Day 1: Lade

I’m trying to write this and I’m wondering who sent me to choose the first day. I guess I am very excited about the new year. I feel like this is going to be an amazing year. The year I slay on all ends and in every way.

https://twitter.com/deaduramilade/status/815344788463620096

In my hopes for 2016 post, I said 2016 would be the year the stars aligned. And, it was great. Yesterday or so, I looked at that post and realised I achieved almost everything I wanted to achieve. I was going to leave out some things I want this year, but I have decided to write out everything I want to achieve and do in 2017 here. So, here I am asking and saying with boldness that God has given me – that he is able to provide beyond what I can ask for or imagine.

I am starting my final year this year. I am very excited about this. My goal for this year is to have straight As and graduate valedictorian. I also want to have papers published in [international] journals, and present a research paper.

I didn’t do too well with saving last year, I want to do a lot better this year. I’m doing ajo, so I think that would help.

I started writing again late last year. I want to write more and write better this year. I want to challenge myself to be better. I want to write at least a hundred stories/poems/articles/essays this year. If I do a one or two 30 day writing challenges, I think it’s possible. I also hope I get the courage to submit these things to publications and I get published.

My friend, Denike, and I kicked off BookBarterNG [properly] last year. My goal for BookBarter this year is to build a strong community of readers and for BookBarter to become profitable. We’re going to have more offline events for sure – we just need to find a semi-permanant place.

I attended Ake Festival for the first time last year, but I only went for the last day. This year, I want to attend the whole festival. Maybe even attend the writing workshops. I also want to travel to at least one state in Nigeria this year. Maybe a road trip.

On the spiritual/faith end, I found a great church last year. This year, I want to take foundation of faith classes, get baptized and become more active in the church. I am going to pray more – for myself and for other people. I am going to talk to God more.

Last year’s TEDxUnilag didn’t go exactly the way I wanted it to. But this year’s own will be awesome. [Plug: We’re looking for organisations and people to partner with to make it happen, please email partners@tedxunilag.com]. Also, I want to attend a TED event this year.

I started a new job last year and I really love it. My goal with my job is to make a little difference in that area and improve myself.

My fitness goal for 2017 is to run a marathon [with Denike].

My first and only relationship so far ended early last year. For some reason, I’m not too concerned about this part of my life. I don’t have any goals for it. Many of my friends are getting married this year and I am very excited about it.

I want to meet lots of people in 2017. So, I’m going to be doing a monthly or bimonthly pizza [or something] hangout. Probably on Sunday. I don’t know. I tweeted about this last year and people seem to be interested, so let’s see how it goes.

I want to have a banging 21st birthday. I want to be even more carefree. I got a diary for 2017, so I can start journaling. I want to allow myself experience all my emotions fully – cry more, laugh more, and love more. I want to do more for other people. Help in any way that I can. I want to apply for fellowships, enter competitions, win awards, and generally just flourish.

God made me to be big, and I intend to take up my space in 2017. I want to let myself be felt.

Here’s to an amazing 2017. As always, you can send me a DM or an email [Ltawaq@gmail.com] if you want to talk.

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Day 2: Lolia

Lolia

Where others see the onset of night and darkness, I see God’s magnificent power shown in His ability to change Day to Night – Lolia

I look at my life and I am convinced that it is the definition of  “Work in Progress”
Okay, so I started off this year an optimistic little bunny, certain of God’s guiding hands in my life, oozing with the assurance of Gods grace and mercy in my dealings.
Fast Forward 6 months later ——-> Thankfully, despite life’s curve balls, I dare say that I am still as Optimistic as ever.
My post in January was me trying to put into words how beautiful it felt to be back, even if then, it was only for a short period of time. Now i’ve decided to narrow down my true but honestly rather vague ‘goals’ from my January post.
Let’s see how this goes….
First, since January I managed to snag ( By Gods grace) a Post Grad placement position in London… I started off in Market Intelligence but somehow glided to Service and Protocol (which, despite my F & A background, I enjoyed soon much more!!)
I decided to move back to Nigeria recently and whilst ( I would admit) I lived a sedentary life (career wise) for a short while, I realize now that there is just so much to be done.
By the end of 2016, I would like to have:
  • Continued to deepen my relationship with God
  • Started off the Partnership business with my brother and put in motion some very viable ideas I/we have had in the past couple of days/weeks.
  • Be on a very challenging but wholly rewarding career path
  • Be more open to take advantage of some of the opportunities that present themselves
  • Open myself to Love and be Loved by God’s tailor-made (flaws and all) partner for me (whoever that may be)
  • Travel to at least Two New Countries and One New State.
  • Do at LEAST two COMPLETELY ‘Out of the Box’ activities.
  • Just overall really Live and Enjoy life the best most productive way possible!
May God multiply all our efforts and crown them with never-imagined success.

Day 1: olatoxic

*strolls unto stage and sits on stool, staring into the distance for a few moments before tapping the mic*

Testing, testing… One, two, three…

It’s been a hard couple of days. You know those days where you make plans you consider fool-proof… Until you see them collapse like a pack of cards.

Oh well, we dust ourselves and move on.

I had grand plans for how this series would start – with a several-day-countdown and an intro – before I would graciously tick off a list of things I had bravely accomplished before the middle of the year…

Alas.

Here I sit, doubled over, upon this porcelain throne forcing out dollop after dollop of… Yeah, you get the picture. Oh well, might as well dive into it now. Smelly and yamayama as it might be.

I’ve been dodging going back to read my #30DaysOfHope post and recall the things I expressly expressed that I’d do this year. But man can no longer dodge it as the dreaded July has now arrived and the music must surely be faced.

Toxic has achieved nothing. Not one single thing from the list I wrote at the beginning of the year. Not even a first step. At least, not yet. I decided I’d keep it short and real simple…
– Start making wristbands again
– Start writing fiction again and blogging more frequently
– Properly develop my website and move this blog there
– Get my instagram activity back up and kick off certain projects
– Finally write the exam for a digital marketing course I took last year
– And somehow, still travel. A lot.

😂😂😂😂

If I don’t laugh now, I might start crying.

Let’s take these one by one and see just how poorly I’m doing. (Don’t worry, I’ve already judged myself).

– I haven’t made a single wristband. I’m still wearing the tattered one below every chance I get, convincing myself it has a cool “vintage” look. (Shush. It does, I’m just trying to ginger myself here 😑).

IMAG0011

A ‘vintage’ olatoxic wristband

– I haven’t written a single story in *counting fingers* exactly a year and a half. I don’t want to believe my oil has dried up in that regard. I just can’t seem to put a whole story together in my head, much less on paper or screen. I’ve already tossed the book project idea out of the window. Not going to happen anytime soon at this rate. I’ve never been able to write medium-length stories. Only shorts. But now, even those… Sigh.

Worse still, I haven’t even been able to write anything else. Thought pieces, poetry, rants, reviews, journal entries… even, ideas. They frequently flutter away before I’m able to trap them on paper or behind a screen.

Well, I’ll not give up so easily. In 2014, I started a ‘project’ where I tried to put up a post every day of October. I think I managed to do 20 days. I think I’ll get back on that. This time though, I’ll try and stock up on material leading up to that.

– As for olatoxic.com, that’s going to take a ton of pedal-to-the-metal grit and hard work that I’m not sure I have in me right now. If anything though, that’s something that absolutely must be done before #30DaysOfHope next year.

– Finally, something positive. I’ve somehow managed to get my activity back up. Though I’m still far from any form of regularity. Also, haven’t quite figured out how to (re)package the ideas I’ve been toying with for a while now. All in due time, I guess.

– From a small high to a big low. I procrastinated so bad that I never took that exam. I hate studying so much that I never did, and so never took the exam. The deadline came and went and I kissed that opportunity for a certificate I hope I never need goodbye.

– Finally, the only thing here which really gives me a cause to smile. I’ve been traveling. A lot! The target was three new countries and three new Nigerian cities/states. In February, I hit Senegal. In March, Kano and then Ghana, which doesn’t really count cos I’ve been to Accra before. It should though, cos we (Yellow Mitsubishi) also did Kokrobite, Elmina and Kakum. But no, Ghana doesn’t count. An neither do Benin republic or Togo, seeing as we went by road through them. But no, I didn’t visit those yet so they don’t count *sniff*. In April, I attended a training in Vienna, Austria. That definitely counts, though Germany doesn’t. Because odeenari layover. Mscheew.

IMG_4547

Because Viennese blue skies and centuries-old, spell-binding sculptures and architecture.

So I need to visit one more new country and two new Nigerian states to achieve my target. Looking good. The only sad thing about all this is how I’d been hoping to begin properly documenting these experiencing by doing some travel-blogging, but nah, such lazy. Sigh.

Oh well, I’ve got another six months to try to get all these done. I really needed this mid-year review to hard reset and force myself to look back and see that I’ve only been given excuses to why I haven’t gotten more done. I can honestly say I have no valid excuses and I sure plan to do better.

Hopefully, these plans won’t crumble again like a house of cards.

Ladies, gentlemen, welcome to 30 Days PurposefulTomorrow, we play catch up with Coco and Lo.

A Hopeful 30 Days – The Finale?

Over the last 30 days, 47 people recorded their hopes, dreams, expectations, aspirations, resolutions, goals and targets for 2016 on this blog. It seems like a small thing to string a few words together stating how you hope and pray your year goes but as reports that have fed back over the last four years have shown, it goes a long, long way in setting the (right) pace for the new year. I like to say partaking in this exercise is the first tangible step towards making these dreams a reality and this has rung true for many so far.

But is it enough?

Personally, I find it hard to regularly come back and study my words and make a conscious effort to make them into something concrete. Especially as we get deeper into the year and farther away from the day the words were laid down. This may not be the case for everyone of us, but I’m fairly certain I’m not the only one who goes through this. Life has a way of forcing us to live in the moment and turn our minds from reflecting or projecting.

Over the last few months, I’ve been trying to figure out a way to make #30DaysOfHope better, more purposeful and make more of an impact to participants. After all, what would be the point of being a part of this project if you’re simply going to write a few words down and forget about them a few days/weeks/months later? I needed to figure out a way for us to more actively pursue the things we hoped to achieve. And then it struck… We can keep our dreams alive by actively and purposefully revisiting them. Together.

Introducing the #30DaysPurposeful #MidYearReview.

In July, everyone who’s taken part in this year’s exercise gets the opportunity to review their year so far, directly referencing their January entries. This way, we get to give ourselves a reality check by answering the hard questions.

How focused have I been on attaining my goals?
How would I score myself thus far?
How far have I gone to make my dreams a reality?
What plans do I need to improve on?
Do I need to push harder?
Do I need help?
Am I on the right path?
Should I change course a little? Or a lot?
Heck, should I scrap this vision entirely? Maybe defer it?
Which of my targets are now redundant?
What do I need to start on right now if I’m going to get it done this year?

Of course, this is entirely optional but the benefits of participating are self evident. Participants who choose to go through with this admittedly difficult exercise get to retain the same day their January entries were published.

In the spirit of fairness, the #MidyearReview will also be open to folk who were not published here in January. The only requirement is for you to have published your hopes/dreams/goals/targets/aspirations/expectations/resolutions somewhere online (your blog, facebook, tumblr, instagram, twitter, anywhere linkable and accessible really) before the 15th February. This is because you’ll be linking back to it when doing your mid year review. This will be the only requirement for participating 😊

Perhaps you see the benefits of doing this, but you’re a private person. I’d like to encourage you to go ahead. You don’t need olatoxic or this blog to “write down the vision and make it plain”. You don’t even need to publish it anywhere. It could be for your eyes only. Or only the eyes of your most loved one(s). Just be purposeful.

As we bow out of January 2016, I pray for everyone reading this a wholly purposeful and fulfilling 2016. May the winds in your sails blow long and strong. May your journey(s) be most fruitious. Though your smile may wane, may it never fade away. You shall laugh many laughs, deep and true.

As you pursue your dreams, ladies and gentlemen, Godspeed.

 

Dark 30: Dami

Is it too late to say happy new year? Nah, I don’t think so. So happy new year everyone.

First of all, thank you Olatokunbo for inviting me to feature here, I feel so honoured.
2016, wow!!! I entered the year with a broken leg, on a hospital bed, with mixed feelings of thankfulness , morose, down-in-the-dumpness and a tinge of joy.
Over the past few years, I just found myself slipping from God and evolving into this fearful, faithless, person that lacked the inner joy of truly connecting with the Living God.
But 2016 is going to be different. I’m going to take a lesson from this broken leg and lean on God, depend on Him fully. It’s not going to be easy but there’s going to be an improvement in my relationship with The Lord. To pray without ceasing or fainting, to fast, grow my faith, increase in love and to read my bible. the devil has taken so much advantage of me, it ended with last year. Jesus girl loading…. Hallelujah sombarry?
I’ve been wanting to lose some weight and get fit, and even as I ponder, the dark voice tells me that I can’t, what if I break my leg again or injure something? But after my doctors give me the go ahead, I’m going to lose a lot of this weight.
I hope to pick up my guitar again and strum some.
I’m going to finish housejob and serve my country this year.
I’m going to learn how to make amala, use my oven to grill stuff like chicken, meat, fish. I’m going to be more experimental in the kitchen department.
This year, my eyebrow and gele game are going to be on point.
I’m going to be involved in church a lot, join a department or 2, be faithful, be involved.
I hope to resurrect my blog. Loll, I can already see Rolayo rolling her eyes, but I mean it.
I also hope to be more generous while learning to rely on God for everything I need, desire and want.
I’m going to hang out with my husband more often, I’ve discovered that he’s more involved in my life than I am in his.
I am going to overcome my fear and learn how to suture tissue, viscera, vessels and skin properly, I personally don’t know how a doctor can be scared of sewing people up. I’m also going to learn how to secure any iyalaya IV line with boldness.
I’m going to save N366000 this year.
I’m going to have more fun this year and keep my friends really close this year.
Yeah, one more thing, I’m going to sew all my asoebis from years back this year.
2016 is my year of walking on water, overcoming my fears, being bold and being an ambassador for Christ by God’s grace.
Here’s to 2016, I’m going to walk, run, leap and soar in Jesus name and all steps will be ordered by The Lord.
Peace, love and joy everyone.

______________________________

I read Dami’s 2015 review and was in awe as to how positive minded she was in spite of a recently broken leg.

Awful glad she’s flying that spirit into 2016. I have no doubts that you shall soar, Dami.

Dusk 30: Valerie

And the Lord answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it.  For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry. Habakkuk 2; 2-3

I love to plan, to write down my goals, get a vision board, the works. It helps to know (and see) where you are going, so that you know that every step you take only brings you closer to your goals. So that is what I am doing, even here, writing the vision. I love beginnings, so naturally, I love the New year. The First day of the first month.

My Tagline for the year is Lean In.

This means that this is the year that I do anything and everything that interests me, and not just as a passing interest. This is the year that I commit and follow through. I am going to put myself out there. I am going to reach out and take it, whatever it is that I want. It means that I will work hard and I will take chances. I will lean in, in all aspects of my life.

Relationships
I will trust God completely, and my faith will not falter. I will attend church more, and I will talk to God more. With my friends and people that need me, I will stretch out my hand and help. I will offer prayers, support and services. I will offer my shoulders, and my arms for hugs. I will try to be a beacon of light and hope, and even when it is difficult, I will be kind.

Self development
I will learn and I will grow. Not just in my career, but in my personal interests as well. I will start writing again and I will start my blog (which I have). Please find me here https://medium.com/@Nenz and on www.cateyesandcarrots.co. I will take every opportunity, and I will work it. I know that I will be tired, but even then, I will make sure that I do my best.

Health and Fitness
This is the year that I get to love myself, my body and food. Food is not the enemy, and neither am I. This is the year that I settle in to this body, seeing as it is the only one I have.

Finances
I want to get my finances right this year. I want to tithe on everything. I also want to help those that need help in anyway that I can. I want to lean in and be a person that makes other peoples lives better, like what is being done at www.athousand1000.com/, to know that because of me, someone can drink clean water at the very least.

‘Order my steps in your word, dear Lord. Lead me, guide me every day.’

That is what I am asking, that God orders my steps. That every step of the way he leads me to the path that he has created for me.

“While you are working, help me be still.”

This is my prayer, that I trust the process. That I am still while God sorts it. That I continue to believe that there are no insurmountable forces.

I genuinely feel like 2015 was the ground work for the 2016 that God has prepared for me.

“You have to force yourself to place big bets on the future.”

Well, here I am, at the end of January, betting on mine again.


Day 30: Stanley

“They say the goodness in life belongs to those who believe. So, I believe.” – Mos Def (Love, 1999).

I believe…

For the last 10 years, I have always had goals for each year. It doesn’t necessarily mean I achieve them within the time set.  I have spent 3 years achieving a goal I had set to achieve in one year. Some, longer. But I kept writing them down every year. And my planning for goals has gotten better with time.

On Tuesday, December 8, 2015, I woke up and decided it was time to quit my job as a Strategic Marketing Manager with a marketing agency. The next day, I bought a bus ticket for Abuja, and 2 days later, I hit the road.

I would love to do a lot of that this year – take spontaneous trips and travel by road to far locations; sleep in cheap hotels. I am an adventurous person, but sometimes I feel like that part of me is caged. I want to free that guy; starting with exploring places in Nigeria, then Africa.

People often complain about January; it’s a slow month, money isn’t available. But my January has been awesome. I have not lacked in anyway. I have had a few consulting gigs, and even though sometimes I catch myself thinking, “This isn’t enough, I need more money. There are so many bills to take care of,” I ask myself, “what if you didn’t even get this income that just came in at all?” I should be the last person to complain. I am very grateful. 

This year, I have 4 top priority goals. For some reason, all my top goals are around my finances and business/professional career.

  1. Get my investment up to NXXX million
  2. Achieve objectives set for Barows 21
  3. Start a new company, but with me only owning a piece of it
  4. Complete the CIM professional certificate stage and begin the diploma stage. Achieving this would be a step towards becoming a chartered marketer and getting my degree.

I am really happy I have started working on all these goals.

A 9 – 5 is still on the cards, but I am open to strictly working on my personal projects as well.

Two weeks ago, I started working as a Communications Specialist with a non-profit in a volunteer capacity. I want to specialise in integrated marketing communications, so the experience is good. However, I have felt that the role is not challenging enough. We will see how it goes.

From a thought I just had, A Thousand 1000 has come alive. And what gives me the most joy is that it is no longer my idea. I don’t ‘own’ it; it is owned by a group of people who made the vision theirs. I am honored to stand with everyone who is a donor like myself. 

Is this the year, I finally get off sitting on the fence with God and fully commit? I really want it to be. The harvest is plenty but the labourers are few. The least I can do for God is to be one of the labourers and to help with getting more labourers.

2016 is going to be an amazing year. That is my reality. I wish the same for you as well. You just have to believe it, no matter what you see around you, and make that your reality. 


Stanley is John McFarlane… Die Hard! For someone like myself who’s too often living a happy-go-lucky life, it’s pretty impressive how hard Stanley goes at it. The man be grinding yo!

I believe.