Ep 24 // Quitting and Evolving Without Ego with Dzifa Ababio

Ep 24- Dzifa Ababio

Hello and welcome back to the Open Door Conversations podcast. Today Akua interviews Dzifa, an entrepreneur and wellness enthusiast living in Accra, Ghana. Dzifa has a hand in many fields such as the legal domain, marketing and branding, food entrepreneurship, and starting a menswear brand. He also started a wellness company and will soon release a wellness journal.  

Dzifa has let his career and interests evolve as he learns more about himself. He has organically moved to the next passion calling his name. He still has a hand in many of the entrepreneurial endeavors he began, and he is comfortable starting new projects and ventures when the time comes. Akua asks him about each step of his journey, and Dzifa shares the lessons and realizations he has had along the way.  

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What's Covered in this Episode About Personal Growth

  • Taking ownership of your time and how you spend it 
  • Moving to the wellness and healing space as an entrepreneur 
  • How to allocate time to different brands and projects 
  • Growing out of perfectionism

Quotes from this Episode of Open Door Conversations

  • - "I want step by step instructions on how you're going to create the content that's going to go online, right? So are you going to have a photoshoot and get a have a mass photo shoot and get like, you know, 30 photos at once so that they're ready?" - Dzifa Ababio

  • "Decide like one or two things in your life that you repeatedly want to share that say a lot about you that you feel comfortable sharing and do that on repeat because people will start to recognise you buy those like characteristics." - Dzifa Ababio

  • "I put the little Canadian flag in my bio and more people go like, Hey, you're Canadian. I'm Canadian, too. Like, if you can choose that, just select the things in your life that you decided that you want to share." - Dzifa Ababio

Get to Know this Episode's Guest

Dzifa is an insight-driven, global consumer marketer with CPG experience who provides expertise in connecting diverse customers to global companies that have an emphasis on entrepreneurial leadership and professional development

Lumiverte Menswear: @lumiverte
Yabo’s Food Truck: @yabosfood
Email: Dzifa.Ababio@gmail.com

Get to Know the Host of the Open Door Conversations Podcast

Learn more about your host, Akua Nyame-Mensah.

Akua is a certified executive and leadership coach, recognized learning and organizational development facilitator, speaker, and former startup executive. 

Since 2018, she has had the opportunity to partner with amazing organizations, from high-growth startups to multinational brands all around the world, to maximize people, performance, and profit.  Outside of her coaching and corporate speaking engagements, she is a regular mentor, coach, and judge for various entrepreneurship-focused organizations.

Stay in touch with Akua Nyame-Mensah, Leadership & Culture Advisor:

  • Read about Akua’s services if you’d like to learn more about how you can hire her to help you strengthen your organization’s culture.

  • Complete her contact form to jump on a call.

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Here’s the transcript for episode 24 about Quitting and Evolving without Ego

NOTE: Please excuse any errors in this transcript; it was created using an AI tool. Akua Nyame-Mensah 0:07 Welcome to the open door podcast. My name is Akua Nyame-Mensah Chaos respond to Aqua and I'm a certified executive and leadership coach recognised facilitator and former sort of leader that loves supporting reluctant buyer fighting and overwhelmed leaders. I've worked with them to help them clarify where they should focus their time and energy each and every day so that they can love themselves, love their work, and ultimately love their life. If you're looking to learn leadership information and hear different perspectives, you are in the right place. My aim in this podcast is to help you see that one of the most productive and profitable things you can do is deeply understand yourself. Understand how you show up, understand how you thrive, and allow yourself to align everything in your work in your life, and in your business to support that think of this podcast as your weekly opportunity to receive leadership support. And remember, there is no one right way to lead yourself or others. Thank you so much for taking the time to join me today. Let's get started. Hello, and welcome to this week's podcast episode. I am really excited about this week's episode. And when I went back to just re listen to our conversation, I am just incredibly grateful that the person I interviewed was so open and so vulnerable and so willing to share his perspective and his journey. So this week, I am sharing a conversation with an amazing human being called dzifa. And we talk about quitting and evolving without ego. So some of the things that we cover, we cover his background and how he ended up back in his home country of Ghana. So we're actually both from the same country as well. We talk a little bit about some of the brands that he's been able to build over the years. And some of the things that actually encouraged him to come back to Ghana after being in the US for quite a few years. And then last but not least, we talk about some of the things that he's learned about himself and some of the tools, techniques, resources and people that he's leveraged to get to where he is. So if you want to hear the perspective of a returnee of someone who's had the opportunity to live and work in places that he's not from, have someone who has opened himself up to trying new things, and really evolving while learning more about how to be connected to himself, and really how to leverage his ego, and an effective and efficient manner. This is the podcast episode for you. I also feel like it's important to mention, I really wanted to have a conversation with him, because I feel like he is so open even on his social media channels around his journey and around some of the things that he's overcome. So this episode really is dedicated to those who feel like they can't or feel like they won't, because of their gender, because of where they grew up how they grew up, or maybe even because their parents say they shouldn't. This episode is dedicated to you. And I hope that you enjoy this episode and are able to take something away, that you can leverage and use in your own life. Let's get into the episode. All right, today, I'm joined by dzifa at the VO to talk about quitting and evolving without ego dzifa Welcome to the show, when we had the chance to reconnect, one of the things that really resonated was the fact that you have many different passions and that you don't shy away from, you know, being interested in so many different things. How did you, you know, how did you end up being interested in entrepreneurship because you went from working within a structure environment to entrepreneurship. What was there something in particular that happened? Was it some sort of earning, you know, or yearning? You tell us a little bit more about that? Speaker 1 4:12 Sure. Yes. So I started out my career as a paralegal, working with Uncle Sam, in Washington, DC. And, you know, I thought my career would take me going down the law school path, you know, of going to be a paralegal going to law school and then being like a corporate attorney. And what I realised immediately I started working, when I say like two months in was that it just wasn't the path for me. And it just wasn't something that ignited ignited the flame in me so to speak. So I was like, Okay, what's what's next for me? I can't continue to do this. And I'm not happy in a role that I'm in but I'm in a place where I can learn and sort of evolve and grow. During that time, though, I was taking spending time coming to Ghana, you know, Frequently, and I started getting the entrepreneurship bug of like, being my own boss running my own business having having ownership of my time was what I realised in that position was, was very important to me. And so you know, at that time I'm watching my friends start businesses there, they seem to be successful, it seems so glamorous. And, you know, I said, Okay, I'm not going to go to law school, but I'll go to business school, and why business school mostly because, you know, I had no prior business experience. And when I was in college, I did all of one math class, you know, I had done Excel or anything like that. So I just had no understanding of business, but I, I knew or so I thought, but I knew that it was business school would be the bridge that I could use to enter into this, this this glamorous world of entrepreneurship. And so that's what I did is took my GMAT applied to business schools interview got accepted, and I went into to a full time MBA programme, and went specifically into focusing on a role and brand management, and marketing and brand management. And I chose marketing and brand management, mostly because it was a role that would allow me to sort of have a crash course in entrepreneurship, you know, you are in a major business, a multinational or fortune 500 business, and you you're sort of running your own business within that business. So it's very hard to fail within that space, or those guardrails for you to be able to fail. And then you learn and you try new things. And it's basically entrepreneurship one on one, you know, you're the centre of it all, as a, as a marketer, or general manager in a role like that. You you're working with cross functional teams, so teams in finance and operations with, with demand planners with, with your insights team, just all of them are surrounding you, and you are essentially calling the shots. And I found that role to be a very, very instrumental role in my growth as a leader, because it involved me having to, you know, make decisions quickly and make decisions without, without having all the answers at bay, you know, and entrepreneurship feel, you know, there's so many uncertainties, there's so many things that go through your mind as to, you know, this idea of my work and this idea or, but you don't, you never know, really, if this stuff is going to work out or not, you just have to go ahead and do it and not think too much. And so, you know, I did business school, I went to a full time programme did that for two years, and came out and landed a role in general management working in the food industry. And that's sort of like how I got my start in, in the entrepreneurship space, just, you know, like, say, telling myself, I'm deciding that, you know, I'm not happy with with where I am right now, and I need to do something about it. And fortunately for me, I had the people around me who had been to business school, a cousin of mine had, you know, finished an MBA programme, two of my cousins had finished MBA programmes, have some friends who have done MBA programmes. So it's very good, easy to, you know, tap into the network around me and ask people about their experiences and determine if, you know, it was a suitable approach for me, Akua Nyame-Mensah 8:30 thank you so much. Yeah, for sharing that journey. And let's let's maybe shift to now sort of, we're not now let's shift to actually your transition back to Accra because I believe one of the first businesses you worked with was a food based business as well Correct? Speaker 1 8:47 Yes, yes. So So I worked with a food company in Chicago, Illinois. And you know, I was there for about three years and again, you know, being in that role still learning a lot and progressing and pushing myself beyond my comfort zone. But you know, after some time that your financial bug you know, pulling me again bitten me again, if you will, and it was more so of having again the ownership of my time, you know, I wasn't so comfortable with having to show up somewhere you know, five days a week for a certain number of hours and work for somebody was getting paid very well and but there was still something missing and I knew that I couldn't continue doing it for you know, for a long time. So after about I want to say 18 months 1820 months or so. You the bug bit me and I would like to call it divine timing. You know, some some stuff happened at work, you know, it just may have been slacking off a little bit. But, you know, I decided it was time to just put in my resignation and and it was a very Very easy decision for me to make at the time, you know, I've been itching and I've been looking for new jobs and new roles, but I got a performance, I got put on a performance improvement plan after my, my performance review. And immediately when that happened, I said, you know, I think I think this is it, I think this is my, my cue that I need to, to move on to the next thing. And, you know, at that time, I had this passion for menswear, my brother was just about to start a business as well. And so it was, it was a space of like, you know, sort of rebirth, if you will, or just like, shedding the old and stepping into the new and, and so it's a very easy decision to make, you know, I had a conversation with my brother had a conversation with Ben girlfriend at the time. And and then spoke to my parents about and I said, No, I'm done. I'm done with this, and literally packed up my stuff. And, you know, took out my 401k and was, I think I have enough money. And let's go like let's move to Ghana and start a menswear business. And that's how that's how I came in. Three years ago. Yes, July was three years. I've been in that car for three years now. Akua Nyame-Mensah 11:09 Wow. Okay, so you started with the menswear brand. Tell me a little bit about some of the other businesses that you have. Speaker 1 11:15 Yeah, so started with Menswear. And when I moved to Ghana, you know, our brother was launching a food truck business and we spoke about it spoken about. So that helped him you know, sort of, like, bring the concept of and flesh out the idea he had at the time I lived in Ghana for I want to say about five years at the time. So it was very familiar with the terrain here. So I said, Okay, you know, I have I have a background in food, you know, the branding and marketing experience, let me come on, and at least help the you know, all hands on deck kind of thing. Let me come on and help you with with this food business. And I can do, you know, some branding, some marketing, some social media management, and we can take things from there. And that's what I did. So I moved July, we spent, you know, about nine months, just so getting the business together, so sourcing a food truck, and launched the business in May of 2019. And initially, it was supposed to be a food truck, you know, a mobile food van, would move around a Corolla, and serve people lunch and breakfast and lunch. And we'd also do events would also do like a midnight menu. So for the club goers as well, you know, typical, like, major city in the US just, you know, bring that concept here. And at the time, you know, we're thinking works in America, you know, you're working in Ghana, and people like food here the ideas is, there's novel, but you don't have to persuade anyone to buy food that there are many of it, if it tastes good, if it's nourishing to their bodies, if it's something that they know about, and you don't have to educate them too much on they are with it and Ghanians like new things, you know, so that that was the idea. And that's how sort of the business came about. And it's been it's been two years of intense work, but rewarding, rewarding work and just a growing experience. Akua Nyame-Mensah 13:11 Yeah. And so I know that you've also ventured into the wellness and healing space as well. Can you tell us a little bit about how you got interested? And yeah, also just a bit about, like, how you are building that brand? Because I think that's something that's that's quite unique as well. Speaker 1 13:28 Yeah, absolutely. Wellness, you know, wellness came to me in a path, I would say I wasn't I wasn't looking for it. I wasn't, I wasn't I wasn't planning it at all. I think my first encounter with wellness was in business school. And we did a programme called the self discovery programme, and it's, you know, a parts of your orientation. So, it's basically, you know, you take a series of tests, I think at the time, we took a, a Keirsey test, which is similar to like a Myers Briggs. I just details you answer series of questions, very easy to do, but you asked a series of questions and, and the idea is that you, you know, they split human personalities into I think, like 16 different categories. And, and the whole thing is to get you to understand yourself better, you know, how do you show up as an individual? How do you think of yourself? How do you how do you function in teams, you know, how, how are you as a leader? How is you as a team play all these types of things? And so they group you based on the questions you ask the group, you know, they come up with a personality profile for you. And I think when I did it, my personality profile was an idealist healer. And so that was the first that was that. That was the first my first sort of foray into into the wellness space. And I was like, Okay, I do is to heal on that. Whew, and, and so they give me like, example, was a few healers are. And I think in my category one was like Princess Diana, and I think Gandhi and I was like, Okay, this is interesting. Yeah, I was like, Well, this is interesting. I cool, I'm doing well. But, you know, I didn't really think about too much on this, okay. It's it made sense to me, because people would always reach out to me and want to share their problems with me. And I think I was always still, I'm a very non threatening listener, you can listen and get the feedback that people need without judging or anything. And I've always been that type of individual. And so it made sense to me when I first heard but a couple instances happened one in business school and one in when I was working as a market seller first in business school, I was on a team, a cross functional team doing a sort of like a case competition for Business School. And two of my teammates, got into a very heated arguments. And they were five on the team, two of them get into this argument. And talking about one, one person has a strategy, another person has another strategy. And all of a sudden, it's silence. And they just look to me. And and both of them are just like, Yo, what's up? Like, where are you to, like, mitigate, where I need to, you know, solve help us solve some of these issues. And, you know, it's just the between the two of them were five on a team was between the two of them, there were two other people, and all of them sort of turns to me, and I was like, Wow, this this, this is scary. But clearly didn't handle that situation. Well, but what it taught me was that, like, there's something within me that people sort of see or feel to, to resolve conflicts or to resolve an ease or, or things of that sort. Something similar happened to me as well, when I was in working as a marketer for this food company, very similar event. And they both looked at me again, sort of like, fumble, didn't know how to react to that. So those just like, in the back of my head, like, okay, there's something that like is there I don't know what it is, or how to hone in on it. But it's, it's there as like, you're a healer in some way. I moved to Ghana. And immediately I moved to Ghana, a friend, a very close friend of mine, puts me in touch with his friend who's, who's doing a an internship here. And I reached out to her and she says, Oh, let's meet for dinner, be nice to catch up and tell me more about what you're trying to do here, we can meet up, I actually have yoga. So we can meet up, go to yoga, and then go go to dinner, or we can just go to dinner, I was like, you know, I like to go to yoga, I've done it at practice once or twice seemed really cool at the time, I wanted to you know, be doing handstands and all the cool things with my body. So let me come. And, you know, I went for a class. So my teacher incontinence, phenomenal class used to have it on a rooftop, just an amazing, an amazing experience. And I went that first session, and everything started to make sense, you know, it was just a peaceful environment, I was able to connect with myself and just like, feel all all of what, you know, what was going through me, and, and just have an understanding of like, where I am as an individual. And so that happened. And so yoga became a practice that parts of my practice, and then around the same time, journaling also became a part of my daily practice where, you know, I'd wake up and just sort of, like, you know, you have so many anxious thoughts, in my mind, of, you know, like, being in this new space, I'm an entrepreneur, I'm worried about running, running out of money, how am I going to grow my business, all these things, you know, going on in my mind, and I said, you know, it was just, like, write and share my thoughts on paper, and just like, sort of, like download. And so I started doing that, and I just got into a regular journaling practice. And I through that, I felt, you know, some weights being lifted off my shoulders of just feeling free and just accepting, you know, some of the feelings that I was having in my brain. And that's thoughts that I was having in my brain. And so I did that, you know, all of 2019 into 2020 and 2020 started and COVID happens. And, you know, I'm stuck at home with the whole family. And I'm like, Okay, well, you know, you're stuck at home. Let's, let's make sure that we and that this conversation I'm having to myself, let's make sure that we we make the most out of this, this two or three weeks that we're locked in at home, so So you know what, okay, I'm going to create like a routine for myself, because I found, you know, it's very easy to wake up and get thrown into your day and not have enough purpose or intention around the things that are important to you. So I said, you know, I want to focus on five things every day. And if I do those five things, I told myself, if I do those five things, I am successful, or I've accomplished something today. And so for me, it was my five things were wake up, let's have a let's journal, practice yoga, you know, that's two minutes, 45 minutes, just something to get my body moving my juices flowing. Read my affirmations. So if anyone who comes to my house or my room knows, like, I always have stuff like on my wall, I turn off my mirror, just like, you know, Quotes and Sayings and things to just reframe, and reprogram and, you know, programme my mind. So read my affirmations, and then do French and French for me, our students at one point, and so I said, you know, I want to be fluent again. And there was just those five things, or four things. And so that's how I started, I was like, just, you know, feeding myself and doing the things that I knew were essential to my being. And I did that for 30 days, and sort of just carried on doing it. And it's become part of my daily daily routine. So around that time to this whole lockdown period, I get a friend invites me to a meditation group, and I've meditated before, but it wasn't necessarily a regular practice. But she invited me to this meditation, it's a 21 day meditation from Deepak Chopra. And every day, there's like assignments you have to do. And then you have to listen to like, a meditation doesn't take more than 2030 minutes to do. And it was I think, 21 days of abundance. I said, Sure, let's, let's feel abundant, you know, why not? And I did that. And, you know, on one of the days, the assignment was to start your own meditation group, and then invite people in and then share the meditations to and so finish the programme, invited a group of people, I think, I want to say 15 people. And immediately I invited people, I noticed the group started growing, and people started to ask, Oh, can I buy this? And this person? Can I buy this? I was like, Yeah, sure, no problem. And it grew from I think, 15, from when it started. So about 25, I want to say, did that for 21 days. And I think on like the 18th. And 19th day, a friend of mine reached out to me, who's also I guess, a healer of some sort, I would say in some ways, and he was like, hey, you know, this thing is coming to an end, I've I've had so much progress and evolved so much in that time, like, I really think you should carry on with it, and continue to, you know, share meditations. And so that's how I'm like, my journey into meditation started off of you been like, sort of roped in. And then now I'm like, the, the person who, who leads the meditations. Speaker 1 23:10 Around that time, a few months after that, I decided I wanted to go to therapy, and you know, just talk. And when I when I told my mother about it, she you know, she was typical, you know, African parents, and she said it in gosh, she was a goner, you don't go to therapy, or people think you're crazy, you know, that kind of thing. And I was like, Cool, well, I'm just gonna find my money and go by myself. And I went that first session, and everything started to make sense, you know, all the work that I had been doing the journey that I was going on, it all started to make sense of, you know, the person that I was I was evolving into and the things that I would be working on. Yes, that's sort of like a long way of saying how I got into the wellness space. Akua Nyame-Mensah 23:59 Amazing. And I think one of the things that is so cool about your story is how naturally, everything has evolved, how all these different brands you have really do come from, you know, the people you surround yourself with the things that you open yourself up to it doesn't seem like anything is forced. Speaker 1 24:20 Yeah. Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. It just, you know, like, happened, you know, I was, so I'm talking about vibing. So driving is one of the brands that that I have, or I'm creating building, and it's sort of like a wellness platform on Instagram. I think it's it's a mix of a wellness platform, a journal, which we'll talk about, but it's started off, you know, as me reprogramming my mind. You know, of like, sitting there on Instagram, I remember it was maybe 2019 Sitting on Instagram. And, you know, I've always been one who's into Quotes and Sayings. And so sing on Instagram and started to create and curate content around some of the quotes. And for me it was, it was really just me talking to myself. So that created a story on my Instagram page. And I would just like, I'd come across these quotes, and I just add them to my story. And I just started putting them out there and like reposting them. And I found, you know, a lot of the things that I was, I was going through and I was facing the self talk or the ways to reframe myself talk. A lot of people resonated with that. And so, you know, I'm sitting here, I'm putting this stuff out there, and people are, you know, responding, like, Yes, I agree, like, wow, this is so true. And, you know, I'm tapping into my creative sense as well, too. So, I'm learning how to use Photoshop and get into graphic design at the time. And I might just create something for this thing at the time, I called the vibe, and it was just like, sort of like, the wavelength that I'm on. And I remember creating the logo and it was like a brain with like, the, I think it's EKG, is it maybe the scanner, when you Yeah, when you go into the hospital, that thing that like, looks like a heartbeat thing. And so I put those two together, I just put it on a green emerald green background. And for me, you know, Holly, I've started getting into plant life and have like, all these plants around the house. And I just put this thing together, we'll call it vibe. And, and that's it. So I did that. And then you followed it turned into you know, I did have a vibe as a one year and then the next year, I came back. And I said, okay, like, we're in year two, what do we call it, and I was thinking like maybe vibing 2.0 or something, I'll just say, you know, what it's gonna be called vibe, just like the way I'm vibing and how I'm feeling. And I started doing that, and just putting it out there. And then I just created like, a whole, you know, story around it of this is sort of, like, the wavelength I'm on and, and it evolved from more of like, a, like a healing space that just, like, just worked. So like visuals, that I would put on things that like I liked. So it'd be like, talking about, like, your mental health and, and, you know, like, how not to take things personally. And then the next next thing would be the image of like, the beach and a sunset. And it was just like, things that made me feel good. And I realised in the process of doing it, it made other people feel good. So I'd always get feedback, like, oh, like, I look forward to seeing your story every day, you know, I look for it to feel like people like would tell me like, it's 7pm Yo, where's your story, like, once, you know, and, and it would be just like a curation of like, 3040, like, different images or quotes for the day. And I just put it out there, add some music. And and, and that's how it like came about. So it became vibing. And I created a whole separate page for it. And I said, You know what, let me tie it to my yoga practice. And then it evolved into this journal that I've been working on. And yeah, that's sort of like how it's, it's all come about and funny, funny thing you said, you talked about it all being natural, you know, it's the my therapy session a couple months ago, and I was showing my therapist, you know, all these things, vibing page and everything. And she was she looked at the logo and she was like, wow, you know, like, this is pretty interesting. It's like, you know, green is like, is a colour of like, healing and comfort and, and you have the brain here. And and this is exactly what you're saying. You have the brain here and your EKG scan and everything and it's like, yeah, this is interesting, you're healing the mind. And I was like, Oh, wow, I didn't plan it. You know, I didn't think like let's do green because it's it just like came together very, very organically without without much thought. And so it's it's, it's interesting, I find it interesting and scary that way things are happening. It's overwhelming to me sometimes like I look the other day I had posted I made a post about like my one of my like, early vibing posts and I looked at at the way the logo looked at some of the things I was posting and and then compared it to what I've been doing now and I'm like wow, it's it's just growing and changing and it it gives me much confidence in knowing that like and starting you know, new things. It doesn't have to be perfect you know, for me coming from my background of like and I think a lot of it was the way I was brought up with like just trying to be too perfect of it has to be like this and fit in this box and and my shoelaces needs to be tied just perfectly you know, all of these like little little things that I've grown up with and looking back I think I've been learning to let go of that thinking and just So you're just gonna go with it and, and have fun with the flow, you know, and and I think all of these things that I'm going to do today is just like helping me do that and break away from the mould or, or so to speak the ego that I put in my head as to how I need to be for how I need to show up. So yeah, it's it's just very interesting that we it's, it's manifesting, Akua Nyame-Mensah 30:24 I'm just nodding I know you can't see me and those listening, you can't see me. But I'm like nodding because I really love how you've sort of shared this evolution and how you sort of have this inner dialogue because we all have this inner dialogue, right, but you've created the time and space, absolutely, to engage with it. And so I do have to ask, as someone who spends a lot of time talking to my clients around productivity. And you also mentioned this several time, times the concept of owning your time, how do you decide how much time to spend on all your brands? Speaker 1 30:58 That's a good question. And I think I'm definitely still still figuring out how to, you know, allocate my time well. But this is also part of the wellness, the wellness journal that I'm trying to put that I'll be putting out this year of, you know, during the lockdown, and knew I had all these tasks to do and I had all these activities to do for each of the different, you know, businesses or brands that I'm building. And so my thing was, you know, how do I have a healthy morning routine, and then go into my day of like, being intentional with my time, and being being very specific about how I'm spending my time, you know, you'd find a lot of people say things like, give every dollar job, don't just like when you get your money, don't just like spend it on anything like assign, have every dollar do something specific or every city do something specific for you, I think it works in the same way for your time that like when you wake up in the morning, every moment of every, and this is like the extreme level, but every moment or as well as you can plan it, every single minute should have a specific job to do for you as as much as you can. And so I come across this journal in a couple of years ago, was called the productivity journal. And it was something where, you know, you allocate, you pick your, you know, three to five most important things to do in a day. And, and you say, okay, it will take me, like, two hours to do it, you break those two hours into 30 minute chunks, and you turn your phone off, you limit all distractions, and you say, okay, for these next 30 minutes, this is the task that I'm going to do, I'm not going to get distracted, I'm just going to do it. And so that's how it started. And so you know, every day I'd wake up, and I just like create it to do list. So I'm a list person, I would like have like maybe five things on my to do list, sometimes it'd be 10. And I would literally just go through and check things off, and do them and check things off and minimise distractions. And for me, like I've, I've always been one who ever since I got on social media, or Instagram, Percy, a lot of people are like, you're on Instagram, one minute, and then you disappear. And for me, it's, it's me managing my time and me checking myself because let's face it, we all get on Instagram. And I've been guilty of this many, many times where I'd wake up and the first thing I grab my is my phone, open Instagram, and I you know, you enter into the scroll, and you want to get on that Explore page, you know, it's such a wrap, you know, hour beyond then I will just scroll and scroll and it estimates to go by 45 minutes go by, and haven't even gotten out of bed yet. And this is me like needing to go to get on the train and get to work, you know, kind of thing. And so you don't want what's Thai would recognise this and had this awareness of like, this, this thing has the potential to be a problem for me and I need to make sure that I'm managing it, I like started, you know, logging off Instagram, you know, I would literally deactivate my account for months on and be like, you know, this is getting out of hand. I'm out. And I'll just, you know, log off. And, you know, as you know, the iPhone came out and they kept doing upgrades and seeing your screen time or your screen usage time. I'd also track that and see like, how much time I'm spending on my phone and Sunday it'd be like spent 10 hours on my phone. It's like wow, you know, this is at the height of it. And so, you know, I'd be on Instagram one minute and the next I've deactivated the mind I'm off. And I've been doing that for like the last I want to say three or four years. And for me it's just a way of like managing myself and managing my time as best as possible. Um, in ways that I can control, you know, you're very, or you're not gonna, you won't always have the ability to manage your time fully, you know, someone might wasted some people are late yearly traffic, all these things, but in the spaces where I have the ability to do so I tried to make sure that I'm, I'm blocking out, you know, specific areas or time slots when I was in business school, I got into the habit of using my calendar a lot. So I block out time for class, I block out time for assignments, you know, that kind of thing. And then when I was working, too, I got into that habits as well. And so I always put it down, like, you know, if I get my to do list, I have to put stuff down, if I don't put stuff down for me, then it just won't happen. And being a procrastinator, like me, it just not, won't even happen at all if I don't puts it down. And so that's how like my journal came about, of like this roots team had built from myself, have you wake up for me? So wake up, I journal get get a sense of like, what's going on? In my mind? Where am I like, what's the self talk looking like, we get into like a nice sort of task manager of like, okay, these are my three to five things that like, yesterday, I told myself I was going to do so I put them in the day before, because I always feel like, you plan for the day before the day starts, you know, for me, it's if I wake up, and I am now planning my day, I've already lost them or even for me, it's before the day starts just think about or have some form of intention as to how I want the data to go and put that out and allocate like 15 minutes or 45 minutes, whatever amount of time, I think it will take me to do a specific amount of work, I put it down there. And then there's also a section with like a quote, like an inspirational quote for the day in the journal. And for me, it sort of came about of like, you know, I'm working through this routine, and it's helping me and I am noticing the progress within myself. I'm noticing how I'm evolving and uh huh, you know, actually getting stuff done. Let me share it, let me share it with the world and bring it out and help people you know, also go through this because I will be the first to admit, I'm a procrastinator. I procrastinate. And I talked about this in the book, I'm a procrastinator, and a people pleaser. And so those two are just a very deadly combo, you know, of like over promising over committing and then procrastinating. So I end up pushing stuff down the line and say, you know, let's, let's, let's just get it together and do stuff in chunks. And once once I realised that, oh, it actually worked. And talking to different people made me realise like, Yo, like, I'm not the only one, there's other people who are also struggling with this thing and who, who just, you know, need some sort of guideposts around, how to manage their time how to how to be, you know, effective on a daily basis. And, and it's not easy, you know, I talked about it, like, it's, it's like, you know, boom, boom, boom, it just happens like, this distractions, like, somebody's gonna come and distract you, and some phone call will come and you know, like, you just your email comes through, or like, you find yourself just opening Instagram, you know, and so it's a, it's constant work of just showing up every day, and not being too hard on yourself. And that's part of the self talk, as well as a little bit of that internal of just like, don't be so hard on yourself for like, if you fumble, you know, and it doesn't have to be perfect, but you just get back up and you just keep pushing and keep ploughing and I feel like a lot of my experiences from my yoga to meditation. So, so all of these are teaching me that like, it's never perfect, but it's always about like, you getting back up and getting right back into it. Akua Nyame-Mensah 39:02 Well said well said and I think this is a good sort of way to sort of in the conversation and I always love to ask where can people find out more about you online? Speaker 1 39:13 Yeah, absolutely. So online, I'm on Instagram vibin S v i b i n e s s that's like my vibing section, my yoga meditation, this journal that will be out soon. Looming events, which is my menswear brand el um, I ve R T E. And then our food businesses yobbos food, why a BOSFOD and they're all on Instagram website coming soon. And yeah, that's that's that's where to find more my email address you find out above you@gmail.com And I'm always happy to chat like always happy to like, learn about new experience. It says in what's going on with people. And just share and listen. Yeah, Akua Nyame-Mensah 40:05 amazing. I'll make sure I link all of those in the show notes as well. Thank you so much for joining me today for sharing your experience. I'm so excited about your journal and your book as well. Speaker 1 40:16 Thank you. I'm excited. I'm excited major things coming this year. And, and thank you for having me, thank you for what you're doing. I'm excited that more and more spaces like these are being created for for young people, especially in this environment, you know, of like being able to have the tools readily available to you know, charts, their own paths and have people around them who can sort of coach and guide and lead them to really, you know, share their gifts and share all that they have to offer the world. So thank you for putting this together. Appreciate you. Akua Nyame-Mensah 40:49 Thank you. Thank you so much for taking the time to listen to today's episode. If you enjoyed what you heard today, please share it with your friends. We can continue this conversation on social media the links to my socials so that is LinkedIn, Instagram and Twitter. You can find them in the show notes. If you tagged me in a story and include the hashtag hashtag ask Akua I will share a special little gift with you. Thank you so much once again for your time and I cannot wait to share my next episode with you stay safe and sane.


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