CHOICES

We all want things that will make us happy, healthy and complete. As children, we thought the world was only full of giggles, smiles and laughter. Being gifted with the latest toys sent us running helter-skelter. However, being an adult, I have realized that wants will always remain insatiable and there are times you get hit with bouts of pain and disappointment. Like the classic Oliver Twist fable, we will always want more. When we drive a simple car, we always think upgrading that car will finally give us the satisfaction we desperately desire. This applies to desiring a bigger house, better job or fancy trip. We always get back to square one when these demands are met ultimately.

When these fail to fulfill us, we reach for alcohol and other recreational drugs to soothe our aching hearts. Sadly, they leave us disappointed yet reaching for more.

As the year draws its curtains down, it is time for us to reflect on how the year has unwinded for us. Most of us might have formed resolutions at the beginning of the year. Introspectively, we have to go over these and double up our steps trying to achieve and check most of them before the year ends.

It is perfectly normal not to meet all the targets we set for ourselves, especially when the expectations are high. Take a break from it all, relax and breathe. Get back on your toes when you are done. There’s a lot more to achieve.

As cliché as resolutions sound, they have been very instrumental in my life and upbringing. My laid-back friends describe me as being too ambitious. However, the parable of the talents in the gospel demands that we put to use the skills, abilities and talents that we have been gifted with. Because when the Master comes, he is going to demand results of whatever he entrusted us with.

I have some friends who say they haven’t identified their talents even in their adult age. If you think this way, you are not alone. I have been there before. It took a conscious effort of reflection and prayer to uncover and unearth my talents.

When God reveals your talents to you, he rewards you with satisfaction and fulfillment even in the midst of chaos and despair. Talents take a lot of hard work and persistence to hone, because they usually come in the bud stage.

It is normal for us to have addictive tendencies. These addictive tendencies propel us to strive for more and achieve the best that we can. They drive us to think creatively and put our talents to good use. It is important that we strive to remain addicted to Him and his word. For his word is our light, guides our path and shapes our vision.

To those of us who have fought unspeakable battles this year, still keep fighting. Keep pushing and holding on to that faint invisible thread. Notice how diamonds are refined by fire? Tough battles in our lives make us stronger, faster and better. They help us move from victory to victory. When others walk, we run. When others run, we bolt. When others bolt, we leap! When others leap, we fly! Because we have our backbone and victory being resident in the promises of the Creator.

Even though, I have not achieved all the resolutions I set for myself this year, it is a clarion call to stay focused and sharp; giving my set goals my best shot before the year ends.

Remember happiness is free and you call the shots. Don’t be too hard on yourself and remember to enjoy a healthy life to the fullest.

Have an amazing day and a Happy November!

Eliezer.

THE JOURNEY OF WRITING

Good morning readers, I trust we are all in perfect health? 2021 looks like it is going to be all sorts of amazing. I am pretty sure most of us were in church to cross over and give thanks to God, preparing ourselves spiritually for this year. The Crossover service is essential in our lives when transitioning from one year to another; to make resolutions and desire to leave old habits back in the old year. The purpose of this blog post is a reflective one, reminiscing on how the journey of writing has been so far. It is also to motivate upcoming and budding writers to keep writing, because you might never know who might be reading.

We all do need inspiration for major activities that come our way. In a culture obsessed with measuring talent and ability, the important role of inspiration is often overlooked. Inspiration awakens us to new possibilities by allowing us to transcend our ordinary experiences and limitations. Inspiration propels a person from apathy to possibility, and transforms the way we perceive our own capabilities. Inspiration gives you the drive and discipline to continue whatever you have started. It keeps you in sync with your passion and fuels it. Why did I decide to write? Just for the love of it.

4 years ago, I had finished watching an episode of the famous detective series, The Adventure of Sherlock Holmes. Sherlock Holmes, a regal, brilliant obsessive-compulsive high on the drug of puzzles typically snooped around a crime-scene, and collected his information. He observed countless details about the scene and the victim (many of which the police seem to have overlooked) and then from that information arrived at a conclusion that may not be necessarily true, but could be probable based on the information available.  Sherlock Holmes, together with his assistant, Dr. Watson used a technique known as inductive reasoning in solving all of their crimes. Inductive reasoning allowed Sherlock to extrapolate from the information observed in order to arrive at conclusions about events that have not been observed. Here, we see the detective walking into the scene a blank slate; with no pre-supposed ideas about what may have taken place. And he goes on to gather information until he arrives at a conclusion — that still may be incorrect. And yet more information will come and come until he is quite sure he’s arrived at the right conclusion.

His assistant, Dr. John H. Watson created a blog, on the advice by his therapist to write his thoughts and feelings about returning to civilian life from the military as form of dealing with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. He does not start regularly updating until when he first meets Sherlock. The blog became an internet phenomenon and was viewed by nearly 2000 people in one day. These fans even started showing up at the crime scenes in order to catch a glimpse of the duo even before they started work. It was then I decided to start my own blog.

Instead of crime scenes, I decided this blog will feature cases seen at the hospital from my own perspective. From interacting with the patient for the first time, through diagnosis to treatment and discharge. This would enable people with similar complaints not resort to self-medication but seek the necessary treatment at the hospital.

Then it got to the point where I had to start writing. Did I even trust myself to produce good content? I locked myself in a room one day, with a pen and a paper and told myself “I was going to write!”  I penned down the free floating ideas that came to my mind without a topic in mind. Interestingly, what I realized was the more I wrote my thoughts down, they seemed to center around a particular theme, which led me to the Title ‘Missing Ingredient’. I had wanted to understand the essence of living and the most important thing in our life as individuals; the bits and pieces that mend together to make our lives meaningful. Before I realized, I had scribbled down a 1000 words.

I could not hide my joy, when I realized I had been able to write something down, whether meaningful or not. Just the idea of being able to write was what kept my joy in check. However I had to share the content for people to read. My idea behind my blog jumped alive and the creative ideas kept coming, as I quickly went to Google and searched “How to create a blog”. Even though I came across a lot of alternatives, the option I have never regretted choosing is WordPress. WordPress gives you the ability to follow the work of other bloggers, and also be followed back. The more likes you get on a post, it meant a lot of readers were enjoying your post, motivating enough to keep you writing. I quickly created a username after creating the blog and selected an appealing theme to make reading easier, and match the content I had aimed to produce. After successfully creating the website, I had to creatively come up with a name. Just because I wanted it to be a form of Online Journal, I named it Diary of a Growing Black Man.

After editing the piece consecutively, I rewrote the final piece in my diary and named it my first blog post. I then proceeded to type this piece in WordPress. WordPress automatically outlines the errors in your post in red so further editing to produce the masterpiece can be done. In addition, there are a ton of fonts to select from, to get the readers stay fixated on a post. Immediately, I was done typing, I let out a huge sigh of relief and published it on my website. https://eliezerontim.wordpress.com/2017/06/11/the-missing-ingredient/

Again I went on Google and searched “How to Make Your Content Viral”. I can’t understate how influential Search Engines have been in my life because as curious as I am, they always seem to have the right answer to my questions. In order to create content that would go viral, it is essential to share the content on various platforms including Social Media profiles such as Facebook, Twitter and WhatsApp, and also share them on receptive websites which accept guest blogposts. I immediately followed these steps and had a large readership within a day.

The feedback I got from my audience was so overwhelming, that I felt a deep sense of satisfaction. Many were actually surprised I had written such a good piece, even though it was my first time. Checking the daily statistics was the best way to start my day because it gave me a sudden surge of dopamine to spring forth the ideas into being. In addition, it gave me so much happiness and joy.

The hardest part of any venture is actually not initiation but maintenance. How do I keep getting content to keep my blog active? The inspiration behind most of my content is as a result of talking to different people and getting to know their views concerning a wide variety of topics. I am the person who will strike a conversation with a random stranger just to be inspired enough to write a post. You never know how much someone knows until you ask. I also try to limit the post between a 1000-1500 words because humans have a short attention span. The feedback I get from my readers after I exceed the 1500 word limit is still overwhelming. For all of you who read my posts, I appreciate you all. Let’s be great in 2021.

Fast forward 4 years later, I have been able to publish over 65+ articles on this website. I am thinking about being an author of a best-selling book to hit the Ghanaian marketplace. Also I have managed to put up another blog mainly for Mental Health Articles for which I have about 15 articles. https://www.onlinepsychiatrygh.com/blog . I have been employed by an affiliate marketing company known as Skills to Dollar Bills, and finally, I manage the social media content of an NGO, DYKB (Development of Youth Using Kindness from a Biblical Standpoint).

Writing has been a fulfilling experience for me because I get to channel and make my thoughts known using a piece of paper and a pen as a scaffold. My views and opinions are heard visibly, and finally, with the right gig, I know it will be rewarding financially.

You have probably always wanted to write but don’t know how? Remember Hard Work Beats Talent! Whatever comes through your mind can actually be written down. The fluid thoughts are meant to be heard. It could be true the escape route for most introverts tends to be writing, but I know a couple of extroverts who are excellent writers, so bear in mind, everyone can write. Scribble down whatever comes into your mind, and don’t stop until you have made sense and put a full stop to the last sentence.

Bear in mind, writing teaches you persistence, determination and consistency because good writers take several days to finish editing a good blog post. Aside their vocabulary being enriched, they develop keen eyes for good posts and strengthen their mind by reading further and deciding to write. You might want to learn the use of punctuations, develop your own style of writing and take further courses. This will render a voce to your writing and place your name on the writing leaderboard.

Keep writing, keep pushing because a professional writer is an amateur who did not quit. Stephen King, a famous author states “If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot” Read a thousand books, and your words will flow like a river. All you have to do is sit down, remove all distractions and start writing. In the initial phase you might need someone to edit your works until you become perfect.

“You don’t start writing good stuff. You start out writing crap and thinking it is good stuff, and then gradually you get better at it. That is why I say one of the most valuable traits is persistence” – Octavia E Butler

Thanks for reading!

Eliezer

INSPIRATION

Finding inspiration

In the midst of objection

Channels affection to the meaningless

And attention to the profitless

The feelings that envelope

The optimism that elopes

Succumb to the fear of annihilation

And the distress of renunciation

The silence of withdrawal

Reaches out to the voice of laxity

The utterance of affinity

Fetches an audience of insensitivity

The leaf that floats on the river of desolation

Hitches on the rock of expectation

Exalting its feet of abjection

Magnifying its air of inclination.

Well, this is my first ever poem I’m writing after I had inspiration from Jess, Obed and Josephine. I never thought of writing a poem in the first place.I think it’s an effort, I tried! I’m hoping my next poems would be better than this one.

Eliezer Bernard Owusu Ntim

Photocredit: GoogleImages

BREAK POINT

20th October 2016, It’s 12:36 pm I return from the ward and realize I have 3 written assignments to complete, each demanding at least 3 hours to be completed. An untouched project work hiding in my locker plus a reading assignment .. I have a class in the next 25mins but I don’t know how many hours I’m sitting in – might last 2 hours or more.


I’m so hungry I could eat a whale if it was served with rice on a plate. My head keeps pounding probably from the nap I had the previous night. I feel dizzy, the blood vessels in my eyes are visibly pulsating, the carotid arteries in my neck keep hitting hard that my head bobs up and down.

I look up to the skies and wonder where my help would come from? How am I to face this journey alone? A few months to go until med school is over however our interactions with our lecturers always end in tears.

Sleep keeps giving up on me. My body tells me to read more because I know less. My head reminds I have to continually read but my mind says “I’m done for!”.The spirit is willing but the flesh is very weak. I need Your strength because I’m breaking down. I thought I had everything under control when the semester started 3 weeks ago. Why the sudden twist? I’m weak Lord!

Then, I saw a Good News Bible just beside a pillow which appeared to be mine.I realize it’s been a while I read it, been a while I heard God’s voice. Am I ready to communicate with Him? I need strength!.

He then says


I know I have strength to face any difficulty that comes my way. I’m writing my name in bold at the bottom of a blank sheet and handing it to You Lord, to fill in. No matter what obstacle you have to overcome, just lose hold of the grip at the end of the rope and leave everything in God’s hands and I know He would never let you down.

I want to cultivate a deep sense of gratitude, of groundedness, of enough, even while I’m longing for something more. The longing and the gratitude, both. I’m practicing believing that God knows more than I know, that he sees what I can’t, that he’s weaving a future I can’t even imagine from where I stand.

Don’t give up!