You ARE Interesting and Smart, and YOU Matter

Building confidence and self-awareness and loving who you are

While growing up and in high school, there was the popular clique and then there were us. We were the average girls. I was one of them. We would always be just at the edge of all the activity and hype.

The smart and interesting girls had so much fun.

Everyone wanted to know what’s happening in Smartville. They sounded clever and confident and all we could muster were nods and oh really.

Fortunately time is a great equaliser. Fast forward 10 years and you will see who made it. It’s not always the high school sweethearts. Few things trump determination and hard work. Laziness cannot be part of your vocabulary.

It took me a long, long time to figure out that I was just as interesting and smart. That I can actually be quite witty and fun. You don’t have to wait for anyone to give you that validation. I want to encourage all the girls and guys who feel they are not matching up.

Those who feel inferior because your 3rd grade teacher did not think you will amount to much. Sadly, those words may have come from a parent or care giver. They sting and they stay.

Let’s encourage positively affirm our young people. You need to know that you are valued, that you are respected and that you can do anything you set your mind to.

Unfortunately, living in a digital world the enemy is just a click away. We are looking to Social Media for that affirmation by posting a perfectly staged moment and waiting for the likes. If you are confident in who you are, you don’t need any validation. Much less from digital friends who don’t even know your address.

Let’s teach our kids that their sense of worth must come from within, it cannot be obtained through someone or something else, like buying a loaf of bread over the counter. It comes from a place of love, self-awareness and pride in who you are and where you come from.

We as adults have a responsibility to the youngsters in our care, be it our own children or those of family and friends.

Everyone has a place and your place is where you are right now. Tomorrow your place will be different. You will be ready and you will fit right in. The anxiety comes from thinking about it when you are not there yet.

Take every day as it comes and know that if you consistently work towards your goals, you will wake up one day and you will be there. The opportunities are right in front of you, it is what we make of them.

There are things I know now that I wish I knew earlier, but I realise that I may not have been ready. Trust the process. Trust and take the advice of those who have walked the path before you.

Treat everyone you meet with love and kindness, for you know not what battle they are fighting.

Let love lead.

Be The Change You Want To See In The World

Do Something For Someone Who Can Never Repay You

As we were driving this morning to run a few errands, there was a heavy police presence in our area. This was unusual for a Saturday morning. It later dawned on me that it was the funeral of Winnie Madikizela-Mandela.

She was a South African anti-apartheid activist and was married to former President Nelson Mandela. She was very much part of the freedom struggle that led to the country’s independence in 1994.

We Are Indebted.

She, and others like her, fought for our freedom. She didn’t know me by name, but I am free today because of her. She didn’t have to, but she did.
South Africa is a better place because of her.

In a man’s world, she stood up. There is no excuse for me and you.
It’s time for ordinary citizens like you and me to pay it forward. In whatever manner we choose. There are opportunities all around us to do good and show kindness.

If you are reading this you are inherently fortunate. Our basic needs are met. About one 3rd of the world’s population live on a dollar a day. What are we going to do about it?

On Minimalism

We can start by making it a point to get out of the endless consumerism treadmill. We don’t need more stuff. It’s a good time to clean out the house and donate unwanted stuff.

Physical clutter takes up mental space.

Buy less.

“My riches consist, not in the extent of my possessions, but in the fewness of my wants.” — Joseph Brotherton

Our journey here on earth is temporary. We are on borrowed time. Strive to do something that will leave a mark. Not for applause or accolades, but simply because we care.

Kindness, Kindness, Kindness

Kindness starts at home. Be gentle with your spouse. Be gentle with your children. At the office. Go out of your way and make someone’s day.

Those who need it most can never repay you. It is infinitely more valuable to give than it is to receive.

People like Mother Theresa and Nelson Mandela stood up and said enough. It is our turn. Let’s be the voices of the voiceless.

There is always an opportunity to show kindness. To make an impact. To help someone in a less fortunate position. We owe it to ourselves.

”Ask yourself: Have you been kind today? Make kindness your daily modus operandi and change your world.” — Annie Lennox

We will all die one day. The saddest part will be to die without ever having lived. That is the biggest regret of the aged.

You have a chance to turn it around. Start today.

“Three things in human life are important: the first is to be kind; the second is to be kind; and the third is to be kind.” ― Henry James