On every dark having a silver lining…

I saw a newspaper headline the other day that dubbed 2015 as “year of the #”. I think that headline was pretty accurate. The ability of people to hash tag events was a big game changer in social media trends this year. If I had to pick a hash tag it would be #silverlinings. I decided to look on the bright side of everything that has happened to date. So while unemployment may have been my biggest challenge, the bright side is I got to spend a lot of time with my family and share invaluable moments. I made new friends, reconnected with old friends, started going to the gym regularly and I even went on vacation with another group of friends.

http://jordan-austin.deviantart.com/art/Silver-Lining-281461718

I’m  not oblivious to the fact that it has been ages since my last blog post! Partly due to the creative juices not flowing and partly due to the way I handle things. I tend to withdraw if I feel I’m not in control and sadly my blog suffers the most. There were so many stories started but never finished and I just seemed unable to complete a full post. So much has happened since that last post. I finally got the balls to face my fears and quit a job that was draining me. It’s a remarkable feeling when one gets the courage to let go of situations that no longer bring joy. One of my greatest fears was unemployment and I faced that twice this year. I’ll share a little bit behind why I quit one of the jobs in a blog post later on. So after I left the other job, I got another one and left that one too for totally different reasons to the other one. But unemployment actually wasn’t as bad as I imagined. Granted there are certain things I’ve had to forgo because I have no constant stream of income but I am blessed with an amazing family who have supported me through everything so I cannot say I was in lack. Also the saving lessons my mother taught me from a young age came into play a lot during this year.

I had a disagreement with someone a few months ago but my unemployment status. I felt attacked and he made it sound like I was content in my current state. My response to him which at that time probably came across as very defensive also led me to have an aha moment.

I can either be depressed about unemployment and cry every single day and feel sorry for myself or I can accept that this is where I in this season and react accordingly. In those few minutes of having to justify myself I realised that how one waits during a setback is just as important as how one will react once the situation has changed.

I choose to be the best version of me – which is the best route to embrace hence my hash tag silverlining. Considering I’ve done the other route before and that just led me to be frustrated and sad and overweight, silver linings are the only option for me this time around.

Every challenge or setback also contains potential for a positive or negative outcome. By focusing on the positive, I feel more inner peace thus being able to accept that which I cannot change immediately.

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Joblessness

They say the Lord will never give you trials and tribulations that you cannot overcome. And its like God knows just when my spirit is about to throw in the towel and at that precise moment, he puts a smile on my face and makes feel better. I get the urge to keep living because I realise that there is a lot to live for and I get the strength I need to carry on.

It has been a long year.

I graduated from one of the best universities in Africa. I expected large corporations to immediately see my worth and my potential and job offers to be flowing in every direction. But fortunately or unfortunately, things did not turn out the way I wished. I have been sitting at home for the last 9 months. Interviews are sparse and offers are even rarer. But through it all, God has been there for me. I did get angry with him for putting me through all this. I got angry at myself for studying marketing and not accounts like my mother wished. I went through what now seems like the 7 stages of grief but I came out stronger than before. I know heartache. I know what it is to get a job offer and watch it slip through your fingers, to watch your friends get the job you want, live the lifestyles that you always envisioned for yourself. But I never once resented my friends for it because I know my day will come.

The last 9 months have been a chance for me to get to know my family better. I had been missing them during the 4 years I spent at university and this was a chance to spend more time with them. My oldest sister and I are closer than ever before. I have a new-found respect for her and her husband. They have been my granite during this time and I am really grateful I have them in my life.  The best part of my days is when my 3-year-old nephew comes home from playgroup. We switch on the radio or turn to the music channels on TV and dance like there is no tomorrow. I have gotten a chance to watch my niece grow up. She is 5 years old, counts and adds like a grade 1 child and she is such a princess. I’ve had the chance to help her with homework and watch her little face light up when she manages to do the sums in her head.

So all in all, I may have been sitting at home for a long time but I’ve created a lot of memories that can almost compensate for all the sitting.