Thursday, 7 November 2019

Personal Keynotes From Excellence in Leadership Conference 2019

John Cage said, "We only hear what we listen for" and I totally agree. I attended the Excellent Leadership Conference today to listen to what I needed to hear.

This is me sharing what I heard with you. May something shift inside of you as you read. Amen.

Notes From ELC2019


First of all, I heard about the Excellence in Leadership Conference via one of my favourite WhatsApp groups. The group admin invited us (more like motivated us) to attend ELC2019 as part of our capacity building activities. Who wouldn't want to hear from this line-up of speakers? I just had to. So glad I did!

ELC2019 themed 'Great Leadership' is a two-day conference hosted by Daystar Christian Centre which started today and is to end tomorrow. The speakers slotted for today were; Dr. Sam Adeyemi, Pst. Nike Adeyemi, Dr. Joe Abah and Ali Baba.

Now let me share what I reflectively gleaned from each speaker. . .

Sunday, 27 October 2019

What I Wore: Long Ankara Jacket On Straight-Cut Ankara Skirt

Happy Style-Sunday! Today is the last Sunday in October. How has the month been for you? For me, October started slow but it's ending in a rush. So much is happening at the same time. I'm staying thankful.

Here's what I wore to church today.

Ankara Jacket


Ankara bumper jackets, kimono jackets, blazers, just name them. You can’t go wrong with them. And you can rock them with skirts, jeans, shorts/bumshorts, pencil skirts or short skirts. They are valuable pieces to have in your wardrobe.

I have had this piece since 2016. As I write this post, I vividly remember where, how and why I got this piece as well as what happened the first day I  wore it. It's interesting how your clothes can cause you to 'play back' certain past experience and the feeling associated with them.

Tuesday, 22 October 2019

Overview: He Wasn't My Husband Written By Nwamaka Onyekachi

My book hasn't broken the Internet yet. Until then, we have to keep talking about it. They call it "promotion." 😁
Written by Nwamaka Onyekachi

Without shame, I am pleading with those who had read/currently reading the book to write a review on their social media platforms using the hashtag #HeWasntMyHusband. I'd really appreciate it. Or, you can send your reviews to hewasntmyhusband@gmail.com.

Many have walked up to me and say things like: "your book is amazing!" 
"I couldn't put it down until I read the last page!"
"Amaka, I applaud your courage to write this!"
"I learnt so much from your book. I am even taking notes."
"I would have to read it again. There is so much to take in!"
"I can relate so well with your story."

Some have turned these spontaneous moments of sharing their thoughts about the book into a talkshow and it's been so freaking exciting (and frightening) to know that this baby is fulfilling its purpose.

OK. Can you now help me tell someone else to tell someone else about it, pleaseeeeeee?

If you are like my cousin who claims she has no writing talent, then you can copy the press release below (shaded words) to paste on your blog, Facebook/Twitter/IG timelines etc. Thank you so so much!

Tuesday, 15 October 2019

Dear Diary, I've Been Married For 10 Months! (My Lessons)

My heart is filled with gratitude to God.  Today, October 15 marks ten months of being married. As in, I've been married for one, two, three,. . .,ten months now! Whaaaat!!!

10 Months In Marriage


I got married during one of my favourite times of the year — December. Preferably, Christmas. And my husband and I are in the beginning stages of learning how to live in one flesh.

We don’t pretend to have everything figured out, but to be quite honest, I blush whenever someone ask, "Amaka, how is married life?"

It's been a constant learning experience for me. Marriage is as much a journey of self-discovery as it's as a journey of two people navigating life together. It is also a journey of discovering God's love. My, my!

Every marriage is obviously unique, but I wanted to give you a peek into some things I’m personally learning in this 10 months of marriage.

Monday, 14 October 2019

Driving Little Starts

Weird title, I know. I’m at that point where more people get to ask you whether you can drive. I have friends who can drive, and I’ve definitely heard my closest peeps hinting that I should learn.

So I went to a driving school. 😁

Little Starts


I'm learning how to drive. Like really, d-r-i-v-e. I'm not talking about driving a car with an auto gearbox, but I'm talking about driving a manual car with three pedals: clutch, brake and accelerator (in that order, left to right).

And boy, it's been few weeks on this journey and I'm yet to get a hang of the clutch pedal. It is obviously the thing that makes driving a manual car more difficult than an auto.

The brake and accelerator pedals are pretty simple — press the brake to slow down (the firmer you press it, the quicker you’ll lose speed), while using the accelerator increases the engine’s revs and causes you to speed up (the firmer you press it, the quicker you will speed up). But the clutch? Let's not go into too much detail.

Sunday, 6 October 2019

Don't Call This A Style Post

If you've been following my blogging journey for at least over a couple of months, you'd have noticed that I love to show off what-I-wore to church on Sundays, especially if it has to do with Ankara fabric.

Sadly, since I started attending my husband's church it's been difficult getting shots that are blog-worthy for Sunday Style posts.

A Failed Couple Style Post


At our local church, Sunday school starts at 8:00AM. Being Teens' Sunday School teachers, we are expected to be at church earlier than 8:00AM to prepare and get ready for our classes.

Let's say our target time is 7:55AM.

Now look at this,

We currently live 45 minutes drive away from church. So that means we have to get dressed and be out of the house at/before 7:10 AM. However, four times out of five, we are yet to leave the house at 7:20 AM. And neither of us would entertain the thought of taking pictures before we head to church.

"Take what? When we are already late?!"

Since we couldn't take pictures before church, we should be able to take pictures after church, right? But it always doesn't seem to work. By the time church service is over, we are either hungry and tired or heading for another event. Taking pictures isn't our priority at the time.

Wednesday, 2 October 2019

CAREER: Why I Quit My Job Again

The first time I quit my job I was single, living with my parents and had no plan whatsoever. Do I regret it? Absolutely not! It was one of the most amazing (overwhelming, frustrating, exciting, scary) years of my life.

Then I found a new job. Got married, started building a home and quit my job again. What's up with me?

The Benefit Of Quitting Your Job


It's the last quarter of the year. While some are getting into new jobs and promotions, others are looking forward to finding better ones before the year ends.

And here, someone is talking about quitting her job?! Whaaat?! Who does that?!

In case we have never met, and you are wondering who this woman is and how she has the guts to go about getting a job and quitting, and not only that, but also having the guts to tell you there are benefits of quitting your job. Calm down, please.

Let me tell you something first:

Monday, 16 September 2019

Take The Blame First

Yesterday, I had the privilege of addressing the church about my newly published book, 'He Wasn't My Husband'. And I am not proud to say that I shed tears in front of everyone there!

It's Your Responsibility


I was speaking as the author of 'He Wasn't My Husband' at church — my new church where most people have seen/met/known me for only less than a year, and were relatively still trying to form an opinion about me. Here I was giving them the basis for their opinion of me.

It was a hard thing sharing this path of my journey with them.

I told the church I had dated many guys before I got married.

I told the church that I wanted to be married at 23, so I dated these guys hoping it will lead to marriage.

I told the church that none of the guys I dated became my husband.

I told the church that I was a messed up young woman yet trying to get married at the time.

I told them all these in tears. . .

Well, thank God they didn't laugh at me!

Tuesday, 10 September 2019

Dear Diary, He Is Free To Bring Any Woman Home

Last month, I visited my husband's village for the first time ever. It was quite an interesting experience. I discovered that I could be a village girl if the need arises. Lol.

The Village Girl


Many women tend to struggle with a bit of impostor syndrome. Sometimes, we feel like a fraud or that we’re not “good enough” in comparison to others. Some of us have worked it out while some of us are still working it out.

Then comes the right guy who will be your ‘supporter.’ He'll walk with you to work it through. He’ll make you feel like anything is possible; and you’ll want to become the best version of yourself to make you and him proud.

When the Spirit breathes on me, I will write an article titled '5 Ways To Bring Out The Best In Your Wife' but for now meet Nwamaka — the bride of Mazi Onyekachi of Amagbor autonomous community in Ihitte, Ezinihitte Mbaise LGA of Imo state, Nigeria 😁

Saturday, 24 August 2019

HWMH: Photos From My Very First Book Launch Party

I’m posting this three weeks after having a thrill celebrating the launch of my book with friends and family. It was a lovely, happy weekend and I still feel like I’m flying! 🦋

*WARNING: This post might be VERY looong!

Pictures From My (First) Book Launch Party


Self-Publishing my book has been quite an emotional experience. I put a lot of myself into it, working long hours through the editorial and cover design process, and then promoting it ahead of the launch and in the days after its public presentation. I hadn’t realised just how much energy I was using, but it definitely caught up with me and after the initial buzz of publication wore off, I felt really drained.

The launch just needed to happen. I wasn’t sure how it would work out, but I'm glad it was lovely. Thank God I reached out to a cool photographer to help capture faces, poses and moments. It was motivating to see a few friends, family and more come out to support me.

I’m grateful to everyone who helped make the day happen and those who showed up. I want to share some pictures with you (as well as to save them here). Enjoy!

Tuesday, 20 August 2019

DIARY: The Way He Looks At Me

From birth to death and all occasions in between, the eyes will always have it. Eye contact is the strongest form of nonverbal communication, and if your partner constantly does it with you! Oh, my!

Keep Looking, Baby


I've had my share of failed relationships and I believe I'm in a better place now. A place where I can recognize genuine love and intention when I see it. It's in the eyes.

Generally speaking, we are all naturally attracted to faces, especially eyes. The human face is associated with our identity; we are recognized more through our eyes than through any other facial feature. That's why your passport photograph in an identity card is enough proof for the person(s) concerned.

When you meet someone for the first time and you fall in love with them or like them instantly, what do you attribute that likeness to? It's the face! You are actually attracted by the person's face, especially the eyes. The eye is where the attraction begins.

You can't seem to take your eyes off the one you love.

Monday, 19 August 2019

It Takes Courage To Be Vulnerable

Happy New Week! This is something I really need to hear at this time. "Be of good courage, Amaka!" I thought you might also find it helpful.

It Takes Courage


My recently launched book was reviewed by a friend (Chiamaka Uwadoka) who is a qualified lawyer and a Brand and Communications Executive at a reputable oil and gas firm. In her speech, she repeatedly made it clear that the author of 'He Wasn't My Husband' was a brave person. And I didn't believe her because I think I am not the very least brave woman I know.

When she said the author was vulnerable, I totally agreed.
Calling me brave? No, I don't think so.

Perhaps accepting my vulnerability is what she calls bravery.

Vulnerability is possibly an act of bravery because you merge with your authentic self, instead of hiding behind a facade to appease others.

You’ve been hurt. Yes, we all have. But loving from a place of hurt isn’t loving. It’s hiding. And you will never hit the high notes of love you’re searching for if you’re hiding.

Don’t give yourself any other choice. Be fearless. Be vulnerable. Show yourself. Put yourself out there, completely. Eyes closed. Arms open.

Sunday, 18 August 2019

STYLE: Yellow Light Tells You To Get Ready To Go/Stop

Hi! Loong time, no Sunday-Style post. But we are back now. Hallelujah!

The Yellow Light


What do you know about traffic lights?

Traffic lights are located on most major road junctions in cities and towns around the world. You see them often, yeah? The lights let us know when it is safe to drive through the intersection and when to walk across the street as well as when to stop and let other drivers, bikers and pedestrians take their turns to continue on their way.

Basically, the red, yellow and green lights tell road users when to stop and when to go.

Thursday, 25 July 2019

When My Uncle Died, I didn't Shed A Tear

I can't hold back the tears. It is not fair that your life had to end. I'll always keep you in my heart. Rest in peace, my friend.

Rest in Peace, Gloria Okaiman


Sweet Glo, I got to hear about your demise today. And I still can't believe it.

I sent you a mail earlier this year just to know how you are doing, you didn't respond. I tried to reach you on the phone, but the line was switched off. I didn't think much of it. But you've always been dear to my heart.

Sweet Glo, we never met. As in, I never saw you physically. I never took a selfie with you. I never gave you a hug. I never touched your hand. But we met. Our hearts met.

Wednesday, 26 June 2019

Yay! I have Birthed My First Book

So. . .yeah! I wrote a book. As if the title of this post didn't tell you enough. I wrote a whole book! Oh my! Everything that has led up to this moment, and everything that’s yet to come has left me completely in awe. I can't believe it!

I Present To You 'He Wasn't My Husband'


Clap. Clap. Clap.

I can't stop thinking about how impossible it is to have my name and face on a book cover. I dreamt of this. Yes, I did! And I am not sure about what to do now because I am too excited.

First, I was scared. I was scared about writing. Who will read it? I had no idea how to write a book. I wasn’t confident that my story would be interesting, or worse, that anyone would read it. Exposure was also a great fear. I kept worrying over what will my mum think? What will my friends say? Thankfully, I overcame that phase.

Wednesday, 19 June 2019

Relationships That Don't Lead To Marriage Become Lessons

Is it painful to end a relationship? Yes, of course. It’s never easy to break up with someone, especially with the one you have grown quite close to and pictured the future with. But I’m convinced it is even much less painful than spending the rest of your life being miserable in a marriage.

He Was Your Life-Lessons

Image By: Ogamars Creatives

I dated many cute guys. Some of them in my mind and most of them in real life.

They were not all bad guys. In fact, most of them had many good qualities. We genuinely cared about each other and had fun together. But in each relationship, there were things that didn’t feel quite right.

In some relationships, I found myself compromising some of my values to match with that guy’s. In other relationships, I began to think that some of the things I had wanted in a husband were perhaps more wishful thinking than things that could actually be.

Do nice, sensitive, funny, godly men still exist? I would ask myself.

Wednesday, 12 June 2019

CAREER: Forgive The Boss Who Treated You Wrongly

Ever been treated unfairly by your boss(es)? Same here. I'll tell you all about it.
It's Career-Wednesday!

Forgiving Your Boss


Anyone who has been privileged to have authority over people will agree that it is a difficult task to manage people. Even the admin on a WhatsApp group will admit that it’s difficult to lead people. There are so many things to consider: inspiration, motivation, results, feelings, safety, etc. 

No wonder bosses screw it up so bad. No wonder, they get paid more. Maybe so.

I thought of writing out my pain the moment I was given a suspension letter without a fair hearing at the office. I was so hurt. I needed to pour out somewhere. I drafted a post. And when I read the words I'd written, the emotional spill was too raw. I deleted it. Lol. 

Tuesday, 11 June 2019

Dear Diary, This Is A Husband Appreciation Entry

I'll be celebrating six months in marriage in 1,2,3,4 days. I thought it'll be fun to appreciate my husband in my diary. I don't do it enough.

To My Husband


I prayed and talked about my Future Husband for a long time. See here, here, there and there. Little did I know that you had existed in my past and were already in my present. If I had known you were the one God had instructed me to do that 21-Day Public Prayer and Fasting for ehn, I probably wouldn't have prayed with such passion and zeal. Lol.

Kachi, you are my answered prayer. You are the man of my dreams. Not just that, you are the man who has slain the dragons in my nightmares. You have exceeded my dreams, brought to life a man my dreams didn’t know existed.

Monday, 3 June 2019

That Moment The Past Starts To Make Sense

You never know exactly when that moment is going to come; the one that finally helps you make sense of things that happened in the past. But it always come.

And when it comes, you'll know.

The Making Sense Movement


If you’ve ever experienced an extremely stressful, sad or disturbing event that left you feeling helpless and emotionally drained, you may have been traumatised.

Ouch.

Trauma is a heavy word. I know right.

Most of us would never use the word trauma when telling our story.

We'd rather associate trauma with natural disaster, disease, war, loss or other extreme acts of violence.

Sunday, 2 June 2019

STYLE: Gangster In Action

Yo! Happy Style-Sunday! What's up? What's poppin'? What's goin' on? Picture me saying all that with two fingers up in the air while rocking this look. Lol. We've got a gangster in the building. Yo!

Gangster For Christ


Right. There are a hundred and one negative definitions of who a gangster is, but who says you have to choose any of those? I am particularly thrilled by how Urban dictionary carefully defines it:

A GangstaforChrist is someone who has, and will endure anything to bring light into the darkness, and bring christ (to) the lost.

Look at that! Just look at that!

My!

I know I am a straight up G. I am a woman on the move for God. Nothing is going to get on my way, I mean nothing. Nothing is going to stop me from giving out light. Nothing is going to stop Heart Rays. Nothing!

Sunday, 12 May 2019

What I Wore: Double Wrapper For The First Time As A Wife

Hi People! How has it been? I have been very busy writing and writing. It's been a long time since I conceived this book inside of me, and I can't wait to finally push it out into the world. Trust me, it's going to be a powerful one.

To clear up the webs on this space, let me showcase what I wore to church today. :)

Double-Wrapper Style For Women's Day


First of all, Happy Women's Day to every woman out there — whether single or married. I celebrate you.

Secondly, I am ashamed of myself today. I was struggling to wear what women were asked to wear to church — two wrappers.

I know that a lot of women can relate with the tying of wrapper in this part of the world (Nigeria). It’s our culture as African women to tie wrapper.

Thursday, 11 April 2019

Anticipate! HWMH Is Coming!

As my birthday draws near, I find myself reflecting on life — the laughs, the love and the memories. 

#HWMH Is Coming Soon


I am a memory keeper. 

I have always been a memory keeper. I record real stories through pictures and words and I LOVE it! I love it so much that it has become a part of my job.

We all love to reminisce. That’s part of life. And as long as we keep moving forward, we realize how important it is to look back with laughter and happiness at the great blessings in our lives.

Sunday, 17 February 2019

STYLE: The First Tip For Couples Matching Outfits Together

Happy Style-Sunday! What's popping? I have got a headache. It's either as a result of my headwrap or my new weaves being too tight. Phew. Anyways, I will be fine.

Let's talk about matching outfits. Do you think couples that dress together stay together?

Matching Outfits With Your Spouse


I can't say whether it is more of a natural phenomenon than a conscious effort to start dressing in a matching and harmonious fashion when you get married.

However, what I can say is you may intuitively or subconsciously want to match your spouses style so that you can mirror them better and sync with them; Adding to the fact that couples that stylishly match outfit look very cute together. Thanks to its focus on complementary and cohesive aesthetics. After all, how do we expect to look well-dressed if our outfits are clashing?

Wednesday, 23 January 2019

8 Unusual Tips For The Perfect Honeymoon

The Monday following our Wedding, my husband and I left Lagos, Nigeria (the bubbly city where we live) to celebrate our wedded bliss. It was the trip of a lifetime — the first long, exotic trip we'd ever taken alone together.

With great pleasure I am going to give you insider tips for planning a great honeymoon vacation without going in debt.

Perfect Honeymoon Tips


You just got married! Now what? Go on your most-deserved post wedding vacation. The honeymoon will allow you some much needed time to rest, recoup and process what just happened.

Don’t conform to what you think a honeymoon should be – take time to really consider what makes you happy and what you really want to see or do while away. Just because somebody else’s honeymoon was perfect for them, doesn’t mean it will be perfect for you. Go gently.

These are my top seven tips to guide you on discovering what's perfect for you:


#1
Be Specific About What You Want

Talk with your beloved about what your vision is for the honeymoon, and ask your beloved to share theirs. What are your top three priorities? Spa, gym and sports? Or cultural sights and traditional cuisine? Or tour sites and travel rides? Beaches and waterfalls? Two of you should make a list —and highlight the similarities. Your top choices should be reflected in the destination you choose.

Even though I had a memorable wedding ceremony, I wanted a more memorable honeymoon. M-E-M-O-R-A-B-L-E was our keyword, so we went all out for that.

Sunday, 20 January 2019

STYLE: A Mismatch Ankara Challenge

Long time no style post. Since the last one, I've not had a good reason to show off an outfit. Partly because I have been wearing the same set of clothes; as my style goal for the year was "Wear What You Already Have". Thanks to a colleague who challenged me by saying, "Amaka, you claim you like Ankara. Can you wear Ankara from head to toe?"

Mix and Match Challenge


And to think that I was struggling to make this outfit look great makes it very rewarding and joyous. What trips me most is that none of the Ankara fabric is the same. The earrings, skirt, shoes and bags have different prints. I simply played around with green and orange platelets. What I think I normally wouldn’t do.

So here is the trick: If you’re wearing different printed pieces, keep some form of continuity going on by choosing prints in the same sort of colour scheme. Making sure they complement each other will help your outfit look more put together. I discovered that a head to toe printed look can have the potential to be quite busy and overwhelming. So you have to break up a head to toe printed look with something basic like a plain white top, a plain black top, or any plain top or a plan belt.

Tuesday, 15 January 2019

Dear Diary, I'm One Month Married!

Life has changed. Significantly changed. I wanted to settle into newlywed life and find a balance between enjoying every minute with Kachi and working a 9-5 before heading back to the blog. But happily for you, he loves when I write and is my biggest encourager. So here I am writing how I feel about being married for a month.

One Month In


Have you ever stopped to think just how much can happen in one week, one month. . . one year?

Sometimes it still doesn’t feel real. I’m a wife. I have a husband. Just how?

By this time last year, I was as single as a slice of bread, still living in my parent's house, copywriting full-time and keeping fairly busy. Now just a year later, I have been married for one month, marveling at all the many (and wonderful) changes that took place in just one year. A courtship, an engagement, a wedding, and now. . . I’m a happy wife. Wow.

Thursday, 3 January 2019

Can You Choose What To Forget?

For a very long time, remembering whatever we choose has been almost effortlessly done so well. However, forgetting whatever we choose seems almost impossible.

This year, I am making a decision have made a decision to INTENTIONALLY forget what should be forgotten.

Choose To Forget


Every day. In each moment. Life is constantly giving us opportunities to make choices as to what we remember. Each day holds many different moments; some painful, joyful, confusing, happy, peaceful, angry and loving. It is up to us as to which ones we remember.

Our memories can't hold all these moments, so the ones we choose to remember are important, for we will learn and grow from them. It is a little like selecting the best picture from a stack of proofs.

Easy but not very simple.

Or, is it just me? Do you tend to also have clearer memories of the moments you really really want to forget?
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