Monday, December 31, 2012

Ahead Into 2013: What Can You Do?

Apparently none of us had the power to increase the number of days in 2012, hard as we might have tried and as much as we might have wanted or needed to; the year has come to an end.  If you are like me, you must feel initially that you didn’t make any progress but after you take time to reflect and reconsider, you realise that you had moved up in leaps and bounds.  Maybe not as far as you wanted, but you moved.

For me that 2012 is ending is not news, and it shouldn’t be even for you, I mean we all had a whole year's notice that this will happen today, so why are we so hung up?  I believe it is because after all is said and done, we realise that despite all the plans we made, none of us had what it took to make it this far, we still had to rely on Someone greater to make it all happen. Thank you Lord!

That tomorrow is the first day of January 2013 is also not news, so while we all will and should celebrate the New Year day festivities, what happens after the celebration?  I am thinking that since we had taken a few weeks to reflect on 2012, we should progress into how we will walk the 2013 journey.  

These points should be useful to you

1.       Go Pictorial – No matter what you intend to achieve with 2013, can you see the picture in your mind?  I was thinking about my life journey going forward and I am cutting pictures that speak to me.  You too should do a Vision Board it will help you see in your mind’s eye where you want to go and give you something to walk towards. (See Blog archive on Vision Board).

2.      Trust Your Instinct – As your life is what we are talking about, it will be really nice to trust your instinct, trust what your gut tells you next year.  I mean if it is your dream life why is everyone else telling you what to do and what not to?

3.      Truly Care about Your Customer – whether you provide goods or services, you will not be relevant without your customers.  So why not make caring for them a huge part of your business focus in the next year.  A happy customer will help you make bank every time you know.

4.      Bring Greater Value – No matter how well you do, there is always room for improvement. So to have a great 2013, why not find more ways to add value to the people you are serving?  Enhance your products, make your customer service experience exceptional. Bring more value!

5.      Partner or Collaborate – some of the things that will bring your dream to significance this new year may not be things you can do alone, so consider who you might need to join forces or collaborate with for the greater good.

6.      Enjoy The Ride – As you may well know, 2013 will have a December 31, just as 2012 and all the other years before have had.  So why not enjoy the ride?  Do your absolute best but make up your mind to enjoy the ride as you go on.

7.      Be Grateful – No matter what happens because some curves will definitely show up along the way, the valleys and the mountains will also be part of the journey… so be grateful.  For every experience be grateful!

8.      Stir Your Ship – In the final analysis it is your dream.  You cannot trust anyone else to get you to wherever you want to go, so take responsibility for 2013, think big, do your homework, get your hands dirty if need be.  Whatever you do, stir your ship! 

While these are not exhaustive, let them set the marker for how you start.  Thank you for being part of my life through 2013, welcome to 2013 and make the best use of your opportunity to be alive.

Happy New Year!


Sistar B

Monday, December 24, 2012



Merry Christmas people!  Another one has rolled by and no matter what has happened or is happening, we are still here!  As I write this, I am away with my family on a much appreciated vacation.  I say appreciated not deserved, because in my mind, deserved doesn't happen unless you can afford to.  So even though we have worked really hard this year, this holiday is more appreciated than deserved.    Thank you Lord for making it happen.

Today I want to look at the issue of expertise.  Who is an expert?  What makes one an expert?  A lot of definitions come to my mind, but the one I am most comfortable with contextually is that an expert is someone who has narrowed down his options and focus to a specific endeavor to be the best possible in that field.  

Today there are so many self professing experts and there is nothing absolutely wrong with being one... It is just that it will be nice to show proof of our expertise, to qualify as experts.  If you think John Maxwell for instance, you see the picture of leadership. If you think Steve Jobs, you see the picture of innovation... So as we round off 2012, if we think you, what picture do we see?  If you think Me, what picture do you see?  We all are meant to conjure pictures of our expertise!

Since it is Jesus' birthday tomorrow, when you think him, what do you see? Even though some now refer to the season as Holidays and others as Xmas, there is no running away from the fact that when you think Christmas you don't have to try, but the picture you see is loads of activity, joy and cheer!  People going out of the way to be nice this one time in the year.

So if you ask me why is Jesus an expert, I will say because He came to achieve one thing and He focused only on that... To bring us the awareness and the opportunity of a better life and a better way.  Jesus qualifies as an expert because He solved and still solved the problem of pain, hurt, misery and death... He is the Saviour of the world... And this season proves that even when people don't agree, they stop to take in the spread of joy in this season.

So if you want to be an expert in 2013 need I say more?  Get better at solving specific problems and when we think you, we will see a picture of the problem you are committed to solving!    

Shout out to my Sista and friend Funmi Johnson, @born2bebeautiful.  When I think you I see Women free from violence.  You are an expert girl... Keep your focus.

To all you who have followed through 2012, thank you so much... Let's do this again in 2013, you are loved and appreciated.  In the words of a song I heard yesterday:

We are no longer lost, because we have a Saviour!  

Jesus is the expert at Saving!  You too go be the expert by  the problems you solve...

Merry Christmas! Enjoy and be Safe!  

Sistar B

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Change your Story!

Good morning world, last week turned out to be one of shock and mourning the world over, from the Connecticut killings to the Helicopter crash in Nigeria that claimed the lives of a governor, former National Security Advisor and others, all whose families are suddenly plunged into deep mourning this season.  It is all sad and my prayer is that God will comfort everyone affected, and heal this dark world we live in.

This has me thinking; what hope do we have that all will be well in 2013? What gives me the audacity to ask us to plan so vigorously?  What is the guaranty that we will be alive to pursue the plans we make?  I wish I can say that because we have worked hard at planning, everything will turn out okay and that we will be alive... But I honestly cannot give any assurances, but that which I should and can give, I make bold to tell you about today.

I am a person of faith, as you may have gathered from following this blog.  I believe in God, not just any God but the God of the Bible, whose only son died for me, so I can make bold to plan 2013 even when the world is dark, because no matter what happens,  I know I am safe in Jesus' hands.  What about you? Have you accepted him as your Lord and Saviour?  If not please don't go another day thinking you have time, because remember, tomorrow is not guaranteed.

On today's post, I hear people say it’s no use planning because they have no idea if they will live past tomorrow but I say, plan anyway, with God you have every chance and opportunity to be all He has called you to be.  So rather than mope around doing nothing about your future, maybe what you need to do is change your story.

Change your story by changing a few things... Say different things, speak positive, that the world is dark doesn't mean the monsters are coming to get you.  You can be part of the light the world needs, by stepping up to intentionally live your dream life.

Change your story; you cannot do the same things expecting to get different results.  Change what you have been doing with undesirable results and your story may be on the way to changing.

You may need to even change those you hang with to be able to get a different story.  Maybe those you hung with in 2012 were more toxic than good for you.  Intentionally, change those you hang with.  Spend more time with purposeful, positive people than with drifters and negatives.

Change your story by changing your expectations, you cannot go around expecting the worst out of life and get anything different.  With a sunny outlook of life, the right plans and your commitment to follow through, your story should change to match your expectations.

Finally, stay on this track... Keep at it until you arrive at your desired destination.  However, don't forget the greatest game and story changer is in who you decide to commit to.  Jesus loves you so much, and is committed to your success more than you are.

So this week when I say you will make it please understand that it is because I know someone who will get you there NeverTheLess... You can bank on Him.  I do.


Sistar B

Monday, December 10, 2012

Live Intentionally!

Shalom!  Blog is late today, I am sorry.  But it is for a good reason.  You know how I have been asking us to try and put together a plan for 2013?  Well, today, I had to move away from telling myself and jotting down what it was I was looking to work on next year to bringing others in to see if they could help me shape some of my ideas.  So you can say that the rubber met the road today.  It was a soft exercise that you know can be very hard yet essential, but I am glad I had that session this morning.

So what is up on today’s blog?  Well, aside from quickly sharing with you, this morning I am reminded again that ‘two good heads are better than one’, and that if you intend to move forward with your plans for the new year, then maybe at this stage you need to begin to involve your team members.  Today, my team helped me set a few timelines and helped clarify processes for some of the things we want to achieve for 2013 as an organization. (Thanks Ladies).

Okay, someone asked me how planning will help if it is not followed up with execution and I did say to him that planning was useless if it was not backed with action.  He then went on to ask if I knew that the likelihood of not following through was really high, and my response again was yes, it is easier for people not to follow through than for them to tackle their plans head on.

His next question was, so how does one avoid or deal with a lack of motivation to follow through?  My answer is the core of today’s post.  The first thing I suppose we can do is to be intentional about what we want to achieve.  I had to personally put a pen to paper to list the overall objective for my life, professionally, as a wife and mother, and Minister of the gospel.  My goal turned out to be just three words “To Live Abundantly.”  But that was still vague and far from something others could understand and so I had to break it down into differently parts. 

 I came up with this:
a.      I want to maximize every potential. (This got me listing out the potentials, what I have done with them so far and what else I need to do.  Which led to identifying the different aspects of my potential that were either dormant or not maximally in use).  Each step led to another and in the end I have like a map of where maximizing my potential is likely to lead.  Consequently, I have drafted a plan with deliverables and before the end of this week, will insert dates and timelines. 

b.     My second leg of living abundantly was to Be Intentional.  Now what this means for me is that I will do my best to have a plan, with a goal in sight and follow through on the plan.  The reason we don’t follow through sometimes on our plans is that we become distracted by equally important issues and ultimately get sidetracked.  So what will I do?   

      I am spending more time thinking than I am even talking right now, because I want to be sure that where I am headed is where I want to intentionally end up.  So if in the course of the year, life throws me a curve, because I am intentional, I will not lose sight of what I want to achieve especially since everyone on my team will have a copy of the destination for the year and can bring me back on track.

The key is to recognise where you want to go and intentionally work towards it.  Life will happen no matter how water tight our plans will be, but the more intentional you are, the easier it will be to get right back on track.  This isn’t about asking God to support the plans you have personally made though, this is about stepping into God’s will and finding your peculiar way of expressing His mind concerning you.

Finally, someone asked how she will know that her plans are aligned with what God wants for her in the New Year, and while I cannot exhaustively answer her, it is important to recognise that you can use the Value, Impact and Gift test to ascertain if you are in line with God.  What is your gift? Are your plans and dreams supported by your gifting? Does your dream add value? And who else will be impacted by it?

Till next post, remember that as long as you are intentional, you will make it NeverTheLess.  It may not happen in a day, but if you keep using your building blocks you will get there. I promise you will… NeverTheLess.


Sistar B