#My2018Story – Ozioma Amaka Paul

Hiya Peopleeeee!
Happppppppy new year! I wish I could give every single reader of mine a warm happy new year hug, but I can’t for obvious reasonsΒ πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚
I can’t be everywhere for every dear reader of mine. So just hug yourself for me. Wait… make sure no one is looking o. Just hug yourself and smile and wish yourself well this year – on my behalf!

Before I delve into #My2018Story. I just want to say thank you for everyone who has liked, read, shared, left a comment on this blog everrrr… Thank you! Special thanks to the amazing contributors too. Like, I couldn’t pay you guys even if I wanted to. Some of y’all had really tight schedules and you still honored this! God bless you! I love you guys…

Okay… My year! Arghhhh! See enh, I wasn’t going to do this. Lol. I wanted to end this with Esasina’s post… but I thought, why not share? I mean, there is strength in vulnerability right? Also, I’m still sleepy from the watchnight service so please pardon any typos you see. I can speak and write English well, I promise! 😭😭😭
Update: I slept and woke up. Story was too long or maybe I don’t know how to summarize. I was thinking I’d do a podcast instead but I decided to do a podcast (that can be longer than this version) and also write here – really major highlights of my year.

My Career – The Job Switch!

Let me start from here… So 2017 was a funny year for me. Maybe that’s why I didn’t do this last year. I came back from service in April. And I was just sure that I would get a job in no time. Well, lets just say it took longerrr than I thought. I started the next month with a writing job but I’m a techie so I wasn’t fulfilled like that. I left after three months – that was in July to focus on my sewing business (Low key I knew the tech job I wanted was close by too)

I got a ‘grand’ job in September. Dream company… Nice pay…. Fresh office… but not my role of choice. So the Unit I was at was back office when I wanted consulting. Before long, I started to feel very dissatisfied and slightly offended. Because I was certain I explained to God what I wanted job-wise so why this route? Anyways, my dissatisfaction was affecting how I worked..

Around December last year, I went on a retreat right after camp meeting at Church(CCI). I remember a prophecy came about a switch in the third month of 2018. God specifically told me to REST on the matter. I didn’t understand because I didn’t want to settle for this unit and I wanted to keep pushing but rest I did. This showed in my work. I made more friends. People started to see the real me! January was bliss… I literally forgot all about career plans and gave my all to my job.

February… first week of February, I got a call from the Head of Talent from an equally big consulting firm. She started like this (I can never forget!)….”I’m XXX calling from XXX, I know you work for XXX as XXX but I wanted to find out if you’re interested in working for us in *my dream unit*….”

My last day at work in February. I cried πŸ™‚

At this point, the bush girl in my came out and I just answered with slurred words…”Sorry ma’am, I can’t hear you well… Please let me step out of my office and call you back.” I literally ran to the rest room and I was laughing for about 2 full minutes. I had tears in my eyes because these guys had actually sent me a regret mail declining my application since November 2017 after pursuit of about 6 months. I had given up! My phone rang again… this time, she said I had a full month to inform my current employer. I was to go pick my offer letter the next morning and start 1st March exactly. When I dropped the call, I continued my cry-laugh because it was as though God was waiting for me to be done with myself before He showed up! Let me make you guys get why I was so gassed, This firm is a big firm like a global firm… they recruit in thousands. They just had another recruitment process that same period so I kept asking, what made them go back to rejected persons and pick me and call me back. I am the only I know that has experienced that at the firm and even at other similar firms I’ve worked at. Some people will say it’s coincidence, I’ll say it’s prophecy at work. Plain and simple. I didn’t realize until like June 2018 when I was going through my prayer journal that that word had come about a switch in the third month and it happened exactly like that. Now, leaving my former place meant a pay cut of over 20% (gross income). I didn’t tell my parents that initially till I resigned. Even the Igboness in me was arguing but to the glory of God, my new work place reviewed pay in September which restoration to my former place plus like 5% sef.

Major Lesson 1

This was a huge lesson for me in 2018. Sometimes, God just wants us to be done with ourselves.

You see, I needed the contact, experience and that awesome work place on my CV – hence my 6 months there. I think that it provided me a safe landing at my current job role. I learnt to do what I can and rest in God to do the rest instead of killing myself with worry and dissatisfaction.

January taught me that contentment is a state of mind. It has nothing to do with your current situation. I didn’t have what I desired the most that period, but I was able to obey God’s instruction of DON’T WORRY. WorryingΒ  literally does no good.

My first day at work at the new place! πŸ™‚

Major Lesson 2

Also, sometimes (this is me every time though very honestly), money shouldn’t be your motivating factor especially when you are starting out your career.

Like Sam stated in his story, go for what you want – money and your dream job would come eventually if you work hard at it and don’t give up. Pus everything in life isn’t about the money.

A second highlight of my year was that I learned so much about myself and my relationships. Uhmmm, so I was in church last night and I was introduced to about 5 people. Actually, more because the last group were about 5. And everyone kept saying… you are ‘the Ozioma?’ I honestly didn’t realize that many people knew me (my name actually) plus they really had nice things to say about me, my writings, my social media (especially Twitter). This brings me to the first thing about myself that I learned this year.Β I suffered greatly from impostor syndrome this year. A senior colleague even mentioned it at work. I’d do a great work but I won’t own it. I’d either push it to the team or my in-charge feigning humility. And humility is good but not this type. It was clear, I was shying away from owning my work. Same with my blog posts or post on social media, I didn’t use to believe they were good enough even my sewing business, I used to feel like my work wasn’t good enough even when my clients are head over heels about the dress. It was quite a struggle. I honestly don’t know where this came from. My close friend, Dolapo said she’s been telling me all along and she’s glad I finally got to see it myself. I’m working on it seriously.

One random Saturday when I got to wear jeans to work!

Major Lesson 3:

There is a very thin line between humility and impostor syndrome. The truth is once you actually feel the need to prove your humility, then that’s an issue. Humility is not refusing to own your work or believe in yourself. Humility is a state of the heart – not something to be proven

Also this year, I broke out of a relationship situationship. It was weird that it was so hard for me. Because I’m naturally strong-willed. I honestly had to pray because this is legit how Satan traps children of God. Or how else would you explain knowing that this person is not the one God intends for you… like you know it so so clearly but you still stay there?! I had to cry to God to strengthen me to say yes to HIM and no to my emotions (especially as they didn’t align). When this was done, I also did an audit and purge – I had too many people around who didn’t rate me as I rated them. I had to tell myself the truth. Some people had bad energy! Simple and plain. Hanging around them wasn’t making me better. I had to excuse myself from a lot of relationships. Sad thing is a good number didn’t even notice. lol… At the end, I was left with just a few friends. I prayed for more because you can’t do life alone and God dropped an idea in my heart to connect with those people I discerned to be good people online. I started the idea but I ran away half way. Lol… I told my friend, Temi – “Please I’m done with this hangout. Sorry I brought it up… Please you can scrap it all or just take over, I doubt I’d be around” It wasn’t funny but this me all the time – running away from being open to love and friendship even though I’m a chief giver of love.

I think rain beat me on this day. Hair was scattered…. I still took pictures.. lol! Honestly though, pictures were one of my coping mechanisms in 2018

So I learnt – it’s not enough to keep giving. You also have to learn to receive love and friendship. Its particularly so hard for me. I can’t explain why. I think it is pride of some sort and I’m done with that life. You people please give to me and love me o… I’m ready to be spoiled with loveeeeeee. No more forming “I need no help”Β πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

Well, because Temi isn’t a quitter! (Pause this reading and clap for the girl abeg! Looool… I know you don’t know her but just clap small mbok. Thanks!) So well, she continued and it happened one of the best things that happened to me last year. We have grown to become family – brothers and sisters who encourage each other work wise, God wise, relationship wise and I’m so grateful for them.

Good friends are a gift from God! I love you guys so so much!

I have concluded that good friends are a gift from God. You can’t buy it in the market. Its not by being an influencer – they are gifts. Life is so much easier with them – they are gifts!

I have concluded that good friends are a gift from God. Spot me! πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

Finally, I’ll share how I almost slipped into depression because I battled some personal issues and yes, I had some friends I shared with (Shout out to my family members, Melody, Princy, Ope, Taiye, Ezinne… the whole LOMIPO fam! My TRIBE fam and to Dolapo my friend of life! Also special love to Tolu Oderinde, Faithful, Rubie TT, and a host of others! I’m so so sorry if I missed out your name…. I love you much) I could always discuss the surface issues with them and they are huge source of encouragement for me.

I learnt how that you can fight depression in the place of prayer. I also learnt that when depression has hit you, as you pray please seek medical advice. I also learnt that you can choose to be above in life. Many times, I’d be tempted to keep low and just be sad but I’d refuse – I’d watch movie or just book an appointment to hang out with a friend or eat sweet things or just have fun in my own way – anything but lying down and crying.

I also learnt friends are important on this journey of life. I learnt as a woman to guard my pearls. Not anyone is allowed to speak sweet nothings to me and confuse my heart. I set boundaries this year and I’m glad I finished sane. I learnt my trade better (how to sew) and I learnt to write better and understand this blogging thingy better. I also learned to be a better consultant at work, I learnt better client relationship and also personal & team leadership. It was a great year! 2019 would be even better.

Lest I forget! I picked up interest in tourism (local tourism for now) – till I go globuuuuu! This was at Olumo Rock, Abeokuta. I’m convinced they’d be more in 2019! Stay tuned! I’ll still a proper blog post on that trip. Stay tuned πŸ™‚

Thank you for taking out time to read this.
I’m really grateful and again, I’d love to give you a warm hug and say God bless you! But please again, do me a favor and wrap your arm around yourself irrespective of who’s watching this time and say, “*Your name*, you are greatly loved! It’s a great year ahead!” Your name is suppposed to be you saying your name o.

Thank you!!!!!!

Okay guys, I have come to the end of this story (blog version). I’m working on putting a podcast tonight or latest tomorrow which would be full gist. I’ll notify you guys and update here when it’s up so you can check again by this time tomorrow.

Love alwayssssss,
Ozioma AKA the Lagos girl (I’m legit thinking of changing this name, I love Lagos but I think I love Enugu/Abuja more)

30 thoughts on “#My2018Story – Ozioma Amaka Paul

  1. I totally loved this! Good friends are underrated, I can’t even begin to explain how they have been my support this past year. I’m so glad about your job too! I tap into it…it definitely gets better.God will perfect all that concerns you!

    Shine brighter Ozzy.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thanks for sharing your experiences Ozi! I picked vital lessons from them. A huge congrats on the job thingy too, that’s something!
    Thanks for also talking about the low moments last year… We all would wish life is always a bed of roses, but then the thorns show up. But hey! We overcame already, and we only play that out.

    Looking forward to the podcast.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Looool. This one was divine arrangement. It was a couple of us from Twitter and I don’t know how but everyone is just super amazing!
      Yes, it is a grace. I agree.
      Thank you Tony! Have a great year ahead πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

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