Bad money habits are kind of hard to break. We do them over and over without even realizing it.
We all want to be rich. I mean, who doesn’t? But it’s one thing to fantasize about the many things you can do with a big paycheck and it’s another thing to muster the discipline you need to make it a reality. If you have bad money habits, you’ll get into a lot of financial trouble.
For so long, I had no clear plan for my financial journey. All I knew was there was money and it had to be spent.
Are you having issues saving? Do you feel like it’s a load of work putting some money down for the future? Well, I’ve got a couple of tips that can help you.
Here are 4 bad money habits you need to quit this minute if you want to become more financially independent:
This is personal for me. I put off starting an investment plan for a later time. And I just kept pushing it farther. Not that I was super busy or anything, just plain laziness and a lack of self-discipline on my part. It wasn’t until I told myself the hard truth: that I can either continue pushing it later or just do it now and get organized. I realized that time was running out and that I had no clear financial goals.
No one is coming to do it for you so you better get on with it. If you keep procrastinating, you’ll end up broke with lots of debts.
We’ve all been here. That urge to buy something. We give ourselves all the reasons why we need to have it. Impulse buying is all in the name. You see a bag and immediately want to buy it. You don’t even stop to consider the cost or whether you actually need it. You buy it before you stop to think whether you need it or can afford it.
You need to first recognize this is a problem and keep track. Before you find yourself reaching for that candy or new pair of shoes, ask yourself if you have the resources and if you really need it. Don’t be in a rush; be certain you need it before you do.
A lot of people live on more than they make. If you don’t have a monthly budget, your money will disappear and you won’t know where it went. A budget allows you to see how much money you’re bringing in and where it’s all going. It enables you to make changes that help you save more money and avoid going into the red each month.
It doesn’t have to be a big chore. It can start with only carrying a small amount of cash with you each day. You can also sign up with a money-saving app that automatically tracks your spending for you. Here’s an easy budget template for you.
Love of Convenience
Once a while, it’s okay to make a convenience purchase. These are purchases that are routine and take little thought when being bought. However, if you find yourself regularly making convenience purchases, it’ll cost you.
You can start by cooking instead of buying fast food every day. Make a regular weekend event of preparing a dish that can be separated into freezer containers for future use.
You can also stop getting that expensive breakfast on your way to work every morning and rather get up 5 minutes earlier to prepare something. I know waking up early might be hard for me so, I cook when I come home. At least I know lunch for the next day is sorted out.
So, there you have it, 4 bad money habits that are keeping you from attaining financial independence. Which of them are you guilty of?
Not everyone owns up to their purpose especially when it takes you from one continent to another. Ugochi left the United States to pursue purpose in Nigeria.
Ugochi is the founder of Reliance Clinics. She’ll be sharing insights into her life as a medical practitioner, health tips, the numerous challenges she faced and how she was able to overcome them.
Who is Ugochi Nwosu?
I was born in Nigeria and lived there until I was 7 before my family immigrated to the United States. That was where I did all my schooling. After my undergraduate degree, I did my residency training in the States also until I returned back to Nigeria in 2019. This kick-started my goal to start a business that provided quality private healthcare services.
What are you passionate about?
Healthcare! I really want to live in a world where everyone has full access to adequate healthcare. In Nigeria, the rate at which people in their early 40s and 50s die is really alarming. All of these can be avoided.
I just want to help people live healthy and productive lives where they get to see their grandchildren and even great-grandchildren. Although this would be beautiful, it’s not easy. If people want to live till their late 80s, it starts from now. So, I want to keep educating people about this.
What ignited the spark to start Reliance Clinics?
For me, the inclination to work in healthcare came since my undergraduate studies. I learnt about the possible challenges, the requirements and mapped out the areas to make an impact. It was important to be properly grounded in what I was planning to do to avoid making any silly mistakes.
I also worked with a whole lot of NGOs to ensure I had a feel of what I was about getting myself into. I didn’t really plan to start a business for myself. The decision to do that came after I kept searching for an NGO to work with but couldn’t find any at that point. This made me start looking for other possible opportunities.
During my residency training, I met people who were interested in digital healthcare services and connected with them. They encourage me to just do what I need to do because no one makes actual change by talking and observing. It was great for me because I didn’t see myself as someone that could take up that level of responsibility upon myself. The plan had always been to work for someone who was already doing the things I needed to do. That’s basically how the business came alive.
How was the startup phase of your business?
I’m not going to deny the fact that everything was new to me. Firstly, we had to scout for a suitable location, then we had to figure out a way to get supplies for the clinic and basically test these supplies yourself because everything had to be reliable 100%.
For funding, I met the founders of a health insurance company during my residency training so things sort of worked out for me in the sense that they needed a trusted clinic that they could send patients to so they kind of gave me the initial funding for the clinic.
What business challenges have you faced and how have those challenges shaped your mindset?
One major challenge has been hiring and training staff. For those in healthcare, the quality of services offered has to be nothing but excellent. Most times, doctors, pharmacists, nurses etc expect some things to be done in some certain way based on what they’ve seen before or something which might not necessarily be the right thing.
When you tell this category of people that there’s a standard that should be met and we’re not going to overlook that standard just because we’re operating in Nigeria, it turns into a situation where it feels like you’re telling them that they’re not properly trained or something so that was a major challenge for me.
Another challenge we had, in the beginning, was dealing with patients and staff who were used to things being done in certain ways and then we do them in totally different ways. For instance, most patients that come to our clinic are used to being given so many drugs even for not so serious cases. When we give them just 1-2 drugs, they feel like we’re not treating them the right way or we don’t really care about their wellbeing which is why we’re given them little amounts of drugs and that’s not the situation at all.
What have you learned so far from running this business?
When it comes to hiring, you have to ensure that those people actually have the skills they claim to possess. It’s mandatory that you do. I’ve learnt over time that you have to be very intentional when deciding who to bring on board, how to evaluate their skills and how to train them so that from day 1, they can actually deliver.
Ugochi is a participant in the High Growth Coaching Program 2020. Catch up on her business journey on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.
Think about a career as a personal journey. How person ‘A’ makes it work, is never the same as how person ‘B’ makes it work. In an industry with hundreds of skilled talent coupled with the rapidly evolving times, how can you craft your own path and remain relevant?
Now more than ever, is the time to be intentional about what you bring to the table; what makes you unforgettable? Case in point- the career journey of popular Nigerian Media Personality, Toke Makinwa – she went from making the big move from banking to being the media star we know today. The key to her progress has been owning her unique career journey.
How do you map out a career path tailored just for you? The three P’s for writing your script are Purpose, Place, and Plan!
No purpose means no perspective!
The secret to a knock-out career is a personal vision. What is your ‘why’ and how can the world benefit from this? Quickly identifying this helps you to know right where you fit in. Think about it this way: without ‘you’ there is no career. So, authenticity is required to create or find the right opportunities for you.
This is what will enable you to be successful irrespective of the dynamism of your sector. So, what if machines took over your sector, how would you evolve to stand the test of times? The answer is ‘you’.
I have always envisioned a world with more women who are relevant and living their authentic lives. This is my personal vision and it translates to the kind of career choices I have made. Through my various roles as writer, administrator and civil leader, my purpose has not changed.
Knowing your place means there is a vacuum just for you
What are you able to bring to the table? Remember it is all about you, and how you can make everything work in your favour.
What has kept Ms. Tyra Banks relevant until now, is mapping out a career path that only she can execute. What is your place in the industry you are in? Where can you work or not work? The path becomes even narrower.
It takes consistency to find a niche or establish a track record, but when you can identify what exactly it is you bring to the table as well as where you can function in terms of delivering your personal vision? That’s when you know you are off to a great start.
In my case, after identifying how I could add value to the female audience, I developed my niche as a columnist on a lifestyle blog for women. I created a column for aspirational women; for daily motivation and personal development. This was how I started out, which in turn enabled me to learn a lot about myself, and evolve. I have built my career on this foundation.
Draw up a plan for you or go home when their plan changes
I mentioned Tyra Banks earlier. Actually, Tyra was forced to make sustainable career plans when her industry rejected her. If she took the list of designers who said they couldn’t book her anymore and admitted that she was done, she wouldn’t be who she is today. Instead, she rewrote her narrative by creating opportunities for herself.
Having found a purpose and a place, then there has to be a great plan to keep you relevant. Like a custom-made strategy just for you.
In formulating a plan, ask yourself the following questions: What is the right network for me? Where is the right environment? How can I gain more confidence and experience? What is crucial to remaining relevant? In answering these questions, you will be able to craft a career strategy for yourself.
To wrap this up…
I have been able to identify opportunities that re-enforce my competencies, which in turn have helped me evolve in my career. This consistency has helped me to learn more about myself, and envision where I would like to be in years to come.
I first started out as a content creator for women, but I have evolved to channel my passion of empowering women, into development work and not just media. As a key-employee in an organization for women, I have first-hand experience in helping women stay relevant.
If you are hoping for a Toke Makinwa or Tyra Banks type of evolution, then you need to put yourself at the centre of your career. Not the money, or being on fleek, or the people you are rolling with. Think hard to make the right decisions. Long-standing personal brands are birthed from consistency.
If someone bet you $5 for every month you keep your resolution this year, the odds are that you’ll lose start losing money by mid-February. If you are already struggling to keep up with your New Year resolutions, you are not alone.
It’s simply not sustainable for most of us to stay committed to a big goal for a year without losing steam. That’s why it makes sense for organizations to plan out the year in quarters. Milestones make it easier to accomplish big goals.
This September, we’re out here on these streets trynna secure the bag. If you’re an impulsive spender, this one is for you.
As a financial advisor working with Holborn Assets, Lydia Chinery-Hesse has helped clients put measures in place to control their spending while increasing their savings and growing their wealth.
She has been working with various nationalities to help them plan their financial future by giving them transparent, objective and honest advice. Lydia helps them visualize their personal (and business) goals and structure a plan towards achieving them.
Earlier this year, she created a Facebook group called Love Yourself Financially, a community of global women who are dedicated to being the boss of their finances.
Their goal is to be financially secure and free – which has a different meaning to each member.
You’ve just finished a successful meeting and decide to take a short walk through the mall, for some window shopping.
Before you know it, you’ve spent money shopping for more clothes you don’t need!
It’s 4:15 pm and you’re absolutely famished. While you could wait another hour to get home and eat some leftovers from last night’s home-cooked supper, you decide to order food that would cost the same amount as your groceries for the week.
Even if you haven’t found yourself in one of these situations before, you’ve definitely spent money impulsively in one way or another.
Why is this?
Why are we so impulsive? More importantly…
What can we do about it?
Here are the three main reasons for being an impulsive spender, and a few ways you can improve your spending habits.
1. You’re using a credit card
Studies show that when we pay using our credit card, we’re more likely to spend money. With a credit card, your thinking will be more along the lines of “out of sight, out of mind”, as you don’t see the money ‘leaving’ your wallet.
Conversely, when we spend with cash, it hurts a little, and you tend to think twice before spending it.
What should you do about it?
• Until you get to a point where you have significantly improved your discipline in this area, ditch the credit card.
• Ditching the card means spending cash only.
• Withdraw your cash allocation for the week, and carry only what you need on a daily basis.
2. Because money should be spent
If you’re able to spend money impulsively, consider yourself fortunate to have the money to do so. That being said, just because you can, doesn’t mean you should.
As an impulsive spender, It’s likely you’re not tracking your expenses by writing them down or through an app.
If you did, you’d be less likely to spend mindlessly as you’d always be aware of what you’re spending on and how much you’re spending.
What should you do about it?
• Before you’re about to buy something, you want, pause. Wait a day, a week, a month or longer to determine if you really need it. Chances are you don’t.
• Track your expenses, create a budget and live by it.
• Get an accountability buddy. When you’re itching to spend, call a friend you trust who will talk to you straight.
• Meal prep. Don’t give yourself an excuse to buy a meal.
• Try no-spend days a few times per month.
In addition to all of these, it’s worth considering…what else could you be doing with that money? This brings me to my last point:
3. You are not thinking long-term
Living for today will most likely mean scrambling or struggling in the future.
Perhaps it would be wiser to live according to this African Proverb, “For tomorrow belongs to the people who prepare for it today”.
What should you do about it?
• Set your savings goal and reward yourself for achieving them (without spending money – be creative!)
• Save towards future plans. Put some money aside monthly towards that goal, whether it’s a vacation, car purchase, etc.
• Be intentional about your long term goals. This begins by figuring out how much you’ll need to either live comfortably in retirement or to reach financial security (where passive income pays for your expenses).
Once you have that figured out, work backward from there to determine how much you should be saving (and investing) in order to reach your target.
The average working-class woman gets caught up in an entangling web where she is trying (so hard sometimes) to achieve her goals, reach her maximum potential, score-in on every success story and look effortless while at it.
It is like she wanting to be wonder woman; hair blowing in the wind (or no hair at all), athletic legs standing firmly in the ground, and beauty unhinged as she saves the world, in this case, hers.
Most people say you can almost never have it all. You can almost never be extremely successful, which comes with a lot of to-do list, running around, and still look glamorous while at it.
Or to be specific, keep to your health/beauty goals as you slay in both financial figures and that figure 8.
But at the end of the day, it all boils down to having a balance, realizing that in this thug life of achieving your goals and your glow, you can manage it all, because it is your life and you are in charge, always.
Here are a few pointers to help you
Set up realistic and achievable plans
Sometimes, when you set up a far-reaching list of what you want to achieve, that is all they are going to be – far-reaching. Where you stretch yourself beyond every elastic limit until you crack and the pressure becomes visible.
Create a list of practical success plans, or health/ beauty regimen you want to achieve for the next one month (it is always good to do it in bits. When you flood yourself, you overwhelm yourself) and stick to it!
Have a scale of priorities
In this case, I would say your health first, but, different strokes for different folks. So make a decision of what takes the front seat and have the other at the passenger seat, with the seat belt on.
That way, they are both on the same level, but one thing has the wheels and navigates the other, which happens to be secured and safe regardless of a crash.
This is when you know that there is no perfect balance and sometimes wonder woman gets a hit or two. The ultimate goal should not be perfection but rather contentment.
This way, you’re able to find the core of things, that you hold them firmly yet delicately together.
We all have it. Look for yours.
Make sure you are passionate about what you do
Passion makes everything look stress-free because you exude a different kind of joy while ticking off the goals that reflect on your skin and glows you up.
“Find what you love and let it kill you”. According to Bukowski, this is a great tip for being happy and fulfilled enough to run that errand, set up that meeting and not dreading it all every step of the way.
And because you are away from that toxic and draining environment it is most likely to reflect positively on your glow.
Give yourself love, backed up by smart thinking, that way you will not put yourself or your business in jeopardy.
How are you growing and glowing this month? We want to share your story! Click here to share.
Want to make serious money moves in 2019 and start taking steps to reach your financial goals? Whether you are getting married or are married, part of the bridal team, just started working, planning to pursue your master’s degree and more, the Money Talks series is here to help you!
With each episode focused on different financial issues most Nigerian women face, the Money Talks series aims to help women reach their financial goals through various FSDH product offerings.
The Money Talks series is brought to you by She Leads Africa in partnership with FSDH Asset Management and will be hosted by She Leads Africa’s Head of Content, Hilda Awomolo.
Each episode will feature successful career and businesswomen, including our co-founder – Afua Osei, who’ll share their insights and provide tips on each topic.
Watch the trailer here:
Through this series, viewers will:
Gain tangible advice on how to deal with various financial – related issues.
Participate in a LIVE chat during the premiere of each episode on She Leads Africa’s YouTube channel.
Be provided with an opportunity to discuss topics in a Twitter chat every Tuesday on She Leads Africa’s Twitter page.
The episode guide is as follows:
Episode 1 – Who gets your first salary? You or your parents?
Episode 2 – Are you a bad person if you don’t buy Aso-Ebi?
Episode 3 – Should you have a separate investment/bank account from your husband?
Episode 4 – What’s the actual cost of having a baby?
Episode 5 – How do people fund their master’s degrees?
Episode 6 – How do you react to friends and family who borrow from you?
Episode 7 – Do your friends help you spend or save your money?
Episode 8 – Does your spending personality match your account balance?
The first episode will be released on Thursday, 28th February 2019 at 6pm WAT on the She Leads Africa YouTube and Facebook pages. Brand new episodes will go live every Thursday at 6pm WAT from 6th March on both platforms.
More about FSDH Asset Management
FSDH ASSET MANAGEMENT LTD – FSDH AM is a wholly owned subsidiary of FSDH Merchant Bank Limited. They are one of Nigeria’s leading asset management and financial advisory firm.
FSDH AM is versatile in financial transactions and investment strategies that meet the need of investors in an emerging economy like Nigeria. They recognize that today’s investors need the services of dedicated and expert professionals to provide them with intelligent investment counsel.
Therefore, their strategies are dedicated to preserving investors’ wealth while maximizing the value that they receive.
As a Boss Lady, I happen to have a lot of mentees and team members look up to me. And by all means, I want to inspire my team and bring out the best in them.
For one, I want to inspire them to keep putting out great work, and secondly, I want to remember that they are not tools for work but human beings. I have to be sensitive to them.
In my Boss Lady life, I have taken a few notes that I will like to share with other Boss Ladies to help them serve their team better. Here are seven ways to inspire your team this year. 😘😘
Don’t Talk Down On Your Team
So, remember we are raising leaders – people who can stand tall with us. The word superior mustn’t necessarily be taken literally in a way that it makes those who work with us feel the exact opposite of that word.
You always want to make your team feel respected as humans with differences. Don’t display any character that puts down people.
For example; Don’t make a joke about a team member’s religion. Everything is about inspiring confidence. Language tops it.
Always be polite even when you are giving criticism. Ever heard of commend and recommend? (Ask a Toastmaster 😉).
“How you show up and treat people means everything. Either you lift people up by respecting them, making them feel valued, appreciated, and heard or you hold people down by making them feel small, insulted, disregarded or excluded. And who you choose to mean everything”.
Show That You Want Them To Succeed
I know we say professionally, “don’t refer to yourselves in the workplace as a family” but to get people to grow an organization with you. You have to be all about the people who are all about your work.
The CEO of House of Tara – Tara Durotoye said she learned very early as an entrepreneur, that for the people who leave their homes every day to come to a workplace there has to be more.
She learned to stop referring to the company as ‘my company’ but ‘our company’.
You have to make people see a greater reason for coming to work. Make them buy into the vision, and show them that you care about their personal affairs.
Ever heard of Linkedin’s Tour of Duty? Where employees are moved up the ranks periodically depending on their career goals. That’s a way to identify with the needs of the team. Learn more in The Startup of You by Reid Hoffman.
Sir Richard Branson says, “Train people well enough so they can leave. Treat them well enough so they don’t want to”.
Always find ways to add value to your team.
Constantly Give Kudos For A Job Well Done
I read the One-minute Manager many years ago, about effective people management. How the one-minute-manager was able to, in one minute dish out praises, and just in the same vein dish out reprimands, – an intentional leadership style.
Team Leaders have to praise team members as a habit, not only reprimand them. It creates conditioning – that they are appreciated and valued, and reinforces learning.
Many times I have realized I hold the keys to many team members happiness and self-esteem, and the worst thing to do is abuse that privilege.
Many people are going through stuff or trying to believe in themselves. Realize they could use some hope from you.
The toastmaster’s sandwich method of ‘Commend and Recommend’ is the recommended feedback standard, especially when there’s a reprimand coming.
You have to always find the good in a team member’s work first, and commend it before reprimanding. Commend their good intentions, or make reference to their usual good works.
There has to be something to commend. Then move unto how they can do better. Notice I said ‘how they can do better’ not necessarily focusing on what they did wrong. Remember they have to feel good about themselves at all times.
Set High Standards For People Experience
I worked with a friend last year and was so impressed by her high standard of people experience. It inspires loyalty, as even I look forward to working with her again and again.
I like it that House of Tara refers to her HR Department as the People Experience Team because this aptly puts their job.
In fact, I was so impressed by this that at a Managers’ Training on Empathy and Emotional Intelligence I used HOT as a case study.
Now that we have established that incivility is a no-no! And that this whole article is about inspiring team members. We are well on our way to implementing a culture.
How do you mark the workers’ special days?
What are the benefits put in place?
Do you show interest in their work process or just the end result?
How do you react at a failed expectation?
Do they feel anxiety or inspiration towards work?
Do they feel treated better by other work teams/workplaces?
Do you deliberately paint them in a bad light before people?
It is when we can genuinely answer these questions as boss ladies, and take action to get our people to experience right, then we will be doing right by the people who work with us.
Don’t Set Unreasonable Goals
Ahan! So, there’s this impossibility fairy who told us doing the impossible means setting unreasonable goals.
The truth is being Miranda Priestly is no longer cool.
Of course, it turned Emily into a go-getter but wasn’t Miranda only trying to get Emily fired at first by driving her nuts with unbearable tasks?
Oh! look at me talking to only those who have seen ‘The Devil Wears Prada’
While we want to keep team members challenged, there is a difference between being motivated and being anxious. You want people to go out of their way but within reason.
Don’t push people.
Don’t set unrealistic timelines, or be overly ambitious, or set unbearable standards. We are all trying to do the impossible, however, let it be reasonably so.
If you put people on their toe all the time, definitely a burnout or rebellion is coming soon.
Teach Them To See Responsibility As Growth
So, we are still talking about inspiration, and growing people through responsibility is part of it.
While work must go on, let there be a growth consciousness. Does the work build capacity? Does it drive them to study and research? Embracing work as a challenge rather than ‘work’ serves as inspiration.
I was so pleased to hear one of my team members say that work means personal development for her. She said “I told myself I have not still attained my goals, so this year my goal for being here is personal development’.
Go for creating a work environment that is inspiring, and learn-by-doing. Don’t ever make people feel that it is all about ticking boxes on the to-do list.
Speaking of a work environment ‘empowered’ is a good word to think of. Here are some more questions for you to think of.
How are you empowering those who work with you?
Are you showing trust and not micromanaging?
Do you promote them and the work they do?
Do they have all the resources to work with? Do you support them to acquire skills or build the capacity needed for the work?
Do you inspire confidence?
Do you encourage openness?
Do you show empathy?
If you said yes to most or all of the questions then you have an empowered team already. Keep up the good work.
Here is to building people and inspirational leadership in 2019.
Can we go over the list again?
Don’t talk down to the team, show that you mean well for them, constantly dish out praises, set a high standard of people experiences, don’t set unreasonable goals, teach them to see responsibility as growth, and empower them.
This is reinforced learning for me too. I want to look at this list at the end of the year and it is all checked!
Interested in contributing for She Leads Africa? Click here.
So, Motherland Mogul, how do you set our goals for the year? First things first…
Write it down!
There are a couple of ways you can do this, journaling or if you are more of a visual person you can create a vision board.
If you write your goals down somewhere you can see them everyday it helps you stick to them, a constant reminder isn’t to make you feel bad but more to remind you what you are working towards.
A vision board is not only fun to make but can enable you to see your goals as an actual reality making it much easier for you to stick to them.
Think of the short term and long term
Set out goals that you want to achieve by the end of the year, by a certain month/ date.
This means you can work on consistent goals as well as focus on the short term. This means you are not only waiting for the end of the year to see results but throughout the year you will have bursts of success that will continue to motivate you to achieve your more long term goals.
So what falls into each category?
Short term goals could includetaking an online coursein a certain month, running a marathon, reading a set number of books per month.
These goals require you to train/ learn/ work to achieve them within a certain time frame, so get to work!!
Long term goals such as the 52-week saving challenge, launching your own business, changing jobs or even volunteering on a monthly basis.
These are goals that require consistency and usually take longer to achieve. The rewards may take a long time to reap but just imagine how it will feel to finally achieve a goal you have been working long and hard on.
Categorize your goals
Not all goals are the same, sometimes you have to realize what part of your life you want to improve or change.
Personal and professional goals are the obvious categories that we can turn to but do not forget other aspects of your life that can give you joy.
You can set out goals to travel to a new country (or a few), to complete a crafts project, grow herb garden or practicing daily gratitude. This helps you focus on your creative side and develop healthy self-care habits.
Put in the work
Each goal you set out is going to require a lot of work and determination by your part. what is important in realizing your goals is identifying what you have to do to achieve them.
Let’s take the marathon for example. You can’t wake up on a Saturday morning and just run the marathon, you need to train in order to run the race.
This would require you going for more parks runs and working out to build the strength and endurance needed.
So you set a mini-goal, for example following a training program that guides you over a period of time. These mini goals help you determine what you need to do on your part to achieve your goals and provide small successes on their own.
You don’t want to run yourself into the ground trying to achieve your goals. They are not meant to tear you down or make you feel worse about yourself. Focus on goals that help build a better version of you, whether professionally or personally.
Don’t set out goals too ambitious or far fetched, but also do not forgot to throw caution to the wind. It is not time to sit back but rather to step up for yourself in the aspects that matter. If you really struggle to hold yourself accountable, why not find a goal buddy? This person will remind you of your goals throughout the year and check how long it is taking you to achieve them. They may also provide you with great advice and be a support system when things seem hard.
Reap the rewards
I do not know about you but sometimes I need an incentive to work on something.
And considering there is no one to hand out badge saying “Well done”, it’s up to you to set out your rewards. So let’s say you have finally managed to start your open your own business, why not throw a small soiree to thank those who helped you achieve your goal or even just to launch your business.
Again, such rewards make the achievement of a goal so worth it, so why not reward yourself for all the hard work you have put in.
Got some advice that can help others succeed in 2019? Click here to share.
It’s a new year and you’ve set those amazing goals that will propel you to your next level. How do you go from being a novice to getting international recognition?
How do you go from your current great level to the higher rung on the ladder of success?
I would be sharing with you a few tips that worked for me while building “The Safety Chic” brand from zero to almost a hundred. I am not at my destination yet but I am a good distance from where I started.
Even though I’m still a work in progress, I believe you can pick a thing or two from my experience.
In my opinion, there are 5 major things that you’d need to consider to ensure you go from zero to influence or from the level you’re on currently to the next.
What do you have in your hands right now? Do you have some training or certifications in a certain area? Do you have work experience either paid or unpaid? How about requisite soft skills and good behavior?
What life experience do you have which has charted you on a certain path?
These things are tools available to you that if used correctly will prepare you for your next level.
As someone with a communications background, I later got interested in the Safety profession but had to ensure I was qualified by getting the right certifications and gaining work experience through volunteer work.
While working for free, I put my best foot forward with good behavior and that led to my bosses recommending me for jobs that paid and took me out of state. Based on your set goals, what do you think you can begin to do NOW to prepare you?
It’s never late to start
Grit and Consistency
When the going gets tough, the tough get going.
As motherland moguls, you need to decide upfront that you’d have staying power no matter the disappointment or challenge you face.
What would you do when friends disappoint you or when no client shows up? What will you do when no one is reading your blog, watching your videos or listening to your podcast?
Would you still continue?
There was a time it felt like no one was seeing all the work I was putting in. There were times friends I asked to give me a shout out on social media did not do it.
When you stay consistent, even though your audience is unresponsive, you’d have what we call a top of mind awareness and when something comes up in your niche, you would be the first person remembered.
There were many times safety situations came up in the country and everyone would be seeking my opinion on social media. This made me appreciate my consistency. More importantly, I honestly assessed what I was doing and decided to seek help in areas where I needed it to ensure I achieved my goals.
He that knows not and knows not that he knows not is a foolish man. If you know you do not know something, seek knowledge centers. There are many ways to acquire knowledge in today’s world.
Besides Google, there are thought leaders in almost all subject matters. Read and listen to what they say, pick up what is relevant to you.
Do courses online and in-person. Find mentors and coaches. There are a lot of mentors you can learn from by watching them, they do not need to be in your DM for you to get it. I learn a lot from reading Strive Masiyiwa’s posts on Facebook but he does not know I exist yet.
When my business needed redefinition in 2016, I took Steve Harris’s Mastering the Business of your Talent Course. That exposed me to the path to tow, increased the number of quality people in my network and he linked me to my current Coach Rotimi Eyitayo who works in the Education space.
This placed me on the right trajectory because I needed to break into the education space. I’m also very selective of the people I listen to on social media and the groups I join.
There is a great Facebook group with so much knowledge being shared regularly that has helped me tremendously. It’s called Headstart Africa. This is a good way to get informed. Look around you, how do you plan to acquire knowledge for your desired goal?
Remember, you can get this formally and informally.
Execute the tasks
Whatever thy hands find to do, do with all diligence. There are so many coaches, mentors and courses can do for you. If you do not execute, you will not move an inch. Put your learnings to work. Create products, organize events, write blog articles, shoot videos, record podcasts, write a book, collaborate with others etc.
Basically, step out in faith and do what you need to do. Do not lose focus because of what people are saying. You must also be your own PR agency.
As you execute, talk about your work and document digitally on your social media for a start. As you go, you’d eventually get mentions in blogs and other media. It is important you have a digital trail so that when a search is done, you and your work will pop up.
This is really important most especially if you want your work noticed on international platforms. It is also important that as you execute, you share your learnings and help others grow. We need one another for the future we desire.
In my case, I created the school safety poster packs, wrote the child safety storybook series, organised the annual School Safety Summit, visited schools to teach children through my Train Them Young Initiative (#2TYI).
I’ve been featured on different platforms like She Leads Africa, Bellanaija, Tony Elumelu Foundation amongst others. I also took up other roles to increase my value and boost my network. Being the YALI Network Lagos Coordinator, helped me use my leadership, organization and communication skills to execute projects.
This increased my visibility and showed that I was a diligent person who produced results. What things do you need to begin to do to move to the next stage? Do not shy away, start doing. This is the only way you’d progress consistently towards your set goals.
Expand your reach/capacity
With great blessings come great responsibility. You will be stretched and if you did not build on the right foundation, you would crash.
New levels will try your emotional, mental, physical and intellectual abilities. When you work hard, you will definitely reap the benefits so you need to be ready for the work ahead.
It will not be good for your blessings to meet you unprepared. You need capacity and that is why you need to do the necessary groundwork. However, you need to know when to automate, delegate and outsource certain functions so you can focus on your core competencies.
It’s also important for you to seek opportunities and platforms that will expand your work. Fellowships, Grant opportunities, scholarships are great ways to build your network and push your work out there.
In 2018, I got the Tony Elumelu Foundation grant and I became a Mandela Washington Fellow. These two opportunities increased my reach across Africa and the US. As a matter of fact, some of my moves for 2019 are as a result of these platforms.
Therefore, seek opportunities that will propel your work. A word of caution though, do not just apply for all opportunities. Instead, seek the ones that align with goals you want to achieve and throw your weight fully behind them.
There’s an app called Youth Opportunities that you can check out. We also have opportunitydesk.com and opportunity for Africans.
Are all these easy? No.
Is it worth it? Yes.
Start, and before you know it, you will just keep growing from one level to the next
Wishing all my fellow motherland moguls an explosive 2019!
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