Growth writing

Life In My Twenties: Two Dilemmas I Have Faced So Far.

Hi guys!

Back again with another post in the Life In My Twenties series! I hope you are all enjoying it so far?

Our guest today writes about two dilemma’s he has faced so far and has come to realise the importance of contentment and being patient with yourself!

I’d love to hear what your twenties have been teaching you, please share and leave a comment!

Happy reading!


Hey Ari, I hope you’re well, 

It’s certainly been an interesting few weeks since you asked me to be one of the contributors to this blog series about what it’s been like navigating my 20’s so far.

I was unusually excited, after all, we’ve had so many meaningful conversations about life over the years and spoken about how we’d like to share our experiences with a wider audience.

However, as time passed I found myself paralysed by the idea of sharing my experiences; and by my fear of being judged – what if I can’t get my message across clearly? What if I’m misunderstood? What if no one cares?

Anyway, that being said, I have decided to go for it and put my fears aside. I believe that there is always something someone can learn from another person’s experience. And that is exactly what this is, my personal reflections on my experiences so far.


The Dilemma’s

“Ari… you know I have a restless imagination at times and I can be a bit of a perfectionist.”

Thinking about where to start on a topic such as navigating your 20s. I was instinctively compelled to write about certain dilemmas I have faced so far. This is because the situations and patterns I have encountered have often provided me with an avenue for profound shifts in perspectives.

With that in mind, I would like to discuss the tension I have often faced fully appreciating my success and striving for continuous improvement.

Up until the beginning of quarantine, it had been virtually impossible for these two opposing approaches to life to coexist in my head.

On one hand, my desire to better myself has been a huge contributor to my achievements. However, it has contributed equally to destroying my motivation and eroding the joy and satisfaction from those successes.

You see, the continuous improvement side of myself would often spend so much time analysing how things could or should have been done better or differently so that the next time round I would ultimately achieve more, and in my head, maybe then I’d be satisfied. 

That continuous improvement side of myself would often rhetorically ask the other side of myself: “But I mean Fola, can you really blame me?” And would then proceed to give the very compelling (in the world of my mind) argument that:

“We both know the allure and promises of ‘progress’, ‘growth’, and ‘the next thing’, are very enticing… And besides, we have constantly been reminded, and also both agree, might I add, that there is always room for improvement, to never rest on our laurels and most definitely never to be complacent.”

Sometimes, this argument would spur me on to do more which I guess had its benefits, but at other times, the other side of myself would simply shutdown.

This shutdown was because that part of myself had found, through its practical experiences that manner of living was simply tiring, draining, unrewarding and hugely dissatisfying, irrespective of how much it had made me achieve. So much so that then achieving more had no correlation with satisfaction… You know, that feeling you get when you realise that what you were so sure you wanted didn’t turn out to give you the satisfaction you’d imagined.


Now that hopefully you now see my Dilemma, I realised that it was as a result of my misconception of what I thought contentment meant.

I thought that to be content meant to settle, and because I refuse to settle (I still do refuse). I was always searching for something out there, dwelling on the past, fixating on the future.

Never really appreciating the moment (or the present success) for what it was. 

A new understanding of contentment has taught all sides of me that there is a time for everything. It has taught me to know that, sure things could have been done better or differently; and that there is still so much more to be achieved. But for now, in this moment, to consider all those facts and still chose to accept where I am at. 

Contentment taught me to be present. To fully appreciate my current successes and also at the same time strive for more. 

The Real Dilemma

Those are the things I would have liked to say about one of the dilemmas of navigating life in my 20s so far, but really in writing this my true dilemma has been that: 

Ari… you know I have a restless imagination at times and I can be a bit of a perfectionist.

Ari… You know I have a restless imagination at times and I can be a bit of a perfectionist I am scared of failure.

Ari… You know I have a restless imagination at times and I can be a bit of a perfectionist i’m scared of failure I am scared of my success.

And I know that although I have found it easy to express myself to you, I know that I will not be able to express  myself to your readers… so I thought why should I bother.

The end.

Growth writing

Life In My Twenties: Where Does It All Come From?

This week our writer focuses on faith…whether you’re a person of faith or just trying to have faith in yourself this is definitely one that we can all relate to in some way.

For me, the central lesson here is sometimes things spin out of your control but there’s a plan so don’t fret.

As always please share your thoughts in the comments I love hearing them!

Dear Ari,

When you messaged me and offered me this beautiful opportunity to be featured on your blog, I was super excited!

I remember the message saying “…faith, career, love, self-improvement, success, failure, identity, purpose, lack of purpose, killing it, struggling, relationships, friendships, family…”. I thought to myself easy-peasy.

These are topics I write/journal about as often as possible and so I thought sending in my entry would be super easy. That was the first place where I was wrong, writing for yourself and writing for an audience are two different things. 

Writing for yourself helps you understand yourself better, brings you some clarity. You are on the receiving end.

An audience? Wow. Getting people to understand you is a whole different thing.

While I would love to write on relationships, friendships or family, (as these are the things I find myself journaling about the most… because I think I have learnt way too much in the past few years).

I choose to write on faith as it is the one thing that has kept me teachable and open to learning in all these other aspects.

Let’s title this, WHERE DOES IT ALL COME FROM?

I am 26 years old now.

5 years ago, I decided to take on the opportunity of doing an internship in a different country for a month. In the beginning, the application process seemed so straight forward. I did not envision the hassle the next few months would entail, I realised later that I would have to pay for every week of this internship. I said to myself that it could be done. So I paid for it.

After paying, I found out that I had to take a professional exam to qualify for it. I paid for the exam and wrote it.

When this was done, I found out that I needed to apply for a student visa as I could not use a regular visitor’s visa. I accepted that. Then I was informed that I needed to attach a police report (this is not cheap where I live either).

I forgot to mention that I would have to sort my own accommodation and travel and all of that other stuff. The list of expenses kept getting longer and longer and it only upset me more because it was more than what I bargained for.

My other classmates had opted for internships arranged by the school and so had a way cheaper route.

I was discouraged every step of the way and I remember driving to my friend’s apartment to ask him to guide me through the police report. As I parked downstairs, I realised how stressed I was and how I was failing to meet the deadline and how I did not want to keep asking my parents for money they had not planned for and next thing, tears!!!!

I was full-on weeping. I was so broken by all that was going on and in the middle of this outburst, a question popped up in my head… who is your source? 

Ahn Ahn! I paused and said “ehn?”.  The question rang in my head again. The answer, however, was an easy one. Jesus. Jesus was and still is my source. He is the one who fills my cup so it overflows, He blesses me with good health, He gives me money, love, food, water, sleep, laughter, joy, everything! Most of all, Jesus is my source of peace. 

In that moment, I had to remember Jesus was my source of money to pay for it all. My parents were only the vessel. He would sort it all out. I started laughing at myself, ashamed that I had such a big God but still had time to worry and cry. I was filled with so much peace from that moment. 

There’s a good ending to this story because I went for the internship, had the best time and as they say…the rest is history. 

I needed that experience because even though the internship is long behind me, I learnt a valuable lesson that gives me a chance to ask myself one question whenever I am under pressure. The answer is always Jesus and knowing the answer is always followed by some peace.

So, let me ask, who is your source?

“I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.” John 14:27 NLT