Name: Tanyaradzwa Shanitah Nzvengende
Organization: Lions Club International
Role: Leo Advisory Panelist for Africa
– Lions Club International’s Leo Advisory Panelist for Africa [2018-2020]
– Lions Club International DGE Training Co-Facilitator, Las Vegas Convention [July 2018]
– Special Olympics Africa Youth Activation Committee Member [2016-18]
– Special Olympics Int. Generation Unified Leader, California Summit [2015-16]
– Lions Club International, Leo District 412 President [2014-15]
– Lions Club International, Leo District 412 Secretary [2013-14]
– Lions Club International, Leo District 412 Regional Chair [2011-13]
The day everything almost fell apart:
Most people choose to not dwell much on this topic, but experience has taught me that love does make the world go round. I don’t know if I can say for men, but when a woman is in love and when she feels loved, everything just flows – especially her career.
But if that area of her life is not going well things become tough. I normally liken it to a car; it one cylinder is not working, the whole car suffers. Not many will accept this truth, but this article is going to be pretty personal, perhaps too personal for some, but I hope it will speak to someone out there.
I thought I had it all figured out, I had recently started a fulfilling job, surrounded myself with people who loved and cared for me. What could possibly go wrong?
Nothing could have prepared me for what happened to me almost 2 years ago. I will save you the gory details but to sum it up, I lost a relationship of 4 years in a day. It felt like my world came crumbling, we were to be married in four months. I had so many questions, it didn’t even make any sense. I couldn’t concentrate at work, I had sleepless nights for weeks.
I could not see past the ordeal and I let it drain the life and joy out of my days to the point where I began to slide on my commitments – giving excuses just to avoid people. Nothing else mattered, I was in so much pain.
Our first instinct often is to curl up within oneself when things become overwhelming and dark, essentially removing ourselves from the very people who could help us find the path we have lost.
I thought no one understood what I was going through, I refused to find solace in any words of encouragement offered. I was losing myself, I had lost my drive and I could literally see things falling apart.
This went on for about a month, until my sister intervened. Together, we made a list of all reasons why I had to pick myself up and refocus, I had forgotten all the plans and targets I had set for myself simply because someone had decided to go after what they wanted.
That’s when it hit me, I had to get up and go after what I wanted too. It takes such a strong person to be able to share these feelings with others, to be transparent, to be open and raw; but still thank God for resilience.
To cut the long story short, I realized that I was letting the mishap control me. I had lost focus of what mattered. Moments of sorrow, stress, failure and apprehension make you believe that your life is falling apart, but you are the one who will ultimately have to hold all the pieces of life together.
Learn from your experiences and develop a new self-identity to reconcile yourself with the realities of life.
I willed myself to focus on my career and self-development. I invested in a couple of books, my favorite being the Power of the Mind by Pastor Chris Oyakhilome.
I began envisioning how I wanted my life to be and became determined to live out each day in a way that would positively contribute to that life I had envisioned for myself. Most importantly, I fell in love with the word of God and His promises over my life. I sought out opportunities and went after them.
I became more involved in my voluntary work with Special Olympics and the Leo Club. I also joined a group of young women and together we began setting our goals and held each other accountable. I developed a daily routine wherein I would plan my day on the eve, this gave me more time to work out my plan the following day.
I stuck motivational quotes on my walls and would only take them down once memorized. Before I knew it, I began ticking away most of my set targets and this willed me to do even more.
In under a year I was appointed Leo Advisory Panelist for Africa, elected to facilitate training on intergenerational relations for Lions Club District Governors in Las Vegas and appointed to Initiatives Co-Coordinator for Special Olympics Africa. All these achievements I probably would have never gone after had I not gone through that ‘catastrophe’.
Sometimes you just need to pause, step back, take a deep breath, look at the bigger picture and be patient. Life never stays the same. After very sunset, there is a sunrise. You just have to be awoke to witness the glory that the sunrise brings with it. Don’t fret over the mishaps in your life; just wait for things to get better.
It may seem like your life is falling apart, and you may feel helpless but, the sour turn of events may be heralding a better life and leading you towards your dreams.
Life is difficult for all of us at different points in time, the difference though is how we deal with it. You must give up the victim mentality and realize that so many good things happened to you too in the past and more will make their way towards you in the future.
I will end with one of my favorite quotes, “Never be afraid to fall apart because it is an opportunity to rebuild yourself the way you wish you had been all along.” – Rae Smith.