Posted in The Here and Now

Embrace Your Weakness

No one ever wants to feel like a failure. When we make mistakes we hide them and only ever let them show once we’ve recovered and made it better.

It’s hard to admit that you’re wrong. It’s hard to tell people that you overestimated your abilities. Our egos and our pride don’t allow us to be comfortable with saying, “Hey guys. I messed up. I don’t know where I’m going from here but this is where I am now.”

But failing is all a part of being human. We can’t be superstars 24/7. We need our missteps to guide us in the right direction. There is no perfect individual out there and I think we all need to be more open with our limitations, as terrifying as it may be to do so.

This isn’t to say we should be glorifying mistakes, rather, we shouldn’t be turning away the people who make mistakes: we should be learning from them and appreciating their desire to change. As a result, I think we’ll all stop beating ourselves up over tiny shortcomings.

Posted in The Here and Now

Thank God For Kenechukwu

As anyone reading this may already know, my name is Kenechukwu. It’s an Igbo name from Nigeria which means “Thanks be to God” as a shortening of the phrase “ekene dili Chukwu.” But even with this truly amazing meaning, I’ve never really liked my name. It was always so difficult for people to pronounce so I have always chosen to simplify.

In order to avoid using Kenechukwu, I hoarded a collection of nicknames. A few gems include: KC, Kaz, Kennie/Keni, Kiwi, Kasia, Chuks. I’ll spare you the more cringe-worthy ones.

In December, I was in the process of getting ready to travel to Jordan. I was making my blog, I was sending my resume out, and I was applying for my University of Jordan student ID. The one question on all of these, naturally, was “What is your name?”

I had to sit on that question for a while.

I’ve never felt that what people referred to me as defined my identity or who I was, because I knew that at the end of the day I was always Kenechukwu. But I did have that nagging feeling that I should be Kenechukwu. It just felt more real.

I figured that I was coming to a country where I knew no one and no one knew me: it the perfect chance to reinvent myself and decide what I wanted to be called. So instead of digging into my arsenal of cute/terrible nicknames for myself, I “settled” on Kenechukwu.

I started to realise how cool my name was when I thought about how unique it is in the States. It hit me even more as I began to hear it on people’s tongues for the first time. People were very casually calling me Kenechukwu with no mispronunciations or hesitations or stutters. We were all getting used to it.

This is just one tiny step towards me becoming the Kenechukwu my mother named me to be.

Posted in The Here and Now

Time Isn’t Real, But Happy New Year

I hadn’t anticipated making this post, but I was so overcome with nostalgia when just the other day I was standing in the same spot I had stood in to ring in 2015. I was wearing the same shoes. I was running on the same amount of sleep. It was the first time I had been back in that spot in just over 360 days and it the question immediately struck me: So, what has changed?

As much as I want to say I am a completely different person leaving this year as I was beginning, that’s simply not true. Honestly, what does it mean to change? Is that why we make resolutions every year? To try our hand at becoming different people? We can say we’ll work out every day or always tip +20% or never tell lies but it won’t improve us at our core.

Resolutions shouldn’t be about specific actions it should be about mindsets. They should be guidelines and mantras we set for ourselves as a viewpoint through which we make those decisions to do those actions on a case-by-case basis. That’s the only way we can ever say we’ve succeeded.

If your outlook hasn’t changed, you haven’t changed.

This year, challenge yourself to make resolutions based on what you want to achieve in life not just in 2016.