The problem with half time, (some refer to it as midlife), is the uncertainty it comes with. Folks who all along have known and planned what to do with their time , money , brains, skills and everything else suddenly get into the I-don’t-know zone. Even worse if money has run out or is running out, which is common for many. I find it so annoying when loaded folks say stuff like, “Money is not everything; there are more important things.” Don’t get me wrong. I agree with that statement. The only problem is when we belittle the importance of cash in today’s life. Many a time when I hear people trivialise the money factor, I make a silent prayer. ‘’Lord please give me that mob cash then I can confirm if money is not all that matters after having it’’.

I once received a Whatsapp forward saying ‘money may not be everything in life but don’t think being broke is holy.’ I must say I agreed with that 100%. The focus of this post today is not money but what lack of it and living in uncertainty does to me (and I’m sure to many others) especially in our 40s.

This week I had a date with another of my new found halftime friends, Cleopatra after a class we both attended on learning how to be a better speaker. She spoke with the wisdom of ten village elders. They would be nyumba kumi leaders in our urban context today. We proceeded for early lunch (before 11am imagine) after our class accompanied by our mwalimu. Food is my love language so any time is feeding time.

Maybe I should change my current profile status to ‘I don’t know’, because I’ve been trying to figure out what my next half will look like. The not knowing has produced some serious levels of anxiety and I have severally called upon Jesus and summoned all my mental strength to help me chill and be easy. It doesn’t come easy to a man with a family, business and other commitments to just believe all will be well and remain still. There are times when the kelele in my head is so much that I’m now driving with the radio off in my car. Just to try and hear some instruction rise above the clutter. So today I turned off the volume in my head (don’t ask me how I did it because I don’t know) and decided to listen and hear what my new pal had to say and it blew me away.

Cleo said; actually I think the Lord above said through Cleo, “Focus on the what and the how will figure itself out’’. That hit me like a runaway bull at the ASK show being paraded for largest and meanest bull category. I have been single mindedly focused on the how in my life for the last three years. How will I pay school fees? How will I provide for my family? How will I leave a legacy (not so much inheritance) for my baby sharks? How will I retire? How will I take mummy shark for her cruise (after buying the Porsche cayenne of course)? How will I ensure my parents don’t lack in old age? How will I spend all my potential and leave this world a better place? On and on the questions go.

Cleo challenged me to say (and see) what I want. To be clear on what exactly I want. Once that is clear and sorted then how to get there will take care of itself. My celeb friend Jackson Biko (I’ve actually met the guy and spoken to him, believe me folks) turned 40 last week. In his weekly blog post last week he wrote something I really liked. Time is measured. Jump off the cliff. Something will catch you. Beauty is not knowing what. Of course that is much easier said than done but necessary.

It’s more like starting with the end in mind. I know what I want but I must confess the how to get it has been my default setting and that has led to a lot of restlessness and worry as I try to figure out how to get past that. The task ahead for me now is to reprogram my head ware and heart ware to focus on the WHAT.  The antidote for anxiety, panic, worry and all those words that have become my surname is focusing on the WHAT only for now. I left that feeding session excited like a researcher who has just discovered  how to prevent mosquitoes from flying in the dark and disturbing us while we are asleep. Cleo is a scientist by the way. Brilliant kabisa.

Folks, when you think of it more critically, many of us are not very sure or clear on what we want exactly. We have an idea and seem more clear on the how what we want looks like. That is fine to start with as it comes easily to us but we cannot remain there. We need to push ourselves to a point where we can clearly articulate what it is that we want. You know you have arrived at that place when the how to is not casting doubts in your mind. I am a work in progress but it begins with a question.

So WHAT do you want good people?

(Money or the box? – just kidding).

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4 thoughts on “Antidote.”

  1. Lilian says:

    Great post Lucas. Thanks for reminding me to stay focussed on what I really want. I think of our kids and if you dare ask them what they want, they are definately very clear. Do we then develop the innocent and beliving heart of a child so that that thing we want appears more real as opposed to unachievable? You just got my mind racing…..mind readjustment! Brilliant

  2. Joe Wainaina says:

    Even beyond 50 all the way into your 60’s the dilemma you face still abound albeit being find tuned towards retirement. That cacophony of noise still bombards me today and you piece has been a wake up call. Keep it up!!

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