Update: The Ministry is moving!!!!

Im quite excited to be writing this post even though this is the second time im writing it. The post just refused to save in drafts ūüėĘ.

So a few things!!

1) I purchased a domain name. So show some love on¬†Becomingyeva¬†ūüôā you’ll notice that its still under construction but in less than a week, this blog will be moving there. Which is very¬†very soon, so update your links Asap. I dont know why I didn’t start with a self hosted blog from the beginning as moving now is just unnecessary stress but better late than never abi !!!

2) my PiggyBankNG post got featured on linda ikeji!!! Yaaasssss!!!.
I honestly didn’t anticipate the feedback i have gotten from this post… i got featured on a couple of¬†tech blogs organically and the PiggyBankNG guys decided to use my story on some of their sponsored posts. Feels really good ūüėä. ¬†This has encouraged me to write more valuable content.

In a related note, i have a really good feelings about this blog. 50 followers and almost 1000 views in 3 months. Might be tiny for some but baby steps.

Im taking digital marketing courses and might pick up programming because of this blog.. which is good personal development for me.

So all in all,

I dont want to create blog goals so i dont put undue pressure on myself and blog for the sake of numbers… I’ll like this to continue to grow organically for now.

3) in sad news, I misplaced my Cassiedaves blog planner and thats one of the reasons I haven’t posted in a while.. like i had composed all my posts till August and had everything all planned out.

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It could get disappointing when you plan and something disrupts your grand plan but you know, all things work together for Good for them who trust in the lord!!

so ladies and Gentle men!!!!! check out Becomingyeva.com my new online baby!! and let me know what you think below… ūüôā

 

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I tried a Social Media Fast for 3 weeks.

social media fast by becomngyeva

You people don’t know me else you’ll be clapping at this title. Let me put this in context, some of my Collegues at work¬†have nicknamed me Snapchat. That’s how into social media I am. The annoying thing is that I am an content consumer not a creator on Facebook and Instagram. That will change soon.

social media fast by becomngyeva
Social media fast

I went on a social media fast for 3 weeks and it was one of the most difficult things i ever did. I honestly felt like a drug addict. I had withdrawal symptoms. I wrestled temptation and chewed my fingernails a lot.

Why did I Do it? ¬†Let me share my experience…

the first reason was to focus on studying for my exam. I wrote about how I study here. the other was I had a lot of projects I was working on but it just seemed like there was no time to complete them. But I had time for Snapchat o. lol, I knew I had a problem.

Important questions I had to ask:

  • why am I on social media¬†(to stalk people)
  • How does it add to my life
  • What do i gain off it
  • How much time do I spend on it?
  • what’s the ROI (needed to be a business person now)
  • How much do I spend on it
  • How much to I make off it
  • Why do i need to document my life for people to see? what kind of approval do I need
  • What am I missing out of when i an off it
  • What do i contribute to it/What can I contribute to it
  • whos posts make me feel bad
  • what ae my goals and how do they tie in

i also had to list out the Quality things i have gained off social media: eg:

  • slay Festival
  • Steph obis Course
  • social prefect tours
  • Tutorials
  • deals

and the negative

  • celebrity scandal
  • bad news
  • advertisements

Like i said, I had some¬†crazy withdrawal symptoms I almost couldn’t believe it. To even add fire, it was during my church’s annual fasting event. Every time I felt hunger pangs, ill also feel the urge to just while away time online but I couldn’t.

  • i was checking my mail like a crazy person. In the spam, social media and promotion folder. Etc. it was very funny.
  • ¬†i was reading text messages again and again.
  • Ill reinstall and delete Instagram like 2times in a day

The struggle was real!!!!

i think everyone should try this. You wont know how much you need it until you start it.

Some guidelines on how to go about it. 

  • make sure you have a purpose for fasting. It helps on the days you want to give up. Make sure its a worthy purpose.
  • have a replacement activity. I usually check Instagram at night after dinner. I decided to use this time instead to read articles on medium or read a devotional.
  • have an accountability partner. Just having someone to talk to could really help

What you can¬†do on this journey: I didn’t do all but I recommend all.
– Take that course that will improve your career, its time to take the classes and read for it.
– Pick up a book.
– Replace the social media apps with educational apps (dualingo, coursera, skillshare)
– Listen to music or podcasts
– Just sit down and be looking around.
– Rewrite your cv. Research what you do.
– Call/ whatsapp people.
– Exercise
– Clean your house.
– Arrange your wardrobe.
– Midnight calls
– Volunteer
– Travel
– Take pictures on your phone but dont post just be admiring yourself.
– Plan your blog
– School handouts and flyers
– Rearrange the contact details on your phone
– Swim
– Board games
– Interact with your parents/ landlord
– Gossip face to face
– Take public transport to a friends place
– Wash the toilet again
– Research skills for jobs you want without comparing with anyone
– Mentor a random child
– Eat more
– Work out.

Advantages
– you are not being sold to. The joy.
– You are not being told what to do
– No bad news you dont care about.. you know all the good news already

So, What did i miss?

  • I realized that life went on without me. The news at the end of the day wont change wether you see it or not.¬†That’s a¬†humbling reality.
  • friends getting engaged.
  • I couldn’t promote my blog as much as i wanted to.
  • I got¬†some¬† recognition for my piggybank post and didn’t know for days. Until a friend whatsapped me.

What i was able to achieve

  • i was able to read for an exam
  • plan my life without the interference of others. You’ll be surprised how much other peoples plans influence yours
  • save money on going out and going to events.
  • i was happier:¬†not a lot of¬†bad news got to me.
  • i discovered i was following some unnecessary people. People of the pepperthem gang. I no do. Unfollow.

Things i should have felt but didnt.

  • i wasn’t really less stressed.¬†FOMO stressed me out.
  • i went for events but was still too shy to network. It’ll take more than a social media fast¬†to cure that.

Needless to say, I’m glad I did it. I was able to use the time to do a lot of things. I also found out more about myself¬†and was able to do complete more projects. I red a lot and I felt free at some point.
In conclusion, i think everyone should try this. You wont know how much you need it until you start it. ill need to go on another¬† fast because i don’t think i totally achieved what i set out to achieve. I’ll probably do it for about 1 month this time.¬†I’m taking baby steps.
I still haven’t decided how I’m going to manage my business but ill survive. I hope.

Journaling: My experience and Tips on Journaling.

I saw a post on Instagram by CassieDaves about one brand that makes journals copying another persons brand and I realized journaling is here to stay.


yes its trendy to journal or sell journals now. in case you didnt know.

at 4000-6000 naira a book, it is definitely a lucrative business, ill admit I also thought about doing it but I knew God was not in the idea and I moved on to other business ventures sharp sharp. The planners trending in nigeria now are the cassie daves blog planner, the dee mako planner, AYD planner, business planner, areses finance workbook and many others

Ill be reviewing some journals I bought last year. Check out the fist review of the cassie daves blog planner tomorrow.

I have been journaling since I can remember.  do you remember those days of slumbooks in secondary school and year books.

I had a very interesting English teacher in senior secondary school. she made English so much fun for us.

I remember there was a term where we were required to journal every week or every two weeks. she made everyone by an 80 leaves notebook and would give us a topic to write about every week. just write she said, your story doesn’t have to be true. she will give us topics like My fist heartbreak or my annoying cousin or the time my parents fought to write about and she will grade on how interesting your story was.

I don’t remember if this was graded because creative writing is not really part of WAEC curriculum but I took those assignments very very seriously. I was a science student but I would ignore biology assignments to do my English assignments like my life depended on it.

ive always loved creative writing, but that woman added fuel to it.. even after secondary school, I would keep a book every year and write about my most interesting days. One thing was I didn’t like was people reading what I wrote cos I didn’t want anyones opinions. I would go through lengths to hide my journal..lol.

I also had an experience during my Nysc where I wrote down everything thing I wanted to achieve that year, my 5 year plan, vision, mission, etc, i went t a¬†christain private university where we were hounded about vision and mission and¬†all the shenenigans andi could define them in my sleep¬†buti didn’t believe them. ¬†I didn’t ¬†believe in speaking or writing¬†things into excistence then. I was so much of a sceptic then and I only wrote those things outta boredom. but I kid you not I had a list where I wrote 20 thing before 20 and I achied everything including getting a job in the company I wrote down.

I was shocked!!!!¬† I didn’t do anything extraordinary or pray or even¬†work harder that anybody else for these things but they happened. I need to do a separate post on this experience cos it was life changing. Since then I have been journaling everything… Goals, fiction, prayers o… everything.

anyways that’s my history on journaling

I currently have about 9 journals that I write in almost everyday. I used plain note pads for some, I bought specific journaling books for some but I’m going to do a series where ill be reviewing all.

I also create my own personal journals when I’m in the mood and ill do a post on how to do that to save you some money.

The journals include:

  • goals and mission for the year.
  • everyday todo
  • learnings
  • Finance
  • Prayer
  • Blog
  • business
  • Diary/everyday experiences
  • writing

My tips on Journalling

  • don’t force yourself. if its not coming just doodle or draw carricaturs. nobody will beat you. its your book.
  • date your posts: it helps to track
  • draw a calender
  • if this is your first time. take baby steps. write small small
  • do it in the morning/evening. when you have time
  • use a nice book.
  • if you want to use apps, ensure you backup everyday.
  • have fun.

Benefits

  • it can make you a better writer
  • you can vent to your self
  • its amazing company for introverts or people who don’t like to talk
  • it could improve your hand writing
  • it could serve as a reminder for your goals and dreams and keep you focused.
  • A place to develop your ideas.

 

Let me know what you think about journaling in the comment section below. Is it worth all the hype or is it a waste of time???

 

 

 

 

The Smart Money Woman by Arese Ugwu book Review.

img_2671In the spirit of being a smart money woman, a friend passed on this book to me to read and I finished reading it that same day.

I had to send a few screenshots to a male friend who’s not so smart with money and wont be caught dead holding a book that’s clearly targeted at women.

I was going to buy the book at the SLAY Festival but God works in mysterious ways… ūüôā

My review:

The fictional story line was kinda predictable. if you are a fan of short simple predictable stories then this is for you. For hardcore readers who analyze Dan Browns investigations and Steven kings horrors, the story line will underwhelm you. it involves a lady, her Lagos big girl but broke friends, family from Benin and a rich knight in shiny Armour who’s about to move into the most expensive part of Lagos. If this is your kinda thing then you are in luck.

The finance part of the book was very on point. Arese touched on Wills, Investing, networking etc. She also included practical exercises at the end of every chapter which was really helpful.

what I love most about this book is its practicality and timeliness. Financial Education in Nigeria is poor!!!  I know too many Nigerians who  know nothing about investing and think being rich is qualified by the size of car you drive. I wish something could be done about this mentality but at least this is  a step in the right direction.

Heck even me talking, I took some finance/ACCA classes in 2012 to and I sill didn’t understand money management and investments. To be honest, things like investments could be difficult for some of us to comprehend and put into practice. All we know is get paid well, or get plenty customers and use to money to take care of yourself full stop.

Smart Money woman speaks finance in an everyday man language. it is not judgy, doesn’t use big terms and breaks it down in steps. Step 1 do this. step 2 do this.

The investment lessons at the back of every chapter made it seem like a children book, but are we not all children.

Thats how arese breaks finance down.

She also name dropped a lot of Nigerian/instagram brands sha.. it made it more relatable to people like me but I can see how that could be annoying to some people. it was like those movies sponsored by Milo or glo when you see a green cup on every table.

You can tell i enjoyed reading the book abi. Shes coming up with a smart money workbook/ journal soon so you can lookout for that

something i took away: You can earn 1 million every month and still be broke. Talking about 1 million. see how I saved 1 million naira.

looks like my blog is really going hard for Finance, that was not the plan o lol, but I recommend this book.i give it a 7.5/10.

have you red the book or heard about it?

Let me know below!!

Laptop Buying guide

You know how in an African home, if you are studying engineering then you are the person who’ll fix the toilet, transformer and maybe the broken roof because, why are they paying your school fees?? abi..


I¬† studied computer science and anytime some one breaks their laptop screen, its me they call, they discover a virus, want a new laptop, just don’t feel like typing,: ¬†Guess who? me…

it’s not as if I was taught any of these things in school o.. but there’s computer in my degree so why not ask me right? lol.

based on this, i have become quite proficient, if I must say in picking out laptops for people. I have decided to share the guide I use when buying laptops for people and what you need to know before buying any laptop. Funny enough, it just dawned on my that¬†I don’t own a¬†laptop. Hmmn.. that needs to change.

Lets get to it. To get a laptop you need to ask yourself some basic questions:

  1. What do you need it for/ what do you want to use it for: this determines everything. it determines the size, the spec, the quality etc. a regular laptop cannot be used for high-end gaming. you will just spoil something. Do you need a large screen?
  2. Then consider¬†your budget: so that you don’t carry gbese on top laptop. There ae banks that offer financing schemes for laptops and devices. you might want to consider that too.
  3. How long do you plan to have it: If you are using it for your new business, then you need a laptop that will stand the test of time as it’s a money producing asset, if it’s just for your final year project, after 1 year it has served its main purpose. etc.
  4. Your Location: Brands bring in laptops based on¬†local consumer behavior, just because you saw a sweet laptop in the USA doesn’t mean you can use it in Nigeria, the language on the OS can be different, the keyboard arrangement can also be different, you might also not have warranty.
  5. Look and Feel: laptops come in different sizes,¬†with different displays, screen sizes and resolutions, you shouldnt go and buy one that the screen shines like halogen¬†bulb when you know you are as blind as a bat. pls¬†don’t spoil your eyes more. some laptops also¬†come with glare protection and some dont, so will you be using this under the sun or at night (then you need a backlit keyboard)? You need to take¬†things like this¬†into consideration.

Then put these into consideration

  • Deals: beware, does this deal sound too good to be true? is someone advertizing a¬†laptop to you for 30k only? watch o!! its probably second-hand oor it doesn’t have all the specs, or be prepared for the most snail-like journey of your life. Buy from reputable retailers also.
  • Ports and pheripherals: dont go for an extra thin laptop because of aesthetics when you know your school still shares lecture notes in CDs or you need to project presentations every week. Manufacturers sacrifice laptop ports for thinness, so look well and get a PC that works with your situation.
  • Touchscreen laptops¬†might be a tad¬†expensive but offer a better experience.

  • DOS: this means empty/naked Laptop. This PC Doesnt come with an operating system. Please and please except you are an advanced system administrator who plans to install Linux, Never buy a dos Machine. People buy them to put in pirated software which is very harmful to use. Hackers monitor what you do when you connect to the Internet from a pirated software and they could steal important information. Make sure that you check that your Operating system is genuine when you buy your system.

  • Mac or PC: For Nigeria, because of most of the programs available for use and cost of maintenance, i recommend a PC. there are states in Nigeria where no one knows how to fix a Macbook. Alot of the software available are also made for windows.¬†But if the applications you use really require a macbook (advanced video editing maybe) then go for it if you can afford it.
  • Service centers: Always find out about the closest service centre to you as soon as or before¬†you buy your laptop
  • Security: Are you moving around or not? do they steal very well in your area or do you have nosey siblings or you need to do some private work?¬†do you need a desktop so no body will steal it or encryption software or fingerprint login?
  • Warranty: all laptops should come with at least 1 years warranty except its grey, or pirated. always ask for your warranty card or confirm your warranty.
  • Processor: The processor is almost like the brain of your laptop. Get educated about it.

The cheapest laptop may not be the best but You might also not need a very expensive laptop to do what you want to do.

You see now that budget is not the only thing you need to consider when purchasing a PC.

Things/terms you need to know


These are terms that from my experience, get alot of people confused or frustrated with Laptops. I have tried to break it down as much as I can.

RAM: Read Access Memory: this determines how fast programs start-up on your computer. Think about it like a temp flash drive. 1 GB ram can only run  1gb of applications and activities in its memory before it gives up or starts to make your computer freeze, same with 2gb. for ultimate peace of mind, go with a minimum of 4gB Ram.  if your RAM is too small, you wont be able to multi task well neither will you enjoy your PC.

ROM: Read Only Memory: this is the permanent storage that comes with your laptop. The laptops hard disk.¬†here you have the choice of SSD or HDD: while SSD is quieter, lighter and faster,it is smaller and quite expensive for manufaturers. You’ll most likely see HDD because its cheaper and bigger. SSD usually comes in 32-64GB while HDD comes in 500GB-1 terabyte. Pick your choice, based on the space you need. ¬†you can do a minimum of 500GB so you don’t start looking for external hard drives in 6 months.

GHZ: Gighertz: The ghz of a laptop determines how fast it is. Technically a 2.5ghz  laptop should be faster than a 2.0ghz laptop, but in reality we see that its affected by other factors. It looks like this competes with the RAM up there but they all work together. The speed is also influenced by the type of processor.

Cores: processos come in Cores. This is when you see dual core, quad crore laptops. Dual core means 2 cores, Quad means 4. In the simplest term, when you run a program, it runs on a core. The more cores you have the more programs you can run simultaneously. It gets more complex but this is the basic explanation. Processor Cores also come in different types. For Intel It is Core i7: quite expensive, for power users and the highest for now, core i5:¬†a little bit lower, then¬†core i3: before we see¬†Celeron, Pentium etc.¬† These i3,i5 are also made up of cores and some extra technology but that’s not for this basic class.

eg: a dual core, core i3 computer = 2.5gh fast with 2 sets of core i3

a quad-core, core i3 computer = 2.5gh fast with 4 sets of core i3

Battery Life: a trick some people swear by is¬†‘the smaller the screen of a laptop the longer the batter life‘. i dont know about this o. it makes sense since smaller screens might use less power, but a bigger battery technically equals a bigger laptop. Ofcouse¬†bigger processing power and higher resolutions take more battery. Just make sure you know the MilliAmps of your laptop battery. Its usually on the battery itself or the carton. Batterylife is directly influenced by usage.

Screen Resolution: The more pixels, the sharper the pictures on your screen.¬†1,366×768 pixels (HD) should be your minimum, with 1,920×1,080 (Full HD) usually being ideal. here’s a break down

  • HD: 1366 x 768 basic computing tasks not very¬†fantastic but very ok.
  • HD+: 1600 x 900 resolution is great for casual gaming and watching DVD movies.
  • Full HD: 1920 x 1080 resolution allows you to watch Blu-ray movies and play video games without losing any level of detail.
  • Retina display: 2304 x 1440, 2560 x 1600 and 2880 x 1800 resolutions are found in Apple’s 12″, 13.3″ and 15.6″ laptop displays, respectively.
  • QHD (Quad HD) and QHD+: With 2560 x 1440 and 3200 x 1800 resolutions, ideal for professional photo and graphics work as well as high-def movies and games.
  • 4K Ultra HD: 3840 x 2160 resolution ¬†for viewing and editing incredibly lifelike images and graphics.

Videocards and speakers: you have nothing to worry about here. except you are a power computer user of which this post is not for you. ūüôā

 

ill stop here¬†so I don’t loose you.¬†I really hope you get these terms with the understanding that they are not so difficult and that this post really helps someone. Let me know your thoughts below. I wont call myself an expert, this post is mostly from my own experience¬†so if you find any mistake(s) kindly call out also.

Disclaimer: I work with a Tech company that is sometimes indirectly involved in producing PCs. I tried to make this post as brand neutral as I could.

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How I saved 1 million Naira using PiggyBank.ng

piggybank

Yep, my title is correct.
I just completed my task of saving 1 million Naira using PiggyBank.ng and i am vey proud of myself.

Why don’t you read the complete and updated post here

 

 

As I said in a previous post, I have always been a careful spender, but that didnt stop the breeze from carrying my money away.. I would calculate how much i was earning, how much I thought I was spending and how much I was actually saving and I¬†wouldnt be able to ¬†account for the difference. I used to delete my bank statements because i didnt want to face the truth… ūüėĘ.¬† Not Anymore!!

In my last Post, I wrote about how i was able to save and even earn more last year and PiggyBankNG was very instrumental to that.i only discovered that after i had collated all my buckets of funds. Well, it looks like they have been responsible for saving me about 1 million Naira.

So what is http://www.piggybank.ng ?

pi.PNG

They are a website/ service that help you save your money. Fullstop.

You sign up, set your target, connect your atm and just forget about it till whenever.

They don’ disturb you with alerts so you can actually forget them (till you check your email sha)¬†. They have only 4 days in the year you can withdraw your money and you get penalized if you withdraw on any other day.

Another attractive thing is they even give you a tiny interest for saving your money. (Up to 4% Annual Interest not alot but this is not an invenstment program) There are No deposit and Monthly fees.

Heres the thing about saving money, don’t save for the sake of saving, save towards something or towards investing into something else.

I am saving for 3 reasons:

  1. Down payment on a new car, so that I can have enough money to add to the money ill get when I sell my old car.
  2. Mutual funds: to serve as a passive form of income. Which after a while ill take the money to do number 3.
  3. Buy land in Ajah or participate in the Lagos Government housing scheme.

Technically I need more than 1 million Naira for all these but at least i am taking visible baby steps. The dream is getting closer to reality. I can see all my savings in one place.

Heres how i did mine:

I started saving with Piggybank sometime last year and I picked the option of saving 25k every week to run for 10 months. You can pick any other option you want. You can save 1k everyday or every week. You set your own budget.

I connected my withdrawal and deposit accounts and basically just followed the instructions on the website.

You can save for a friend or use quick savings when you have extra cash you want to quickly deposit there before your brain starts telling you to do otherwise. If you don’t have cash in your account, they kinda pause the system which now starts again when you have money. You dont get penalized for not having money.

See their FAQ page here: https://www.piggybank.ng/faq

It’s not MMM so don‚Äôt expect to get rich off it. Use it funds you really want to set aside fo something later on.

Note: I have a friend who works with PiggyBankNG but all opinions are mine and i wasnt paid for this post.

Would you like to try this?

Have you tried them before? What was your experience?

Oya share below:

How i made more money without knowing, in a recession. 

Yep, my title is correct. I calculated my savings and networth and i was worth more than I expected.

You see, I am a frugal person, but that doesn’t mean I have always had control  over where my money goes. It got so bad in 2015 that i knew i had to change something in 2016.!

I noticed this after I calculated how much my company was paying me every year, how much I thought I was spending and how much I was actually saving and I couldn’t account for the difference.

That was when I realized I had to take some basic financial steps to correct this. This is a pretty long list and i had a longer one but i decided to blog about the steps i actually took so i can proudly say I learnt from experience. i didnt do every activity at once o.. but i tried most of it in 2016 and will retry it in 2017.

Lets get to it:

  1. Getting some Financial education. I took courses on Coursera and skillshare on personal finance.
  2. Getting a financial journal.: There are finance journals in the market but im writing a post soon on how to create one from a blank book which is what I did.
  3. Sowing:  this works, weather you are religious or not. When you give you tend to get back. The universe always rewards.
  4. Read books: I purchased a-z of personal finance by Mrs Nimi Akinkugbe, read a friends copy of  Smart Money woman by Arese Ugu, rules of wealth, pocketbook for believers etc. All these were done in January.
  5. Read Articles online: I scoured the internet to find as many articles and blogs on personal finance as i could find. Arese had videos on Ndani Tv, and Guardian Life, Mrs Akinkugbe has a radio show on smooth FM and was very active online.

  6. Invest: I never understood investing until finished smart money woman by Arese and I started asking people questions.¬†¬†I met QueenAnne on a Tour organized by Social prefect and step obi¬†and she graciously added me to an accountability WhatsApp group, now I have multiple streams of investments.¬†She told¬†me¬†about ¬†a company called farmcrowdy. I am also investing in livestock at a family members farm (use what you have) I just pay the farm keeper and visit once in a while to check. i decided to research more and ask more questions, and now I have some other investment options that you can start even if you earn only minimum wage, hit me up for more ideas.. ūüôā
  7. Have a Passive source of income or a side hustle  I serve as a creative director/ financer/ executor with some of my friends companies , I run Ybarn and YS as my side hustles.
  8. Separate your accounts: I actively use 2 bank accounts 1 with an Atm the other with a mobile App. I  also have accounts i cant reach except its an emergency.

  9. Savings: I save in 2 ways.
  • PiggyBank.ng: I use Piggybank to save. Piggy bank is just an online kolo. Ill do a seperate post on this.
  • Target Accounts: If you stay in Nigeria and you have a GTB account, you can save using a target account. A target account is basically an account that is connect to your name but not connected to your ATM. You have to go to the bank or go through the web version of the internet banking platform to withdraw from that account into your main account before you can spend the money.

10) Mutual Funds and Investment Solutions: these are financial services that help you invest your money in other things like bonds, stocks etc. at very little risks to you. I used the GTB Investment 1 but stoped cos it wasnt as seemless as i thought which was kinda my fault. there are others from First Bank and Stanbic out there that are good alternatives. There are different packages and the ones I have tried are the myPass and Medview scheme. you can look here for more details and select what suits you best.I am trying stanbic this year so lest see how that goes.

11. Use your smart Phone to document. I mean actually use it for the smart things its able to do. Take pictures of your receipts. Download finance apps and apps that help you save. I use over 5 finance apps that do different things and I try as much as possible to document my purchases and take pictures of my receipts using these apps. Documenting your purchase ensures you are not broke by Mistake as you can see how your account balance is reducing and what is reducing it. I haven’t found an app I especially prefer but would do a review of the ones i have tried.

12) Take advantage of Deals, group buying, coupons and discounts. There’s almost no good that’s sold in retail that never goes on sale. why pay full price now when you can pay half later. search Dealdey¬†and online stores regularly for deals. If you are a corper or Government worker, you have access to low cost goods and services and can even pay instalmentally. However you should be careful of installment payments as that can be a form of bondage if you buy the wrong product.

13) do you know about PVC: its your pensions volountry contribution. This is my best tip so far so stay with me. You know if you work a 9-5, your employer is mandated to pay tax and a pension contribution from your salary on your behalf, weather you like it or not.  Do you also know that your pension contribution isnt taxed? . How can you take advantage of this? You can ask your finance guy/lady in the office to take part of your salary, up to 30% and add to your pension fund. That 30% taken out of your salary isnt taxed. If you do this for a while, you get to save money and get to earn part of your tax back. Its an easy way to earn more and save more at once and dont give me the side eye, you are not cheating the government it is perfectly legal. Ask your PFA.

14) save in Forex: as much as you can. I remember early last year when the black market rate of the dollar ¬†went up to 270 and i was almost in tears. Someone told me to still exchange my money at that rate and I refused. After some weeks i went to the bank and the rate was 310 and i grudgingly exchanged most of my savings. It was honestly very painful and I didn’t want to do it. In my mind then, the exchange rate was still going to stabilize. Thank God for wise counsel. Now the black market rate is 500 naira and it is still going up.

Honestly, i think what helped me best was asking questions, I asked and I received. I asked the most unusual people, experts, church members, hair dressers etc. and i was able to pick out different things from different people.

So if you have money issues or even any issues, just ask.

I might even do a part 2 of this post with more things i plan to do this year.

You can check out desolas Blog and Tosins blog for more ways to save money this year.

what Financial goals are you setting for yourself this year?

How do you plan to save?

How do you plan to make more money?

Do you have any ideas that have worked for you?

Why don’t you share?

 

I went for the she leads africa Slay festival Lagos and I have mixed feelings.


when I saw the Instagram post for the slay festival,I knew I was going to go.

Anytime i hear training, meeting people, food, cool people. I just get very happy.

then I saw the date on my birthday and I started getting unsure but thanks to the she leads africa marketing team/agency.. plus the fact that i didnt have any birthday plans, i went.

I have to give it to them, their marketing was really onpoint, I mean they were everywhere. Newspapers, blogs, social media, whatsapp!!! I mean.. a round of applause. I need their team for my next campaign.

I actually said to myself that I wont go for over marketed¬† or over hyped events this year, not because of the organizers but for personal¬†reasons and this event didn’t prove my hypotesis wrong.


First of all, ¬†I prefer intimate events where I have an idea of who’s there, do I fit in with the audience, are the speakers speaking to my needs etc. these are the things i usually look for but for the #slayfestival, when i saw TFD and her husband FD.. i was sold(silly me didn’t cross check the time)

Secondly, I have had bad experiences with free events. Free events attract awide range of people from trouble makers to peace makers. The mix isn’t very good. This might be good for the organizers but not for me. #slay festival wasnt free btw, just thought to put this out there.

Next is over crowding, we still havent gotten crowd control right in this country.

Lastly: when theres alot of hype around a poduct or event, people start to get unrealistic expectations which the owners/ organizers would have to stretc to reach. some people meet these expectations and some do not and that is fine.  But  when you cant, it could result to high and then dashed expectations which is never good. This happened in the #slayfestival. i heard some people came all the way from Ilorin but left disappointed.

anyways, back to my recap,

I went to the festival with my amazing friend eremi, I made her leave her house in magodo by 7am so that we could get to the venue on time. . which we did..  we got there by 10:00 am and we met a queue: first red flag but its ok.. we were still hyped up.Then there came this annoying  drone that kept on pouring dust on everybody on the queue.. smh.

I love the railway venue charm in pictures but it  in reality, it was quite dusty/ musty. Eremi is asthmatic and she was very uncomfortable. We had to leave earlier than planned cos we both didnt want trouble.


we got into the venue and were like, where are the chairs? There were about 150 chairs for almost 400 people and more people were obviously coming. The vendors were also still setting up at 11am and we started to get annoyed. The organizers kept on talking about showing up early so naturally they should have setup a day before abi?  The sound was also still shaky.

We met up with some acquaintances and they shared the same sentiments, honestly the morale was quite low.This was around 10:45- 11:30 am Unfortunately for some people, they got the oga madam ticket which was worth 10-15k depending on when you paid and they were expecting Vip treatment which never happened.

Then the weather started getting hot (as expected) and there was ¬†nowhere to stay hide and listen. There were tents, but the space couldn’t contain everyone.¬†To say we were angy was an understatement o.. lol


I know its starting to sound really bad but it wasnt all gloom!! After some complaining and hiding and hissing, we decided to make the best use of our 3k and our time. who comlaining don epp?

The first thing I did was to go back to the entrance, where the talking drum guys were still playing and I danced with them. It was so much fun. I’m sure some people thought i was high on something but those guys made sure i danced to my heart fill.. bless their soul. I¬† now feel so bad that i didn’t give them any money. If i see them again sha!!

 

see me trying to komole!!

We waited for the vendors to set up and I connected with as many as possible. i took cards, flyers, asked questions.. ¬†they had really good vendors i must add. I met with people like diylaw.com, who will be helping me register a business name, soyummy had¬† free popcorn, I had the most amazing smoothies, Ankara accessories yakpa everywhere, books, inverters… i went everywhere.

 

I left just after¬† Toke and Areses talk and I gained a lot.(i sat not too far away from a speaker beside the vendors cos i didn’t want to stay under the sun) I really like Toke Makinwas brand. I havent red her book just because……¬†but i try not to judge her personality by what i see¬†on social media,¬† I really like her story and the fact that she can create value from her bad experiences!! I’m not sure i agree with some of her values but i admire her business sense.


there was also an art exhibition by¬†an SME consultant corner for free business consultations, a virtual reality creation lab (i didn’t see it)¬†a Beauty in Lagos manicure bar( i love ez) ¬†Henna designing by the Henna place (couldn’t wait my turn on the queue sadly)¬†free natural hair styling by kinky Apothecary( unfortunately i had extensions on, saw some of what she did and she did a great job), make up by House of Tara, make up challenge by Beauty Rev NG, (saw clips on insta)¬†¬†a Maggi Jollof bar (I couldn’t wait)¬†e.t.c



All in all.. it was a good event. The decor was beautiful, bellanaija had a photobooth, people were very well dressed, the vibe was fantastic.

Would i go next time, maybe yes, as a vendor or a speaker ūüôā but I learnt valuable lessons.

1. Not all that glitters is gold: (especially social media) 

2) always find a way to make the best out of any situation you find yourself in. 

She Leads africa is committed to educating and empowering african female business owners. I love what they do and totally key into their vision. i stand with them!!

Go on and slay!!!

 

ynaija

 

 

GMAT: How i am studying for the GMAT 


Yep, I’m studying for the Gmat exams.

I have been studying for this exam for a very long time because i want to get an MBA someday, Gmat is a requirement for most MBAs and their scholarships. MBAs are pretty expensive and i need to have the best chance at a scholarship. (Also because i have been procrastinating and fear has been ruling my life in this aspect)

Im also thinking about doing a weekly update on my studying, what ive learnt, etc just to keep myself accountable here. Let me know what you think about that and lets see how that goes. 

So how am I studying?

Lets get straight to it. 

First thing i did was to delete Instagram, twitter and snapchat from my phone. Social media is a thief of time and I decided to use that time to study. I couldn’t delete Facebook because i use it for some work, and i wanted to reply all my birthday messages. (Side note: i install and delete Instagram occasionally cos the struggle is real).

The next thing i did was to purchase the official Gmat guide. Popularly called the GMAT OG.

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The OG consists of 3 books in one and when i got to the market, the least price of the complete set of 3 was 30,000 naira. It was even 50,000 naira in some stores. I just humbled myself and bought only one book for 10,000 which was the best price i could get at the time. This was quite an investment cos 10k for one book isn’t exactly cheap but if im totally honest, its worth the investment ( exchange rate palaver). 

If you need the book in Lagos, i bought it from yaba and i have the guys number although i cant guarantee the price cos of exchange rate fluctuation but i can hook you up.

The GMAT OG  is honestly quite bulky and I’m convinced that if i can finish all the questions in it them I’m good to go. Unfortunately there are almost 1000 questions in it and they are not baby questions. So far I’ve been able to practice about 300 questions effectively.

You can also get some other books like barrons, kaplan, princeton review, mamhattan etc, but most Gmat gurus swear that the OG is the number 1 book to get especially cos its written by the exam makers themselves and the other books are just for supplementary study. 

The Manhattan GMAT study books are also very good but i didnt find any of them in yaba market cos no one seemed to have any in stock. I cant testify cos I haven’t used the book myself but some study preps swear by it. It also seems really pricy too. 

The next thing i did was to make out time on my calendar. I set an alarm to study for 1 hour in the morning and 1 hour in the evening. This helps to keep me accountable even though I don’t follow it religiously.  img_2758

Another very helpful tip i discovered was signing up in GMAT forums and clubs. I never really liked forums because there just seems to be a lot of noise and chatter in there and they could be disorganized. But these ones have been super helpful. People answer difficult questions, they organize live online events with school reps, they give discounts on some online classes and some people actually help to review your applications to see how good you are doing. There’s just a joy in kindred spirits hustling towards the same goal. The most helpful sites include:

http://www.beatthegmat.com , http://www.gmatprep.com , http://www.poetsandquants.com , http://www.gmatclub.com

These sites are on bookmark and you have to visit them to confirm my testimony.

it would be helpful to note that Beat the Gmat has a fantastic 60days study plan which you can use as a study guide. They send you an email everyday for 60 days. I have tried other plans like magoosh but this is still my best. You can subscribe here . A study guide is very important. There are also some documents and spread sheets you need to have with the study plan but i wont go into details here. 

I mentioned earlier that the Gmat official guide is bulky and i cant really take it out of my house, because of this, i decided to look for study apps to aid my study sessions.

Thanks to Lagos traffic, I spend so much time commuting to work and functions and sometime it just feels like I am growing old on the road. The right Gmat app was very necessary because of all the potential wasted time.

I needed to find the right GMAT app for the job. I spent a lot of time and data downloading, trying, practicing questions, deleting and reviewing all the GMAT apps mentioned below.

Disclaimer: I only tried these apps on an IPhone, so all the apps mentioned here may not be on the play store nor work the same way (sorry Windows)

Now lets get to it: the most effective study apps for the GMAT exam for Yevandy.  I present to you, my top 3:


VERITAS Prep I love veritas prep. Amazing app or rather its the content of the app that’s amazing cos the app itself isn’t fantastic. Veritas prep is actually a study prep company and they do test prep for Gmat, GRE,ACT, etc. Honestly, the original test prep is quite pricy, (more than $1500 for the basic plan) but this particular app contains informative videos on every topic on the GMAT. You also have access to 1 free full length exam on their website.

You could also sign up for a 1 week trial which gives you access to their full test prep, textbooks, one on one prep, lessons and the whole shebang. They also have an informative YouTube channel and social media presence. (android and IPhone app available)

The Economist: Also an amazing prep program. gives you everything veritas prep gives apart from the videos. Instead of the videos you get an interactive prep software with questions and explanations which i think even works better than videos as you have to practice, and answer questions while you learn. its also a little bit pricey, about $800 for 3 months when they are on sale so you might have to settle for the 1 week trial which I have used 3 times with my siblings email addresses(not proud). but trust me the 1 week trial really works. (android and IPhone app available)

Ready4 : formally Prep For Gmat: This is the best out of all 3. This app is simply amazing. I have to check all the time to make sure its still free cos its too comprehensive.  i really love it. Let me try to explain how it works. First of all, They ask you questions about your intended school, the score you want etc They basically take your profile and save it. Then you take a full length test to determine your current ability. Then the classes are made into flash cards and then there’s a test after every class and then your estimated score is updated after every test and then I’m sure you get my point now. There’s also a daily reminder to study. The app is intuitive and beautiful, the content is amazing. there are answers to your questions and you can study randomly or according to topics.  (android and IPhone app available)

The questions in this app are not simple at all and the explanations are really on point. it works offline and best of all its FREEEE!!! lol.


Now to the others: wont go into so much details so I wont have to do a part 2 as this post is long enough.

Manhattan Prep: looks really good but most of the features are locked and they only give you 24hours free access which is really small. I couldn’t do so much with that and  I wasn’t ready to pay.  All in all, you get bad ass question, strategies, lessons etc. It looked very  good and i saw a lot of good reviews, but the less than 5 days trial really put me off.

AllenPrep: The iOS App for Allen prep has a lot of questions, more than 1000. knock your self out. Not very interested.

DigiSchool: is alright, but the adds popping up every time you launch the app kind of annoy me :(, not as bad as some others sha, but it comes with a lot of valuable test preps and exam advise.

Pocket Prep: as the name says is a really condensed prep app. it allows you do the basic practice and noting so much. you can unlock bonus features by liking their social media pages and eventually paying $12 which is not bad. But don’t depend on them for full study.

McGraw Hill: Used their text a while ago and it was very helpful. Their IOS app only has practice tests..

Arcadia Prep also need to pay for full practice but the free lessons were ok. tick with the full course if you are interested even though the interface isn’t too friendly.

Kaplan and Magoosh Flash Card apps are just mehh!! their full desktop prep is much more better. Magoosh really needs to work on their app.. its so crappy.. its so sad cos they have great content. Kaplan was deleted a log time ago, I don’t even remember what it looks like.

I’m not sure if anyone can go through all the questions in all these apps except you have more than six months to prep and you are practicing for 4 hours, 3 times everyday in the 6 months ūüôā

I hope this has helped someone trying to study for the Gmat exam.

I religiously use  the top 3 apps and i have seen ALOT of improvement in my studies.

Have you used any fantastic app to study for the GMAT exam? Please tell us about it in the comments below.

Let me know what you think about my list above.

Thanks.

 

 

The TFD Series: 10 things I learnt.

I attended this amazing event called the TFD series organized by two powerful and Inspiring women in Nigeria. Tara Fela Durotoye and Ibukun Awoshika

tfd2
TFD Instagram Page.

 

it was an amazing event and believe it or not, I¬†took notes worth 5 pages. I had to stop when my hand started to ache and I couldn’t keep up any more.

Some things they said really impacted me like:

The first question she was asked was about building Capacity:

View more on my new site here