I stopped being afraid


Dear Lord what a question!

This in my view is a question loaded with a LOT! What if I were a billionaire? What if I was a better human being? WHAT IF I truly lived a life of no fear? A life of not being scared to voice out my opinion without fear of ridicule. To talk about my dreams with as much confidence as I do my non-existence love life? What if I lived in a world where expressing my hurt, disappointment, vulnerability and shame was possible?

Wait, does such a world even exist?

For months, I’ve been intentional about “SHOWING UP”, irrespective of how I felt. I’ve normalised facing my imposter syndrome, accepting my failures and learning to ask for help. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, well check out the last few blogposts and catch up.

Captured by Neo Mareka

With time, showing up gradually became my new mantra, a new habit I’m growing to love. Showing up is also very empowering, but I’ll also admit that it also takes a lot of skill, confidence and self- awareness. It requires a level of vulnerability, where you constantly need to remind yourself why you are doing what you doing. Is it working? Mmm , now this I’m not too sure about.

Growing up in a country like Lesotho can be disheartening. It’s a small, beautiful country plagued with many socio-economic and political issues. As a nation, we’ve experienced a LOT over the last 4 years and it’s becoming increasingly difficult to stay optimistic and energised. It often feels like I am living in a country where young people’s dreams and aspirations often take a back seat to the scandals of prominent leaders and politicians. A land where only the negative headlines seem to see the light of day, while the positive news, achievements and incredible work young people are doing withers into nothing. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, do yourself a “favour” and check out the front pages of our local newspapers. DEPRESSING! I wallowed in this negative state of mind for weeks on end, which eventually clouded my judgement and dimmed all my optimism. With each passing week, I drift further away into this negativity, losing all hope that things will be okay. I suppose that’s what a negative state of mind does.

For a number of weeks, I’ve constantly felt like my country had become a land where opportunities and dreams aren’t allowed to thrive. For me this has been extremely frustrating, especially when when our neighboring countries seem to be progressing and moving forward (even with all their flaws). Could I be so wrong?

Picture by Justice Kalebe

With time I grew tired of the pity party, and asked myself what it was I could do to change the status quo. I knew I had no control over what our leaders were doing or the narrative they were telling about our country. I had no control over what stories made the front pages or international news. The only thing I had control over was my state of mind, attitude and the story I wanted to curate about my life as a young person living in Lesotho. I asked myself WHAT IF I shared stories of hope and possibilities? Stories that will inspire more young people to share their stories of hope, believe in their dreams and show the world just how incredibly beautiful our country is.

Picture of Afri Ski  Resort

Initially I was scared! My fear of failing and not being good enough showed me flames, but I wrote my first series of blogposts. I grew more confident with each post and this motivated me to write more articles. Through my international travels to the United States of America (USA), Europe and Asia I made it my mission to tell the world about the Mountain Kingdom of Lesotho. I bragged about our mountains, ski resort, water falls, peaceful and talented people. I had the privileged to speak at various webinars in Kenya, Botswana and Ghana and my story remained the same. I told everyone I met about my beautiful country and all it has to offer.

Webinar in Kenya

I decided to start a YouTube channel, a platform where I would share my money, travel and lifestyle adventures. The goal was still the same – tell stories that would inspire young in Lesotho to dream bigger and pursue their dreams. Stories that would show the world that Basotho are brilliant because we are. I’ve intentionally branded myself as TKay Nthebe from the beautiful mountain Kingdom of Lesotho. With each opportunity I have, I continue to talk positively about Lesotho and Basotho. I’m intentional about only sharing positive stories of our successes and achievements as individuals and communities. I also make it a mission to collaborate with other Basotho who are working hard to change our narrative and position our country in the very best light. What a journey this has been!

My YouTube channel

Starting, I was so afraid about my content creation journey; mainly because I felt like I didn’t know a lot. I second-guessed myself and judged the quality of the content I was creating. I made a lot of excuses why I couldn’t start, convincing myself that I needed a lot of expensive equipment. I was worried that I wouldn’t be consistent or finish half of the projects I started. Looking back, all this was such rubbish. It’s amazing how crippling fear can be.

To be honest, my first achievement started in my mind. I woke up, decided to stop being afraid, believed in myself and the vision. I took my phone, wrote my first blogpost and then later recorded my first video and uploaded them. I started! That is a BIG step. I kept going, learning from my mistakes and improving as I went. I kept showing up, even when it was hard to be in front of the camera or when I didn’t know what to write about. I kept SHOWING UP!

Captured by Nkopane Mojakisane

If like me, you are tired of all the negativity, I encourage you to start- whatever it is you’ve been dreaming about. I challenge you to ask yourself “WHAT IF” I took the leap of faith and started something with my passion, skills, talents and stories. What if all of these could improve our lives? Well, I believe that if we stopped being afraid, and unapologetically pursued our dreams, that we could achieve something great. It’s possible.

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