonathan 150 years later after his death.

Out of his descendants. There was:

  • 1 U.S vice president
  • 3 U.S senators
  • Three governors
  • Three mayors
  • 13 college presidents
  • 30 judges
  • 65 professors
  • 80 public office holders
  • 100 lawyers
  • 100 missionaries

One hundred fifty years after you cease to exist, what legacy would you want to leave behind in your family?

Can we make a vow as millennials to nurture our children in the right ways and give them the best love a father could ever give?

In contrast to Jonathan Edwards life lived Max Jukes. Max Jukes left behind a horrible legacy after his death thanks to his wayward descendants. He had: 

  • Seven murderers
  • 60 thieves
  • 50 women of debauchery
  • 130 other convicts
  • 310 paupers
  • 400 physically wrecked by indulgent living

Can we make a vow as millennials to nurture our children in the right ways and give them the best love a father could ever give?

Bottom Line

To solve the fatherhood crisis in the society today, we have to accept the fact that it is a present challenge in the community today.

Many are suffering as a result. However, all is not lost. If a victim of the fatherhood crisis, you need not dwell on what you are missing.

Dwell on what you already have. Have an attitude of gratitude. Personally own up your situation and take time to heal as you seek to accept and forgive your dad.

In the same way, the government and like-minded institutions should avail mentors in schools. They will be handy in offering emotional and mental support to students dealing with the fatherhood crisis.

Men! It’s your time to stand up and take the father’s responsibility over your children.

If you want to voice your opinions on this issue, leave a comment in the comments section below.

The Road of Life: Where Are You Heading to?

road of life

The other day I was driving down this familiar road that appeared entirely new because I had taken long to pass through it. Interestingly, there was nothing much fascinating about it: broken culverts, gaping potholes, and the common drainage issues. However, I do not want to talk about physical roads today. Why don’t we discuss the road of life?

The Enormous Question

What is it that comes to your mind when you hear about the road of life? If you are reading this piece, you must be on a journey that has an ultimate destination with several goals in between.

Alternatively, you could walk through several routes that all converge at the same point. Well, I even don’t know whether the statement above is making sense of itself. But the fact is, eventually you want to be somewhere in life if you are of a sound mind.

Greatness is in all of us

One pure truth about life is that everyone born of a mother under the sun has an inherent desire to be great. And some driven by vice have used crude methods to get to the top. Isn’t it true that some of our political leaders have killed and exiled their rivals and political opponents to get to the top? Well, you may say you fight for power and don’t beg it, but no one has the right to take away life.

One pure truth about life is that everyone born of a mother under the sun has an inherent desire to be great

What’s your view of success/greatness?

If you are still there, I want to partly talk about my experience in the Kenya Education system 8.4.4. Has not education played a major role in shaping our lives? Whether or not you went through it? There must be one or two things you learnt from it.

When I was in primary school, pupils who had done their last exams and left; probably joined national schools would come back visiting. We used to revere them and see them as our heroes because they achieved what we hadn’t.

We viewed them with awe and admiration and imagined the wonderful life they were leading in national schools. Our teachers could celebrate them, telling us to be like so and so.

Oblivious to us, they were also the typical high school students on a journey of life with the core desire to make their lives more meaningful. Back in primary school, as you may want to call it in slang, we imagined an excellent experience, after that, in a prestigious national school. Time went by, and the lucky ones like me (or should someone else be saying this) found ourselves in high school. 

Know things for What they are

We realized high school wasn’t a bed of roses either. Primary was a walkover.  In my case, mine was an excellent performing provincial school whose promotion to a national school was long overdue.

They deemed the school among the best in Western Kenya under the leadership of the head teacher we had nicknamed “Jeshi”. In high school; it was survival for the fittest.

A series of CATS, assignments, and quizzes. We met poor performance with some hard lashes on our sitting apparatus and our teachers would threaten us with repeating classes.

So this is what the heroes we revered in our primary school days went through? The food was not much different from the one we used to consume with relish back in primary school but was better in my opinion.

Failed Expectations

Over time, I watched as guys gave up when things became tough. Some stricter subjects like Mathematics, physics, and chemistry proved to be a tall order for many.

In primary school, for instance, you could gamble with multiple choices and scoop 97/100%. If you have been through the Kenya 8.4.4. In the education system, you must relate to this. 

I wouldn’t want to talk about myself here lest I brag or get biased. Add to the indiscipline cases that bedeviled the crooked ones.

As a high school student, the word expulsion or getting expelled was so dreary that thinking about it would send chills down my spine. Actually, to a high school student, it was like your life had come to an abrupt end.

While going home after getting expelled or suspended, you needed to think hard to fabricate lies that you would use to convince your parents why you were out of school or otherwise your goose would be cooked.

And what were the villagers expected to think of you? After hearing the son of so and so joined high school and is now passing the time at home.

A considerable number of guys we schooled with in primary school got expelled or suspended indefinitely for many indiscipline cases.

The lucky ones would get suspended for two weeks, get back, and write course notes on end for classes they missed. However, the worst would await them.

If students had done any exams during their suspension period, it means they would rank bottom, and “Jeshi” would shame them during the academic parade.

In the wildest of our dreams back in primary school, this is not the life we had dreamt of or envisioned.

The Good Memories

On the flip side, there was the fun part of it. Graduating from putting on shorts to trousers. Writing letters to girls and interacting with them. Entertainment on weekends and abrupt changes with something delicious on the menu.

Also not forgetting games, Mathematics contests, Science Congress, Drama and music fests, and the many other co-curricular events. 

In high school, we had the revered visitors who could stop by for their teaching practice. Talking of an AGM, a complete bull would go down for parents’ lunch. The dining hall would instantly become a no-go zone for students.

Source of Hope

Among the revered visitors were the old boys who would motivate us to work hard. We would find great relief in listening to them, not because they were talented speakers but because they had gone through the system.

In them, we found the hope to join University via the government program then referred to as JAB–Joint Admissions Board today known as KUCCPS.

We also saw superheroes, role models, and guys who were already making it. To us, these were making it on the road of life. Looking back, I imagine the life struggles they also faced even though they appeared heroes in our sight.

Now, I had this fairy picture of a university. I imagined a place where young adults were well-behaved, disciplined, focused, go-getters, and all the positive words you can think of.

Well, but wait till you visit the washrooms. Hahahah. Wait till you go for student elections! People would get stupid, forget about ideologies and primitively go tribal.

Add to the injury the many tribal associations that still exist within our campuses. Ooh! Kitwek Student Association! What for!!? Students would speak vernacular in some of these meetings. I thought we derive the name university from the adverb universal. Don’t we

Logically, this would be expected regarding student elections. Weren’t their sponsors the same tribal kingpins we see in parliament buildings?

A friend once mentioned how University thwarted his expectations.

To him, the university was a citadel of research, a place guys were immersed in research on several topics. Shockingly for him, it was an endless journey of lectures, the same handouts, and exams.

The White Lie

Talking from the eyes of a Kenyan graduate University wasn’t a walk in the park as our high school teachers would want us to believe.

If you burned your Chemistry book after your final exam imagining Chemistry was over, you would be in for a rude shock. Science-based courses still had elements of Chemistry and biology in the first year. 

On campus, freedom was at its peak, and you had to learn discipline, manage your time, money, and foodstuffs.

Come the exam time and people would read and study like there was no tomorrow. Even the best of jokers would seclude themselves and get down to business.

Apparently, at every stage of life, the Darwinian theory of selection applies.  By the fourth year, some chaps we began with were missing for myriad reasons. A proof to the fact that every stage in the road of life had lessons to offer.

Some reasons, such as having no school fees, were rather pathetic. However, cases of indiscipline, missing classes on end and getting pregnant along the way would make life difficult for many.

The Situation as it is

Four years down the line and everyone was out again, and we get to mingle through social media and WhatsApp groups.

Some came out married, others engaged, and some marriage was a distant dream far away. Still, when joining, others came from the North but left going South in search of greener pastures.

Others lingered on for a while, perhaps waiting for a sign from God knows where.

For those who were partly students and partly engaged in businesses, it was merely a matter of transitioning from being a part-time student to a full-time business.

To them, education was a tool for relevancy, but they appeared to have their lives figured out already.

As of writing this, it’s another four years since campus. Time seems to have moved fast but with minor changes.

Young families are still coming up. Some saw the need to advance their education, and they got back to it again. Interestingly, a few chaps who were rather unheard of have taken the world by storm.

They now driving gigantic machines and living a life that would only amount to wishes and dreams at our age.

You would think because of them living large, they would be quick to lift and support others. But nothing could be further from the truth.

Success is a process. You get to apply for jobs and not even get a regret email. You try business it somehow cannot see the end of the year. You try relationships; you get some rough rides before a soft landing.

You would think because of them living large, they would be quick to lift and support others down the ladder. But nothing could be further from the truth. Success is a process. You get to apply for jobs and not even get a regret email. You try business it somehow cannot see the end of the year. You try relationships; you get some rough rides before a soft landing.

Now to somebody who has achieved some sense of significance without going through breaking a sweat, the need or the heart to help may not even exist.

Some who had relatives and friends in prominent places knew they have well cut out their road of life only for matters to take a downward spiral.

The Big Questions

Essentially, the big questions to ask ourselves is where are we walking to on this road of life. Why all the toil and sacrifice? Is it worth it? Is there a crown awaiting you at the other end of the tunnel?

Is it to disapprove of people who never believed in you or what fuels you to keep walking? What meaning or significance are you looking for in life? At the end of your journey, what do you want people to remember you for?

That you paid school fees for orphans or built and lived in the most expensive house? Let me know in the comments below.

Bottom Line

Strictly speaking, however much you may think someone is living the best of life, things could differ from reality. As I wrap this up, it’s more important to know where you are heading to in the road of life than just dragging yourself by.

What you Need to Know in Parenting Teenagers

raising a teenager

Parenting teenagers is very demanding. It’s not a surprise that most parents fear the teenage years in their kids. It’s always a time of intense growth in their lives. They are growing physically, intellectually, and emotionally.

That makes them more curious. Your teen now has the increasing desire to be addressed as an adult.

They make decisions that will define the relationship between themselves and their teens. As a parent, it may reach a point whereby you feel like your teens reject your influence.

Your teen is still the same toddler you nursed. They are now trying to be more articulate, idealistic, and thoughtful. Given the right guidance, teens should make you proud as their parent.

So, worry not if your family seems to fall apart. In this article, we will help you find applicable ways on parenting teenagers in the best way possible.

Signs your Kid has grown into a Teenager

Maybe you are at a loss as a parent on how to identify your kid is a teenager. You are not alone. Many parents find themselves in this melee.

Years alone may not help as kids go through different growth spurts. In children, you will find speedy developers and those growing slowly but steadily.

Some key signs that will help you identify your kids are transitioning from being a child to a teen include:

Sexual Characteristics

  • Facial hair
  • Pubic hair
  • Growing breasts
  • Menstrual periods

Behavioral Characteristics

  • Desire to be independent
  • They want to be decision-makers
  • Loathe you addressing them as kids
  • Are aware of other people’s opinion on them
  • Seek identity and a sense of belonging

So how should you handle your teenagers? We give you a 10 point guide on how can make your teenage parenting smooth.

1. Understand What they Need

The teenager is no longer your child whom you would cuddle with all the time. He or she has developed and is almost becoming an adult.

Most probably, they are becoming different from what you knew them to be. It won’t mean that you will have to stop caring about them.  Have frequent talks on what they need most.

This will enhance a strong relationship between the parent and the teenager.

2. In Parenting Teenagers, Prove to them you Love them

As a teenager, he or she may develop an ego during the first stages of adolescence. By doing so, the teenager may seem rogue at some point, hence some parents feel like giving up.

As a parent, you need to ensure that there is enough evidence to prove that you love your son or daughter. First, it does not matter whether you give him or her money.

Money does not solve any problems. Take some time off with your teenage child. You can opt for road trips or anything to enhance the bondage between the parent and the teenager.

Through all these, the teenager will grow up to become a respectable person in the community.

3. Know more about their Friends

As a youngster grows up, they always have time to make new friends. Some of these friends will make a major difference in how your son behaves.

Despite this, while knowing their friends, do not be too nosy. As a parent, there is that overprotective feeling of handling your child.

You can host a party and tell him to invite some of his friends. By doing so, you will have made a big achievement in knowing his or her friends.

It will also enable you to guide him about his company. As they say, never judge a book by his cover, so don’t be too overprotective. Parenting teenagers is a skill that needs learning.

4. Have a reinforced Standard within the Teen

Children are never born knowing what is right or wrong. As the child turns in to a teenager, he slightly bends the rules that you as a parent has set.

This will make you feel troubled and somehow stressed. If it comes to this point, ensure to remind them what you taught them at a young age. 

Also, give practical reasons why there are boundaries. Do not be afraid that you may seem strict.

In the end, the teenager will thank you for your tireless efforts to raise him appropriately.

5. Always Listen to their Queries or Needs

Fewer adults respect or listen to their teens. Many of them think they will get over that stage just like how he or she managed.

Sadly, this destroys the emotional character of the teenage child. The child will feel more of a burden to the parent or guardian.

As a teenager, your son or daughter will seek advice from other people who may mislead them.

Advice from unknown persons could ruin a healthy relationship with your teenager.  Always listen to what your teenager wants to discuss with you.

It helps to create a better mutual understanding and stronger bonds.

6. Offer your Wisdom regarding when you were a Teenager

Being a parent, you have had several encounters as a teenager, some of which may be impressive or not.

In line with that, you automatically gained the gift of wisdom since you are no longer a teenager.

Give this wisdom to your child and it will make a positive impact in his or her teenage life.

It will also make parenting teenagers a lot easier.

7. Guide them to Stay Focused

This is one of the crucial parts to consider when raising a teenager. Guide them to balance enjoying the fun within adolescence.

At the same time, prepare them for the future. Your teenager could forget the consequences of their current choices which could cost them the future.

Ensure that they are not always focusing on football games or prom.

8. Do not always talk to your Teens

Your teenager will always receive lectures from several adults.

Many of these adults care more about their agenda rather than the teenager. This is very exhausting for kids hence making them not trust adults including parents.

Avoid much too many lectures on your teens. When giving lectures or bits of advice, always address them as adults. Remember to keep things clear and straight to the point.

9. Take away Some Privileges

You should always note that teenagers need you in their lives and not on their terms and conditions.

Take away some privileges like going to events, gaming, and many more if they seem to develop an ego.

This applies to some extreme cases whereby the teenager is very stubborn. It will definitely help to bring him back on track.

10. Reward Increasing Maturity

Reward your teen accordingly if he seems to portray patterns of maturity. You could reward them by increasing their freedom.

You could also give them an extra tip on the allowance and many more. It will also make the teenager to trust you more and be more responsible.

Final Thoughts

That being said, raising a teenager can be demanding if you do not know how to go about it.

Yet, if you follow these tips, your child could become the epitome of being mature and responsible.

So, if your child is just getting into teenage hood you now know how to handle them best.

How to Raise a Child Alone

single mom

To raise a child alone can be very demanding. When it comes to single motherhood, you may feel like you are not being the best parent to your son.

At times, you may consult people on how to be the best single parent or just figure out on your own.

Currently, many single parents have not discovered the best ways to raise their children.

There is no need to worry; I will guide you on the best ways to raise your child despite being a single mom.

Adapting between dating and single parenting

As a young single mom, you may find yourself dating in pursuit of true love. When you are dating, do you consider the impact your child will get once you introduce the romantic partner to him/ her?

This is one crucial thing that many single parents fail to address. Before you introduce your partner to the kid, ensure that you have established a solid relationship with your partner.

Furthermore, ensure to get a partner who will treat your child with admirable respect.

Once you have established a strong relationship and you are in good terms with the partner, the next step is to tell your child about his personality. This will enable the child to get to know more about him and have established trust between you and the child.

Have a parent-child talk about divorce or separation

Apart from losing a partner through death, numerous single moms may have divorced or separated from their partners.

If this may be the case, have a pep talk with your child about the changes that have taken place.

Also, ensure to remind your child she is not the cause of the separation and bring assurance that you love him or her very much.

Besides, listen to what the child feels about the divorce and try to answer all her questions in an honest way as possible.

In addition to that, avoid bringing out the negative side of your partner. In recent research, children fare best in divorced marriages when parents have frequented communications on co-parenting.

You can always organize meetups, video calls or something that will help the child to be raised in the best way possible.

Avoid bringing out the negative side of your partner

Set a Positive Model

To raise a child alone takes sacrifice, determination, and persistence.

Once you have all these and you embrace them to the maximum, your virtues will always inspire your child. They will always be determined to be the best in whatever they do.

Have a set of Household Established Rules

When making rules, ensure that they are short and easy to understand.  Children need short and simple rules that you should define well.

This will also help your kids to gain focus on what do than giving them long lists of what they should avoid.

If you want them not to do something, tell them by mouth, give them the consequences but not in a threatening tone.

Always be accessible when the child needs you

As a single parent, ensure that you can always give help to your child. This applies whether he or she needs it.

You can always ask about how he faired in school, check his homework and help him where he needs correction.

The child may also be involved in extra-curriculum activities. You should always give support by attending all the games or anything apart from curriculum matters.

This will motivate the child to grow positive knowing there is a parent bringing a positive impact in their life.

Visit a Counsellor Occasionally

To raise a child alone can make you feel depressed and confused about how to raise your child.

Some single moms emulate what other parents are doing to their children, hence they end up doing some things which may not influence the child positively.

As a single parent, you can visit a counselor to get some advice and to gain some knowledge on how to raise your kid accordingly.

Rethink on how you have been performing as a single parent

At one point, you may ask yourself questions like “Am I doing the best for my child?”, “How have I been performing?”.

Put another way, such questions help in setting standards that you may plan to achieve as a single mom.

Once you know the past of your single parenthood, it will be easy to set goals and aim to do what you have not done so far.

Successful single parents always do this simple trick and the child turns out to be well raised and have a good picture in the community.

Have Respect for your Child

Being a single parent can be hectic. You may have repeated arguments with your child, which may lead him or her to acquire a negative mindset.

To top that up, some parents may be overprotective to their children. This may lead to the child feeling demoralized and denied the chance to get new friends.

Also, this denies them the chance to create a stronger bond with thier old friends.

As a parent, you should have respect for the child. This can be achieved by always listening to their demands and address them accordingly and to avoid quarrels before knowing the child’s reason to do a certain mistake.

Show your Family that you are a good Single Parent

Family members will always monitor you and the child to know the progress.

As a single mom, the aim will be to show your relatives you are making progress as a single mother.

To achieve this, you need to show maximum care, love, and support to your child.

Concerning that, do not pretend to be nice to your child when being around your family.

The child can think on his or her own and he or she will notice this. As the child grows up, you notice that the respect and love they had for you is fading with time.

You will remember the fake care and support you gave to the child. Unfortunately for you, it might be to late to mend fences.

Bottom Line

To raise a child alone can be hectic. This means being a mother and partly a father to your lovely son or daughter.

However, with the right mindset and attitude, no one will separate the love and bond between a single mom and her child if everything is done right.

7 Ways to Discipline your Child without Provoking them

discipline your child

Discipline is a substantial key when raising your child. The forms of discipline determine how the child’s attitude will come out once he grows up.

Many parents around the world discipline their children according to how their own parents disciplined them.

Parents and guardians should stop this mistake. We should discipline in the smartest way such that the child learns from their mistake and not provoking them at the same time.

Scripture Perspective on “Discipline your Child without Provoking them”

Let’s look at some scriptures from the Bible about child discipline: Ephesians. 6:4 (English Standard Version)

Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.

Let’s also look at another key verse from Colossians 3:21 (English Standard Version)

Fathers, provoke not your children to anger, lest they be discouraged.

As you will notice, the writer of the verses refers to Fathers, but it should not escape the reader that the verses are addressing both parents.

So whether you are a mother or a father, you can learn how to discipline your child without provoking them.

Are their times your child was angry at you because you provoked them? What did you do to cause the provocation? Children, in certain times, are justified in having a holy anger towards us.

I justify holy in the sense that they are mad at you, their parent.

Provoking your child will only accumulate to stressful days when the child grows up. I will guide you through some key steps on how to discipline your child without provoking them.

1) Have realistic expectations

Parents and Guardians tend to expect too much from their children. For example, the child may not be superior at academic works but excellent in playing football. The parent will always pressure the child to perform well in academic work and at times punish the child severely for having poor grades. This is a crucial part where most parents fail to put much concern. The child will undergo a series of scolding by the parent. After some time, he will feel provoked. This is where his/ her discipline tends to depreciate. The more the child will be provoked, especially at a young age he/ she will gain hatred upon the parent and may lead to a catastrophe.

The more the child will be provoked, especially at a young age he/ she will gain hatred upon the parent and may lead to a catastrophe.

The parent should have realistic expectations in that, if the child is not doing well in school, or any task given, a more formidable way of discipline should be used. The parent should also not punish the child for unreachable expectations but rather have a positive attitude towards the child and offer moral support. Set expectations that the child may achieve and with time increase the level of expectations. You will notice that the child will gain appropriate discipline and will not be provoked

2) Avoid Constantly bringing out Faults

Children have a belief that their parents give them absolute love. When they are young, you as a parent should avoid rebuking them for every mistake they make. They will obviously get angry then feel provoked. If the faults keep on being brought up, the child will somehow start losing the unconditional love that he/she once had for the parent. The child will be angry and aggravated. As a parent, you should gain a positive form of criticism for the faults caused by the child. Having a positive way of disciplining the child will also avoid seeing petty mistakes and bringing up faults all the time.

3) Choose your Battles Wisely

As a parent, you should not always pick out minor arguments with your child all the time. For example, you set a curfw, and the child comes home late.

You will get mad and punish the child. These small battles should be addressed in more of an affirmative manner.

Issue out a warning if the child fails to maintain discipline. If he/she does it for the second time, have a small talk. If the issue is repeated consistently, then the appropriate way is to combine efforts with both parents and some of your friends.

It may seem like intimidating the child but in the end, the child will learn from their mistake. Picking battles with them most of the time is just provoking their reputation and diminishing their discipline.

5) Comparing your child to others is a way of provoking them

Your child may seem not to fit in terms of many activities, which other children tend to do well than them.

By doing so you will feel obliged to pressure your child to become like the other kids. This is a common mistake among many parents at this age.

The parent will end up thinking that by putting pressure on the child is a way of motivating them. It provokes the child and he/she ends up losing their discipline morals.

As a parent, identify what the child does best and it can be unique from what you compare with other kids.

By doing so, the child will have a motivation to achieve his or her goals and also maintain high standards of discipline.

6) Think about the outcome of provoking your child

If you pick on your child all the time, what are the consequences?  The child will feel irrational. As a parent, you may think you are giving them discipline, but the child in the actual sense is gaining nothing from the correction.

Think of an outcome that may have a positive impact on the child.

As much as you want to discipline your child, you also want to establish a strong relationship with the kid.

So having to think about the outcome will aid to avoid provoking the child and maintain high standards of discipline.

7) Be calm before dealing with a discipline issue

Cases of parents beating their children giving them severe injuries and also children injuring their parents have been common recently.

A parent picks out an argument with the child, this provokes the child they end up committing a crime.

It is so sad for such an image to be displayed because of provoking the child. If a discipline issue pops up, do not start spanking the child. Listen to his or her story of what made them become indiscipline.

After listening, have a civilized way of communication and don’t raise your voice to an extent you piss the child off.

By doing so, you will have disciplined the child by using appropriate communication skills hence avoiding a catastrophe.

Wrapping it Up

Using an ideal form to discipline your child without provoking them as a parent is very important.

According to the Bible verses in Colossians and Ephesians, discipline and instruction are necessary without provocation.

The child has a sensitive way of responding to things. For discipline matters, parents must have a formidable way of ensuring the child has lofty standards of discipline.

Also, maintain a positive attitude in their minds. The child will grow up having high standards of discipline and fewer chances of being provoked by anyone. 

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Child Discipline: How should Millennial Parents Discipline their Children?

Child discipline is a key factor that most parents think of when they are raising their kids.

It is a key factor in that parents can remove obnoxious behavior among children as they grow up.

Similarly, child discipline also shields society from the chaos that children who did not gain discipline at an early age could cause.

The debate on child discipline has been common, which are the methods to use when disciplining children.

Child Discipline Methods

Guardians and parents give habitual discipline to entrench appropriate social habits among children.

They may use many discipline methods that fellow parents, teachers, or even the grandparents may recommend.

If you are a parent and you seem to have trouble disciplining your child, you should not worry.

I will outline some various child discipline methods that have worked and enabled children to maintain discipline for the rest of their lives

1)  Educate yourself on parenting and discipline styles

Once you gain the skills of disciplining your child, you will have a simple time. Many parents base themselves on the common knowledge of child discipline.

For example, some parents think the way their mothers and fathers raised them is the way should raise their kids.

Even so, this thinking is somehow wrong. Parents should undergo the needed training and pick out the best ways on how to discipline their children.

By educating yourself, you will gain a style that fits your family, and the child can cope with it appropriately.

2) Reward good listening behaviors

Listening behavior is a factor that a child learns at a very young age. The child may obey and disobey some rules at that young age.

If the child has good listening behaviors, you may reward the child with hugs, food that he or she loves, or take them out for a walk.

By doing so, the child will learn that having awful behavior they will gain nothing from it.

Good listening behavior makes the child learn that good actions result in praise and positive attention.

3) Respect their need to communicate

Children have a unique skill of communication. They are not like adults to lay down their issues straight to the point.

Having respect and creating time to listen to them communicating will help a lot.

The child will have confidence in themselves and the parent can address the issues raised by the child.

You will discipline the child since you respected their need to communicate.

4) Set clear consequences and limits

Choices have consequences. If you don’t correct your child at one point, the world will discipline them.

There are excellent ways like denying them the chance to play video games. This way the child will learn from the mistakes they did.

Also, set substantial limits that the child will avoid breaking. This way, you will have played an important role as a parent to instill discipline.

Benefits of child discipline

The benefits are truly rewarding. The child will grow to be a respectable person in the community.

In school, children will relate well to their peers and teachers. As they grow up, they will become socially and emotionally mature adults.

Likewise, child discipline enables the child to be having satisfaction and happiness, especially at their adulthood. All in all, the benefits are of no doubt very gratifying.

Final Thoughts

Parents should understand their children and how they relate to the outside world.

By doing so, they will manage their child appropriately and monitor them as they grow up.

Mastering the skill of relating the right way with the child is also a very important key to maintaining child discipline. Overall, parents should have a first-class relationship with their children.

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Success in Life: 5 Simple Things you Should Avoid to Earn it

Success in life means unique things to different people. For some, it’s all about achieving your goals.

To others, it’s about inner peace and fulfillment. While many of us want to reach the peak of our careers, health, and business, many are void of the will to succeed. More so, fear of failure sometimes riddles us and we would rather do nothing than try.

However, we shouldn’t walk riddled with that kind of mentality. And here are the things you should avoid to have success in life.

1. Self-doubt

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As one author puts it, no one will ever doubt you more than yourself.

Normally, this appears something that we can easily brush it over our shoulders and put the blame on something else.

But the reality is unless you work on getting past your self-doubt success in life will be an elusive dream.

But the reality is unless you work on getting past your self-doubt success in life will be an elusive dream.

Self-confidence could be the only difference between your failed state and success.

2.  Wasting time

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The rich and the poor have both twenty-four hours a day. How the two groups spent their time makes the difference. Waste time and success in life will be an elusive dream for you.

To avoid wasting time, have a to -do list on your table every day you wake up. Make this easier by buying yourself a personal diary that will help you keep tabs of things you intend to do.

There are many distractions in life that kill our time. Movies, TV, social media are all avenues that steal away our precious time.

However, from today on, you can desire to be a good time manager. You can plan your day well so that you have a constructive activity to do every our of your day.

3. Procrastination

Do it now if you have the chance. Period.

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As pupils back in the day, our parents could admonish us to finish our assignments in time before resting.

This practice was a life of virtue that they were trying to instill in us at a young age.

If we could have procrastinated on them, the consequences would be our teachers punishing us for getting to school late.

As we begin to adult, we always forget what our parents tried to instill in us at a young age.

Even though these habits could still be ingrained somewhere n our subconscious minds, we either ignore them or feel they were meant for kids.

As we begin to adult, we always forget what our parents tried to instill in us at a young age. Even though these habits could still be ingrained somewhere in our subconscious minds, we either ignore them or feel they were meant for kids

It’s today or never. Prioritize and take action.

4. Indiscipline in our Finances

You can watch all the podcasts and attend workshops and seminars about building wealth.

Similarly, you could attend classes on saving money and investing. But all these will be a waste of time if you won’t take action.

Success in life calls for good financial planning. And this means working with a budget.

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I was at this place at one point in life. I wasn’t in charge of my finances and off I went from one debt to another with no savings and any investment plan.

Realizing my lack of discipline and penchant to overspend is now saving me a lot of bucks and my bank account is growing fatter by the day.

How did I curb my lack of financial discipline? I made use of my bank’s standing order to make me never see the money I save.

Also, any delay in depositing money into my bank account for the standing order the bank was to apply meant they would sir-charge me..

You don’t go shopping without a shopping list. You will buy everything at the shop your money can afford – Impulse buying.

Have multiple streams of income to have a constant cash flow. I still balance two jobs despite the pressure to deliver on both. Success in life calls for making tough decisions.

5. Giving Up

Giving up is always the simple thing to do when all else has failed to work. I have been a victim of this in life.

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The environment at the bottom is discouraging and snaps out of you the boundless energy you had.

It’s even worse when you surround yourself with pessimists who tell you nothing is ever going to work.

If you feeling overwhelmed with a task at a hand or a project, take a break but by all means but never give up.

Conclusion

Success in life means many things to many people. That means only you can define the breadth of your success and how you want it to be.

To add to this, not all people can have the same route to success. In fact, some will arrive earlier at it than others.

There is no sense in getting envious or jittery about your friend’s success. They are in their own route with different circumstances compared to yours.

Success in life calls for investing in yourself and focus on becoming a better you.

Are there any of the mentioned points that you still struggle with? Let me know in the comments section below.