Some home truths to ponder over New Year

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By Christopher Maina

Hope you had a memorable Christmas and the New Year has started well. I am happy to know you are reading this, brother, for it is proof enough that you have seen the year 2014. It is upon you now to make of it whatever you will because you, and none other, are the maker of your destiny. You are both the producer and director of the movie of your life. I am optimistic all will be well with you this year.

And I won’t talk about New Year resolutions – isn’t that a waste of space? I mean, we spoke about the same last year, and the year before, and the one before that. And making resolutions and keeping them is not rocket science; it is a matter of both character and will power. So if you can’t bring yourself to keep a resolution aimed at bringing the best out of your own life, another 700 words from me won’t do the magic. You can keep on doing what you have been doing and hope for different results. Maybe, just maybe, the laws of nature have changed this year and it will now be possible to do the same things and get different results. All the best brother!

But I will tell you a few undeniable truths as we start this year. Hopefully these will help you.

1. You are not getting younger

So you have been planning to do something for the last five years, but you haven’t gathered enough courage or discipline, or both; or you haven’t saved enough money to begin the project or maybe you haven’t even begun saving. Let me tell you something. Now is your best chance to do anything. Leave tomorrow alone, you are not sure even of the next few hours.

Secondly, the more your commitments grow, the more you become risk-averse and the more you will lower and shift your goalposts. The older you grow, the more you begin thinking about job security and other securities. You might never do what you wanted to do the more you wait.

2. You are the air your children will, or now breathe

This is deep and serious brother. Let’s say you already have children. The food they eat, the house they live in, the neighbourhood they grow up in, the schools they attend and the friends they make are all dependent on your current situation. Think for a moment brother. The kind of money you have or you don’t have affects not only your wellbeing but also that of your kids.

Can you afford to give them a balanced diet? Do your children live in a decent house and secure neighbourhood? Do they attend good schools and visit good hospitals? Whatever the answer, don’t even think of blaming the government or the high cost of living due to VAT. You are not the only one paying VAT. It is you and you alone to blame. That is the bed you make and, unfortunately or fortunately, your children have to lie on it too. Hope they are happy in it.

3. Some friends like you, because you are useful to them

In my neighbourhood, there is a joint called Friends Bar. And sure enough friends frequent there. A taxi driver, who ferries most of them home, tells me that there are guys who meet in that pub every day. They don’t have to have money since the bar owner has allowed them to buy on credit and pay at the end of month (they are loyal patrons). He also says they are usually broke a day after payday once they have cleared all their beer debts.

The taxi man should know for he says they rarely are able to pay for his services for a straight week in a month and they soon result to staggering home very late at night. A risky affair. I don’t know about you, but I will tell you this. Beware of those you call friends. They will keep you away from those you should spend your time with and ensure you never get to pursue any of your dreams. Of course there are very good friends; but they are not as many as you now have, and they are not as available as yours are.

4. Finally, you won’t be here forever

Thank God we are here today. So many didn’t make it to 2014. The Baragoi massacre, the Westgate saga and the numerous road accidents that appeared to have been on a mission to wipe off many road users, just to name but a few incidents that snapped off the lives of many Kenyans at a go. You could have been there but no, you weren’t. Truth is, any living being is a candidate for death. Sooner or later it will be you and me. It is inevitable. So, live right and do right. Make the best of your time. That is the one miracle you have in your hands.

Happy New Year!

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