Positive Quote For Today

"The only way that we can live, is if we grow. The only way that we can grow is if we change. The only way that we can change is if we learn. The only way we can learn is if we are exposed. And the only way that we can become exposed is if we throw ourselves out into the open. Do it. Throw yourself."— C. JoyBell C.



Things I Fear

With permission, I have extracted this picture-quote from Izquotes.com. All rights reserved worldwide.


In his book Think & Grow Rich, Napoleon Hill lists six fears that keep people from succeeding in life: the fears of death, of ill-health, of poverty, of failure, of criticism and of loss of loved ones. I don't know about you but for me, I have suffered from two of those fears. There are times I have feared that my ageing parents might not live to see me walk down the aisle with my princess charming as it is my dream. There are also times I have feared being criticized.

When I talk of me fearing criticism, I particularly have in mind one experience I had in December 2015 when I wrote a series of stories about the challenges I was going through and shared the stories with people on Facebook and via email. A few of the people criticized me for boring them with my problems. Despite the criticism, I went ahead to pen another story of how I was striving to make use of my years but wasting my days yet it is the days that make the years. After I shared that story with people on Facebook and via email, I was seized by fear that some people would again criticize me harshly for belabouring the point of the problems I was facing. As a result of that fear, I kept away from Facebook and email for several days after I shared the story.

About a week later, I felt bold enough to check my email and Facebook accounts. And alas! I didn't come across any criticism in my notification messages. Instead, what I found were words of wise counsel and encouragement from friends and acquaintances. Like there was a lass named Agatha Wanjiru who had sent me Robin Sharma's The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari; she encouraged me to read it, which I did. And wow! I enjoyed the book so much that I felt like highlighting sentences in almost every page of the book.

Then there was David Mwakima, a friend of mine then at Harvard College, who had emailed me a well thought-out piece of advice on how I could make my days productive. He advised me to plan on what I would do the following day before retiring to bed at night.

Judging by those positive comments from friends and acquaintances, it seems my fear of criticism was unfounded. That leads me to believe my fear of loss of loved ones is also baseless.

Besides those two fears, I have also suffered from the following fears that Napoleon Hill didn't list in his book:
  1. Fear of darkness: I used to have this fear when I was a boy. Like one evening in the '90s as I was walking home, I broke into a run when it got dark before I reached home. I ran as fast as my little feet could carry me for fear of what could happen to me in the dark. These days, I am no longer afraid of darkness.

  2. Fear of depth: I realized I had this fear in 2014 when I was afraid of staring at the bottom of our borehole; a fear that some men I hired to cover the borehole didn't seem to possess.

  3. Fear of snakes: I have always feared snakes since I was a boy. Like there was a time in the '90s when I wailed loudly after I saw something that resembled a snake on a road leading to our home. My eldest brother Joe Kagigite came to my rescue by telling me the object wasn't a snake.

  4. Fear of heights: This is another fear I have always had since I was a boy. I vividly recall one time in the '90s when I got real scared of going down a staircase of a certain building in Nairobi where my father had an office. Although I can now use the staircase without feeling afraid, I still possess the fear of heights. Sometimes when I imagine myself stuck high up in a skyscraper, I feel a sensation running through my legs.

  5. Fear of getting sandwiched in between cars: I have developed this fear in recent years. During my daily walks to my hometown of Kiserian, I sometimes am afraid of walking past parked vehicles for fear that I might get crushed in between the parked vehicle and an oncoming car.

  6. Fear of being pressed to urinate while walking or travelling: This is another fear I have developed in recent years. The fear has led me to relieve myself before boarding a matatu. By the way, I only pee in toilets and latrines, not on fences or by the roadside.
There you have them: that is, the things I fear. I find some of the fears healthy because they keep me from danger. But some, such as the fear of loss of loved ones, keep me from enjoying my life to the fullest. I will therefore strive to get rid of the unhealthy fears. So help me God.

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Lessons From President Moi

This is Daniel Toroitich arap Moi, Kenya's second president who I shall talk about in the story of mine below.


The other day, I was surprised to learn from my parents that 10th October is still a holiday, known as Moi Day, here in Kenya. I was surprised because the last time I checked, the holiday had been done away with when President Moi, after whom it is named, relinquished power in December 2002. As to why the holiday was reinstated is something I am yet to understand.

Anyway, when I learnt from my parents that Moi Day is still celebrated, I couldn't help remembering President Moi and how I adored him when I was a boy. He was the first Kenyan president whose rule I witnessed because he took over power about a decade before I was born and ruled for 24 years.

Back in the early '90s, KBC - the then only television station in Kenya - used to paint President Moi as a great leader. The station always began its evening news with what Moi had done that day. And on Sundays, it would let us know where Moi had attended church. I guess it is as a result of that positive coverage of the president's day-to-day activities that I came to adore Moi.

So much did I come to adore President Moi that I would sometimes get into heated arguments with my eldest brother Joe Kagigite who disliked Moi. Joe thought Moi ruined our nation's economy because Kenya registered negative economic growth during some years of Moi's rule.

Unable to stomach my support for President Moi, Joe once remarked to me in Kikuyu sometime in 2001, "You know you love Moi because you always have bread for breakfast every morning; you don't know how people out there are suffering because of his bad rule." I didn't know how to react to that Joe's remark.

Joe's assessment of Moi's rule notwithstanding, I still believe Moi was an able leader because our country enjoyed peace during his 24-year reign, at a time when some African nations were getting torn apart by coups, genocide and civil war. And I have always loved Moi's philosophy of peace, love and unity. In recent years, I have been having an opinion that Moi would have fared better as a leader if he had added "prosperity" to his philosophy so that it read "peace, love, unity and prosperity".

It has been seventeen years since President Moi relinquished power. As I write this story, Moi is still alive at 95 years of age. I am thinking the following could be the secrets to his longevity:
  1. Believing in God: Moi is a staunch Christian who believes in God and in the Bible as the inerrant Word of God. I once read in the newspapers of him awarding students with Bibles. He advised the students to study the Bible diligently because therein lies a lot of wisdom.

  2. Laughing: Moi used to sometimes laugh in public when he was president. I particularly remember one time in 2002 when he was captured on camera laughing uncontrollably during a national holiday celebration. And that has contributed to his long life because scientists say laughter reduces stress and speeds healing.

  3. Having a forgiving attitude: During his last weeks as president, Moi publicly asked for forgiveness from all those he had wronged during his reign. He also stated that he had forgiven all those who had sinned against him.

  4. Being generous: Moi was generous when he was president. He regularly donated money during fundraisers (popularly known as harambees here in Kenya). And he would sometimes buy bananas for members of the public during his meet-the-people tours. As a pupil, I got to enjoy the milk his administration gave out to school children.

  5. Pride in his culture: Moi was proud of the cultural heritage of the community he hailed from - the Kalenjin. He always carried a spear as it is a custom of the Kalenjins. And he had one of his lower teeth extracted as it is a tradition of his community.

  6. Patriotism: Moi loved our country when he was president. I could tell it from the way he governed with zeal. In 1996, I once heard him on TV telling Kenyans that "siasa mbaya, maisha mbaya" - a Swahili statement which means bad politics results in low standards of living.
There you have them: that is, the lessons I have gleaned from President Moi's longevity. I don't know about you but for me, I will put them into practice in my life, especially the bit about believing in God and studying His Word diligently. Adieu!

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FEEDBACK: Would you be so kind as to offer your feedback on the stories I post in this blog? Just click on the "Feedback" link on the menu at the top of this blog and share your thoughts with me. Thanks in advance for your comments.

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It takes so much time to research, write and edit the stories and videos in this blog. If you do find any joy in going through them, please consider supporting the author with a donation of any amount - anything from buying him a cuppa to treating him to a good dinner. Thanks to everyone who is contributing; you rock!

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