Category Archives: Inspiration

The invitation

By Oriah Mountain Dreamer

It doesn’t interest me
what you do for a living.
I want to know
what you ache for
and if you dare to dream
of meeting your heart’s longing.

It doesn’t interest me
how old you are.
I want to know 
if you will risk 
looking like a fool
for love
for your dream
for the adventure of being alive.

It doesnt interest me
what planets are 
squaring your moon…
I want to know
if you have touched
the centre of your own sorrow
if you have been opened
by life’s betrayals
or have become shrivelled and closed
from fear of further pain.

I want to know
if you can sit with pain
mine or your own
without moving to hide it
or fade it
or fix it.

I want to know
if you can be with joy
mine or your own
if you can dance with wildness
and let the ecstasy fill you 
to the tips of your fingers and toes
without cautioning us
to be careful
to be realistic
to remember the limitations
of being human.

It doesn’t interest me
if the story you are telling me
is true.
I want to know if you can
disappoint another
to be true to yourself.
If you can bear
the accusation of betrayal
and not betray your own soul.
If you can be faithless
and therefore trustworthy.

I want to know if you can see Beauty
even when it is not pretty
every day.
And if you can source your own life
from its presence.

I want to know
if you can live with failure
yours and mine
and still stand at the edge of the lake
and shout to the silver of the full moon,
“Yes.”

It doesn’t interest me
to know where you live
or how much money you have.
I want to know if you can get up
after the night of grief and despair
weary and bruised to the bone
and do what needs to be done
to feed the children.

It doesn’t interest me
who you know
or how you came to be here.
I want to know if you will stand
in the centre of the fire
with me
and not shrink back.

It doesn’t interest me
where or what or with whom
you have studied.
I want to know 
what sustains you
from the inside
when all else falls away.

I want to know
if you can be alone 
with yourself
and if you truly like
the company you keep
in the empty moments.

The thing about a dream…

 

Some dreams are scary, they are big and you feel small, yet everything you see in the world was once but a dream in someone’s mind.

Take the world as a painting, upon which every man must add his own brush stroke. We cannot all paint the same, and we do not all like the same colors. But paint we must, for to have lived is to live a mark.

The question is not what, but how you shall choose to paint! Some of us were born to improve where others have already started, while some were born to create new things.

Paint your dream the way it is in your mind, the world is waiting for your brush stroke!

How I almost founded a School and what I learnt in the process.

The School

I was fresh from High School having done a few terms of being a relief teacher at some Rural Government Schools.  Most of my High school mates had gone off to University, which I couldn’t afford because of my financial situation.

I needed money. The easiest way to get it was to use whatever skills I had. I could teach, I had done it before. I invited a group of friends, approached a local primary school and negotiated to use infants classrooms since they finished at 12 noon. I printed fliers and posters advertising for Ordinary Level Lessons.

They told us we were operating illegally since we had no certification.

The events that followed surprised me. In a month, we enrolled 200 students. Our school had attracted everyone who was seeking to resit their O’ level exams in the area including grown-ups who couldn’t attend conventional school. I became an employer of 6 teachers.

After a single term, The Ministry of Education Officials knocked on our door. They told us we were operating illegally since we had no certification. However, because we were meeting a great need they said, they would help us formalise our private college. They gave us textbooks through a UNICEF programme that was running then.

Things were happening so fast. I had set out to make a few coins helping individuals pass their exams, I was on the verge of founding my own Formal Private College.

Our first group of students went on to write exams that year. We had an 80% pass rate! Later I closed the school when I secured a formal Job.

Many people, like me, have given up dreams that would make them so successful for comfort that would see them die yearning for more.

The Lessons

1. SometimesYou do not need money to start a money-making business

Many people seeking to make money ignore their own skill sets, in search of complex business ideas. An entrepreneur looks first at what he/she has and sets out to meet a need.

2. Lucky is for the prepared.

If I hadn’t started this school, UNICEF through the Ministry of Education wouldn’t have given us textbooks. Lucky is when opportunity meets preparedness.

3. The best thing you can do is:  Start.

Many projects die before they are even born. Perfection is a killer disease. Business plans and budgets are good but the reality is often a different game altogether. Start your project, learn and adjust your sails as the boat floats on. Read about  The Lean Start-Up

4. Big Organisations are still People.

If you have a dream, there will be companies, organisations and people you will need. Fear of rejection may stop you from reaching out. Do not be afraid, in every company or organisation, decisions are made by humans, and, humans can ethically be persuaded.

5. Employment is a dream slayer. 

Employment is comfortable. You do not worry about capital, human resources, company bills and industry policies. Many people like me, have given up dreams that would make them successful for comfort that would see them die yearning for more. Hold on to your dream.

Why do I write

Writing is living twice, you live the experience, writing immortalises the lessons.

I do not regret all the words I have written, perhaps my only regret would be after being read ,my words fail to change someone’s life. I write to send my words in search of a home in someone’s heart.

I write because I want to make life easier for young people. I know how it feels to be young, unexposed and clueless. It is degrading and humiliating.

I could not help but notice how today’s society is killing the reading culture in young people. There is so much pressure about academic grades. Young people hardly have time to read anything else unrelated to their chosen career paths.

Social media has made the situation worse. Life has boiled down to chasing trends and hashtags. Young people no longer read to equip themselves, they are only interested in what gets them retweets and likes from people they do not know.

I am a marvel to many people, I seem to know something about every topic. The secret has been a consistent reading culture. I read to enhance my knowledge, so that I can be able to hold a conversation with anyone, at any given time, on any particular subject.

I write to spark a light in someone’s mind

I have had a lifetime of dipping my toes in various books, from business to philosophy, music, art, history and science. I have read about revolutions with the same avid interest I have had for poetry. It has been so rewarding. Reading has boosted my confidence, I am hardly intimidated when I meet new people, I know I can always find something to comfortably converse on. 

I write to inspire young people to explore life. I hope someone will read the stories I share and have a life shifting moment. I want young people to be knowledgeable on matters that concern their lives , dreams and welfare.

I write to live twice.

It’s not easy…

He who has a why to live for can bear almost anyhow

Viktor Frankl ( Man’s search for meaning)

At the 2018 Australian Open, Japanese tennis star, Naomi Osaka was ranked number 72 in the world. Fast forward to 2019, only a year later at the same tournament she became Number 1 seed!

From an outsider’s point of view, this is just another meterioric rise to first place; but Naomi knows how long the year between the tournaments had been because of the hours of work she had to put in.

It was not easy, so how did she do it?

I had dreams that I would win this tournament,and every time I have a dream I accomplish it

Naomi Osaka -2019 Australian open.

The secret to achieving anything is to first identify it as your goal. Make it your purpose. Live, eat , breath and day dream it, while busking in the feeling as though you have already achieved it.

This is the kind of imagination that will have you waking up to study or train for hours everyday. You can push yourself towards a work ethic you never thought you could manage. A burning desire can push you to break your limits.

Muhammad Ali made his “I am the greatest” speech at the age of 21 before he was the champion he later developed to be. Being the best is a decision you can make!

Naomi Osaka won the 2019 Australian open before even coming to the tournament. Showing up was a mere rehearsal formality towards fulfilling her dream. The tournament was won the moment she made it her goal and directed all her energy to training for it.

Identify your goal. Make it the reason you wake up everyday to do what you do. When it gets hard remember your why. The reason will help you to bear any pain on the road to realising your dream.

Photo credit / eurosport.

My Testimony

Without a college degree, professional qualification nor a single connection, in a country where you need either of these to make it or get a job,God took a special interest and helped me to secure a stable and decent job. This is my story…

I lost my mother sometime in 1999 and my father followed in 2003. With this loss also came the loss of my financial muscle to make it to University let alone finishing my High school.I hoped from one relative to another till I completed my A Levels.

The period that followed was the hardest in my life.Even though I was now staying with my brother that did not lighten my situation. I mean how do you make yourself useful after everyone has left and gone to work?How do you receive a plate of food ,chew it and have it digest in your system when you know you did not help in any way. I took up teaching classes at a nearby High School during the day and by night I worked as a security guard for a brick company just outside Harare. All in a bid to lighten up the load I had become on my brother’s shoulders.

Over 20000 graduates are released from universities every year, to compete for the few jobs that can be found in a country where unemployment is rumoured to be above 70%. You can imagine how difficult it was to even dream of competing for a decent job. I had no qualification to think of! With nothing but hope and faith in God I distributed my “skeletal” curriculum vitae to different companies. I searched the streets whenever I had a chance, looking for anything that could pay enough to sustain me.

I am a testimony God answers prayer

I prayed to God every night and day.I promised him that if he could give me a decent job I would learn sign language and preach to the deaf. I stand to testify that God answers prayer.

When I least expected it I was called for an aptitude test at a very reputable company. We went in two groups of twenties. I remember failing to answer questions with marks totalling twenty-five yet one had to score 75% to make it into the interview. I passed with exactly 75%! Eleven of us made it into the interviews and of the eleven I was the only one from my group and the only one without an undergraduate degree. I went on to pass the interviews and landed my dream job.

I later realised when I was posted to a country branch that God indeed works in mysterious ways. The congregation there already had sign language tutorials in progress. I am progressing well in learning sign language so that I can preach to the deaf, at the same time pursuing my Association of Chartered Certified Accountants Qualification.


When I reflect on all this I cant help but feel like Hannah when she proclaimed in 1 Samuel 2:2

There is no one holy like Jehovah;there is no one besides you ;There is no rock like our God.