If something is worth doing, it’s worth doing it well
“Throw your heart over the bar and the rest of your body will follow” is the mantra that spurred Patsy Mugabi to create a lifestyle blog, Justified Ecstasy. This is a life lesson she learned from Norman V. Peale in his book, The Power of Positive Thinking. Her blog has seen her co-author a book on mental health, Memorable Amnesia.
Patsy is a fourth-year student pursuing a Bachelor of Business Science in Financial Economics degree. She describes herself as an art-preneur, an avid reader and a ferocious writer. She tells her story of the birth of her blog and book.
Who is Patsy?
I am a being filled with confidence, the size of Africa, especially when it comes to talking all things personal finance. I an art-preneur, an avid reader and a ferocious writer, who loves to thrive on challenges or to challenge the status quo. I am an amiable person who is always ready to learn. I am the last born in a lovely family of eight children. I was born in Uganda where I did my O and A levels.
When did you start the blog and what was the inspiration?
I started the blog in 2015 to tackle problems I was facing with my hair. They say a woman’s crown is her hair, so I wanted to change the popular narrative about natural hair being unprofessional or hard to manage. The salon became a place I slowly dreaded due to the bad experiences I encountered. Later on, I broadened the scope of the blog to personal finance and lifestyle to attract a larger audience and to engage them in the everyday issues that we go through as adults in our 20s.
How did you come up with the blog?
I started writing about everything and anything that I found interesting which included debate and politics in Uganda. I took a break shortly after because as the saying goes, one can be a jack of all trades and a master of none. I needed to redefine my ‘why’ and reshape my niche in professional writing which I later started in 2017. I decided to broaden my area of coverage by writing about personal finance and lifestyle. The core inspiration behind it was to change the narrative that for us to live the best life in our 20s, one ought to have a lot of money.
Who are your target audience and why?
Justified Ecstasy is a lifestyle blog that targets people in their 20s who are looking for lifestyle tips on a budget and personal hacks. The choice of name is a story for another day. But in a nutshell, I wanted to make their ecstasy justified through having these conversations and hoped that my writing would leave them to feel blessed and blissful, hence the tagline of the blog; Blessings and Bliss.
What is your greatest achievement?
I co-authored a book on mental health with Jade Novelist, an author and poet who has written multiple anthologies. The book was titled “Memorable Amnesia”, a collection of poems focused on mental health in the black community. I did a reading of the book last year during the mental health awareness week. Co-writing with Jade Novelist was something that I did out of my comfort zone. In as much as I was still blogging about hair and personal finances, I wrote about vulnerably on conversations about mental health. I believe mental health matters matter to everyone. I have also written for a few magazines and online blogs in East Africa.
With the help of my colleague, Daniel Ochieng, I formed the Strathmore International Students Association which taught me teamwork along with resilience, perseverance, confidence and commitment, makes the dream work towards achieving a desired end goal.
Why did you choose Financial Economics for a course?
When I was younger, I always wanted to be an engineer. I was uncertain about what course I would pursue in campus after my A level. I did some research on the types of engineering that existed and I found financial engineering. When I came to Strathmore, I learnt that the course was not among those that were offered. I therefore decided to sign up for Bachelor of Commerce so that I would specialize in Finance and perhaps a master’s in financial engineering later on.
Eventually, I was advised to consider a course in Financial Economics which I have loved ever since. I would be lying if I said, it wasn’t mentally rigorous, but it is going to payoff I believe. I have come to the realization that Financial Economics is a means to an end because it is a versatile profession that could land me in the impact driven fields like health and transport.
How do you balance between studies and content creation?
Financial Economics is an uphill task, but the endgame is worth it (pun intended). Also as an impact driven person, I have learnt the subtle art of putting in the hours to do the work and creating time for content creation. I believe if something matters to someone, they’ll definitely create time for it. Once you are passionate about something, time will always be there to actualize it. If something is worth doing, it’s worth doing well.
Where do you see yourself in the next 5-10 years?
I am working towards creating content that will engage everyone such as a podcast that would revolve around money matters for people (in the 20s) to understand how to sustain money and how to go about their spending habits. I would also like to write an e-book that delves into personal finance, budget planning and saving habits through which millennials such as myself can achieve our money targets. I also look forward to conducting a bi-annual event that would provide room for necessary conversations on money and mental health matters. And of course, I hope to venture into the research world as a financial economist.
Do you have a role model?
Yes. I look up to my mother who has demystified all the odds for us to live the life that I lead up until now. God bless her heart of gold. Oprah Winfrey and Michelle Obama also inspire me. Oprah is an impact driven person and Michelle was the FLOTUS. My secret ambition is to become a First Lady in the future.
The article was written by Odhiambo Obonyo.
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