The first issue of the Rise and Shine column was published on Thursday October 1 2009.
This means that this week, the rise and shine column clocks 10 years! It is worth a celebration. It is a major milestone that needs commemoration by all of us involved, including you the readers, the editors and Nation Publications Limited (NPL) too!
As we commemorate the 10 years of sharing ideas that can inspire you to realise your potential, to dream big and to excel in life, I want to salute those that have played big and pivotal roles.
First are my two friends who originated the idea that I should run a weekly column in the newspapers. I was reluctant for a long time. Stanley Onjezani Kenani and Peter Makossah separately influenced me to run a motivational column.
It was interesting to see that although they did not meet and I doubt that they were even friends, they were separately influencing and persuading me to write. And they both offered to help if I was afraid to start. Kenani literally offered to write the initial articles for me.
At that point, I had no choice but to do it on my own. I salute these two gentlemen for believing in me and for pushing me. The big lesson here is that sometimes you do not have the ambition or drive to start something but good friends may push you hard and if it is a good thing, go for it. You may excel on something that came from your friends suggesting to you to start doing.
Second is Taweni Gondwe Xaba. She was a consultant at the NPL around September 2009 when I made an unsolicited proposal to The Nation for a motivational column. She was very excited about the idea. She asked me for a few sample articles and then invited me to the NPL where I met her team and several reporters and editors.
She strongly believed in the impact that a motivational column would have on the readers and especially the youth. She immediately suggested that I should take on the Sunday’s Real World Preparation column, which I run in parallel with the Rise and Shine column.
Along with Taweni, I want to greatly salute the editors for the great job they have been doing editing my submissions: Moses Michael Phiri, Chikondi Chiyembekeza and Aubrey Mchulu, including some of the past editors like Ephraim Munthali, Gracian Tukula, the late Edward Chitsulo and many more.
Without good editors, their guidance and support, I would not have sustained the column for 10 years.
Then there is James Chavula, my former maths student and now a great journalist—he has been a source of encouragement and has been giving me great technical advice.
I could not have kept writing the more than 500 articles for Rise and Shine in 10 years, every week if you the readers were not there. Thank you. You are the only reason I write. At times it is really difficult to find time.
Often I write late at night when tired or even sleepy. Other times, I park the car by the road-side to write and submit the articles in time while on the move. I take these sacrifices because of the feedback you give me, that you find the column very useful and empowering, energising and inspiring.
We have focussed the column on developing your professional life as a career person or business person. We have also occasionally touched on personal development. We will continue with the same path but as recently reported, we now want to be transformative.
Our articles should not just inspire you, but they should drive you to take immediate action that transforms your life. That is the challenge we have in the second decade of the Rise and Shine column.
To achieve this, we count on the readers’ support and feedback. Looking forward to even better articles and impact ahead.
Watch out for a book soon, collection of selected Rise and Shine column articles, as we commemorate the 10 years of existence of this column.