Like most people, I’m not gifted with a super-human ability to see yonder. So, in the course of my life, I’ve consistently made a series of painful and costly mistakes on anything from self-care, fashion, dating, college, work, business, marriage, parenting and everything in-between.
There really should be a mistakes quota per person because I seem to have grossly exceeded mine.
For a long while I was convicted that I was intrinsically inclined to make a mess of my life and then walk right through it over and over again. It was frustrating but with it came the liberating realisation that I am wired to live through periods of monumental stupidity causing enormous confusion as the stepping-stones to get me to the other side with crystal clarity.
Didn’t I think to get some help? Well, as Buddha put it; “When the student is ready, the teacher will come”. I wasn’t ready for help.
Even if help had hit me with a sledge-hammer right between my eyes, I would not have recognised it for what it was. I wouldn’t have appreciated it because I was looking for clear, plain and simple quick-fix answers to anything and everything — I wanted magic to my challenges. In short, I wasn’t teachable. I wasn’t ready.
In spite of myself, I got loads of help from others who didn’t necessarily package themselves as “help”.
I identified them quite unknowingly, actually. Their lives resonated with me in one way or another. I studied what they did, I paid attention to what they said even though most of them didn’t know and still do not know of my existence. I followed their lives along like a fly on the wall — a silent observer. I spent most of my days wanting to think, speak, act and live exactly like them.
I learned without setting out to. I grew to the point at which I realised that they did not hold the key to my answers. Their lives, however, enviable were based on their answers. I was and still am selfish.
All of us are. We are created that way and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that until we let our selfishness infringe upon the rights of others. So I realised that what I needed and wanted was my answers. Everyone else like me is selfish. So they had done the work required on themselves and created their answers for themselves. No one had answers specifically designed for me. This was as profound a realisation as it was hard to take.
Be kind as I share this with you and spare me the indignity of having to disclose how long it took me to accept full responsibility for finding my own answers.
It is a long story that goes over the numerous hills and valleys of more mistakes than I want printed here. I eventually did find my answers and in many ways I am still finding them.
This is not because I’m exceptionally smart. I was just fed up of looking in all the wrong people, things and places.
I wish age-old wisdom was a little bit more direct. It simply told me that “my answers lay within”. Boy! All those years I’d spent looking without were such a waste! I could have saved myself so much hurt, relationships, shame, anger, bitterness, failure, rejection and heartbreak. My biggest hurdle was my training all through life.
I was trained to do things as those in authority around me did and accepted as normal and good for me. I was very well-trained to look for answers outside of myself; what subjects to take in school, how to dress, what to aspire to and be.
When most aspects of your life are pre-determined for you, you live your life following other people’s answers. It indulges the lazy in you because you do not have to do the heavy-lifting work required to find your own answers. For as long as you’re following other people’s paths, you’re going to be lost for a really long time.
Here’s what I’ve learned — you don’t exactly find answers. You discover them by consistently being true to yourself.
This may not be the usual, normal, comfortable and acceptable way to be but it is your authentic self. I learned that to be true to myself, I’ve had to break a lot of norms, re-align mine and others’ expectations of me and in some cases develop the thick skin to completely go against long-held norms. It is the price one must be prepared to pay…and it is more than worth it.
My whole life can be summed up as a collection of valuable experiences. I now turn around and weave it into structured tools to enrich those in a quest to finding their own answers.
World Bank pushes G-20 to extend debt relief to 2021
World Bank Group President David Malpass has urged the Group of 20 rich countries to extend the time frame of the Debt Service Suspension Initiative(DSSI) through the end of 2021, calling it one of the key factors in strengthening global recovery.
“I urge you to extend the time frame of the DSSI through the end of 2021 and commit to giving the initiative as broad a scope as possible,” said Malpass.
He made these remarks at last week’s virtual G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Meeting.
The World Bank Chief said the COVID-19 pandemic has triggered the deepest global recession in decades and what may turn out to be one of the most unequal in terms of impact.
People in developing countries are particularly hard hit by capital outflows, declines in remittances, the collapse of informal labor markets, and social safety nets that are much less robust than in the advanced economies.
For the poorest countries, poverty is rising rapidly, median incomes are falling and growth is deeply negative.
Debt burdens, already unsustainable for many countries, are rising to crisis levels.
“The situation in developing countries is increasingly desperate. Time is short. We need to take action quickly on debt suspension, debt reduction, debt resolution mechanisms and debt transparency,” said Malpass.
Kenya’s Central Bank Drafts New Laws to Regulate Non-Bank Digital Loans
The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) will regulate interest rates charged on mobile loans by digital lending platforms if amendments on the Central bank of Kenya Act pass to law. The amendments will require digital lenders to seek approval from CBK before launching new products or changing interest rates on loans among other charges, just like commercial banks.
“The principal objective of this bill is to amend the Central bank of Kenya Act to regulate the conduct of providers of digital financial products and services,” reads a notice on the bill. “CBK will have an obligation of ensuring that there is fair and non-discriminatory marketplace access to credit.”
According to Business Daily, the legislation will also enable the Central Bank to monitor non-performing loans, capping the limit at not twice the amount of the defaulted loan while protecting consumers from predatory lending by digital loan platforms.
Tighter Reins on Platforms for Mobile Loans
The legislation will boost efforts to protect customers, building upon a previous gazette notice that blocked lenders from blacklisting non-performing loans below Ksh 1000. The CBK also withdrew submissions of unregulated mobile loan platforms into Credit Reference Bureau. The withdrawal came after complaints of misuse over data in the Credit Information Sharing (CIS) System available for lenders.
Last year, Kenya had over 49 platforms providing mobile loans, taking advantage of regulation gaps to charge obscene rates as high as 150% a year. While most platforms allow borrowers to prepay within a month, creditors still pay the full amount plus interest.
Amendments in the CBK Act will help shield consumers from high-interest rates as well as offer transparency on terms of digital loans.
Scope Markets Kenya customers to have instant access to global financial markets
NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 20 – Clients trading through the Scope Markets Kenya trading platform will get instant access to global financial markets and wider investment options.
This follows the launch of a new Scope Markets app, available on both the Google PlayStore and IOS Apple Store.
The Scope Markets app offers clients over 500 investment opportunities across global financial markets.
The Scope Markets app has a brand new user interface that is very user friendly, following feedback from customers.
The application offers real-time quotes; newsfeeds; research facilities, and a chat feature which enables a customer to make direct contact with the Customer Service Team during trading days (Monday to Friday).
The platform also offers an enhanced client interface including catering for those who trade at night.
The client will get instant access to several asset classes in the global financial markets including; Single Stocks CFDs (US, UK, EU) such as Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix and Google, BP, Carrefour; Indices (Nasdaq, FTSE UK), Metals (Gold, Silver); Currencies (60+ Pairs), Commodities (Oil, Natural Gas).
The launch is part of Scope Markets Kenya strategy of enriching the customer experience while offering clients access to global trading opportunities.
Scope Markets Kenya CEO, Kevin Ng’ang’a observed, “the Sope Markets app is very easy to use especially when executing trades. Customers are at the heart of everything we do. We designed the Scope Markets app with the customer experience in mind as we seek to respond to feedback from our customers.”
He added that enhancing the client experience builds upon the robust trading platform, Meta Trader 5, unveiled in 2019, enabling Scope Markets Kenya to broaden the asset classes available on the trading platform.