Unemployed: The pressure

Hey fam. I’m about to roast you here, but it’s all with love

So as soon as you leave school, most people are hoping that you get a job as soon as you possibly can. Of course there are so many people that don’t go the employment way but this is to the employment folks. For most people, from the day you leave school, to the day you actually get to secure employment, you will spend every other day job hunting. Having recently completed school, I have obviously been on the job hunt side of life so basically I am airing my sentiments from experience – haha! and the process is faaaar from interesting.

Let me tell you why, everyone and their mother will be on your case about it. Mostly indirectly and though they mean well, the resultant pressure is not funny. Those comments of  ‘”Usijali, utapata kazi tu”, “don’t worry, God will make a way” can feel heartbreaking and sad . Maybe you’re not even looking for a job, or you’re looking at totally different opportunities but noooo…. You need to be employed ASAP. Some messages of reassurance are always welcome, but when every time you meet some people all they do is ask about your employment status then send some motivational statements your way, you’re going to feel pressured.

Lets say you’ve been sending applications to several places. In the fortunate event you get an an interview call.. This is how things go down..

So your interview is on day X, if your people are anything like my relatives, they will need to approve of your outfit, your makeup, your hair etc which is amazing!! Mine are so extra you just might go shopping for some outfits. They will all wake you up early (my grandmother included) just to ensure you’re not late, they will call you at the time they presume you should leave the house and about 20 minutes to the interview time to ensure you made it in good time. My family is bomb, right?! All the concern… I love them to bits.

In the event you have something like a presentation or a pitch as part of your interview, you will need to run it through some of them and even present it to them, you know, for practice and to get their feedback in case you need to make some modifications. In short they have done their best to ensure you’re well prepared, so if things don’t go well for you, you have very many people to deliver disappointing news to… and that’s where the pressure comes in. If no one knew about it, it would just slide away quietly.

There’s also a bunch of people who just …I don’t even know how to put it. One, you’re not that close but they are probably related to you somehow and know that you are jobless. You normally don’t talk much but now because you are unemployed they only contact you to ask whether you actually got a job. And if you say no, get ready to receive all the unwarranted advice the world has to offer. They will advice you on how to structure your resume, how much perfume to wear during an interview etc. So basically, you don’t have a job because you wear too much perfume. Of course, some help is most definitely appreciated but some people are just too much with it. And they got all this info off the internet and you probably already have this information because you looked it up too.

Basically, what I’m trying to say is if someone is actually seeking a job, they already have enough internal pressure. Sometimes all people want is just a day without having someone point out the fact that they don’t have a job.

No one likes to be broke, so trust me, they’re looking.

Love,

Sally

 

 

 

 

 

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Getting Started: Figure out your workout

Disclaimer : This is my journey, it’s not the right one or the wrong one, it’s just what I did. I have nothing against any other method one may use to get to their goals, I am just sharing my experience.

Now that that’s out of the way, let’s get started.

I am a strong advocate of starting small then building up with time. I find it more realistic and bound to survive time. It’s okay if you do a total diet overhaul or go full vegan or go extremely high impact for a start. If that works for you then do you boo.

I first noticed that my weight may have been a problem around November 2012. This was after I had security guards telling me that they weren’t allowed to use metal detectors on expectant women and I was heartbroken. That I guess was my turning point. I brought up the idea of gym membership to my mum but she wasn’t too enthusiastic about it at first so I decided I was going to work with what I had.

I’m going to tackle this in the two obvious ways I had to make changes in my life: working out and eating clean. This will be done in two posts to avoid making this one too lengthy.

Incorporate small sessions of physical activity: As a beginner, you may not be able to go very high impact, but trust me with consistent practice, you’ll keep getting better.

Back then in 2012, I lived near Strathmore University’s field so every evening after school I’d try and run around that field. Initially, I could barely complete a single lap but in about a month, I could do one to two laps.

It’s important to have fun when working out. You’ll be able to do it longer and enjoy rather than feel like its a chore you can’t wait to finish. There are numerous workout options which I may cover in detail in weeks to come.

Running every other day got boring real quick and I had to switch it up, else I was going to give up on working out.

Then I happened to stumble upon Tae Bo by Billy Blanks. I can’t seem to find the exact workout I used sadly. This was so much more interesting for me and I would wake up earlier to get my sweat on before school. Working out in the morning gave me mad energy levels for the day.

Build a program that works best for you. I know some people say working out in the morning is better than the evening or vice versa but I’m just going to say: workout at whatever time works for you.

Eventually, my mum gave in to my gym demands and I was sooo excited. I gave the gym a try and it turned out not to be what I expected. There are machines and equipment but very little input from the trainers, besides maybe aerobics classes. That may not be the case for others though. So I’d just jump around the machines as I pleased and it was not satisfactory for me.

So after the month I had paid for, I quit and went back to Tae Bo. The gym clearly wasn’t working for me. My cousin, whom I lived with had joined this band wagon and she introduced me to Zumba. Anyone who knows me well knows I love to dance and Zumba was going to give me that and a good calorie burn.

Make it consistent, at least 3 days a week for a start, then you can build up with time.

So I had these two options to work with. Initially I would alternate them i.e Tae Bo today, Zumba tomorrow every weekday and then I would take a break on weekends or do something light like leisure swimming on weekends.

After some time, I did Tae Bo in the morning and Zumba in the evening every weekday.

Don’t get too comfortable with your workout. Keep challenging yourself

If you’re going to the gym and have a trainer, they will keep it challenging for you so you’re safe. However, if you’re on your own and are following one routine, your body may get too comfortable with it so you need to take it up a notch and get something more challenging. Over the years I have followed different workouts. You can look them up (if you wish).

  1. Tae Bo
  2. Zumba
  3. Swimming
  4. 30 day Shred by Jillian Michaels
  5. Insanity by Shaun T
  6. T25 by Shaun T
  7. Chalean Xtreme by Chalene Johnson
  8. Yoga by the Africa Yoga Project

Ocassionally I may try Matt Stefanina’s dance moves in the name of working out but the above are my basic go to.

I have tried to keep a consistent workout regimen over the years. Every weekday if possible and so far so good. With time you get so used to it that your day feels “incomplete” without working out.

I hope this helps.

See you next week for the eating clean section.

Love  always,

Sally

My Weight-loss Journey: Checkpoint

Lately I have been getting a lot of  “oh my God, you have lost so much weight” comments especially from people who haven’t seen me in like 3 years or more. Of course I am beyond elated to receive such compliments considering I may have struggled with esteem a while back and my weight was definitely a factor.

Yes I have shed a lot of weight between 2013 and now and I am happy to have changed my life to sustain this process .

Just to bring into perspective exactly what I’m talking about take a look at this

old3

I was definitely not a thirry four bae.

old2old

I look at these photos and now I see why someone once told me I could pass for 26 at the tender age of 17.

Now, several years later I have significantly shed some of that weight off.

now2hdr

I rarely take full body photos but these are the latest I have from my trip last month.

I have so many people asking me what I did and what I still do to maintain it and I’m always happy to share my story to anyone who cares to listen. For that reason I will be sharing my experience as well as giving tips every now and then.

A few points to note:

  • I began taking this healthy lifestyle seriously in 2013.
  • Since then I have been to the gym for a total of 2 months – I did a full month, did my thing from home for a while, tried the gym again for another full month, quit to do my home workouts and have never been to the gym again – so don’t despair if you can’t go to the gym for whatever reason.
  • I have done no ridiculous diet. I see so many floating around.
  • I have lost about 20kgs to date.
  • Patience and persistence are key, our bodies are very different and comparison may not always be a good thing.
  • You will feel amazing when you feel better about yourself. That confidence boost will definitely make an impact.

Having said that, I will see you in a few days with tips on how to get started.

Love always,

Sally