About two years ago I was venting at a group that I belong to about how stagnant my life feels. Support groups on the fourth floor are crucial for our survival. For a long time, I felt that I have done a lot of activity with very little results to show for it. I was stressed because I couldn’t handle the discomfort that came with feeling stuck in no man’s land. That’s how transitions feel like and they are even more pronounced at 40.

I would vent almost every time we met as to how things were not working, and that the future looked very bleak. I became this negative guy whom I disliked. It got to a point at the beginning of this year where I decided not to vent anymore because I was sounding like a chewed tape (post millennials can’t get what that is). That sounds worse than a broken record. I quickly had a meeting with self, and we agreed no more whining. From that point on whenever I met with my group, I would just give thanks in advance for the future I desire. I recall vividly at one weekly gathering Njeri telling me that my second half calling will have a much larger impact in just a few years than the last forty years combined. We have discussed many things over the years but for some reason I have never forgotten that comment she made.

I have run my events and tent business for twenty years, so I can call myself a good business mentor and coach, which I am. I have earned my 10000 hours. That’s what it takes to be an expert in something. I wonder how they landed on 10000 hours. Why not 5000 or 15000 hours?

I now know that most of what we do in our first half of life is preparation for our second half. On the surface it may not look like it is but from my experience, the relations and experiences I have accumulated pre-40 are like oil lubricating the new initiatives that will help me live out a second half of significance.

I met one of my halftime heroes, Caroline who left a HR career in corporate Kenya to become a full-time photographer. We move faster and better when we align with folks who are ahead of us on the path that we choose to follow. We learn from their mistakes and experiences and save precious time. This was my first sit-down with Caroline, and she opened the window for me to see how much work and time she has put in to get the stunning wildlife photos that she shares on Instagram. Check her work out @seemuchphotography.

I recently decided to awake my photography passion and I’m determined to make money from it, so I need to do it as professionally as possible. I was taken aback by how much Caroline has adjusted her life to make space to advance her skill. From the many hours travelling in game reserves (including cold nights in the bush) in search of that one shot of animals in action, to the monies spent buying camera lenses and accessories. Then add the hours spent editing and cleaning up the photos taken. All this input and still hoping to break into the right market for her photos. Opportunity finds the prepared. I can assure you that at the rate she’s preparing, a huge opportunity is around the corner for her. I hope her photos catch the eye of some deep pocketed individuals. Oh, and that’s my prayer too when I get to that level soon.

Most of my three-hour meeting with Caroline was on her teaching me how to use Lightroom, a photo editing software that professional photographers use. I need to acquaint myself with it so that I can clean up my photos better and use them to advertise my new skill. That skill is even more required now after my good pal Shiro gave me a job to photograph her beautiful Christmas décor at Galleria Mall and Radisson Blu Hotel in upper hill last week. Doing that assignment was like a dream I had not dreamt come true. Catch those photos before year end on Shiro’s Instagram page @magnoliaeventskenya. She’s easily the best wedding planner in East Africa.

At this point I feel like I’m at the start of another accumulation of my second set of 10000 hours. But I feel this time most of those hours will be spent creating a much wider impact for many more folks compared to the hours in my first half. Initially I’d be driven to spend time on activities that primarily made me money. Now (though money is still a motivation) I’m finding myself investing in things that are more voluntary. The primary drive here is to impact people’s lives positively. So far, I’ve done that with a lot of psyche as I silently pray that chums will unlock later in one way or another. My gut feeling tells me that financial reward will happen in a big way if I just spend my hours having a good time doing good things for good (and not so good) people.

Folks, I hope you can see that when we begin a new life at 40, we approach our time very differently. We have a longer view (using a longer lens he he) of the impact that our actions will cause on ourselves and others. May you have fun as you accumulate those hours in your second half of life. Spend the time doing stuff that will outlive you. That’s my Christmas wish for us all.

Time truly doesn’t wait for anyone. I can’t believe it’s that time again when I must love you and leave you my dear readers for two weeks or so. I’m going to that same place that doesn’t have Wi-Fi like last year. This has been a good year because you have spared your precious time to read my random thoughts here. And for that I’m eternally grateful. Looking forward to what lies ahead in 2020.

Happy holidays folks.

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4 thoughts on “10000 Hours, Season 2”

  1. MG says:

    What an awesome article to end the year. Enjoy yourself in the place that has no WiFi. A very Merry Christmas to you and to your family and God’s richest blessings for the New Year.

  2. Mwangi Martin says:

    Hi Lucas, am completely moved by your writing and always thought you had more than the eye could see. This particular piece am taking and keeping as my own, and just like many others some so challenging, is a master piece. If you’d shared so much with me 10-15 years earlier, am sure I would not be where I am today.

  3. Lilian says:

    Thanks Lucas for writing and sharing your random thoughts. I have enjoyed reading and also been reminded of some important aspects such as being generous and gracious even to those not so nice people.
    Wishing you a Merry Christmas to you and your whole ‘ shark’ family.
    Mob love

  4. Levi says:

    Great job Lucas. Another year and 50 random thoughts out. God bless you and guide into the new year. Baraka tele.

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