Sandras Phiri

My Life is Easy Story

Growing up, I was shy and quiet. I believed that people didn’t like me. I was often sick. I was complaining all the time. I always had problems of some kind. I remember for so many years I had a medical problem of some sort. For years, I had allergic conjunctivitis. I also had allergic bronchitis. I had malaria not less than 3 times each year of secondary school. I had a ringing sound in my ears due to quinine (I still hear it when I pay attention). When I was in Grade 11, my dad died. The following year, a week before my Grade 12 exams, my mum died. My younger brothers and I had to stay with my older siblings who also had their own lives and families to take care of. I had problems! Imagine being often sick, poor, with no real home and being a teenager! I felt sorry for myself and my little brothers. The only positive thing I had was that I always did very well in school. So I passed my exams to go into university.

During this period I told everyone about my problem. I shared how hard life was; how I had so many allergies; how I had only enough money to get to school and food for 2 days and had to wait for the government bursary. I remember this beautiful girl I was close to, who I told my problems on a daily basis. I was always asking her out and she always said “it is best we were just friends”. Now I understand why she never even kissed me! I wouldn’t go out with myself 8 years ago!

Throughout this period I always asked so many questions. I asked what made people successful? What made people happy? What would make girls be attracted to a boy (that was poor)? Believe me, after growing up shy and quiet and going to a boys seminary and losing my mum, what preoccupied my mind was to have a girlfriend. I spent lots of time while staring at a page thinking how to make money, get a girl and become happy! I was looking for a nice girl I could share my problems with. So whenever I met a girl, and after consulting with other single guys ( who we called “monks”), I told her who I “really” was. I shared the story of my life. I was thinking this beautiful girl would think “poor boy, he’s had so many problems, he needs me”. I wondered why in the 4 years at varsity I had no girlfriend!

In my final year I met a nice girl who understood me. It turned out she had worse problems than me. For that reason, she ceased being attractive. I had a few male friends who encouraged me and a few others who had major issues. Somehow, I was finding people like me and these people liked me.

Something that I did a lot was reading. I read outside computer science which my field of study. I read about successful people and motivational stories. One day I read a story that talked about two dogs that entered a room full of mirrors. One dog was happy and the other one was sad. The sad dog entered the room and saw a hundred other sad dogs and he cried and the other dogs cried too. He left feeling sadder. The happy dog entered the room wagging it’s tail and saw a hundred other happy dogs. The dog smiled (he was a special dog!) and the other hundred smiled back. The story said the world was like a mirror!

After that story, I thought about my life and what I had created it to be. It was full of sadness, illness, problems and negative people. I thought that if the world was a mirror, I could change what I projected.

I thought when people ask me that “wadyela?” (which would directly translate as “are you eating well?”), which is a common greeting in my country, I’d now say “Yes!” as opposed to the usual answer which is “a little bit”. When asked how I was, I’d answer “I’m great!” or “I feel fantastic!”. When greeted with the question “How’s life?” I would not say the usual “so-so”, I’d say “Life is easy!” or “my life is excellent!”. I’d go as far as saying “I’ve got no problems”. This went against my usual behaviour where I only shared the negative; “I’m so broke”, “I’m so sad”, “I’ve got problems”. I started saying such things as “today, I’ve got money”; “I’m so happy today”, “I’ve got a great job”.

It felt strange at first as I did not really believe that. But the more I said it, the easier my life became.

With life is easy, I’ve been happy even when I’m broke. I remember singing to Destiny’s Child’s independent women’s tune saying “To all the men who are broke and happy, throw your hands up at me!”

I strongly believe that life is easy and expect things to go well. When things went wrong in the past, I’d say “I knew it!” and when they went well I’d say “I can’t believe it!”. But now when things go wrong, I say “I can’t believe it!” and when they go well I thank God and say “I knew it!”. When I mess up, I never say to myself “I’m so stupid” because my subconscious mind does not know that I don’t mean it and it remembers.

Whenever, I said “life is easy”, I loved the response I got. I made some positive friends. Needless to say, girls liked me. I easily got jobs where I worked with wonderful people. When my belief in life being easy became stronger, my “luck” got bigger. I met and married a beautiful and intelligent woman (those don’t exist in “normal” life). I met her when I was broke. She said she knew I’d be a great man because of my positive attitude. I believed her. But more because I believed life was easy. Now I meet people who offer me great things. If I believed life was hard, I’d would not trust and hence self sabotage. My health is great. Now I’ve got great friends and business colleagues. Even my family and in-laws are nice! Have they changed? I think it’s what John Maxwell calls the Bob Principle: “When Bob has a problem with everyone, Bob is usually the problem”

Saying life is easy and being positive is not on autopilot. For every 1 positive person there are 9 negative people. Hence, I constantly and deliberately expose myself to more positive – life is easy – material. I hang around positive people and I entertain positive conversations and thoughts. I tend to avoid negative TV or radio programmes that only show doom and gloom. I ran away from negative conversations and people. If I have been exposed to something negative that is pulling me down, I go and listen to a positive CD or read a good book for a few minutes to bring me back to my life-is-easy self.

I now believe that the Bible in Mathew 6:25-34 is saying “Why worry? Life is easy”.

One of my great former bosses sent me an article that said that it was not earning more money that made people happy, rather happy people earned more money. (Visit the Life is easy group and read an article about a University of California Riverside Professor Sonja Lyubomirsky’s study that shows the correlation between happiness and success). I’m a living witness! Did I tell you that one of the highest paid guys at the two places I’ve worked in South Africa was a young black foreigner? I was the only black guy at my former workplace. I’m the only black guy in the new team. I’ve heard rumours that racism still keeps people from getting what they want? Barack Obama heard it too. What do you believe? Look in the mirror and see the person that’s stopping you. Life is easy!

Have a “life is easy” day!

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  1. Wow!!!!! You know all the years i knew you on campus i wouldnt have guessed your life story ( Oh this is someone you knew on campus dont know if you remember me but i do)
    I can relate to your life back then. my dad died when i was quite young my mum had to bring up three girls on her little salary. She made sacrifices and everytime she did it was engraved in my heart that whatever the case i will make it and be happy for my mum and for myself.
    When i was on campus i had issues i tell you, thank God for that Bursary thingy coz God know where i would have been. there were days i would be in my room and ask God why i dont have this and why things have to be so hard for me. But there was this voice i would hear telling me “things will be better maybe not tomorrow maybe not next year but eventually they will get better”.And guess what? they did!! things are getting better and better each day. Everyday i wake up i thank God for the new day and for the blessings to come. When im broke i tell myself its just momentary coz THINGS WILL BE BETTER!!!! maybe not today maybe not tomorrow but eventually. Even when im low emotionally you know sad and all i always say things will be better and believe me they do get better.
    Im so loving your story because it resonates in my life. Your website is so cool you guys are doing a great job.Keep on keeping on!!
    So remember however bad the situation remember Things could be worse but most importantly things will get better!!!

  2. i wana thank GOD for everything,secondly you for these inspairing,encouraging and life changing stories.Iam so very touched with the stories,these are the encouragements i need in my life.i’ve have had a tough and rough time in the past.i love positive people in life because am also positive i strongly believe i can make it in life,because i have faith in JESUS CHRIST.
    Is there a website for more of these stories iam be a member please.

    Thank you,God bless u and your family.

  3. Hey Mercy! Of course I remember. Thanks for sharing.

    Mel, thanks for the good wishes and blessings. I’ll be posting more often on this same site. You can also join the Life is Easy group on Facebook.

    God bless y’all!

  4. Life is what you make it. I can relate to this story and I am a living example that there is power in our words. We need to be careful what we say to ourselves.
    There is power in the universe that draws to you only that which you hope for. Faith is belieiving for the things that you hope even if you do not see them, you will see those things come to pass as you continue to believe.

  5. Things became easier for me when i came to realise that there is a very poweful Being who is always looking out for me and wants the best for me. When i realised that iam not in control of the things around me and if i aim at being happy i can to a greater degree acheive it. I thank My Lord Jesus for his Grace.

  6. hi. I came to your website by chance, from a facebook page where your wife/partner has a book – really hit the nail… best!!!

  7. Wow Sandras! Had no idea about your life story. The sad but true thing is that often those who’ve had to overcome much are the ones who often rise to great, lasting success…once they get over the pity-party. A very inspiring read and a lesson to all. I am soo impressed at how far you’ve come and quite convinced the sky is the limit for you (and Lele your lovely wife and family of course!).

    I especially like your adaptation of Mathew 6:25-34 the “Do Not Worry” passage. Vs 33 tells us how “Seek first His Kingdom and his righteousness and ALL THESE THINGS will be given to you as well” (NIV-My emphasis).
    How true!

  8. Sandras am inspired,i had no idea and yet i spent alot of time with you guys chatting am beginning to wonder what we used to chat about!!!I’m greatly inspired by your courage and the way your life has turned out.I will get in touch i think i need some life couching..

  9. Great stuff, may God continue to bless you as you bless others with your life indeed “Life is easy”.

  10. Sandras this is very inspiring, may our good Lord continue to bless you abundantly.

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