Last year, I told myself in January, that I’d put myself out there more and be all up in people’s faces about my business, career and everything I am about. I didn’t write goals or aspirations on any paper as would be the norm, I just created a mental note and promised myself I’d follow through by Allah’s help.
You know, I got married in December 2017 so the year started with me being… a wife. As they say, one is never totally prepared for marriage but I was at peace because I knew it was something I really wanted to do and I was ready to wing it. It was also beautiful that I had someone who was ready to support me in every way in my corner, so I knew the world was ready for me and I only needed to put in work to move my brand to the level I wanted. If I say I had a cut out plan for doing this, I’d be lying to you. I just knew I was going to gain new grounds and explore new horizons in different ways, despite not having a well planned strategy (By the way, don’t be like me).
The Omotolaniee brand got registered without a hitch (When you have a lawyer for a husband, these things come through easy right ) and we were ready!
I put word out about what my brand would be doing (Content creation, Social media management, Brand consultation and sales of clothes) and I started getting messages and well wishing reach outs. People were ready to refer others to us and advertise the brand. All the more amazing right? I launched a Fashion collection in February where I tried two pieces for the first time and people really came through for me, from the awesome ladies who modeled the clothes for free, to the photographer and everyone else, I was so wowed. The sales moved fast and I was really excited about what was coming.
Still in February, I got my first Content creation job since the brand got official and I was really excited. A business owner was ready to take the leap with me by employing my services to help in being a part of a project and It went well, thankfully. I was doing many things at once and not getting overwhelmed while at it, I really don’t know how that came to be. God came through as usual.
I told myself I wouldn’t take up any 9-5 job because I needed all the time I could get for my long term goal to play out properly but sometime in February, my husband sent me an internship vacancy with an international organization and he advised I go for it since he feels I’d be a fit. I was reluctant at first but on second thoughts, I got his point and decided to try. If for nothing else, I could actually do with some new learnings and experience. So, I started the application but was discouraged on seeing how long the process was. He still pushed me on and I concluded the application, then I was invited for an online assessment exam which I really thought was difficult but still did my best. Guess who was invited for an interview and later given the job? Yes, Omotolani.
In April, I began a three month contract with the organization; Save the Children International, and it ended in July. There, I learnt more about being a good communicator and met the most awesome people, some of whom have become very close friends with me. It was quite beautiful working closely with children and knowing more about how the development sector works. I thank my husband over and over for bringing that opportunity my way and I have no regrets at all.
I got many messages from people asking me how I rebranded so well and how they can do same. Ah, this was the problem o, I didn’t even know what to tell them but I just narrated the steps I took and realized that in the midst of my no clear cut strategy, there was actually a strategy and I can write a whole book about it. The greatest step for me however was networking and putting myself forward for many things. I met people, attended events, volunteered for more organizations and was an all round hippy hopper. Mentally Aware Nigeria, one of the NGOS I volunteer for, gave me an opportunity to speak to a really large crowd in July and despite having jitters before it commenced, it went really well and I was quite gladdened by the feedback.
I was going to travel in August for Eid, so one day I just thought about organizing a Meet and Greet. You know, it wasn’t so spontaneous like that, I had always wanted to do something involving women where we would have cozy conversations, eat lots of food and network; all in a bid to make ourselves better. So, I believed a Meet and Greet would serve this purpose and I started planning it, with the help of other amazing ladies we pulled it and it was indeed a successful event. We had lots of sponsors and supporters ehn, it was really the best thing.
It was also the first year of marriage for me, as stated earlier, and this too can fill a whole book. Lol. I have grown and learnt more and I am really glad. It is hard not to praise someone so amazing, so despite my effort at being so modest, I really have to send a shout out to my man. Thank you for doing everything you promised and more, thanks for always being in my corner, thanks for making this journey worthwhile, thanks for everything you teach me, thanks for letting me love you and loving me back quite beautifully, thank you for being in my team and never letting me go, thanks for all that you do, thanks for making me so happy. I love you, W, and I can only pray that Allah’s mercies never depart from you. We will keep getting better in love, In sha Allah.
I shouldn’t make it seem like I didn’t have any lows through the year o. I made a really bad investment decision by putting so much money in a business and the outcome wasn’t good. I had my crying moments, I had the times I didn’t feel good enough or felt like I wasn’t doing enough, I had yells and screams and rants but all in all, the positives outweighed the bad, Alhamdulilah.
2018 was quite action packed and fulfilling, I can’t relate everything because I don’t want to bore you guys, really.
Sometime after all of these, I fell ill. So I had to compulsorily slow down. I had to go off social media, I had to put my business on hold, I had to become a full time housewife, I had to stay home every day! This story, I will tell, by Allah’s will. I will tell you of the mercy of God, of the support from those I call my friends and family, and again, of the mercy of my creator that never leaves me. When the time comes, I will, trust me, I really will.
I am ready to take on the year, and I hope it is a fruitful and beautiful one for all of us. Please put God first and never allow any disbelief in yourself. 2019, I wish to see everyone winning!
It’s my birthday today, please find time to say a prayer for me and my family. Wish me well and think of me positively, may we all be granted our beneficial desires and may we attain the happiness we seek, genuinely. I’ll be back, OBA.