he year that was, showcased a set of challenges in unprecedented proportions worldwide due to the pandemic. We have all taken to the effects of the lockdown and post lockdown differently. From losing loved ones, to job losses, pay cuts, business shut down, the list is endless. Yet by God’s grace, here you are, in a new year, trying your hardest to be hopeful and rise up to the task of building yourself up, and coming out on top. The fun librarian cheers you on!

So, how are you choosing to live out your 2021? I have taken it upon myself to have some premeditated control of my productivity. I am choosing to do something new and scary (blog). Planning my days better, spending quality time with my family and friends. I am choosing to invest in myself by reading books that will propel me forward in my thinking capacity.

What is it you want to achieve this year? Will you be able to look back on the year and be ecstatic about your achievements?

A reminder on my dining wall to lighten up

Reading is essential for those who seek to rise above the ordinary.Jim Rohn

How do I get over this?

Knowing where to start can be an uphill task. We may have an inkling of what we want to achieve but have no idea on how to go about it. I would know that; I have been there gazillion times.

This is the reason we throw in the towel and get back to living a mundane life. Yikes! Also, know this all too well, because I have been there gazillion times. 

Wait! Who are your mentors again?

Reading your way to your goals is certainly a must have if you intend on being anything other than ordinary. This I heard from my dad, my mum, my teachers, my uncles and aunts, even my pastors. Then came along Wangari Maathai, Nelson Mandela, Oprah, the Obamas’, TD Jakes, you know; all those phenomenal people who did extraordinary things under the scrutiny of the lens. And yet, have red blood in their veins like you and I . The last place that I ever thought would implore me to read to be successful was the Bible. I consider the Bible to be my true North.

Did you see that coming? Neither did I, until, well; I stumbled upon a line that God told a certain warrior called Joshua. ‘Listen! Don’t let your art of war and Zorro skills fool you.’ To win this war, you have got to meditate on this word Day and Night. Only then will you be successful.’ I promise you, the word Zorro is not in the Bible, I however like to dramatize my reading in a way that  will entertain me and so, understand better.

Also my all time favourite action heroes were Zorro (he was fine, romantic and skillful with his sword),  Jet Li (a man of few words but deadly with his feet and arms), Rambo ( Am I the only one who calls Sylvester Stallone Rambo to this day?) When someone gets mad and you can almost tell this situation is about to be handled on a muscular level, we always said, ‘he is going Rambo on that situation’.

Oh well! What do you know, it doesn’t take much to amuse myself as I’m sure you are gathering.

If you are unsure of where to begin, I have a few suggestions for you that may help.

#What are your goals?

Are you looking to have a healthier lifestyle? Perhaps time management has always been a challenge and you want to change that. How about hobbies? How often do you laugh at yourself? When was the last time you dreamt big? Are you a happy person?

Notice I am addressing your soul mostly. Oh I am certain you can be a millionaire if that’s what you are up for. But I also know If you are not a happy person today, or a laugh out loud kind of a person today, the millions won’t change that. Also wisdom from my true North.  As one of my sister wives would put it, ‘live a little’.

Whatever your goals are, there’s a high chance that it involves a change in habit. Applying  yourself to read is a sure way to get your mind to see the possibility of change.

You know what they say about change right?

It all starts in the mind!

# Identify your mental state

Last year, had me going mental with the mom life and the caged life after the COVID 19 drop. I was going crazy with homeschooling, cleaning, cooking, playing referee in Lego fights. Feeling deprived of date nights and adulting. I cannot paint the picture well enough for you to get a headache while reading about it, but you get it am sure. Because you had your share of crazy!

Thank God, for my sister in love who at the time had a fantastic idea of trading books that we each felt would benefit the other. Elizabeth George’s, A woman after God’s own heart was an answered prayer.

It was filled with practical applications which I obviously related to, sound advice from a solid authority, spiritual wisdom and very gently put advise. Not to mention the escape I  needed. I cannot fully appreciate how this book shaped my way of thinking. It gave me perspective for my role in my home at a time of crisis.

Boy Am I glad the author was real about motherhood and not always getting the point of it all until one day it does.

You can also read my article on why reading is considered therapeutic


#Where do I begin?

Otis Chandler, Goodreads co-founder, said he figured out at an early age (grade 2) what to do when he wants to know which book, he should read next. When he wants to know what books to read, he’d rather turn to a friend than any random person or bestseller list.

My God! Does it get you mad, when you read about some of these multi millionaires eureka moments? I expected some revelation from beyond the skies only to read about recommendations……who doesn’t know that! Anyway, he figured it out and used it to rake in his millions.

I could not agree more, just like him, the book title I  mentioned which was mind shifting to me, was brought to my attention through someone I trusted. You too can start by turning to a trusted friend, or someone who influences you in a positive way for a recommendation.

Whatever way you choose to Build your Library, choose to start Today!

We all have different ways of exerting ourselves, and reading extensively is one of them. It can be reading as a pass time, or reading to apply yourself. Whatever the case you can be sure you are expanding your knowledge and improving yourself.

Take Away

In a nut shell, for you to succeed in your Self Development goals, these are a few guidelines you can use:

  1. Set your goals for example be more health conscious.
  2. Identify how you really feel about the objective of your goal.
  3. Identify who you admire in that area. The more the merrier. This will help you in getting references or recommendations.
  4. Go ahead and do it anyway.

How has reading helped in your personal development journey? What book would you recommend? 

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