Saturday, 18 January 2020


‘People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing – that’s why we recommend it daily.” Zig Ziglar.

If you're familiar with the hashtag, #ThinkBIGSundayWithMarsha, then you know it is that place on Twitter where positive thinkers converge to spread good vibes into the world. Vibes we can never get enough of - love, kindness and peace. 

#ThinkBIGSundayWithMarsha is a place for everybody, regardless of race, colour, creed, or location. The main condition for using the hashtag and getting retweets is that you maintain a positive attitude. 

Every tweet on #ThinkBIGSundayWithMarsha oozes love, growth, positivity and embraces humanity as we know it. Everyone is encouraged to be respectful, recognising that we are all different and unique and that we all have something to give to this world. 

Through the hashtag, we become one, striving for a common goal: to encourage and inspire. No religion, political affiliation, religious views or any other private agenda separate us. Each participant at #ThinkBIGSundayWithMarsha understands that to share these positive vibes using the hashtag is also to gain massive exposure for your company, business and/or any other business.

Let's face it, the world is miserable enough; the best thing we can do to ease suffering is to spread love and light. No one is in denial here or sugar-coating anything. We are simply choosing to look on the bright side and to put sunshine where there is, in fact, rain. We all understand that bad seasons exist and always light at the end of the tunnel. That we can dream big and speak things into existence.

However, adopting an attitude of gratitude has taken a lot of learning, growing and soul-searching. I’ve learned that one way to rise above some storms, challenges and setbacks is to allow myself consistent dollops of motivation. It is an undeniable fact that if I am surrounded by those that encourage and inspire me, then I have the basics of what I need to face anything.

So, Marsha's #ThinkBIGSundayWithMarsha on Twitter is my go-to place for motivation and inspiration every Sunday. On some Sundays, I may not participate. But you can bet I will be scouring those feeds for motivation and inspiration - a nice little recipe to fill me up for the day. 

So if you're struggling to see the light at the end of the tunnel, for your project, for your inner peace, or simply want to stalk some good people, whatever, search for the hashtag #ThinkBIGSundayWithMarsha on Twitter and witness the magic and the chain reaction that comes with spreading a little bit of kindness and tenderness into the world.

#ThinkBIGSundayWithMarsha creates a large force of light directed towards hope. Scrolling through the quotes and testimonies, you will get to witness the potential humanity has to simply become what this world desperately needs today - love and light.

Join the fun!

Friday, 17 January 2020

To Forgive is Divine

It is the beginning of the New Year and a new decade, and what better way to begin than on a clean slate. Set new goals - get into shape, break patterns, raise your standards; indeed, forgive those that have hurt you and move on.

Have you ever felt so angry, hurt and disappointed that you lie awake at night, tossing and turning? Blood courses through your veins as you mull over what they said, did or did not do. Your heart races, your face transforms into folds of fury at the mere mention of their name. You may even make a loud, contemptuous snort or look away at the sight of them.

 And, when they are finally out of sight, you exhale a sigh of relief, thinking – that showed them. That knot in your stomach unwind, and your body rests for you have proved a point and revealed to the person just how much you despise them. And, that feeling of satisfaction finally disperses the lump in your throat, perhaps bring back that spring in your step.

Alas, the feeling does not last. It never does. 

Before long, the anger and hurt come rushing back. Your body goes into a frenzy as it slips back into another whirlwind of emotion. The actions of your so-called nemesis begin to torment you once again. The words they uttered during your row keep ringing incessantly inside your head. Their actions or lack thereof gnaw away at your soul, and may even chirp away at your confidence. Your body becomes paralysed, robbing you of everything good – joy, creativity, gratitude - because your object of torment has now become your sole focus. It is all you can think about.

You are hurting, and that is understandable. 

Illustration by Nichollekobi

But I have news for you. 

More often than not, the person that dumps rubbish inside your heart and soul forgets about you the moment their back is turned. They go on to lead their lives and on their terms while you are left reeling, broken and debilitated. 

Emotions are necessary. For example, anger and hurt can alert to that which we do not like. By experiencing them, we get to reflect, and in some instances, they can become the motivation we need to make changes in our lives. But anger, hurt and disappointment, if not well-managed lead to bitterness, resentment and hate. 

Science informs us that anger as an intense emotion triggers that fight and flight response. The body recognises that something is wrong and releases hormones such as adrenaline and cortisol to help it cope – your blood pressure rises, your heart rate soars, and the gut becomes compromised as the brain shunts blood away from it and towards the muscles as it positions itself for a physical attack. If this happens long enough, your body gives way to disease - headaches, digestion problems, stress, depression, heart attack, stroke, and so on. 

So how do you liberate yourself from this soul-destroying mission?

The short answer is you forgive. 

You do not have to shake a person's hand, give them a peck on the cheek or let them know you have forgiven them. Exhale and let it all go because forgiveness is about you, not them.

And, there are steps you can take, which are:

1) Realise that you cannot control someone’s actions, thoughts and behaviour. But, you can control yours.

2) Embrace your feelings and allow yourself to feel what you feel. You are human, after all.

3) Practice gratitude, because no matter how bad things get, we all have something to be thankful for.

4) Think positive and breathe life into your soul - this boosts your confidence and self-esteem and  you will need this to tackle the next stage which is;

4) Do not give value to hurtful words and actions. If someone knows you go on a rampage whenever they push your buttons, there may decide to amuse themselves by playing with your emotions. 

5) Instead of reacting negatively, turn things around. One way you can do this is by being kind. Kill them with kindness as the saying goes. A mean feat, but doable. 

6) Work on your negotiating skills; talk things through and find common ground if it is something you can agree on.

7) Last, but not the least, consider the possibility that you could be wrong about a person and their intentions. Sometimes people hurt us unintentionally, therefore, having an open mind allows us to see things from a different perspective. 

As hard as it is to do, you can forgive. The only person you have power over is yourself. When you learn to let go of that anger and resentment, you take back the reins of your life. Other people’s actions can no longer haunt you. 

To quote the words of the wise: “To forgive is to set a prisoner free and discover that the prisoner was you.” 

Wednesday, 15 January 2020

How Time Has Changed Me

I can’t say I remember my suckling or cooing days. Neither can I claim to know for sure if I was a terrible toddler or not. What I can vouch for are the marks tattooed on my legs and forehead. Mama tells me they are monuments of the numerous falls sustained during my tender years. She has recounted to my horror, my audacious attempts at clambering the tall mango tree in our backyard at three! And how I slapped other children across their cheeks and watched them wail, unfazed, devoid of emotion. I am also told I once chortled and tried to reach for the slithery viper that crept into our living room. Thank God, Mama was always there to save me from me.

There is a phase my memory has not deceived me. The time the upbeat, patriotic songs blared on the street corners and lyrics of Michael Jackson and Grace Jones thumped through open windows and muffled gramophones. I remember reciting every verse of Nothing is Gonna Stop Us Now and painting my diary pages with every word. My interests were innocuous at first. But as the music took on a new meaning, I was no longer just chanting, scribbling and dancing to the rhythm. To the boy who sent my pulses racing, I professed I Will Always Love You. When he shattered my heart into a thousand pieces, I begged him to Come Back to Me. I was just another Broken-Hearted Girl. Each melody, each beat, every phrase, became poignant, sacred and meaningful. An allegory for my life. 

Those in the know say I was just a teenager with raging hormones. 

But I swear the world was conspiring against me. How else could I explain other girls having superior coiffures? Or that my bulging thighs were an eyesore even in steeply-priced habiliments father bought with his hard-earned cash? By now, I had sassed what calls for flattery and roused the opposite sex, and it was nothing I possessed. Nothing I could pin down. Is it any wonder jealousy, self-doubt and paranoia consumed me? 

Then I took a stab at engineering my transformation. Skin lightening creams, hot combs and Palazzos came to the rescue. I am thankful there was no Snapchat and Instagram to increase the torture. Looking back now, I cringe at the things I did. What was I thinking? It was inevitable, I suppose, that gradually I would embrace who I was. It turns out, being me is okay. My looks do not define me. There is more to me than my hoarse voice and knobbly knees. My intelligence matters. I could shift my focus towards greater heights. Reach for the stars. Become the so-called woman of substance. 

There are things I wish I had, want to have like yesterday, but I try not to dwell on what I cannot change or control. I am learning to trust the process. Friends and the need to belong are essential to me. But I am also at peace in my own company. When I experience defeat, my mantra is to try, try, try again. I pride myself on my resilience. My ability to bounce back. For how can I grow if I do not fall?

Somewhere within me, lies a passion for igniting. I have something to offer, not only to my family or my immediate surroundings but the world. It’s funny how an appetite develops into insatiable hunger. The realisation that there is an entire world to explore. Something else. I derive satisfaction from motherhood, wifehood, occupation, and all that which makes me a grounded being, I suppose, but should I suffer for wanting more? Striving for more? Geography and responsibilities do not a hindrance make. Personal expansion is mine for the taking. But first, I must know - what is my purpose? 

With each season, I become my own philosopher, pondering, searching and demanding answers to life's tough questions. I know little, but I have heard and read the success stories. The great men and women inventors. The DaVincis of our time. Writers and performers, and those whose names are not visible among the stars but have changed the world all the same. Who am I to stand in my way? I could write the world's most celebrated novel or find a cure for cancer. This fire is past kindling. Perhaps one day, like the cleansing furnace, it will rid me of the disquieting voice. That constant whisper that nudges me towards greatness and prompts me to find a reason to live. My purpose. Meaning.

Inevitably, I will enter my twilight years. Without a shred of doubt, I know that when the time comes, it will be the cacophony of my grandchildren and great-grandchildren's whines and feet that will afford me the most pleasure. I will treasure the feel of their tiny hands, exploring the contours of my wrinkled face. I will attend to their questions, showing as much zeal as the desire I have to make sense of it all now. I shall drown in their stunned, twinkly eyes when they listen to my tales. I will chuckle when they gasp at my ancient words. For it matters not if they get it or not. Because in the years to come, they will. 

When the time comes for me to slow down, cross over to the other side, I want to reflect, inhale and exhale, knowing I did all I could. That I swum with the sharks and survived. That I swung for the fence, reached my full potential and fulfilled my destiny. Or at least gave it a whirl. 

Hey, come back soon!