Over the last two years I have tried to have a word that will guide my decisions and activities throughout the year. I got the idea from my clever mentor Mwihaki. Mwihaki has been my fellow half-timer. She left her highflying job to form Paukwa, (a platform that tells Kenyan stories by Kenyans). I feel like she’s the hare in the race and am the tortoise because she has covered so much ground in what appears to be a short period of time to me.

I think she picked up this one-word lesson from a church service. She talked about it so convincingly; it was clear that it was working for her. So I decided to give it a try. After all, she’s my mentor and she is managing her transition successfully in my eyes.

Last year was my first attempt at this and the word or phrase that surfaced to my mind was POSITIVE ACTION. I felt like I had been frozen in anxiety with my life showing no signs of progress. Confusion and uncertainty were the only variables that were not frozen. They were increasing daily and I felt like I was close to the breaking point.

I was at the point of desperation as shown by Denzel Washington’s wife when their child is in ICU on borrowed time and will die if he doesn’t get a kidney from a donor. The hospital process is slow in paperwork of getting a kidney on time. In desperation the wife shouts at Denzel, “DO SOMETHING.” He breaks the law by locking down the hospital at gunpoint and orders a doctor to remove his (Denzel’s) kidney and put it into his son so as to save his life. This is one of the few movies I remember long after watching it but I forget what it was titled. The other ones are animations led by Madagascar then King Julian. You can see my baby sharks have converted me kabisa. Animations are a good stress buster.

I became aware that I had to do something fast so as to get out of my downward spiral. So one morning in January 2017 I got the crazy idea to start writing what I’m going through. I call it crazy because I’ve never liked writing. In fact, all the writing I had done until that point in my life was mandatory. Like exams and loan applications. Maybe that’s why I have a horrible handwriting. I usually joke I should have been a doctor.

I reached out to my sister Valentine who is a media personality and she gave me a few tips. Since then it’s been almost two years of weekly posting. This has been very good therapy for me and surprisingly many others who are going through transitions of their own. That one positive action just like in the Denzel movie has gone a long way in giving me hope and preparing me for my second half. It has been a source of conversations that will lead to my prayers being answered. I’m glad I started writing (and reading too). As a result, I’m in a much better place now on my halftime journey.

This year the word was SIMPLE. I like to think of myself as a simple guy who desires a simple life. I felt the anxieties caused by my midlife manenos had complicated my outlook on life. I would over-analyse stuff and that would produce more confusion and negativity. I didn’t like who I had become. So I became intentional on going back to the simple zone. As I take stock now that we are almost ending the year, I think it has worked to some degree. I feel I have gone back to the basics in running my business which has brought back a positive vibe. I have also tried to do my public service job from a simple perspective. We identify the task at hand and find the simplest way to accomplish it for maximum good.

The highlight as we close 2018 is that I am now the closest I have been to having childlike faith where I trust that I cannot control the future and that’s okay. I do what I can and let Sir God do the rest. In fact, for the first time ever I have a Bible verse on the screen of my phone to remind me to chill and live simply. It is 1 Peter 5: 7: So be content with who you are and don’t put on airs. God’s strong hand is on you; He’ll promote you at the right time. Live carefree before God, He is most careful with you. This living in a state of surrender is so refreshing knowing that as long as I’m doing what I can, the best I can, then good will come my way and I will not miss my portion.

That state of mind has led to my word of 2019, DEFINING. I feel as though the last four years on fourth floor have been preparing me for what will happen in 2019. A lot of realisations and connecting of dots will happen in 2019 and that’s why I choose the word – Defining. I hope the bamboo that’s been growing underground for the last five years will now break through the ground for me to see it. I have to protect this tender leaves of hope and positivity breaking through the ground from the birds of anxiety and hopelessness that threaten to eat up my young bamboo. I intend to do this by working as if it depends on me and praying as if it depends on God.

Folks, allow me to challenge us before the year ends to think of a word that will guide you in 2019. Pick a word that describes what you want to achieve or become. For me, my desire for a future of public service will start being defined in the coming year and I will start seeing tangible evidence of that. I feel that strongly. It’s largely a walk of faith.

I will not wish you merry Christmas now so that you can read my next week’s article haha. Here’s to a word-defined future.


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4 thoughts on “Defining.”

  1. MG says:

    My 2019 word. Phrase more like. Actually two. No I’ll narrow it down to one word. Not a phrase. Just one word. Serendipity.

  2. George Muya Nuthu says:

    Thanks Lucas for the challenge. In response to it and without much fuss, my 2019 phrase is DEEPENED FOCUS!

  3. Boni says:

    Indeed whata a challenge… I can’t think of one word they are many..lol!!..but I will say… “Ssurrender”….. And wish you all the best in yours too..and one day I will follow in your footsteps perhaps when am on the 5th floor😉. Stay blessed

  4. Annie says:

    Great piece! Positivity. The movie is John Q…

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