The Only Constant Is Change…

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As I really embrace the twilight of my twenties, I have come to understand and accept a few things for what they are. First of all, change is inevitable and as uncomfortable and painful as it may seem, you will eventually get used to it. Better to embrace the change and let it happen. Friends will come and go, love will blossom and die, jobs will come and go and more importantly that youthful smirk you are so proud of will fade eventually. The only thing that will remain constant in your life is CHANGE.

Easier said than done embracing change. We are human and looking back in time, change is something we have struggled to come to terms with. The transition from stone age to iron age, white superiority to equal rights and more recently “Thin Oprah to Fat Oprah”…

I have been faced with a lot of change in my life and yes I am finding it quite difficult to accept and embrace the change. Some days are better than others but the beautiful struggle is ongoing. I am continuing with my journey and doing the very best to challenge myself at every step of the way. Learning to stay humble, to stay true to myself, to be patient and have a pure heart. A pure heart makes for a healthy conscience and a healthy conscience gives birth to strong values. Strong values are the back bone of difficult decision making processes.

Please find below an offering from the talented Philadelphia native, Miss Jill Scott. “Lord Hear my Call”

Here I am again asking questions,
Waiting to be moved.
I am so unsure of my perception,
What I thought I knew I don’t seem to
Where is the turn so I can get back to what I believe in?
Back to the old me and.

God, please hear my call.
I am afraid for me.
Love has burned me raw
I need your healing
Please, please, please.

I am such a fool
How did I get here?
Played by all the rules
Then they changed
I am but a child to your vision
Standing in the cold and the rain
Lost here in the dark
I can’t see my foot to take a step,
What is happening?
Oh, this hurts so bad. I can hardly breathe.
I just want to leave so…

I was asked a question the other day that I couldn’t answer. After careful examination, I realised that the answer to that question marked the area of focus for my personal journey. The question was, “When was the last time you were genuinely happy?” … I am running a lot, praying a lot and generally trying to ask myself difficult questions about my life. I will sometimes fall short, I may even breakdown sometimes but I will not deny the natural event that is change from happening. The Better Man Project , Living and Learning.

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Over N’ Out.

BMP183 – Week 1

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Arranging your mind – The happiness of your life depends on the quality of your thoughts. It is something you choose. Whether you like a situation or  not doesn’t depend on what it is. It is how you arrange your mind. Be reminded of what Jesus has given to you and be thankful. That ladies and gentlemen is how you arrange your mind.

Wise words indeed. Lets grow…

Over n’ Out

The Better Man Project…

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After the debris settled and the dust got swept off, what was left for all to see was a shell of a man. The very foundation and backbone of his existence was rocked. The moment when you are disappointed with what you see in the mirror and do not recognise the person either.

I decided not to do anything out of emotion that I would regret and so I held my position and waited it out. I thought long and hard about my situation and accepted the repercussions that seemed to be sometimes a little overwhelming. I took to the blogosphere for inspiration  and to my delight I stumbled upon an amazing blog and story. The Better Man Project!!! This is a blog about a certain gentleman who woke up one day and decided to become a better man. I read through the blogs and they were very appropriate for what I was going through. I decided to start my own Better Man Project and I gave myself a lead time of 183 days. I was buzzing now with fear and excitement. What was to be involved?  How hard would it be? How would I measure the success rate?

My BMP183 (cool name right?) … Anyway, my BMP183 will involve me challenging everything that I was and am. I will blog about the challenges and little victories that I will have in my 183 day challenge. I feel that the only person who can really deal with any problems, concerns ,shortcomings is you/yourself. You are the architect of your mind and the mind shapes your everyday life. I choose to dig deep and battle my demons head on. My past, my mistakes, my regrets, my insecurities and everything that needs fixing.

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Over n’ Out

 

The Two Oceans Marathon 2013…

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My journey to the Two Oceans Marathon was both beautiful and painful. Last year, I told myself that I would run the Two Oceans Marathon with no previous experience. I took to the blogosphere for running tips and to get a general feel of the most beautiful race in the world.

I started training and made considerable progress in my fitness levels. I kept telling myself that I have done harder things than this which was not true but that kept me going during my 5 am training sessions. Four weeks before the marathon, I was faced with a massive hurdle. I rolled my ankle after running 18km and could barely walk the last 3 km. My physiotherapist told me that I was not going to make the Marathon and if I did it would not end well for my ankle. Determined and stubborn as I am, I went on and boarded the plane to Capetown.

IMG-20130328-00564 IMG-20130328-00561Landed safely in Capetown in high spirits and very determined to run. I immediately noticed that it was quite windy. Settled in on the first day and only went to register and check out the Two Oceans Expo at the CTICC( Cape Town International Convention Centre ) the following day.

IMG-20130329-00571 IMG-20130329-00577 IMG-20130329-00579I have to commend the organizers of the Two Oceans Marathon on what seemed like a flawless procedure. The registration process took about 45 seconds and I walked off with my bag of goodies and a timing chip from the good folk of the Two Oceans marathon. The expo was filled with so many interesting things and I managed to make my way to the physio/massage area. I could feel my ankle and right leg tightening up from the flying and walking about. A very nice lady called Linda worked on my calf, ankle and metatarsal. I walked off that table with a renewed bounce and confident strut. It was game time.

IMG-20130329-00575Back at the hotel, I met several runners from all parts of the world and we exchanged stories. Over all great environment in Capetown. The night before the marathon, I went out in search of a hearty Pasta dinner. I found one place on Long Street or off Long street that would satisfy my quest for carbohydrates . It was incredibly cold and windy at the time so my mission was to get the pasta and head back to the hotel room and zone out. I had my kit ready, carbs loaded in my system and I was hydrated. I was ready….

IMG-20130330-00584 Wake up call from hotel at 3 00am. I could hear the wind outside and I immediately got concerned. It was absolutely cold and I got worried because I had not trained in such conditions. The bus picked us all up at the hotel at 3 45am and we made our way to the start point. It was blistering cold outside and we got to the start of the Marathon pretty early. A little too early if you ask me.

IMG-20130330-00590 IMG-20130330-00591 IMG-20130330-00582 IMG-20130330-00585 IMG-20130330-00589It was absolutely amazing to see how many people were awake at that time braving the weather and in high spirits. The DJ was playing music and keeping everyone pumped up before the race. It was like a festival.. Come to think of it, it was very much like a festival. At exactly 6 10am, the gun was fired and the thousands of runners took off. You had the old,the young, couples and random runners  in crazy outfits  ready to take on the race. The most amazing part of the marathon for me was the support which was pretty much everywhere along the course.

I have to bring your attention to what they call Southern Cross Drive . The  half way mark of the race which has a hill  climbs 160m over 3km. This was the toughest part of the race for me .It is along here that the Two Oceans Half Marathon earns its scenic reputation. I have to commend the support especially on this part of the race. . There was a band and all kinds of support on this 3 km stretch of pure pain. Two_Oceans_Marathon-2013-8074526_DSC_2344 Two_Oceans_Marathon-2013-10074841_DSC_2151Please don’t mind the action shots that I have not paid for. Pauper lifestyle… Any-who, after the massive hill it was all flat and manageable inclines. I noticed that I was making very good time thanks to the altitude advantage I had over everyone else and my team mate who pushed me all the way before letting me take off.

From Kirstenbosch with only four kilometres left your thoughts turn to the finish as you canter straight on down the hill. The route continues along the cool and beautiful tree-lined Rhodes Drive, imposing mountains tower on your left. At the 19th marker board you take a sharp upward turn to the left into Union Avenue. Here lies a challenging little rise known by many names but relished by few. This final surprise at the end of the race is the closing punctuation mark. With the end finally in sight, Union Avenue is the double carriageway that takes you to the university’s rugby fields and the finish. Remain in the left-hand lane, the majestic slopes of Devil’s Peak tower alongside as you enter the Upper Campus of the University of Cape Town.

I entered the University of Capetown (UCT) grounds and heard the crowd cheering. I looked around for any familiar faces but couldn’t spot any and just kept pumping my arms and running towards the huge finish line. I crossed the line at 1 hour 57 minutes and 45 seconds..My legs were dead but was overwhelmed with emotion and teary eyed after I realised I had conquered my first marathon in a very impressive time … I said a quick prayer at the finish line and joined the crowd of finishers. The party started right there and then…  IMG-20130330-00593IMG-20130330-00606IMG-20130330-00609 The remainder of my trip was filled with delicious cocktails, hearty meals and beautiful Golf courses. A treat to myself and a late birthday present was a solid 18 holes at the prestigious Erinvale Golf Estate in the hills somewhere outside Capetown. I was a bit too sore to really enjoy the course but it was an experience just being there.

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I conquered the 2013 Two Oceans Marathon. That’s one off the bucketlist. I would like to take time out to thank all those that supported me when I told them about my crazy idea to run the marathon, my physiotherapist, my prayer warrior and my running team who were willing to run at 5 am twice a week. A huge thank you to all.

Next….. We climb a mountain before 30…

” To accomplish great things we must not only act, but also dream; not only plan, but also believe.” Anatole France 1896

Harness the curiosity of life…

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I have an absolute gem of a blog entry for you all today. The past three months have seen me take a new approach which is going relatively well. Positive energy attracts positive energy I always say.

I was having a casual chat with a very good friend  online. The usual office instant messaging to kill time. What ensued was a mind-blowing conversation that graced my Google chat. This person who might want to remain anonymous has such a beautiful mind and has always been very influential in most of my decisions as an adult. So to really showcase the wealth of knowledge this person possesses, I have decided to copy and paste parts of the conversation for all to see. I will not edit nor will I change a word.

Disclaimer; It’s gonna sound like a whole lot of mumbo jumbo, but stay with me.
So a while back I realised it was one thing to be having negative things happening to you and another thing to just entertain negative things – ie thoughts, people, etc.

After an internal audit of my internal dialogue, I realise that things had to change. You see, your internal dialogue impacts your belief system directly ie. Always thinking you ain’t sh*t will eventually make you end up believing you ain’t shit. The only way to correct both is to change your daily internal dialogue and that’s were daily affirmations come in.
You know the whole “you attract what you think, say and do”, well that’s what daily affirmations help with. Eventually, you repeat them so often that your subconscious believes they are solid beliefs and wah-lah, more positivity etc.

Obviously, this doesn’t work by itself . I realised in general I had to be more mindful about what and who I spend my time on. For example: Twitter has become a cess-pit for nonsense people and their antics, my hiatus during Lent made me realise that to a certain level it was feeding negativity towards me. When I get back on, there is going to be a mass culling session and less time spent on it. Same goes for who I spend my time with, I used to be such a social butterfly – anywhere and everywhere. Nope, that’s not happening anymore. I guess it’s just being more mindful of where I contribute my energies and what energy I’m on the receiving end of.

Ladies and Gentlemen,I honestly feel like I shouldn’t add anymore out of fear of ruining what are some very wise and insightful words.

Harness the curiosity of life… Live… Occupy ALL STREETS…

This is the 12th Hole at Arabella Golf course, Capetown.  Embrace life and celebrate your achievements. Happy Birthday to all March babies.

Over n’ Out…

Occupy ALL …

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G’day to you all….

It’s actually been forever since I blogged and the truth is I just had a sensational spell of writer’s block. Glad that has come to an end now. Lets get right into it.

Occupy all…! From  the “Occupy Movement” that swept the social networking waves a few months back and managed to get a few people arrested and maybe even bruised from all the public demonstrations. Apparently, it’s when individuals get together from the bottom to make a change at the top. For instance, “Occupy Wallstreet” was a noble and valiant attempt at the “poor” 99% in America to get a piece of the pie the wealthy 1% have worked so hard for. From the tone in my poorly scripted  blog, you can tell that I do not subscribe to this foolery. It’s a damn shame that the 1% has the money but that is how life is. You want equal pieces to the pie, you should move to a socialist state or wait for the afterlife. As it stands, you get what you grind for… Hooorah!!

With that preamble, I can start my actual topic of discussion. In December 2012, I was perfectly poised on a chair seated on the balcony watching the sun set doing some reflection of my life. In a nutshell, I sat there and decided I didn’t want this year (2013) to start off with the usual “to do list” “achieve this” or whatever list . I was very real with myself and said I was going to go for it. I WILL OCCUPY ALL STREETS and AVENUES. Every facet of my life. I will give a 110%. Every opportunity…..

Stage 1– I started leading a healthier lifestyle (I am running close to 30 km a week) and subsequently will be competing in the TWO OCEANS MARATHON on the 30th March 2013…. *throws confetti *

Stage 2– I decided to put my career advancement in over drive. I am working smart and working hard with my academics. Some nights are bad, some are even rough but I refuse to be outworked.

Stage 3 – I have decided to stop planning and not executing. I shall focus and go in for the kill. I will fly when I want to , laugh when I want to,  will do what is required of me when I want and it shall be at the cost of a lot of things and people. I am looking out for the star player of this team “Captain awesome himself”

Before I bore you with more words than you were prepared to read. In conclusion, nobody in this world will do you any favours. Life is an individual project and you alone are the difference between mediocrity and sensational. Break barriers and go well beyond your comfort zone. Occupy all…

Over n’ Out…

Life is a process of becoming, a combination of states we have to go through. Where people fail is that they wish to elect a state and remain in it. This is a kind of death.
Anais Nin

Wilson….

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I have aptly named this entry “Wilson” based on a theory I am working on. It is not perfect but by the end of this blog I would have gotten my thoughts and stuff together. The year has started off generally well, I am pushing myself harder than I did last year in pretty much every facet of my life. I want to be a better version of myself and I am desperate to break new barriers with growth. Growth! I love the word…

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Now, the Wilson Theory or Wilson Effect is based on the 2000 movie called “Castaway” that has Tom Hanks as the protagonist.  This fellow finds himself marooned on an Island after his plane crashes and he pretty much has to survive on and entertain himself with debris from the crash. One of the major highlights of the movie is when Tom Hanks makes a Volleyball his best friend. The brand of the Volleyball is Wilson and that naturally becomes its/his name. Understandably, being alone on an Island can be quite difficult and very emotionally taxing. Your mind would be tested and companionship would be integral to survival…

Stay with me folks… This is the part we put everything together. So after a few months of struggling, endless conversations with Wilson and a suicide attempt , Tom Hanks manages to build a raft and float to some help with Wilson on board. These two are now fully fledged BFF’s (Best Friends Forever)… This emotional and personal journey continues for Tom Hanks thanks to the companionship of Wilson.

He  grows as a person and that is just a living testament to what the right kind of companion will do to a man/woman . There is no limit to the growth that may be  when you have the right support system. Wilson was just a Volleyball stuffed with some straw and a smiley face painted on it.

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SPOILER ALERT: The twosome manage to build a raft and venture off to find civilization after 4 years of waiting on the Island. While they are floating away , Wilson drifts off.

This part of the blog now talks about the effect that losing a “Wilson” in your life will have on you. Tom Hanks cried… and cried…uncontrollably wept and you could see the pain on-screen as Wilson floated off. He was torn between swimming after him,losing the raft,being with Wilson again but drowning or  staying on the raft,surviving but losing Wilson.

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And behold, the Wilson Theory…. Who is your Wilson? Does your Wilson help you grow? Would you be willing to part ways with your Wilson in order to save yourself?

Oh and before I forget to mention. My Marathon training is coming along well. Did my first 20 km last week and I didn’t die. TWO OCEANS MARATHON

Good Day to you all…

7 Things …


Happy New Year to all. It has been a fair bit since I blogged. I was kind of waiting for the Mayan Calendar to deliver but alas. They postponed our impending apocalyptic doom. The doomsday passed and I found myself facing the harsh reality of life and the traditional January excruciating financial ineptness induced by excessive holiday splurging… That aside, I wish to draw your attention to 7 things I am grateful for right now. This very moment in my life.

  1. My Family- I would not be the man I am if it were not for the advice and unwavering support my family has given me over the years. Family first always.

  2. The Pursuit – The hunger inside to always want to better myself. Whether its academically ,financially, emotionally or career-wise. The passion and desire is alive and well.

  3. Friends- They know who they are. Old and new. Lifting up, laughing, celebrating, calling up, planning, inviting, conversing, showing up. The greatest gift I have received this past year is the recognition of how very important friends are in enriching my daily life. I have no idea why it took me 27 years to get that straight in my noodle.

  4. Music- Defying all the laws of harmony . Beauty may boast of her eyes and her cheeks but music brings joy to the heart and soul when she sings. A form of escapism, a new world of opportunity and just sheer joy. I am grateful for music and the role she plays in my life. Music…

  5. Poetry. In my many hours of reading and never-ending quest to understand myself, I found this amazing piece of poetry.

  6. Witnessing bravery- In the last 6 months alone I’ve been privileged to witness two friends demonstrate big time courage in their lives. Taking chances, moving forward, stepping outside their comfort zone, making things happen. HOLY MATRIMONY. I wish that for all of us – to see it and to live it.

  7. Growth- Being able to write my dreams and make them reality as each day comes. To fearlessly pursue happiness and blossom into a man I can proudly face in the mirror. To be able to love wholeheartedly and unconditionally is a blessing from the heavens. To be of sound and able mind and to allow myself to feel and not worry about not understanding why. To just feel.

I really do wish you all a very successful New year. “If you can dream it, you can create it”