Success Revisited: The Millennial Crisis –A new approach to the ‘icky’ phase

Success Revisited: The Millennial Crisis –A new approach to the ‘icky’ phase

Hey Guys!

It is officially the end of summer! I am back to work fully, no holidays in sight whatsoever till Christmas and I am generally getting back into the groove of working and studying for some upcoming tests! Wish me luck J

So I will definitely start the ‘ANTI’ Series, next week, but I wanted to interject here and revisit something I wrote about this time last year (How time flies).

Then I called it the Millennial crisis.

For those who were not yet part of the Seunawo journey, I explained:

‘[the icky phase]..is that time when you give up joint custody of your life choices with your parents and assume sole responsibility for what you do and who you become. Prepared or not, this is a part of life, a rite of passage into the world of adulthood.’

Why am I talking about this? Well, last weekend As I sat on the plane coming back from Cannes, I came across this article by Simon Sinek called: ‘A Millennial problem.’ As I read it I nodded in agreement with the insights he had about four factors that affect us: parenting, environment, technology and impatience.

Being a millennial myself, I often think: Surely it is normal to have a big vision for your life and be unwilling to settle for less? To want quick career progression? To expect to be rewarded for work you do and have investments made in your career progression? Surely being an entrepreneur makes a lot of sense even without so-called experience? Surely the combination of passion and hard work will guarantee you success? right? RIGHT?

Well as much as this way of thinking is perfectly sensible in my millennial mind, I have to stop myself and think of things a little differently.

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Success Revisited: The 3D Revelation

“My best self is expressed when I live my life at the intersection of these three dimensions. That’s when I’m totally balanced and I believe the same is true for ALL of us.”

Hey Guys!

HAPPY FRIDAY!!

Last week, we celebrated the one-year anniversary of Seunawo.com!! How time flies! As one year is a milestone, I took the opportunity to do some thinking and strategising about just what I was doing with this platform. I explained my vision for this last week, so I will not bore you on this lovely Friday morning, but in True ‘Pick Me Up’ Style, I wanted to very briefly touch on the revelation that forms the core of what this platform is.

It is no other than the 3D revelation.

My first email on seunawo.com explained this revelation, but I think it is important to revisit it with fresh eyes as we embark on the second year!

So what is the 3D revelation?

For those who have joined this journey later than others, this was what triggered me starting this platform. I was a year and a bit into a great job with a fantastic finance firm, loving life. Having experienced a couple of weeks in New York, now in London and just about to go on my first work trip to Amsterdam, I found myself reflecting on whether this was exactly the life I had dreamed it would be. The answer made me shudder. The truth is, it really was not! There HAD to be more.

As with most things, I had to look inward to understand the root of this dissatisfaction.

Now I know, (after having taken a very stimulating life-coaching course) that I had a limiting belief about what success meant. I had this notion that it was limited to ONE THING. As my thoughts gathered, it almost felt like a God whisper: ‘Seun life IS three dimensional!’ ‘Yes!!’ I thought, what a perfect metaphor! My dissatisfaction had developed because and I limited my success to only one part of what would end up being a very full and varied life.

You see, I really believe that we all know deep down that there is a strategy to success and happiness. The 3D framework is only MY way of understanding and articulating this balance and different people call it different things.

The fundamental truth is this- YOU decide WHAT makes you HAPPY, however there are three pillars that create this foundation. You need to EARN. You need to DREAM and you need to SHARE.

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Success Revisited: 1 YEAR!!

What this year has taught ME. 

Do you guys remember back in 2008 when your BBM status was your opportunity to tell all the people who you had on your phone you were thinking? I remembered that time a few days ago and I chuckled to myself realising I have always been a little loopy. One Tree Hill was my favourite TV Show in my early teens and to be honest it still ranks high up there till date. When I lived in Paris a few years ago I had to write a paper for my TV shows class on the impact of TV shows on the American Dream focusing on One tree Hill and Mad Men. How fun? I digress! Back to the BBM status, for a long time mine read: ‘With arms outstretched to wish impossible things’ a quote I created by combining the names of the two favourite episodes from the show. This, friends, is my permanent lifestyle position. Opening myself up to receive the impossible that life has to offer, through relationships, career, dreams etc.

I took some time off to visit family in New York/New Jersey over the past 10 days, sorry I have been MIA. Let’s just say the best seunawo season is the season we are approaching, whilst the summer months are the rest/play months! (lol- taking my own advice slightly too literally)

During this time off I turned 24, and this platform that your love and participation has helped me build turned ONE!!! That’s right guys, we have reached the one year milestone!!!

So one year later and over 40 posts in, what can I say I have learnt about the very subject that began this journey? Well guys it wouldn’t be a Seunawo post if I didn’t summarise this into three points! But before I do so, I wanted to share something with you guys. So the subject of my weekly posts has always been to give you all a new Lenz through which to view your lives and empower you to define success for yourself and provide tools to help you chart that very personal path. I have emphasises the 3 dimensions: Earning, Dreaming and Sharing as pillars to live your life by. We have done different series ranging from a focus on procrastination, perfectionism and slashing your life. Whether this is career success, emotional success etc, I strongly believe that the principles I share will help you gain perspective and step into your best self and also guide you to sustaining that version. That is the goal and that will never change.

Over this year of reading, writing dreaming and praying (the four ways I gain perspective on what to say) I have honestly become a much better person. I have learnt some discipline, learnt how to use my voice both for this platform and others (Love you She Leads Africa!). I have learnt to believe in the value my work brings, and to let go of my negative pre-conceptions. I even learnt to be on camera which is a HUGE fear of mine, and I learnt to be publicly vulnerable. The overarching thing I have learnt though is that the content on this platform is NEEDED which is what has guided me week on week to ask myself: What do I need to hear?

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Success Revisited: TRUST

“What we are waiting for is not as important as what happens to us while we are waiting. Trust the process.”
― Mandy Hale

I’ll be honest; recently I have not been that confident about what the purpose of my writing these weekly emails is. As many of you know I started this website with a HUGE vision, which I still hold dear. Although I still don’t fully have language for it, I know what it will look like. I made a decision to run with the big vision and just start. I was like yes okay I’m going to go for it! I’ll start writing. And I have done this weekly for almost a year now. I sit at my desk or most times in my bed and write. I look inwards and I feel the energy of what I am meant to share and in about 30-40 minutes I have scribbled everything down. I have read more books and watched more inspirational videos this year than any other and recently to be very honest I just got disillusioned with it all. I stopped giving myself  time to write, I felt like I was just going through the motions and I could no longer see the big vision I once started with. People would tell me how much my work helped give them new perspective, or a new Lenz to see life and all I really felt proud and though that was great, but there was something missing. I could not really receive it.  I was still kind of just waiting for the big vision to happen. I understood determination, I understood consistency, and to some extent I felt like I have done that. So why wasn’t it making me FEEL like I thought it would any longer? Why am I feeling lazy and dragging myself through the writing process with more and more strife each time?
As life would have it, or really as God’s grace would allow, I came across two very powerful resources this week which really showed me what was at the core of this dissatisfaction. The truth it, I was missing TRUST completely. I put it to you, dear friends and wonderful subscribers, that TRUST is as vital a key to success as hard-work or consistency are. Without trust, it is like running on a treadmill hoping to get to your destination without realising that your are just running and not moving forward. Trust is that key ingredient that will propel you to run on the road instead. Trust places you on the right path. Trust opens you up and more importantly, Trust allows you STAY on your path with dedication.
The first thing I watched was a documentary on Tina Turner. As  you all know, I spend a lot of time researching people, hearing them speak. Tina’s story is a fascinating one. She married Ike Turner at a young age and was in a terribly abusive marriage to him for decades before deciding one day to leave and try to have a solo rock and roll career at the age of 39. In a sit down interview with Oprah she explains how she managed her life journey to the point where she now ‘Desires nothing’.

‘Life is a journey, you are born, you go through the journey and you leave it. How you manage the journey is very important. I stayed on course. Why I stayed on course, is that I had a vison for myself. This is where I am today. In the past happiness was I bought a dress, I have this car, all material things. Now I have a big chair where I go to wake up and I sit there and a wellness comes over me. There is nothing I want, I have all I need. I have the peace of mind, what else is there to want? My legacy is that of someone who strived for better and got it’

What struck me throughout the interview was how dedicated she was to trusting that the process of life has brought her right where she is meant to be. Whilst she would get beaten by her husband and have to perform with a torn lip, She still speaks of those days with gratitude, as she trusts that life would ultimately always bring her here.

For me, I dug and found that I have trust and the beginning, and I have trust for the end. But real TRUST in life, which is a really important ingredient to a successful life, is trusting that everything in your life, (even those boring days in the middle), everything you have experienced is a true part of your story and believing that it is all leading you somewhere. It is also believing that the universe, life and God are on your side.

Do you guys remember the post on Push Vs Pull decisions? I think that applies here, if you trust in life, you will follow the Pull as opposed to the Push. Are you pushing for something really hard and it is draining you? Maybe you need to change your perspective and follow instead what it is you are being pulled to. That’s the first step. The second step is then TRUSTING in the pull and that it will lead to success, and not just general success, but specific success and a personal success for you.

I love that! It has really led me to feel that fire again, as I’ve recognised that although I followed the pull in starting this platform, I don’t trust in it enough. I’m constantly waiting for it to prove itself to me so I can get on-board with where it might lead because I’m desperate to know the end. Instead it has to be an attitude of trusting it and working with it to lead to an end I already believe will be the right one.

It is a bit wonky to think of it that way, but it is so important guys and freeing. A lot of us are putting pressure on ourselves to be successful with no trust that what we love can bring us to that point.

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The Last one on The Slash..

‘How Wild it was to let it Be.’ -Cheryl Strayed

Hey Guys,

Hope you are all well and starting to enjoy the Summer! It seems to be going by very quickly.

Anyways this is just a short post to close out the SLASH life series and start a new one called Success Revisited. In some strangely serendipitous way, over the past two weeks I have volunteered in school of Year 9 students, and in an old peoples home. The conversations I had with both really different groups created an interesting dynamic in my thinking. I felt a tugging on my heart to revisit the concept of success, and open the lines of communication for us all to look at this concept very closely. It is interesting that this concept of success, although it evolves over time, will most likely be very similar for individuals throughout their lives. As the young people picked out words that meant success to them and I listened to the oldies look back and define successful moments, I found that at the intersection of both of these was a unique sense of personal revelation and the struggle to be true to that person inside of you yearning to be better each day.

More on this later…

For today, I want to share another example on the balancing the SLASH life.

 How I balance my slashes – Abiola Babarinde Full time Management Consultant at EY/ Blogger on freelywritten.com/ Video Producer and Editor

Balancing your slashes is an ongoing process, not a one-time thing. As your skills evolve, so will the demands on your time and you will need to roll with the punches to keep the engine running. My full-time job accounts for a huge chunk of my time, so it takes the right mix of planning and flexibility to make sure that my other slashes don’t fall by the wayside. For example, I preempt how busy work may be a week in advance and then I block specific times in my diary to work on my other slashes.

Writing down my plans helps to keep me organised, committed and focused. For me, there are two different types of ‘slash times’.

1) When you need to compromise

I try to get at least half a day devoted to slash every fortnight. This usually takes place over the weekend, meaning that I sometimes have to say no to brunch, drinks or a casual hang out with friends. While maintaining a healthy social life is important, understanding that sometimes something has to give is the secret to slashing successfully. It’s up to you to decide what those compromises will be and when they will happen. Personally, I never feel like I’m missing out because I am so fulfilled when I invest my time in pursuing my passions.

2) When you need to be flexible

The luxury of an uninterrupted half day on top of a full-time job isn’t always achievable. Sometimes life gets super busy and this is where being flexible really helps. During busy times, I’ve had to be creative about how I continue to slash in smaller chunks of time like during my lunch break on a slow day, during my commute or very early in the morning. You quickly realize that waiting for the perfect time when you have all the hours in the day-dream, strategize and get inspired is unrealistic and so you learn to make it work. You learn to be flexible with your schedule. In some ways, having limited time has been a huge advantage as it pushes me off the fence of procrastination into action, and sooner or later those actions lead to great results.

I love both of these points from a real-life slasher and in what will be the last edition of this slash journey I think it is an important perspective to end on. At the end of the day, in every life, we need to learn to be flexible to where life may lead us. I’m a strong believer in sometimes ‘rolling with the punches.’

Some of you may know that I just read Wild by Cheryl Strayed. I love the book so much because it really emphasises the points above in a very interesting way. We have looked at living this slash life from many different angles, we’ve question how it can be done, analysed why it is important to embrace the concept and looked into what the concept itself is.

I want leave you guys with this quote because it had a really powerful effect on me and I know it will for you. Be reminded that the slash is just a tool, as everything else you encounter will be. In the end you make your own rules! There is only so much control we can have on how everything will turn out. There is an element of doing your best and leaving the rest that is required. I think personally that it is when I struggle to do just that that I lose myself and begin to creep into depression and anxiety over things I quite frankly cannot control. Cheryl Strayed walked the Pacific Crest Trail to find out that in the end, life is good even when we make mistakes and veer off track. Just like the PCT it is a long and enduring journey. We walk on it but ultimately the path will lead us somewhere. Somewhere so uniquely ours, that we are the only ones that recognise savour and harness it and in hindsight refer to it as the place you knew you were heading all along.

Here’s the quote:

‘It was all unknown to me then, as I sat on that white bench on the day I finished my hike. Everything except the fact that I didn’t have to know. That is was enough to trust that what I’d done was true. To understand its meaning without yet being able to say precisely what it was, …. To believe that I didn’t need to reach with my bare hands anymore. To know that seeing the fish beneath the surface of the water was enough. That it was everything. It was my life – like all lives, mysterious and irrevocable and sacred. So very close, so very present, so very belonging to me.

How wild it was, to let it be.’

Have the most amazing week! Love you and I really mean it!

Seun

xxx

 

 

How to Slash: A Practical Take..

Hey Guys!

I am back from holiday- have been for a week now and it was definitely too short! Did you enjoy the ‘Holiday ponderings’ email? If yes please let me know your thoughts by replying! If you have no idea what this is, it is because you have not subscribed! Subscribed here to receive emails that do not go on the site or on social media. I like to have an avenue to speak to people directly and more personally.

Right guys, back to our topic for the past few weeks, The Slash Life. We have covered what this is, why we should think of our lives this way and when to consider taking on that very exiting slash. All great and helpful, but today I would like to cover the most important dynamic: HOW.

I hosted an event recently helping out my friend Bayo Adelaja CEO of Do it NOW NOW. It was a session called start-ups for Africa. It was an incredible event where different people with business ideas gathered to share their plans to influence Africa through businesses. I was to play the role of host asking the guest speakers questions and fielding them from the audience. It was an amazing experience and I was blown away by the diversity of ideas people had and inspired to take a fresh look at my own creativity. The aha moment came when I had to introduce myself. I had honestly planned on avoiding it. I was not sure what I would say! I decided to be a little brave and said my three slashes: work/seunawo.com/NGO. As I sat down I didn’t feel like I had done a good enough job. What I should have said was:

‘My name is Seun, I am a motivational speaker/writer who works in finance and also runs an NGO.’ That’s the true story.

Why do I say all this? The first step to slashing is actually working out your slash dynamic and being able to communicate it effectively. In Alboher’s book which a lot of this work is based on, she advises that we ‘think about how we want to present our various slash identities to others. Whereas a resume could never convey the multidimensionalality of a slash career, web sites are often perfect for them.’ This is a fantastic point. It is easier for me to direct people to seunawo.com to find out about all of my slashes, than to have a business card for each of them. How will you communicate your slashes?

Another important point is to take advantage of networking. As a slasher, our biggest assets are our relationships, especially if you are slashing with a full time job. People you meet along your journey to slashing will add so much colour and diversity to your vision and also give you new ideas on how you can operate. What I have found that has been crucial to my lash life is surrounding myself with people who slash their lives too. Misery loves company and so does ambition.

To this end, I asked a couple of people to share their stories on how they navigate their slash life, and I will share this one here with you. When my friend Joann sent this to me, I had no edits. It was perfectly written and her passion for her slash life was so evident. I hope you enjoy it and pick up lessons on how to navigate your own slash life. If you want to share your slash story with me, please feel free to do so via email! (s@seunawo.com)

Here are Joann’s words:

Balancing a full time job with a newly formed company has been challenging and exhilarating. I know challenge isn’t typically synonymous with excitement, but there is something amazing about turning an Endeavour you’ve always had a passion for into a coherent vision and reality. I spend my evenings and weekends strategizing about how to provide an even better service to my next client than I did my last. I also make better use of my allotted annual leave, and dedicate some days to ‘Colleges and Careers’ tasks. This helps me stay on top of my client’s needs at all times.

I’ve been reading Seunawo.com since day one, and I firmly believe in the concept of a 3 Dimensional life. On my journey to making this concept a personal reality, I have found that while I love my 9-5 job, I am even more drawn to the financial security and earned status that it gives me. This is a pivotal discovery in my 3D life because it means that I don’t have to love my job every single day. I have recognised that isn’t the sole medium through which I draw strength, or my way of feeling most fulfilled. – and I’m completely fine with that. Instead, I find that my happiness comes from receiving registrations, questions and feedback about my new business, which has only been a dream up until this point. My dreaming dimension is one of the many lights of my life that I am exceedingly grateful for. While a charge a small fee for my services, it is also one of my sharing platforms because I build mentoring relationships with my clients that transcend simply helping them through a process.

Overall, I’d advise people to start their journey to a three dimensional life without worrying about finding the time to do it all – the 24 hours we have won’t change! The most important part of balancing your slashes is time management! We know that with a full time job we spend most hours each day on our earning dimension. The key to succeeding at having other ventures is being willing to cut back on our social calendar, or attend social events that add value to our dreaming dimensions.  Also, remember that the network you build in your full time corporate could lead to a large client base in your start up  – and clients keep the business wheels turning!

I wish you success as you delve into your slash life!’

More on Joann: Colleges and Careers (CC) is an organisation in the ‘informal education’ sector, focused on helping students, undergraduate graduates develop the core skills required to be successful in applying to universities and jobs in the UK & US. In addition to skills training, Colleges and Careers acts as your ‘application partner’ by supporting you through each stage of your application process. For more information, check out the Colleges and Careers website here: www.collegesandcareers.org  

Till next week people…something dangerously personal is bubbling!

Tons of love like my dad would say,

Seun

Timing your slash life: WHEN?

‘Just because you love doing something doesn’t mean its wise to do it all day long. I love coaching but the intensity of personal connection also makes it quite draining for me. I find writing extremely fulfilling but as an extrovert I need to balance it with human interaction and external stimulation. Speeches and interviews are a joy, but after a certain number of hours on stage I have nothing left! I couldn’t do any of these things as solitary endeavour, but when I combine them in the right proportions each enables the others.’ – Michela Lecher career coach/writer/speaker (excerpt Marci Alboher- One Life/Multiple Careers)

Hey Guys!

Last time, I tried to provide some guidance on embracing your slash life, by looking at the questions, What and Why? What does one slash and why would one choose to do so? Hopefully you found the thoughts helpful and are fully ready and positioned to embrace your slash life that awaits you.
In continuation, today I want to discuss When.

I am sure you guys have all heard the phrase: timing is everything. This is a crucial concept when it comes to the slash life. The timing of your slash or the timing of your life when you decide to embrace your slash is enough to make or break it. We are all multifaceted and unique beings and have full capacity to determine how we structure and live our lives. I believe having the correct strategy is half the battle won, and a big part of strategy is timing.

Last night I stayed up quite late having dinner with two of my faves and I have to share this thought with you in the context of when to slash. We are all working and slashing different things too, and it became apparent as we talked, that there is an order when it comes to how you approach your slash life. The first question you need address is: What is my ANCHOR slash at this point in my life?
The reason I say this is simply because it is not possible to add a slash to something that is not there.

Take this simple visualisation of a slash life,  A/B, if the A was unstable or not present then it will read /B which is not a slash life at all. The first part of the slash has to be stable for you to ‘add on’. So that being said, a couple of points on When to Embrace your slash…

  • The Anchor vs Orbiter Dynamic – Spend some time making sure that that the ‘anchor’ is solid before you add anything else to it. Any good career adviser will tell you that to get a new job, you need to be killing it at your current job. This demonstrates the capacity to do something well. For your slash life, it is the same. Invest the time in getting your ‘anchor’ slash correct before moving on to embracing something new. I really think this is crucial. For me, my anchor slash is my job in finance. The moment that begins to slip, everything else slips as well. This is simply because this aspect of my life currently takes up most of my time, so the longer it takes for me to sort that out, the less time and energy I can give to my slashes. Think of it as solidifying the base and creating a pretty strong platform for the other skills to nicely orbit around.
  • Have an ‘Add-on’ Goal– A slash is not something that you just pick up randomly. You have to make a slash goal. Now guys, this language here around ‘slashing’ is just a mechanism for you to intentionally address a process I believe is very natural to all of us. In other words it is nothing new. A good slash is a well thought our slash. Before I knew what job I would do, I always knew I wanted to write and speak. The wisdom is not in knowing what your talents are and planning for them, (that part as discussed last week is just a matter of looking inwards), it is knowing WHEN it is the right time to do so. For some of you this is the time to begin to plan your future slash once your anchor is solid. For some it is time to put those very detailed plans into action and ‘work smart’, for some it is time to reduce the amount of time your anchor slash takes because it has achieved its goals and begin to actively develop your slash. Everyone is different. The key here is to understand where you personally are on the journey, and do not compare! The only person you should try to be better than is who you were yesterday.
  • Double or Triple Time- Okay so lets assume your anchor is solid and strong and you have taken up a slash. How much time should you spend on each? I put it to you dear subscribers (hint if you are not currently a subscriber please subscribe here-wouldn’t want to leave you out!) that it is not really about the amount of time you put it, but the amount of energy and focus it extracts from you. If you have three slashes, your energy and strategic efforts should be divided amongst the three equally even if your time is not. So for example, I have three slashes currently. Work, this platform for guidance and inspiration and my charity. They all take up the same amount of energy, even though they occupy different amounts of time. A slash should be able to stand shoulder to shoulder with another one, in terms of your commitment to it. If it cannot then please down grade it to a side gig or side hustle.
  • Seasons of Life – One of my most treasured books in the world explains how there is a time for everything. A time to slash and a time to wait. A time to let an old slash go and a time to embrace a new one. I really believe this is true. Sometimes a slash is not meant to be for the long haul- some slashes are seasonal. It may have seemed like the best idea to start a company when you were younger, and now it looks like the vision has evolved and you need to start again. That’s fine. Or, your company might be going through downtimes, which mean you need to increase your independent income. Time to dust off those slash skills and put them into work. What is my point here? Be flexible! You have to be malleable to the times and seasons of life you find yourself in.

Hopefully these points have sparked some thoughts and unleashed some personal strategies on how to live your slashes. Next week we move on to the practical steps of HOW? How do you turn an interest into a slash? I am also excited to speak with people who have done this successfully for some insight.

Speak to you then people!

All my love,

Seun

xx