Welcome to the brand new year 2021!
We all can agree that 2020 was a doozie, and threw many challenges at us. I’m here to encourage you that now is the time to look up! No matter what you’ve experienced in the past, the good news is that there is always a do-over or opportunity for a reset.
Today kicks off the new Season FIVE of Mimika TV! I’m so excited to share with you things that have been on my heart, and what I feel God wants us all to know.
During this new season, you can expect to hear from me more personally, as I share more of my own story and the valuable lessons I’ve learnt.
For some who don’t know my backstory, I thought it fitting to start the season sharing my own personal story of challenges, heartache, victories and encouragement.
Let’s begin this new journey together…
Resilience, Grit & Counter Thinking
Once upon a time, when I was born and raised during the time of Apartheid in South Africa, which was a turbulent environment to grow up in. There was no coloring outside of the lines, and we were always told how to live and how to play by the rules. Now, I don’t know about you, but I’m an artist who loves to color outside of the lines so when someone tells me I can’t do something, I’m immediately wondering why not! I have found that a lot of the environment I grew up in has shaped my life and the way I do things.
Change Is Good But Not Always A Holiday
During my final year of high school, in 1994, Nelson Mandela became the president of South Africa. His leadership had a huge impact on the country and shifted it for the better. The interesting thing is that for someone who was living through that, it was pretty much like the environment we’re living in right now where there is a lot of fear, uncertainty, racism, hatred and a lot of people slinging mud at each other verbally. Schools were closing down, cars were being threatened and burned, we were on the brink of a civil war.
One of the uncertainties we faced during the 1994 election was where we were going as a country because we didn’t know our new leaders too well yet. Changing from old to new is great, but depending on the environment you find yourself in, it can create a sense of fear. We, as humans, love to have a sense of direction in life, and if that is out of our hands we either withdraw or throw our toys out the cot. Being entrepreneurial the way I was at the time, and knowing that colleges were all closed during this time, I decided to start working. My intention was really just to find a place where I could learn, I had a hunger for learning.
Learning To Become My Own Boss
I fell in love with video and media and started working in a TV production company. I was there for two years and really engrossed myself into the journey towards becoming a TV broadcaster. If you know anything about working in the media, it is a 24/7 kind of job, where they practically own you. This was not the lifestyle I envisioned for myself.
During my school years, I met my high school sweetheart and we were looking forward to getting married in the years after high school. This was when I knew I had to make a choice. If I wanted to have freedom in my career then I had to become my own boss.
We ended up getting married when I turned 19 and it was then that my husband and I made the decision to start our own businesses and become our own freedom fighters.
All In, Baby
Now I know I’m revealing my age by sharing this, but my husband and I were one of the first bunch of people to create an internet-based business in South Africa. Let me tell you the internet in South Africa was like 10 years behind the rest of the world, so when we offered to design some websites, people had no idea what we were talking about. We realized this was going to be hard work!
All we had at that point was the AOL, plugging your phone in to connect to the web, and it was groundbreaking! A few years down the line, the internet exploded. Of course, for us being in South Africa, the political situation was still very volatile. We wanted to create further opportunities and so we started to get some international clients specifically in England. This was when we decided to go all into this thing and give it a try.
Now, I wouldn’t advise this, but we sold everything and moved to a brand new country, while I was pregnant with our second child (and a 2 year old) to start this new business. Our families thought we were totally off our rocker. Why would you leave the comfort of home? Why are you going somewhere that you haven’t been? The good news is I did have family there, my mum and my sister already lived in the UK for quite some time before we moved.
Fun, Thrill & Genuine Grit
This massive move was a whole lot of fun, a whole lot of learning and a whole lot of grit all at the same time. We never lost the excitement of this new chapter we were stepping into.
I’ll never forget going to the grocery store when we had started our business and we were living on fumes. I would take my two year old who would have a huge tantrum, my newborn in the car seat and go to the grocery store just praying that the credit card would go through so we could pay our groceries for that week. You cannot believe how but we were living off credit cards that we had from South Africa and even though we didn’t arrive with money or a network, we were still open and excited for new opportunities. We didn’t arrive with a really safe business, even the paperwork and all the immigration stuff we did, we had to do ourselves.
It just goes to show that where there’s a will, there will be a way, you just need the right mindset, some goals and a good attitude. I don’t know about you guys, but I feel like a lot of this new generation and even what we are all living in now, people have lost grit. People don’t have that sort of stick-to-it-ness anymore. Where I grew up in South Africa, we were always told to pull ourselves towards ourselves and just get on with it. There’s no need to be precious or emotional about everything, it’s about building character.
The Second Move & A New Business
You might think this is crazy, but we eventually did it again. We moved from the UK to the USA, with a truckload of paperwork to prove we were eligible. We went through the whole immigration process with a lawyer this time because we were getting more and more clients here in the USA because of being in digital marketing. My husband and I were doing a lot of web design and helping people to slowly move online. It was at this point where I decided to become a photographer. It was in this season where we really started to clear all the credit card debt, and honestly eat beans on toast for dinner, just to climb our way out again.
We just made sure that if this was the goal we wanted to achieve, that we were willing to make the sacrifice. Needless to say, in 2006 we moved to the US, and managed to get a mortgage and start the photography business just before the 2008 crash.
The ongoing journey to prove ourselves fit to live in the states just continued on and on. We basically had to show them everything so that we could stay in the country. We felt naked!
Life Doesn’t Come With An Instruction Manual Or A Roadmap
It doesn’t come with an instruction manual, parenting, entrepreneurship and life. Environments change and there is no set plan for living life, those days are over. We are living in a time where we need to be able to pivot and shift with new paradigms of society.
Our school systems have taught us all to think in a certain way, however, I think we need to be agile in this day and age. What I’m realizing is that even with all of us having lived through this global pandemic, where we have had to home school our kids for a while, and clients are wanting to position themselves differently, life just does throw us lemons sometimes. What you do with the lemons, will determine your altitude in life, and I think it’s about having some grit.
As long as we have a growth mindset and we are able to think on our feet even when things don’t go as planned we should be able to manage. We have to learn how to take ownership of our own lives and decide not to become victims or stuck in the mud, we can choose to be positive and proactive.
We Won’t Always Have Control, But Our Attitudes Can Still Be Good
We have to understand that we can only control how we respond to situations, we don’t always have control over the situations themselves. Just like a serenity prayer says “God, give me serenity to be able to accept the things I can change, the courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference.” At the end of the day life will change, but we have to be able to learn and grow from every situation.
If you are ready to break through barriers, fuel your faith, pursue your purpose and market your message so that you can impact the marketplace for God, then you are in the right place.
As a Mindset Coach I know how important it is to get our thoughts in the right place so our feelings and actions follow in the right direction. If you’re needing support, encouragement and accountability; consider joining my group coaching program Unstick Your Mind.