Being content

The face of hunger – Oswald Mbuyiseni Mtshali
I counted the ribs on his concertina chest
bones protruding as if chiselled
by a sculptor’s hand of famine

He looked with glazed pupils
seeing only a bun on some sky-high shelf.

The skin was pale and taut
like a glove on a doctor’s hand.

His tongue darted in and out
like a chameleon’s
snatching a confetti of flies.

O! Child,
your stomach is a den of lions
roaring day and night.

We see images like these everyday, everywhere, from the news to social media depicting hunger. It appears like the one thing associated with Africa is a bunch of children starving. And as time passes, this appears the norm. A lot of us have never experienced this hunger that thousands go through everyday. Though we cannot magically wave our hands and wipe out hunger and poverty, we can start small by being content with what we have, big or small.

Practice gratitude
You might think you have nothing to be grateful for; your family’s going through a rough patch, you had to repeat a class. But in reality, there are many things specific to each person that can count as something to be grateful for; the amazing people you call family and friends, how you narrowly escaped an accident. Just being aware of your environment and being grateful for the little things go a long way.

Avoid comparison
This is the real killer. Most impulsive buying is sometimes just us trying to show whoever’s watching that we can afford some things. The problem is, when you compare yourself to others, you’re comparing your worst features with their best ones. Take time to know your goals and values and live up to them, not other people’s expectations.

Get out of your little bubble
A lot of times, we only see things that directly affect us. We really only genuinely care about ourselves. Take time to go to less privileged areas, give out things you don’t use anymore, offer help to someone in need. Sometimes we get so caught up in our worries, that we forget others are far worse than us.

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