A Narcissist for a Friend

Black girl ears

“I” and “me” are their favorite vocabulary, the world literally revolves around them, your woes don’t matter, your problems can wait, theirs cannot. We all have this type of friend who puts them-self first even when a little selflessness is expected of them. They are what we call a narcissist.
They are enemies of progress, a destroyer of frail people’s self-esteem. Team work does not exist in their vocabulary; they consider themselves self-sufficient. Due to their repulsive behavior they have pushed everyone away.
Boisterous falls short of describing them. Vain is their middle name, their ego is the elephant in the room that everyone has to learn to contend with.
Woe unto you if this describes your boss as you are not allowed to have opinions, having an opinion is usurping power from them, you have to apologize even when you are not in the wrong. Narcissists subjugate their employees; they abhor growth in others as to them it means you just might end up better than them.
Narcissists are stuck up; they have a fixed mind-set as opposed to a growth mind set. They talk too much and barely listen when others share their ideas.
I believe narcissism is a personality disorder but some say it’s a necessary trait with the claim that you have to sometimes put your interests first because no one else will do that for you. Believing in yourself is good, you need to have the kind of faith that can move mountains in yourself just not at the expense of others.
Most people who have gone on to become Nobel laureates have selflessness as a virtue. A narcissist is selfish and even though they may succeed in given areas in life they will never be weapons of change in society. If you are so focused on you maybe, it’s time you took interest in your neighbors well being too. It could be your gateway to winning that Nobel Prize.

A Good Woman is a Humble Woman

643-02425314 Model Release: Yes Property Release: Yes Cropped portrait of African American girl looking down, studio shot

“No sweet angel, a girl should never raise her voice in the midst of men”

A mother will be heard telling her daughter of six years.

“Learn to be gentle and only speak when spoken to.”

The young girl will reply

“Mama, but he is wrong and he took the book you bought me and I also want to read right now”

And the mother replies

“Let him finish, you can read when he is done.”

This mother has just taught her daughter to play second fiddle in any situations she might find herself in even when they are in the right. When this young girl blooms into womanhood she will always shy off from opportunities that would have propelled her to positions of influence and those that would impact the lives of others positively all because her confidence to speak up has been eroded by her own mother. This problem stems from her mother teaching her daughter ‘humility’, that she cannot speak up and demand for what is hers from her own brother because he is a man.

Depending on your gender certain expectations are pegged on you by society. A woman will be expected to dress a certain way while men will be expected to be providers. Even in the millennial generation this trend has continued yet millennial’s said to be more mentally liberated.

Misplaced Priorities

Various communities in Kenya have continued to practice traditions such as female genital mutilation (FGM) in the name of keeping their ladies in line and humble. FGM in the past was a rite of passage from childhood to adult hood .Medical research over the years has however revealed the dire consequences that this procedure has on the girls once they get to the child bearing age and thus the need to abandon it. Some communities however are hell bent on continuing with FGM at the expense of the girl child’s health and comfort .They see FGM as a way of ensuring that a lady submits to her husband, as she does not enjoy sex anymore like other women after the procedure .It is the tool that ensures women do not cheat on their husbands (but how do this communities ensure the husbands do not step out of their marriages?). Refusing to undergo the cut is seen as arrogance and women who stand their ground and say no to the circumcision of their children are regarded as outcasts.

Humble Girl 2

Secondly its saddening that Stereotypes such as a ‘woman’s main purpose is to please her husband’ and that ‘a man’s comfort tramples a woman’s’ are still uttered and upheld  in this day and age .It’s also baffling that in our times society a girl is expected to always dress up and always look pretty. Do her nails, put on makeup, cook and do laundry while at home. Do not get me wrong, all this things are good, I mean who does not want to always have their nails manicured or to wear that expensive mac make up? But they should be done at every lady’s discretion not because it’s the only way a man will notice you or because it’s the only way you will get and keep a husband (because marriage is still seen as the ultimate success determinant in life and single women are shunned)

Looking at these circumstances, The society is continuously telling girls to take second place that they do not have a say on what happens to their bodies or the paths they take be it career wise or in life. This creates a crack in their confidence. A crack that may be irreparable as it is made early on in their childhood. Humility is a noble virtue when possessed by any person man or woman. Women however should not be forced to settle for less in their life endeavors in the guise of humbling themselves.

 

 

 

 

Kereita Forest

The calm forest area.
The calm forest area.

Kereita Forest is a historical landmark for Kenya. People in this area gave their lives in exchange for our independence as a country. The British in March 1953 killed approximately 5000 people at Lari as a retaliation to the Mau Mau attack on about a hundred European collaborators during the Lari massacre. This area is home to the mass grave where the 5000 people killed by the British were buried making it instrumental to our history.

Tree planting
Tree planting

It was thus an honor this weekend when I had the opportunity to join a group of people in planting 2000 trees to help in the continued conservation of the Kereita Forest which forms part of the larger Aberdares forest. It’s a major water catchment area for Kenya which reinforces the importance of us continuously taking care of its well being. Fertile areas such as Kereita are susceptible to deforestation and human encroachment that is why organizations such as Kijabe Environmental Volunteer’s efforts to aid in the conservation of this forest are very much appreciated.

The group is made up of young people who give their time and skills to the maintenance of the forest. This is selfless on their part and it goes to show that there are young people dedicated and ready to work towards the aversion of climate change. The Kijabe Environment Volunteers have also introduced activities such as Zip Lining meant to attract visitors to the forest. Funds collected from the activities are used in conservation of the forest.

Kereita Water Fall (image courtesy of jambonairobi.co.ke)
Kereita Water Fall (image courtesy of jambonairobi.co.ke)

The forest also serves as a tourist attraction site as it has an array of wild animals including elephants, monkeys and various bird species. There are also hiking trails for persons who love to explore nature. The biggest attraction site here is the Kereita Waterfall on Gatamaiyu River and an adjacent caves that house a bat colonies, the caves are also said to have acted as hide outs for the Mau Mau .Make a date and visit Kereita Forest it will be worthwhile.

The Higher Road

 

Integrity is key for success.
Integrity is key for success.

A Quote like “The difference between successful people and unsuccessful people is character” sounds like one of those cliché opening statements that motivational speakers use at the beginning of their talks. Yet it is not. Character and integrity are key for one to excel at anything in life.

A young man in a village in a county in Kenya, has a dream, His dream is to become a member of the county assembly in his locality. What is questionable however is that his ambition to be a leader is not driven by his need to be of service to the public but rather by a need for him to amass some wealth his motivation being the lavish lifestyle that his to be predecessor is currently living.A lifestyle that was only a dream before he was elected to this position as he did not have much to his name. This is the story in many other parts of this country both the young and older generation lack selflessness and in its place there is dishonesty and greed .The lack of integrity in our current leaders is to blame for the corruption in our government .Funds set aside for development are swindled and put in overseas accounts by the persons in charge for their personal use. The consequence is that we experience under development in most sectors of our economy.

For us as a country to experience growth and development we need to replace dishonesty with real integrity, this means that our leaders should be the same in public and in private. A person of integrity is authentic and dependable. If you are honest with people you will tend to have more impact on their lives be it professionally or at an individual level. You will be a tool of change and though you may face resistant at the beginning of projects or tasks people will eventually appreciate your work when they see the results.

Choosing integrity is choosing the higher road.Millennials need to build a culture of straight forwardness the reason people take short cuts while at any job is due to vices such as laziness or greed . What we need to embrace in our lives is acting with integrity because if we act without integrity we lose our chance at influencing people on decisions that matter. It’s thus our duty to tell the truth even when the truth does not favor us.

 

(image courtesy of imgfave.com)