From Life and Living

*peeks through the curtains*

Hellooo beautiful people! I won’t bother with the whole “it’s been ages but I’ve been busy” intro message because I’m sure you’ve all heard that every time I’ve had a new post up in recent times. So let’s skip that part, shall we? Yes, I’m alive and well, in case you were wondering. I’ve been thinking about how I haven’t shared any lessons from my life recently and since I can’t seem to get my head around writing fiction, what better thing to write about than lessons from life’s escapades?

Listen to your gut. Always: So, I’ve never thought myself to be someone with incredibly accurate hunches but it appears that as we go through life, we discover that life doesn’t have that many tricks after all. They’re all recycled and if you look close enough and pray hard enough and think wisely enough, you will become one maestro at decision making. Of course, there’s still that glitch of imperfection, but really, instinct is such a beautiful gift when you let it lead you. Sometimes, you are well informed enough to not need instinct, but then there are times you have no idea what you’re doing and you simply have to let your “subconscious” work it out. Because I never thought myself to possess such power of gut, I’d never really ever been one to listen to my hunches. Until about a year ago. I’ve made so many decisions (including choosing answers in multiple choice exams, which by the way works by choosing the first thing that comes to your mind after reading the question/and options) based on instinct (and prayer) alone. It’s just like a muscle! It gets better every time you use it! Of course, like I already mentioned, sometimes you will be wrong because, you’re human but the number of rights will outnumber the wrongs. Trust me. So, next time you’re about to choose a path (or multiple choice option, duh), ask yourself “what is my gut saying?”. This is because, your instincts can only scream so loud; people’s opinions and your fear and self-doubt can easily drown it’s voice. So give it a chance to “speak to you”.

WORK: As a recovering addict of lie-down and lie-ins, I will tell you now that there is nothing better than getting your work done when you should. Not an extra episode of that TV show, not an hour long nap (although there are times when this is necessary). Nothing. My mother always says “eye too fear”. This means, more than half the time, seeing or thinking about all that you have to get done will do more harm than good. Constantly fretting about how hard something will prove to be before you start to work on it will psych you out! So instead of procrastinating by over-planning and spending too much time thinking of how grueling a task will be, get on it! It helps me to remember that hard work pays off. It helps to keep my eyes on the prize, all the time and work. This is not to say, I never just want to lie in bed for hours at a stretch especially if I’ve had a bad day, but you’ve got to keep it moving.

Prioritize: I’m so sure I’ve written five million posts on this but it never gets old, so yes, priorities. I’m not one of those persons who thinks you can only do one thing with your life. I refuse to believe that. I’ve chosen to believe that although there will never seem to be enough hours in  a day, there are 24 hours and you can make those count! Now I shall proceed to ask a la Beyonce “what is your aspiration in life?”  “what are the most important things in your life?” Fitness? School? God? Family? Health? Happiness? Friends? You know what’s amazing? You get to choose. It doesn’t mean everything other relatively unimportant thing gets completely cut off, it just means they get maybe 1% of your 24 hours. It means because for example, my health and school are important and I’m super swamped this weekend, I’ll stay in and study or because I’ve studied all week and I’m relatively free next week, I’ll see my friends and Skype family for most of this weekend. It’s really that simple. You’ve just got to know what’s important. You also need to remember especially if you are in medical school or have a generally really really busy schedule or if you’re a perfectionist that you cannot do everything. Cut yourself some slack. Take time for yourself. Eat right. Sleep as much as you can and if you cannot meet up with every hang out, relax.

Do YOU, Boo: Med school can get really competitive, I’m not even going to pretend that’s not true as much as I’m not going to blame people for being competitive. Life is competitive almost all the time. Everyone wants to shine, be the best in their field and even in fields that aren’t theirs. So, comparing ourselves to each other is not even remotely new. But here’s something really corny but true: No one can do anything like you can. No one can write the same exact way you do or sing in the exact tone that you can and no one can even have the same exact scores as you do. We are all so different and that has erased whatever right to comparison you think you have. Besides, your life is better when you focus on you and your business, your life is happier when you aren’t constantly looking over your shoulder to see who’s besting you. The world tries to pit humans against each other “best this” “best that” but we need to always remember that the only best that’s important is yours. Your best time, your best score, the best meal you’ve ever cooked. You are the only person you should ever have to measure up to. Simple as that.

If all else fails, LAUGH: I read somewhere that if life gets too hard, laugh because it’s better than crying. I’m very much pro-crying, to be honest. Sometimes, all we need is a good cry. Still, laughter is amazing. Laugh, because things get better, always. Laugh because you might not wake up the next day and thinking of that makes a lot of things matter wayyyy less. Laugh because it’s a really good feeling and you should not deny yourself of life’s smallest pleasures, according to Augustus Waters. My whole point is that life likes to humble you from time to time and fighting that with tears and anger doesn’t always work. So, laugh instead.

Hahahaha. (like that).

I hope everyone is doing okay even as the world is going bonkers with protests, killings and missing planes. Stay happy, guys.

Love, Afoma x