5 things about healthy friendships you must know

Making friends is one thing but keeping great friends is another. Growing up I never had as many friends, the type people call “best friend”  but I understand now that friendships happen for a reason and also making new friends shouldn’t mean losing old ones. The fact that I never had much did not make me bad friend material I just hardly found the right amount of connection. I however sometimes wish I had certain friendships. Just imagine if Zahra Buhari was your childhood friend 😊😂…you know

Well I am sharing secrets from personal and shared experiences on what great friendships takes in this post
1. Be thorough in your conversations.
As humans of diverse backgrounds our understanding of issues differ. Even twins misunderstand each other. abii…Our conversations must therefore highlight the details in plain black and white. Be generous with words in getting your point across. Don’t speak to the other person in sparse words and expect them to decode your whole idea. If you are on the other end, ask questions when you don’t understand. You either say it as it is or dont say it at all. Certain subject matters can be off limits but when they are inevitable make sure you are as open as possible.
20170928_0453542. Be Vibrant
This is just a way of saying be lively, don’t be boring. Be ready to share your thoughts on just about everything. Be it about money, your parents, your insecurities or doubt, your hate for broke guys..yea… I have to be real. I like when i am able to relate with one person on several levels. Whilst we may not share the same ideas entirely, i would be interested enough to acknowledge yours and give you the freedom to be yourself with me. I also realised that it takes enthusiasm to deal with challenges knowing there is someone to talk and laugh things over with. I however have noticed people try to be who they are not around me just to be relevant….don’t pretend, be you but don’t be boring!
3. Keep in touch
When you are with your friends you see each other and talk often, that you don’t see how growing up can cause you to grow apart. Calls turn into chats yhen ocasdional texts and days apart become years apart and you ask your self how did we ever get here? It is important to keep in touch and keep each other up to date with what’s happening in your life. The paranoid african woman in me will not let me be so vocal but we are working on it…lol ….That way they still feel a sense of belonging so when they move on to another phase of life they still carry you along. When you communicate try to discuss how you hope to spend your time together when next you meet. It makes it easy and necessary that you have each other in mind as you make your life plans. Keeping touch is much more than Facebook and Instagram likes or WhatsApp hello-hi chats. If you are keeping in touch it is because you cherish them beyond the present and they have a place in your future.

4. Be invested enough to make it work and selfless enough to let go.
As they say all good things must come to an end. Its sad and i know. It is imperative therefore to give friendships and all other ships your best. Makes sacrifices if you have to especially in situations when it does not undermine your personal values. Spend quality time together doing stuff and creating memories. Be intentional about your (genuine) conversations and let them be and edifying. When people leave your life or vice versa, they should be able to remember you for the real you and the values you hold dear. When that time comes and you know you need to, pls let it go. Don’t hold on because there are certain things that need to happen in your life or the other person’s life that has nothing to do with your/their presence.

5. Don’t start what you can’t finish
This is as straight forward as it is. It is not strange for people to have certain expectations of you, for acceptance to come but Don’t force it. On the other hand, we give too many chance for mediocrity to a point where respect is lost. Don’t do what you won’t do months down the line just because you want to keep people-pleasing. From day one be yourself but don’t waste time and resources trying to prove anything. If you start what you can’t finish it will finish you. Geniune Friendships will however take people to their next level.

20170928_063444You know I always like to hear your thoughts. Feel free to share, like, and subscribe too to get the latest.

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Yours truly Ije 💐

A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; Ecclesiastes 3 vs 7

 

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ALL THE THINGS I’M GRATEFUL FOR

Happy New weeek!

How are you my lovely readers?

I am sorry for being away to long these days, i want to be here more often, i have you all in my mind all the time and the need to do well by you guys makes me want to be better and i am loving it.

Its been a pretty tough year and i cant even complain. I can only be grateful. Many times i’ve felt like all the positivity and struggle to become is all a fluke but the truth is everyday we are alive is a gift to be used to the fullest. There is no time to be sitting around and being average.

I’ve lost some fighters to death, i’ve asked a lot of why(s), I’ve blamed myself for some of my misfortune, other times i’ve thought life was just being unfair. I’ve had to come to terms with the harsh reality of death. We make life plans but no where in the equation of our life does death fit in. It comes when it comes and thats the end. Yet, we must live everyday expectant and pushing through, to live out our dreams.

Just when I’m about to go off on a tangent, i realize that despite the changing times and seasons of life, my most trusted connection has not changed. God is still God, once he wills it, there will be a way. I want to be more but when i am not there yet all i can be is grateful – no complains

GRATEFULI am grateful for:

THE OPPORTUNITY TO HAVE AND CHASE MY DREAMS : Its only people that are alive that can dream, set goals and get goals. I am grateful for such a priceless priviledge. Some people have lost their lives in the process and to still be in the race is something i won’t take simply. In the midst of all the struggle to survive and become somebody you are proud of, don’t forget to acknowledge the ultimate provider and make your way right with Him all day everyday. Good health begets sound mind and a sound mind can only make sound decisions.

GREAT FRIENDS: I am talking of those ones you don’t see often or speak with often but you just know they are there. They remember you in there prayers and that enough remembrance. The kind of friends that listen to you without judging. Their success is my success and my challenges are their prayer point. I am not the type that has too many friends and so when i meet people that are genuine we just connect and it is so timely that i just know that it was meant to be.

WONDERFUL FAMILY: If you have met people who are under certain pressures from family, you will understand what it means to have a family that understands. For a long time now especially this year , i have felt the need to be more for my family, parents and siblings. I have constantly pressured myself to be more for them but there is only so much i can do for now. I also know that i am not where i used to be and i wouldn’t have come this far in one peace if it were not for their support and understanding. The sacrifices they have made is enormous.

THE THINGS I NO LONGER HAVE TO PRAY FOR: You know those things people are fasting and praying for to come their way? Those things i now wake up to, not because i prayed the most but because God willed it. As much as there are so many things i am grateful for that this post will not be enough to say it all in plain words, these are the ones that i have struck off my prayer point list (e.g fruit of the womb), meanwhile i see what people are going through these days in search of these blessings that came to me on a platter. What a relief!

Its easy to get carried away by the things that are going wrong in our lives that we forget to take a moment to say thank you. Thank God for his finger and he will show you his hands. In the course of the week, don’t forget to seize every opportunity to say Thank You to him – the one who knows about all that you need, the one who knows about all your sleepless nights, the Mr FIX IT!

Stay Blessed!

Ijeoma...xoxo

 Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. – 1 Thessalonians 5:18

 

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Differents faces of Jollof: Tales from My first attempt at Making Jollof Rice

Something significant happened in my life when i was about 11 years old. I cooked a full pot of Jollof rice all by myself for the first time. This week, precisely the 22nd of August was celebrated as #WorldJollofDay and all the images i saw made me reflect back to my first attempt at making Jollof Rice.

Jollof Rice

@foodace

Looking back now, I think that happened pretty much late. Then again if I had not done what i did it would have happened even much later. Was the rice anything to write home about? You will keep on reading to find out.

jollof rice

@afrovitalityeats

As the first child my mum, a time came when my mum delegated certain tasks to me and i had to do them under her supervision and so over time i was sure to do them right with little to no supervision, even if she was home or not. The thing is cooking Jollof wasn’t one of them by this time.

That very day, she had to attend an evening meeting and it was and still is a tradition in my parents house to eat Jollof (ocassionally other variants of rice) on Wednesday nights. My task here was to parboil the rice, blend out the tomatoes and pepper, open and scoop out the tinned tomatoes puree, slice out onions  and other choppable veggies.

jollof rice

@sisiyemmie

When It was time for her to be home, she was no were to be seen, my little ones started to feel sleepy and that would be the worse thing to happen. My dad was out of town. There was also no means of getting to her because there was no means at the time. I figured that I had to do something to save the situation and so after much hesitation I jumped right into action.

jollof rice

@chef_fregz

What Actually Happened?

I was not ready. I never thought that was going to be the day. I had always felt too young to prepare the family meals. Besides i had never attempted making a full meal under my mum’s supervision so how was I even going to go ahead with this in her absence?

I felt that my level of experience was still limited so it did not prepare me for the challenge I was facing. I had to start somewhere. I started with what I knew from watching mummy make it

I heat the oil, put in the onions to fry, then I fried the fish in it and, then I took it out afterwards.
I put the blended tomato and then the puree into the oil but by now my onions was practically burnt and I did not realize.
I  fried the tomato for a while then added water enough to cook the parboiled rice.
I added two royco cubes, then some salt,  and yet another salt. I tasted the sauce and added some more salt….jezzz! I struggled with this part ooo…

I waited for the sauce to boil then poured the half cooked rice. I later added the chopped veggies and much later the fried fish just before the rice was completely cooked.
My mum came back just after I had brought the food down and was pleasantly surprised.

At this point lemme mention that I had an older distant relative at home with us but he clearly stated that he was not going to be a party to whatever I was conjuring. Obviously he was not even helpful when it came to tasting for salt…in short he was blanK.

jollof rice

@thechefjosh

Was my Jollof palatable? I don’t know.  Was it presentable ? No. But was it edible ? Hell yes!
In a Nutshell, We cleared out our plates except for the blackly badly burnt onions we had to pick out  of the food the whole time😂😂

jollof rice

@dooneyskitchen

If I was to take a picture of the very first Jollof rice I made, it would not have looked anything like this. At what age did you make your first pot of Jollof rice?

#Jollofwars, My first attempt at making jollof rice would have been scored a 4/10. What about yours? Click To Tweet

jollof

@preciouscore

What I learnt

  1. When it comes to taking chances, you don’t have to be ready, you just need to be willing.
  2. Moving to the next level in life is a thing of the mind not ability. Your mind will make you do the seemingly impossible. Your mind will make the amateur in you execute like a professional because you take on a professional mindset.
  3. People will only give you regular tasks, but those life transforming opportunities have to be taken with guts.
  4. Not everyone will believe in your judgements, so just be willing to take the blames and the glory that will follow afterwards.
  5. There is no perfect time. The right time is now so recognise opportunities and take them regardless.
  6. Lastly, trust no man in the kitchen! They will deny you if it goes wrong
jollof rice

@sisi_yemmie

This post by Sisi Yemmie featured in The Guardian, and This post by Precious of PreciousCore.com will help you take your Jollof to the next level. Thank me later!

As always Thanks for being loyal readers. Subscribe to my blog to be the first to get all the gist. Like and Share your fave posts and get your friends to read too.

Yours Truly,

Ijeoma...xoxo

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It's all in your mind

Monday Motivation || IT’S ALL IN YOUR MIND.

How can you possibly explain the rush of strength and confidence we exuded as children  but grow up to become limited and enslaved by fear?. Fear of the unknown,  of failure, not even just the things you see but even those you cannot see – those that exist only in your mind.

As a child I did things I am actually scared of now,  that i can’t even think of encouraging any child to do – Oh! I had a few injuries but I have no regrets. The ajebos may not understand shaa…

Lately, my 10months old son has been endlessly and fearlessly trying to walk by himself and after several falls that follow every attempt, the next attempt is made with even more zeal and excitement – the same kind I had those days. In my head, I imagine that he knows about the possibility of another epic fall but he seems clearly excited to be making attempts than scared of making them.

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As little kids we have big dreams and claim bold ambitions not minding how we will get them. We are totally convinced and cannot wait to grow up to manifest not minding our social class, gender,  color or background. Our mind just tells us that we will get there and we believe and do not see the need to shrink ourselves.

We get older, and life happens. Our consiousness of our circumstances begin to make us feel the need to shrink ourselves and cut down on our big plans. Ultimately we find ourselves at the mercy of our bargaining power. We bargain our choices and chances in life and settle for less. We freaking settle!. Why? Because It’s all in your mind.

Our level of conciousness, which may seem to be of advantage, unfortunately make us second guess everything. We become too guarded many times that we end up lost or stuck. Very often we look back with regret and comfort ourselves by calling it fate! Hmmmm…..

It’s only in our mind that we stay limited. The travails of the world and our interest in the lives of others corrupt our minds. The knowlege of our Insecurities outweigh the knowledge of our strength. Our thoughts shift and we pay attention to the limitations and the challenges, which are rather only natural, and then we fail to get by. We miss out on the adventure, and don’t catch the fun. We become limited because of what we see in our minds.

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Work your mind out of those things that have corrupted it- addictions, people approval, bad company, laziness, past failures, financial limitations etc .

Set your mind free by changing the focus then your thought patterns follow. Focus on believing in you and your God given potential then your thought patterns will get you to heights you thought impossible. Look at your strengths and work at getting stronger. Remember, it’s all in your mind!.

Set your mind free by charging it with a prerequisite dose of inspiration. Develop your self, and gain the confidence to say “I can” rather than “I will”. Make positive affirmations, surround yourself with positive people and understand that it’s all about you. So, you must take time off and reflect.

Just  like foremost Nigerian female rap artist Sasha P said in one of her songs, How about we see through the eyes of a child and stay innocent? This way we can truly Be fearless in the pursuit of our dreams, doing what ever God has placed in your heart with obedience and as service to your innocent mind.

In your mind believe first, now and always, then go on to achieve no matter what. 

If you think that, the mountain before you means that it is the end of the road then you will settle there. But someelse will approach that mountain and start climbing it somehow. Guess what? Well, I am sure you kno they will rise to the top.

Where would you rather settle go-getter?

Happy New week guys😊… please  share, like , comment, subscribe.

Yours Truly,

Ije 💐

Where the mind goes, the man follows. – Joyce Meyers

 

Check out : Dealing with the myriad of thoughts that go through your mind daily

Career Chat with Jessica Ogbunamiri : Author the Pre-EMINENT MIND 

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Nudity is not Female empowerment

We are taking this too far|| Nudity is not Female Empowerment

They say it’s all about sharing the natural beauty of  pregnancy, some others say it’s creative photography. Others have argued that all of the charade is aimed towards removing stigma associated with womanhood, pregnancy and breastfeeding, so society can see it as a natural part of life. I just think we are taking it too far. Just like that nudity is becoming trendy and unashamedly encouraged in the name of empowerment.

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I remember when I left home for the first time, It was to a boarding  secondary school. My very first night, after a long journey was nothing like the Sunday night I imagined. I was welcomed by the house captain, who also helped me to settle in. She left me with the instruction to get ready so she can show me where to shower after having dinner. At this point, I was already taken aback by how most of the girls seemed to be very comfortable pacing about, half dressed/naked.

It was taking time to sink in. I was going to have to be in their shoes someday after all we are all girls right? Nothing to hide. Like they say “what do you have that she does not have?” A politically correct justification if you ask me.

As if what I had seen was like intro, I got to what i did not realize was the bathroom and I almost fainted. I actually think I had an out of body experience for like 3 seconds….don’t even laugh😂😂😂

What I saw was too much for my then 9 years old brain to process. What??? Are these people okay? Why are the bathrooms not covered? Everywhere was noisy,…..Why is the school allowing them to bath outside the bathroom? They must be disobeying school rules? I thought.

As I was about to turn to my house captain/guide to ask where the bathroom was so I  can go inside, she tapped me and said “You should start bathing quickly so you can go and sleep. You have had a long day and tomorrow is school.”

With my small body wrapped tightly in my long towel I asked, where should I bath?

With a look of concern mixed with humor she said “hhereee!”

Chai…just like that?..that was how I lost a significant fraction of any share of shame I ever had. That has to go down in history as one of the quickest bath I ever had. I gradually eased into things around me with an understanding that, this was how things worked around here. Maybe because we are all women it was easy to be comfortable around each other.

What i still couldn’t understand was why was a male staff would walk in on students in the bathroom in the name of doing their job – as staff on duty. But why?

I was in an all girls school and so I always wondered how different it would have been in a mixed school or an all boys school. Would women be that comfortable or demand more privacy?.

Fast forward to present day, the social media generation, nude pictures are everywhere with thousands of likes. Weird much is the pregnancy shoots and pictures of breastfeeding mothers baring it all in the name of showing strength of femininity.

What is Female Empowerment?

Empowerment is defined according to the Cambridge dictionary as ” the process of gaining freedom and power to do what you want or to control what happens to you”. I couldn’t have thought of putting these two words (nudity & empowerment) in a sentence for a positive cause. Isn’t Female empowerment all about creating opportunities for women to rise at their place of work and in their homes? So that we can fully contribute to the raising of a moral and just generation.

Female empowerment is not about doing the most. It is about speaking up a lot more and finding ways to add value to the life of other women. It is about telling the story of femininity with out evoking emotions that objectify us but rather arouse the interest that seeks to unravel our innate divinity and by so doing, raise the moral bar a notch higher. Just like Author Michelle McKinney  Hammond, “Femininity is strength under control“. Empowerment therefore should not come from making money by morally compromising means and shoving the idea down our throat, with all manner of disguise to make it seem appealing.

Okay, 

Where are the paternity pictures? Where are the naked fathers in the pregnancy shoots? or is being a father not noble enough to be worth baring it all for? Are expectant fathers not as joyful and proud of their newest achievement? Or is it too condescending a way, to express strength and joys of manhood/fatherhood. Pls I can’t understand. We women/mothers must be taking this too far. Is nudity then a woman thing?

These images are going up into the cyberspace in their numbers at a rather too alarming rate by the day. Given the prevailing social norms, perhaps we are expected to begin to warm up to the idea of Nude Pregnancy Shoots and the likes. I can’t even imagine my daughter growing up to find my naked pregnancy pictures online let alone extended family members.

Social media is largely uncensored unlike the tv stations, which still has not got so much of a success. Our kids now own smart phones and social media accounts therefore, it’s easy for kids to come across what they are not supposed to see or what they did not intend to see and that’s how their innocence starts to die. This in itself is a form of child abuse.

By not speaking up against these practices, we are re-wiring the innocent mind of children to become dead to the ideas that can corrupt, as we trivialize the presentation of nude graphics by celebrating the characters. We will be raising men that are obsessed with the female body from a young age due to their premature exposure. This means everything that can stand in the way of the woman and her dreams; rape, domestic abuse, assault, sexual harassment etc. Therefore we stand a risk of continuously fighting lost battles, if we say nudity empowers.

Nudity is not Female empowermentWe need to start shaming all sorts of nudity and protect the future of our young boys and girls. If we let it become a trend there will no longer be need for the use of the word “privacy” let alone lay claims to privacy invasion. We must give modesty its place and pride in leaving a lot more to the imagination. I understand that some of these pictures are jobs that are well paid for and that is not to say it is justifiable. Modesty still holds ground as Hijabi wearing models are getting signed to top agencies and becoming beauty queens and that to me is ground breaking and empowering.

Every action does have its price and pleasures and i think the price does outweigh the pleasures in this case. I know I cannot tell people how to live their life but I can choose how to react to it and so can you. Don’t let them cause you to undermine the values you hold dear.

How about we stop hitting likes on the pictures to show that as fans this is not the sort of thing we consider empowering ?

How about we do them for sculptural or embalmment purposes? Because art of such presentation means more and is worth more instead of littering the cyberspace with offensive graphics

How about we (women) find other forms of art that are expressive of the strength  we are trying to show and celebrate such?

How about we consider that baring it all in presence of the photographer and the world at large is not the best ways to say that “I love my body/womanhood/motherhood and I am not ashamed to show it to the world”.

Nudity is not Female empowermentI think we can do better or what do you think?

Ijeoma....xoxo

But those who desire to be rich fall into diverse temptations, into a snare, into many senseless and harmless desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction – 1Tim 6:9

Check out: While you are expecting|| Stay stylish in a Bump

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