11 Traits to have in your single years – while waiting for a life partner

The single years can be fun and productive, but in some societies, the stigma that arises when you start getting close to a certain age can become overwhelming.

Beyond that, how can you make your single years transformational and fruitful before settling down? Here are some tips to help you:

1. Give more than you receive

This is the best time to start practicing how to share. When you get married, you’ll have to share your life with your spouse and if you have always felt that people were invading your space, this is the best time to start practicing.

Smile more, show courtesy, give out some things that you don’t need and volunteer with your time.

2. Start working on things that challenge your self-worth

Do you have issues with being confident? This is the best time to seek therapy on that. Do you feel you’re not tall or beautiful enough?

This is the best time to start seeing yourself in a positive light. Take time to evaluate what makes you feel less and start appreciating it.

In marriage, you wouldn’t want your spouse to be the source of your happiness because sometimes you’ll need to learn to enjoy your alone time. Nobody can complete you so start learning to love yourself.

3. Learn to manage your money

If you spend without a budget, plan or savings then you want to learn to manage your finance. You can start saving and investing now.

You can research on apps that allow you to save and invest and also learn more on business opportunities.

4. Learn to manage your home

If you can’t clean your space, then start owning your space well without the intention of your spouse arranging everything for you.

Learn to clean every corner of your house and practice good and healthy hygiene.

5. Be a praying person

Marriage has its own battles and you don’t want to go into marriage with an entitlement mentality.

You want to start praying for yourself, your spouse and children ahead. Learn to build a relationship with God in your single years so that you don’t build your world around your spouse alone.

6. This is time to work on your insecurities

There’re people who’ll get married and try to control or manipulate their spouse because of trust issues. This is time to stop projecting your fears on your partner.

Seek therapy and closure. It usually stems from your past experiences and it is better to seek for healing before you settle down.

7. Let go of pride

If you’ve pride issues, this is the time to start seeking professional help. Pride kills the beauty of marriage.

Don’t assume that your excesses will be managed. Pride comes before a fall.

8. Practice self-control

If you think marriage will help you to stop playing the field, that’s a mistake. Self-control is important because you won’t be having sex every day.

9. Start learning little act of commitment

Marriage works because of two committed people. Commitment should be practiced even when things are not going your way. It starts with your thoughts and decisions.

10. Travel to a new place

One of the beautiful things you can do in your single years is to go to new places and try new things. if you cannot afford to visit a different country, try traveling to another state to tour and meet new people.

11. Invest in your personal development

You should also use this period to read books, attend seminars and invest in yourself. I can’t emphasize this enough.

A lot of singles find it difficult to invest in their emotional life and it can be frustrating at the end of the day. Save yourself the stress of being hurt and clueless.

Learn and relearn. Learn about your personality type, your values, your deal-breaker, communication, love and apology languages, and so many other things.


Which of these do you want to start doing?

Nomvelo Chalumbira: There are endless possibilities available to millennials now than there previously were

‘Lazy…entitled…’? Enough with the name calling!

Because some bold young ladies are challenging the way some describe millennials, and Africa is already celebrating their work!

Nomvelo Chalumbira, 23, recently graduated from Wits University where she studied journalism and is currently interning at Reuters Africa.

She is also the co-founder of Melenial Media, a digital-content platform created by two young black women, for young black women, with the aim of empowering them and supporting the great work they are doing in different spheres of society.  

What started as a blog is growing into a great media brand, and with a prestigious award already on their shelf, we thought we should get into the psyche of this aspiring media mogul, and also asked her to share some of her work with us.


What made you decide to start early, co-founding Melenial Media while still studying?

I wasn’t entirely sure what I wanted to do after university and felt that my degree had not prepared me for the job market, but I was always interested in media, and after doing a blog with my friends for a year, I wanted to start something that represented me and other black millennial women.

My passion was to be a part of the change of the media landscape in South Africa and not rely on building a career at already-established media companies.

In my third year, my current partner and I saw a huge gap in the market of voices of millennial women of color, and thus Melenial Media was founded.

There is no set path to success Click To Tweet

 

 

 

 

 

 

Millennials have been called many (not so great) names, such as ‘the Me, Me, Me Generation”, as expressed in an article by a reputable magazine. What are your thoughts about this?

Times are very different and things are being done very differently. Many traditional industries have been disrupted and altered to suit the needs of the current generation.

For instance, the media industry is becoming more digital and fast-paced. We must all keep up with the new.

As an article in the Atlantic put it very well, “every generation has been a me, me, me generation”, so what is new?

How did you go from blogging to having an award winning media brand? What drives you as an entrepreneur?

It hasn’t been easy! Building a business has taught me discipline and perseverance, especially juggling studying full-time and doing Melenial. But, I absolutely love what I do and having the privilege to do what I love every day is a great blessing.

That has helped me get through the tough times, knowing that the reward is sweeter than the sweat. We try our best to be consistent and put out the best content.

Entrepreneurship is challenging but I have a great family support system. What’s even more exciting is being able to be a part of the advancement and empowerment of black women.

Please share some of your photojournalism work with us:

 

More Than a Barcode: Like identity, our sense of place is fluid; it changes as the place changes and as we change. One’s sense of place becomes part of their identity, and one’s identity affects the ways we define and experience a place. Therefore in the construction of identities, part of what one does is to instill place with meaning by attaching memories and experiences to the place.

 

Serene yet Strong: Mammy Setshogo fulfilling her regular duties of looking after and running a tavern household in Soweto. Here she is washing the household’s clothes and she looks serene, regal, strong and beautiful whilst doing a mundane chore.

 

 

 

How does Melenial Media aim to empower millennials and change such narratives about them?

Melenial Media showcases a diverse range of women doing great things in their respective fields. We are breaking down the stereotype and notion that there is one type of black woman.

The content you find on our site is interesting, fresh and relatable – not only to millennials but to any generation. We showcase that there is no set path to success.

Melenial Media shows that anything is possible if you believe enough in your vision.

We are breaking down the stereotype and notion that there is one type of black woman - @nomvelo_c Click To Tweet

From the work you have done so far with millennials, what potential do you think they have to make Africa even greater?

There are endless possibilities available to Millennials than there previously were. This makes the potential to do great things even greater.

With information, access, and opportunities available at our fingertips, millennials are creating their own opportunities and path.

Africa is a wealthy goldmine of opportunities and it’s all about seizing the moment and just going for it. And that is exactly what millennials are doing. They are not afraid to take a chance and create their own realities that suit them.

Africa is a wealthy goldmine of opportunities and it’s all about seizing the moment and just going for it. Click To Tweet

You won the ‘2016 Top Youth Culture Blog in Africa’ award in such a short space of time. What does the award mean to you and Melenial Media?

It was a humbling milestone to have reached in such a short time. It has made us realize that we are creating a sustainable business that is making a difference and contributing positively to society.

What we have created is something quite relevant in the current South African media landscape. We have started something unique, which I am extremely proud of.

...anything is possible if you believe enough in your vision. Click To Tweet


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5 things all potential business partners must consider

#WOCinTech Chat

Starting a business can seem very daunting. So, you’re not Chuck Norris. You have a great business idea or project plan and acknowledge that you have limitations. Well, that’s okay because sometimes, bringing in a business partner makes good math.

A business partnership is a marriage of sorts. So before you seal that deal, take a moment…

In my third year at university, a close friend and I decided to start up an entertainment company together. It seemed like a fantastic idea at the time and we had a lot of fun as well as learned a great deal about the industry. In hindsight however, it would have been preferable to define the parameters of our professional relationship and consider a lot of the points on this list:

1. Look out for someone who brings something different to the table

It is important to approach a potential business partner who can complement you by bringing in something different whether it be financial power, business connections or a particular expertise.

Be sure to delineate the roles and responsibilities. Speaking from experience, it is never fun when one person feels like they are doing all the work. It is extremely important to draw up a founder’s agreement devoid of personal sentiments early on in the process.

There is no point bringing in someone who doesn’t have anything unique to offer. If the value proposition does not add up, ditch the thought.

2. You need to have a shared vision

Though your goals may differ to a reasonable extent (not so much that you want different things out of it), your potential business partner must buy into the vision you’re selling.

The last thing you want is a scenario where your partner is no longer passionate about the work or decides they have grown bored with the business. This is a risk that can actually happen to any business owner regardless of how pumped they are at the commencement of the venture.

However generally speaking, it is less likely that partners part ways if they both solidly believe in the vision behind a business and are committed to making it work.

3. Study them in their work environment

Seeing your potential partner in their professional element can help you better understand what it would be like working together. Do they have a good work ethic? Do you speak the same work language? Are you comfortable with their style and pace of work? The answers to these questions can help shape your decision when considering another for a partnership role.

Afua and Yasmin, SLA co-founders weigh in on what makes their partnership work:

Since we came from the same company, we have a similar working style which makes being partners very easy. It’s great having someone to collaborate and brainstorm with on new challenges.”

4. How do they handle personal crises?

Make the effort to get to know them not just on a professional level but on a personal one as well. How do they get along with friends? Are they petty and vindictive? How do they deal with the tough situations in their lives?

The last thing you want on your hands is a partner that’s messy and doesn’t know how to manage stressful situations.

5. What’s their commitment level like?

Startups are extremely tasking. In the incubation period, there’s a lot of conceptualization and planning going on. You need someone who is ready to give a 100% of themselves to the heart and soul of the business. Even if you are both unable to meet physically as often as you would like, they must be willing to keep the communication 110% just like you are. Virtual meetings, emails and instant messaging are available to compliment regular meetings.

If you notice that this person always has an excuse for not getting work done, calling like they said they would or constantly need motivation to think positively, it’s a definite red flag.

After going through this list, hopefully you feel more confident about your decision to take on a business partner. It’s a pretty exciting thing. If you have found however that you need to go back to the drawing board, that’s okay too. Like they say, better safe than sorry!

 

5 ways to support the ambitious African woman in your life

teyana taylor power couple

Women are going beyond traditional roles of stay-at-home moms and caretakers, and building careers outside teaching and nursing. Through legislation and promotion of gender equality at work (which still has a long way to go), women have been catapulted to an unprecedented level of success both financially and socially.

A lot of women are venturing into the jungle of entrepreneurship, starting their own businesses in the pursuit of becoming Motherland Moguls. The men who love these women may either be intimidated by their drive or, are cool calling “shotgun” and letting their lady do her thing.

If you are in the ‘shotgun’ group, here are 5 practical things to do to show your support for a Trap Queen in your life; things she probably wouldn’t ask you for but would appreciate.

1. Be her CEO

Before you quit your day job know that I am talking about Chief Evangelical Officer. Spread the “gospel” of her business to your friends, family, colleagues, people in a queue at the bank. When you start up, there is usually not much of a budget for marketing so you rely a lot on word of mouth and referrals.

Share links to her business on your social media, and have a couple of her business cards in your wallet and car. If you know someone in her field, hound that person until they meet with her. Recommend her business to supply a service to your employer.

2. Groceries

When you start your own business, there is very little money for luxuries. We have all read about entrepreneurs living on bread and eggs or eating cereal with water. She is a Trap Queen so she will never ask and she has the basics covered.

However, she will appreciate some of her favourite pre-hustle treats once in a while. I’m not suggesting that you go and fill a trolley because that would actually infuriate her. She doesn’t need to be rescued, but wouldn’t mind being spoiled.

She may live at home with her folks so housing is not necessary, but you can fill her tank with gas so she can get to meetings. This is not a closed list. You know what your Queen needs.

3. Give her space. Lots of it.

Being an entrepreneur is a lonely path and that’s how entrepreneurs actually prefer it. When its time to strategise, plan, and envision the future, please do not disturb. If things aren’t going well and we need to lick our wounds, we often retreat into our caves.

Entrepreneurs do not work a 9-5, they work as the need arises: their laptop is their office, they work overnight and sleep during the day. Taking calls or replying texts can break focus or creativity, which entrepreneurs need.

Don’t be upset when she doesn’t call or text back in 24 hours and under no circumstances is it ever acceptable to be needy or nag her.

Realise and accept that if an opportunity comes along, she will need to invest time in it so you must never make her choose between you and it.

4. Be secure

Networking is the lifeblood of entrepreneurship. You need to be known in your field because the playing fields aren’t equal. Owners of startups need to be beating the streets of the cities, pushing business cards into the hands that could later sign their cheques.

It’s undeniable that men are the leaders of the business world therefore women will inevitably spend time with them for professional purposes. Most of these events take place after hours or on weekends so you need to be secure enough to let her go. Some weekends dates will have to be cancelled because she finally landed a networking opportunity with someone she has been trying to meet for ages.

Alternatively, you may have to accompany her to a black tie event where she will leave you with a table of strangers so she can talk to her potential investors. In those instances, be a big boy and network for yourself!

5. Hold her hand

As mentioned above, entrepreneurship can be a very lonely road and it does get very hard before it gets easier. Singer John Legend once said, “the world is beating you down, I’m around in every mood.” I don’t think that means PMS but times of fear, failure, joy, triumph, loss, betrayal, anxiety and insecurity.

Holding her hand also means keeping her accountable because entrepreneurs are dreamers tend to be passionate about their project. But they can also get carried away with flighty thoughts. This why you need to reign her in sometimes.

Finally, in case you haven’t figured it out it yet, her networking will also help you meet new people who can change your life too. So invest in your Trap Queen and watch her build the empire.