“Everything had to happen exactly as it did to get you where you’re going next!” – Mandy Hale
I can’t believe 2018 is almost up. In some ways it’s been one loooong year, but in other ways the year has just whizzed by. I was reflecting on what I could share with you as the year draws to a close and before I realized I was thinking about the highlights of my year. Not only has this year been an eye-opener, it has reminded me all over again that our tomorrow can certainly be better than our yesterday. Take a few seconds to reflect…even if 2018 was not the best of years for you, you must admit there have been some pretty good times. I’m here to remind you that you’re so blessed, even if you don’t believe it!
Let’s take a little trip down memory lane shall we:
January – nanaboatemaa.com turns 1!
Frankly I thought it was last year that I celebrated the site turning 1, only to realize it was this year! I sometimes imagine what it’d have been like if I had allowed fear to get in the way and not started the site in the first place. I’d like to say a big thank you to Jeffery Opoku and his Sidekick Media Team. He has helped make this vision a reality. There have been some setbacks along the way, but through it all, the site will only get stronger and better.
I’m also thankful that I have readers like you who make carrying on with the site truly worthwhile. Thanks for all the comments, suggestions, encouragement, etc. It’s been a magical year with you.
February – Featured on Eric Seyram’s Personal Innovation podcast
I still remember when a gentleman, Eric Seyram contacted me to find out if I would like to speak on his podcast. The first thought that came to mind was “Why me?” But of course God reminded me that I can never grow if I don’t take up opportunities. So after a few days of preparation, sharpening my technical and speaking skills, the interview on ‘How to Nurture Your Passion for Writing To Achieve Your Career Dreams’ was over in a matter of minutes. I still remember how nervous I was. Up till now, I feel I could have done better, but hey, it was an opportunity I was very thankful to have.
P.S. Don’t ever think you’re not good enough when an opportunity comes your way. You can always learn on the job.
March – Kingdom Readers’ Conference
Just when I was recovering from the podcast episode, I was invited to speak at a Readers’ Conference. Again, I wondered, why me? However, at this point I realized something: if you keep looking down on yourself or doubting what you can do, people may never get the chance to learn from you. Once again, I decided to give it a try. It turned out to be one of the most humbling experiences of my life! A few of my friends (Jessica, Nigel and the ever-present Bra Alex) turned up to show their support, and the hosts of the conference made me feel so special. I left feeling so loved, with a question lingering in my mind: “So you see….what if you had said no?” That was one of the best lessons I ever had on humility, loyalty and appreciation.
April – Missed a Freee Lunch
Whenever I think of this episode, I still can’t believe myself. I didn’t want to come across as “d-bee”, so I lied about what I was going to buy and who I was buying it for! At that time, it seemed like the logical thing to do, but now it seems really funny to me. We are sometimes so bent on sitting on our blessings that we end up actually missing the blessing. Of course I’m certainly never going to miss a free lunch again! (P.S. Thanks to everyone who has surprised me pleasantly in one way or another this year. You know yourselves 😉
May – the lovely month when Boatemaa was born
Can I say May borns rock please?
Anyways, honestly this year I was not expecting anything extraordinary for my birthday…but by the time the day was drawing to a close, I felt so loved and literally speechless. Some people who mean a lot to me made it a point to make the day a memorable one for me and till now whenever I think about it I still smile. Oh before I forget, there’s a little lesson I learnt here on preparedness. To me, I thought “oh I’m just stepping out for a few hours and will be back soon”, so I literally just threw on a white shirt and jeans. Little did I know I needed to dress fancier and pay just a little more attention to my appearance…it turned out to be a surprise party! Piece of advice…….always dress as if that’s the only description of yourself you can give to anybody. I learnt that the hard way! 😀 (Thanks again to you for making that day extra special….you know yourselves 😉
June – My first TV gig ever!
Before I even continue, I’d like to appreciate a certain gentleman and mentor, Mr. John Affaidzi Appiah. He sees so much potential in me and pushes me to go out of my comfort zone. I’m always thankful to God for people like him.
So, for the first time ever, I got the chance to speak on TV; it was a program called ‘Live Chat with Paul’, on the topic The Role of Reading in Personal Development. I was so excited when I got on set. I had the opportunity to go through the whole TV process right from make-up to the best angle to sit. Knowing that TV apparently adds on a few pounds, I was really hoping the screen will do me justice 😀
It turned out to be an enlightening conversation, and I’ll never forget how some friends of mine stayed glued to their TV sets just to catch my segment of the show. They hardly even watch ETv, but made it their number one station that day. There’s nothing as comforting as knowing you have a few eyes cheering you on no matter how intimidating the situation.
July – Ended my national service
I just needed to add this because it was a whole journey of growth I couldn’t help sharing with you. When I look at the girl I was when I started service and where I am now, I am certain of one thing: God brought certain people and situations my way to make me a better person. Here, I learnt a few things:
-Not everyone will like you, and that’s fine
-Identify the right people who will nurture you, and you will be fine
-You don’t always have to share your problems or issues with everyone. Sometimes, telling one person something could mean telling a whole nation!
-The corporate world is one competitive one, and you need to adapt
-If you’re waiting for a well-done before you give your tasks your best shot, you may never get it. But give it your best anyway
-Not everyone is going to treat you the way you treat others. The earlier you understand that, the less heartache you will have
-Emotional intelligence is an essential weapon in the world of work. There are times you will need to separate your emotions from your work (most of the time actually, if not all the time)
-Growth is never comfortable
I ended my service wiser, better, with a few priceless and life-changing friends, and excited about the future!
September – Wordsmith Conference 2018!
Now that’s one event I’m not going to forget in a loooong time! My team gave me so many priceless things, including sacrifice, creativity, loyalty, encouragement and work with happiness. Till now, every time I think of them, I feel the warmth of gratitude in my heart. The conference was as great as it was because of two factors: GOD and The Wordsmith Team. I just can’t be grateful enough, including to my parents. We need to always pray that our parents understand our vision, so they can support it. Nothing like parents’ support!
Funny enough, a number of people thought I made profit from the conference…I actually laugh whenever I hear that. I certainly gained much more than money can buy; your time (seeing you that day meant the whole world to me), support and more importantly the opportunity to share and make an impact. Money is good yes, but that shouldn’t always be our priority. With time I have learnt that focusing too much on money could actually cause us to miss out on some important lessons and opportunities. This helped shift my perspective, and more recently one of my prayer points: Instead of praying to be a person of wealth, why not pray to be a person of influence? There’s no way you can be influential without being wealthy; the latter brings more blessing and impact than the former. Simply put, wealth is a subset of influence. (That was just by the way 🙂
To all the speakers, including Josephine and Padikwor, I really doff my hat to you women. You’re an inspiration! And Biko, your voice is amazing! You make every girl feel as if you’re singing to her 😀
October – Thank you for a 1,000!
So in October, I finally got 1k followers on Instagram. It wasn’t really the number that mattered, but more of the journey to reaching that number. It had a way of reminding me that no matter how small your audience may be, keep doing what you do. You never know who is watching, and more importantly, who is inspired.
P.S. Just in case you’re interested, my Instagram handle is _nanaboatemaa.com_
November – A Girl’s Rant/ Youth Leadership and Development Conference
It was an honor to speak at the Youth Leadership and Development Conference, organized by a young gentleman called Bernard Boateng. It’s really amazing the things young people are doing today. It by no means implies that we should feel pressured or wonder what we’re doing with our lives. The secret is to be ourselves, make something out of our talent and passion, and take one day at a time. Above all, we can never go wrong if we walk according to God’s blue print for our lives.
Moving on……I really enjoyed sharing a Girl’s Rant with you! Most of you still suspect I’m Manza (even though I still wonder why 😉) Anyways, who knows? There could be Part 3, or someday I may reveal to you who the character Manza is really inspired by.
December – A month of learning, growth and most importantly I get to celebrate the gift of life with you
This month in particular, it has really hit me hard how short life is but how we can really make it worthwhile. To live up to this point in time is a testimony we shouldn’t take for granted! 2018 has been some year, but through it all the Lord has been good. This month has taught me more about humility, service, believing against all odds, just to name a few.
I’m so glad to have shared this journey with you. It’s truly a blessing to have readers who don’t only read, but share and give feedback. Thank you for making my 2018 journey a more memorable one.
I wish you a very merry Christmas…..we’re always asking one another about Christmas gifts, but this time around, why don’t we pause and give thanks to the Reason for the Season, Jesus Christ. I bet He’d love to hear from us too.
In the meantime, here’s to greater years ahead. I know 2019 will be better.