For millennials: 21

 

Journaling

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There is no warmth in waiting for the right time. The patience will sting harder than the truth you believe about holding on.

Misery becomes more appealing.

“may you be defined by your boldness in running through dry and dark cracks.”

I’d get into the bus sometimes, most times with my headphones banging loud music out its tiny speakers.

Sitting by windows is my favourite thing. My eyes get to count coloured and grey houses, watch trees and many other greens. I often begin to play rhythmic music in a lowered volume to feel the same feeling I get when watching good scenery movies. I deviate into solitude and just observe.

It is powerful.

The only regular thought I’ve known is home, it’s sometimes with me and other times I fear to think of its broken tone.

I’ve watched myself grow with strangers that I call friends. I’ve been shaken by subtle disagreements imposed by the universe in openness.

I seldom believe we are all here, just making history and not living well enough. We will all die surviving with or without purpose.

“In love, the purest of our souls’ manifest.

In love, we succumb to humility and fear without coercion.

In love, we tell our stories in ways we wish they existed.”

Can you read the signs through my saggy eye bags?

I’m knackered by pressure from my wants and the wants I’m expected to want.

I heard mum’s voice on WhatsApp call and she sounded like 50 hasn’t been good to her. I’ve been thinking of her in a sweet way lately. In a way I would spoil her with happier days if she were here.

“Be generous and kind with what you bear to instil

I’m one and a half page of an A4 gone and I’m still wasting words on consciousness. This is what it feels like to fight forces that you never chose, fighting constantly.

You will live, you will live

You will write, you will write

You will love, you will love

You will break, you will break

You will heal, you will heal

You will die again and again before you learn to live to die.

“Be offended by your zeal to live because thinking of your death will remind you of here always”

 

Dyna Ekwueme Copyright, 2017.

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Happy women’s Day

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Picture gotten from-Figurative art

To be here, to join hands and to murmur what it’s like to feel this way. To feel like a woman that I didn’t choose to be but of the nature that chose me.

Here is to all the days and all the nights I stay with me, with womanhood thinking of how big of a smile I should give the next day even whilst groaning in pain. Here’s for now, where neglect and responsibility will cut through deep layers of my skin, yet I’ll stand and be silent of it all. I wish to celebrate everyday for the rest of my life women whose existence have hurt and broken them in ways that can’t be told or written, yet love is all they give.

To women of all colours and roles in life, you are a bold statue that can’t be washed away by lingering figures. You are waterproof and transparent amidst where you think you’ve been. You are still a rose to be admired by men that stand with you. You are deserving of all favours you’ve been turned down. You are all this because you are a woman.

The universe will make love to you in good timing, woman. we will all celebrate the joy and pride of being a woman with you because you are valuable and valid.

I hope you take care of yourself everyday for the rest of your days here. Happy WOMEN’S DAY!

Dyna Ekwueme Copyright, 2016.

Securing an undergraduate placement in the UK: my horror story.

I had long doubted my patience until the day I decided to get a gap year from university, working anywhere associated with what I’m currently studying. It’s been over 5 months since my final year started and over 8 since I got rejected by the organization I placed my last hope on. Part of the rejections I got made me embrace this final lap and part has been chaotic and has eventually pushed me to share this. I believe that there are quite a few or many students who would want to know this stage I didn’t quite conquer.

Firstly, I’m an international student and not to say that interviewers or most organizations or bodies that accept placement students discriminate against international students but let’s be real here. Any country whatsoever would consider taking theirs first before any other unless you are exceptionally suitable/ there isn’t any domestic student available to take that role, then you might just be lucky. Anyway, I had that in mind long before I even started cooking up a CV. Second year resumed September 2015 and my university already started putting up advertisements for the roles linked with Biomedical science, which is what I’m currently studying. It is a broad course involving various health and life sectors, therefore adverts were placed on student central (a learning and assessment medium for most universities in England) nearly everyday.

Some of the successful interviews I had gotten were partly due to the help my university (the University of Brighton) had  rendered. They helped get my CV to look more presentable and appropriate, they constantly sent direct emails to me whenever a new position came up, they always replied to most emails I sent and was always willing to give me advice whenever I needed help. That’s really what they can offer anyway, they can’t hand you a place!, don’t know about other universities but I’m speaking of mine.

Fast forward to when the application war began, bear in mind that 1st semester had  already started and I had 6 modules to cover, each with their coursework and examination so you can imagine keeping up with the stress. Most colleagues of mine weren’t interested, so it was a lot harder to share my pain or have them relate with me on something they were not interested in. I applied to quite a few number of pharmaceutical companies including GSK, Pfizer, Nestle and many more. Some would have you submit your application online, which usually takes a long time and after which you also need to do an online test or even several tests before you get an interview which is not even guaranteed. Pheew! GSK, I remember vividly, doing everything until it got to the online test, after a week or so, I got a nicely written rejection. I did apply also to organizations that supported health science and governmental bodies too, all to no avail. Some won’t even bother to leave you with a rejection, you’ll just be waiting for your saviour to come.  To be honest with you, until today, I can’t tell where my perseverance came from. I kept going with all the piles of rejection. It was really saddening.

After my first semester ended, I was able to convince two of my close friends to get a placement year, sharing with them the benefits and long term joy it would leave them. Thankfully, I had them with me for the rest of the application journey. We were told around April 2016 by our placement team that the NHS affiliated hospital (Royal County Sussex) here in Brighton would be putting up various positions, so we should create a totally different CV that complies to the roles that would be advertised, including in it our choices (ie the roles you wish to work in. For eg. haematology, histology etc). We were more than excited because it is commutable and their acceptance rate from our university is high from statistical indications and also not a lot of us were running for the positions.

This was my final hope so I wrote my CV more than three times, had it checked by different well read people and the placement team too and waited patiently for the D day. My friends did too. It was a few weeks before the exam, the advert came up on student central, I applied and waited. We three had gotten an email saying we got ourselves an interview. I was overly joyed and happier that it was the same day for the three of us. One week before my second semester examination, we had gone for the interview and we all came out smiling and hoping. I began to imagine myself even working there and all, you know how your hormones mess you up, yes! it did to me.

It took nearly a month before we got our feedbacks, my friends had called me with excitement that they had been accepted and they would be resuming soon, screaming that I should check my email, that they should have given me a place too. As I opened my email and read the first line, I just closed the whole link and started weeping. I literally weeped out loud. I felt stupid for having persevered the whole time and placing all that effort I should have focused on my studies on placement places I ended up not getting. I questioned what really interviewers wanted, lies? Till today I can’t really say.

Truth is, some people apply the first time and just get it and others are never lucky. I feel like the criteria for getting a place not just a placement place but for most jobs are not always considered and looked into. Most interviewees who end up not getting a place especially suitable candidates don’t always see fairness in recruitments. I believe a new system of accepting employees should be put in place and also placement applications shouldn’t feel like hell for students. More universities should have affiliates where they can  directly place students that choose to do one. I understand international students (me and the rest of them) here in the UK should know better when we signed up to come here to study that there are limited jobs and opportunities considering the population and how small in comparison the country is , but efforts should be made at least to have us secure affiliate places here or abroad with the fees we pay. Home students too.

This is my horror story.

Are there any questions you want to ask regarding this? Or thoughts you wish to share, let me know in the comment box below or email me using the contact form. Thank you.

Dyna Ekwueme Copyright, 2017.

Every ideal blogger’s worry- 5 main worries with possible solutions.

Whether you’re an established blogger or a start-out or even an intermediate in putting out contents, there are certain things you fear that could happen along the line. Here are a few of most likely worries that bloggers experience with possible solutions to fighting them.

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  • Audience Response–  Questions like “would I get backlashes from this post?”, “will my audience fall in numbers?” “can I get reported, put down or petitioned against if I air this opinion of mine?” might resonate in an active blogger’s mind before publishing a post for the world to see. It may not necessarily be these questions but most questions that come in mind tend to be audience-targeted as they are the major building block of blogs.

 Solution– Just post it! You’ll never know if your presumed controversial post might turn out to be your breakthrough or the post that receives recognition from an organization you least expect. Therefore, the only solution to this worry is publishing that thought, story, event or whatever that content of yours may be.

  • Information coverage– I think this comes before what my audience have to say in my own case. Most bloggers fear lack of knowledge and insufficient amount of information being put in their post for many reasons. This could be seen with most book and movie review bloggers, reporters or any sort of blog that has to deal with publishing enormous details for their audience compliance  or service use.

          Solution–  In this case, I’d advice leaving links to more information on the subject area posted, pictures and most importantly asking your readers to share their own thoughts in the comment section, that way you interact and tend to cover what you think wasn’t from answering questions and building a community.

  • References and copyrights– Only a careless blogger will make use of a copyright content without acknowledging the source. Even with acknowledgements made, most bloggers fear illegal use of materials from websites and other sources.

          Solution–  It is helpful and most appropriate to inquire on the use of a content not owned by you and to also leave reference details which may include web links about the material/s used.

  • Theme (future changes)– Most bloggers who for instance started off blogging on photography and travel might want to switch it up a bit with/to journalism along the line. These bloggers tend to fear audience-drift/loss. This happens most times with bloggers that start off blogging for the fun of it all or with no particular genre in mind and then go on later to specialize on blogging in a particular field or what they tend to enjoy blogging the most.

         Solution– Panic not. You may either choose to open a separate blog and inform your current audience on the change beforehand which leaves you managing two blogs instead of one or you may also choose to do it all in one blog by opening a new menu, titling it with your chosen field and informing your audience about the changes made. No matter how many readers you lose using any of these strategies you’re likely to gain more for what you’re passionate about. Why not do it?

  • Revenue– This may not be start-out bloggers cup of tea but definitely for the majority who make a living from the contents they put out. These bloggers worry about their profits and losses. They try to give out content where they earn the most and this they monitor using their statistics. Of course, this should be their main worry but fighting this enables them grow and stay focused without drifting from their passion whilst earning from it.

          Solution– Do not ignore the polls!. Every now and then, go through your stats thoroughly. Look at the contents that gets viewed and requested the most. Find innovative ways to carry your readers along without drifting from your original plan. Also, see to it that you read and respond to your emails. Take up advertising opportunities from organizations and individuals sending you their products and services. You may also want to keep up to date with information and advice on how to successfully grow your revenue over time. This can be done by joining local forums, going for seminars and speaking to people who are ahead of you in your blogging area.

These are a few points I have observed that sets back most bloggers. If there are any more major concerns you feel that you battle with as a blogger, please let us know in the comment section so we can render possible solutions or discuss it in detail. Thank you.

Dyna Ekwueme Copyright, 2016.

The magic in ‘first times’

I had an Asian friend who I had known for over a year leave me a goodbye note. On it, part of what she had written said “..it’s been a really great pleasure to have met you, my very first Negro friend”. To be totally honest with you, I had a rush of mixed feelings just reading that line. I laughed, got offended, laughed again, cried and ran out to give her a tight hug. Why? Firstly, I imagined being her only black friend out of the battalion of my kind we have in our city, Brighton. I also thought how naive she was not to know that calling me a ‘Negro’ was sort of offensive but I read that line again and laughed again “..my very first Negro friend”. At that moment it occurred to me that, I wasn’t going to see her again until fate or coincidence brings us back together. I thought of her presence for the past one year and how time loves goodbyes. I cried for a girl for the first time in my life.

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What am I insinuating?

You won’t know the feeling of magic until you experience something for the first time. It may not be like mine with someone triggering the effect, it may just be you creating and experiencing your own magic. Perhaps, the word ‘magic’ can be a bit too imaginative. Let’s call it a sensational feeling, one that renews your adrenaline. Think about the first time you had done/started something (esp. something that you love and chose to do). The feeling definitely doesn’t feel like the end of it, it doesn’t equate to the time it begins to grow weary, it’s so alive. That, sometimes is what pushes us to finish or continue, the thought of what and why we started. Sometimes the memory it leaves builds up and takes over our strength to carry through even when the initial thought is dead. The magic in ‘first times’ should be felt as often as the zeal you have for consistency.

When was the first time you decided to go for a walk, or probably read a book? When was the first time you chose to change your hair colour, take another route to work? When was the first time you gave something you cherish to the needy or leave someone random kind words? When was the first time you chose to meditate, to switch off and go offline for a while? When was the last time you told the people you cherish how much you appreciate and love them, the first time you hung out with people that are not in your class, race or even circle? These may all sound daunting or probably scary but believe me you, the feeling you get from ‘first times’ are more reviving than the consistent thing you’ve been doing your whole life.

So?

Get up! Go out! and experience your own magic! dear reader.

Dyna Ekwueme Copyright, 2016.

 

Poise

They say something about writers that I often believe isn’t untrue. You can tell the kind of life they live from their words, what they feel and how they feel. Although, most people often refer to actions as being the loudest amongst written words, I read patterns from crossed ‘Ts’ and dotted ‘Is’. Some would rather kill you and bury their guilt in words than stand up against you and utter a word. This is an example of balance I suppose.

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Picture gotten from-Colossal

What makes you you?

I’d like to be blunt. Think bluntly too dear reader.

This question should pop up every now and then in your daily life.

What makes you feel true, not what makes you feel like you should be some type of way. Not that stereotype kind of person. I’m not asking about the you you feel you should change to suit a particular circle or person. What is it that genuinely makes you smile, makes you get up in the morning and feel purposeful? What is it you feel you should be doing rather than which you are doing for a certain reason best known to you? The day you get the true answer to that question that is the very day you begin to live a life full of value. A life with so much to offer and less to ask from.

Most people up until their late forties suffer from identity crisis, not knowing where they belong or what it is they are truly living for. Others either just go with life or are very certain of what it is they ought to build for and lose as life goes on. Whichever way it is that we are climbing the ladder, we as individuals all get to that point where we stop and process it all. We reflect and make changes. The only difference is that these changes either gets worse or better. Creating a balance with life helps weed out the unnecessary, it humbles our little beginnings and keeps us woke.

Become a student over and over

Ryan Holiday, the author of the book ‘Ego is the enemy’ described one of the reasons for prolonged success in most moguls and successful people that have lived and still is, is cultivating the habit of re-learning. It might not be the best advise but going back and learning the basis of what brought you farther than ever and applying them over and over makes you the best at what you do. It humbles you enough to also learn from others and realize how much the foundation play a bigger role in sustaining timely success.

Energy is an investment

What you place value in is where you spend most of your time. To create balance, energy must be of value too. This determines where that ladder you’re climbing is heading to. Do you spend most of your time investing in people who are less invested in you? You’ll find that you’ll be losing yourself in the process. Do you make time for things that will develop your mind and encourage you to live healthier and happier? The results won’t lie at all as you’ll find yourself growing and developing from stage to stage. Energy is a heavy investment that determines where you’ll be in years to come. Invest wisely and you’ll find your reap to be solely built upon what you made time for.

There are many ways to enlarge your horizon and still be in balance, when you begin answering the first question asked in this piece “what makes you you?” you’ll find that initial step to help you put it all together and move on from there.

I’d like you to share with me ways that you create balance for yourself and your inner mind in the comment box. Thank you.

Dyna Ekwueme Copyright, 2016.

 

 

Sunrise in the south: Brighton

Brighton Wheel from PierPicture from- University of Brighton

These clouds don’t wait,

so does the rain and the warm air.

You can hear the cycles wheeling down the hills,

the decker buses and the long ones too.

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Well, it’s full on.

Horns, stammers, faces and wild-walking people radiating innocence,

you feel the sense of hearing the mornings,

mondays laughing at faces, still the sun wakes.

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At the beach,

the tip of the waters awakens the fine pebbles, watering it further for doves,

for their warmth, ground and place.

A display of serenity and beauty for tourists.

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When the sun rise, the city does rise with it too

I sit outside my window counting heads, hearts of those that keep us green.

I sing aloud our country song and play my home strings

because I found a home in this home

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It’s nearly always a perfect beginning,

one that never ends especially here in the south-east.

Even the birds in Brighton tweet to the vibe.

Here’s all I know about sunrise in the south.

Dyna Ekwueme Copyright, 2015.