They say you really don’t know how good something is until you lose it. But as it turns out, more often than not, we take too many things for granted. May be you are sitting there hating your job, boss, family or even the government…but beyond all the negativity, there is always something positive you can choose to focus on.
The problem however, is that the human mind is wired for drama and negativity. That is why negative news travels faster than positive news. Our goal is to help you engage in a mind-shift; and just before you start whining about how unfair life is, always take time to appreciate these 8 things.
(1)Being alive and healthy
You woke up today. You can hear, feel, touch and taste. You can walk on your two legs which leaves you with lots of energy to wield a wide array of tools. Your hands are working just as fine and that’s why you can use your fingers to scroll through this blog.
Many people have suffered from broken limbs, and they know just how it feels to lose those fine motor skills. Be grateful that you are still alive and that even if things don’t work out well, you can always go out there and push a hand-cart for a living.
(2)Being young and having lots of time
You can make money, buy cars, start mega businesses, but the time you are allotted by your maker can never be purchased or replaced. By virtue of being youthful, you still have lots of time to invest, fail, invest again and fail again. Your immunity is still strong which means you don’t need regular medication to survive.
You can big risks without worrying about exhausting your retirement package. Even if you lose your job today, you’re still young and can always start afresh someday. Even if you lose your business today, you still have several decades ahead of you to rebound. So stop wasting your time complaining. It is the most precious resource you have as of yet. Make good use of it.
(3)Freedom of speech
The freedom to express your opinion is another crucial thing we take for granted. You can a blog condemning the Government’s incompetence and no one will arrest you. You can comment on the President’s timeline and still walk free. You can speak your mind to a blue-chip CEO through a simple tweet.
In other parts of the world, expressing your opinion can lead to serious repercussions. Just cross the border to Ethiopia and try poke holes on the track record of their government—you will be lucky to walk out scot free. So don’t take this freedom for granted. There are people in other parts of the world wishing they could get just a fraction of it.
(4)Free air to breathe
Early this year (Feb 2017), Kenya was ranked as the “least toxic” country in the world. Compare that with Saudi Arabia and Kuwait which were ranked as the most toxic countries. You are lucky to live in a country with clean air. Even when things go down south, you can always take a deep breath and start all over again.
(5)Access to many wonderful opportunities
Gone are the days people used to complain about lack of access to information and capital. Nowadays, business blogs like Kuza Blog are here to offer you the latest dose of business practices, free of charge. Organizations like KCB and Safaricom are there to provide you with mobile loans just in case you are running out of funds.
You can easily send and receive money using your mobile device. Anybody who entered into the world of business in the 90s will tell you just how easy things have become. There were times when sending money used to take weeks if not months. Don’t take this access to opportunities for granted.
(6)Your parents took you to school
You may not have become a doctor or a pilot as you wished when you were young. But it’s worth appreciating the fact that your parents or guardians took you to school. You may not have gone all the way to university, but at least you learned how to communicate in English – and that is why you devour this article like a boss.
You can count your money, understand what comprises balanced diet and above all you can read and write. In short, you have all the skills it takes to succeed…it’s only that you are yet to begin appreciating yourself.
(7)You can access modern technology
If you are an avid follower of technology news, chances are that you’ve heard Kenya has faster internet than USA. At 13.7 megabits per second, our country’s average data connection speed is almost twice as fast as the global average. You should therefore be proud that you can scroll through this article using as little as Ksh10 worth of internet bundles.
Be proud that you can create your products and market them freely on Facebook groups. Access to modern technology gives you immense advantage that you should never underestimate.
Peace is one of those things you’ll never know they really matter until you lose them. I was a stranger to this fact until I was caught up in the 2007/2008 post-election violence in the Rift Valley. Basic necessities like mobile airtime, food, water, sleep and warmth of a house became a luxury. Even the sick could not be transported to hospitals.
Road transport was no longer available. Businesses that had taken decades to build went up in flames. (You can read my full account of that violence here). The good thing is that we managed to come out of that hell-hole as a country. But the lesson I would like you to take-home is that the effects of conflict are far-reaching. Let’s value peace and uphold it.
I would like to challenge you to look around you for a moment. There are many things you have that others are not as fortunate to have. You have got quite a number of reasons to smile and keep going. It takes gratitude to unlock the fullness of life.