For the past week, I’ve been away. I know. I took the time off to craft up a social media project I called #ThingsMyFriendsSay. I ran the project on Instagram and Facebook. In #ThingsMyFriendsSay, I highlighted seven quotes from personal friends of mine that pushed me forward; motivated me at times that I particularly needed to hear them. Here, meet my motivational friends and their words. Who knows, they could be speaking to you too!


Gracy Balinda
You know how every little girl talks to her Barbie doll about everything? And every little boy to his puppy? Well, meet Barbie doll/puppy. This doll is my personal shrink. She’s got a ka cute nose but it does a terrible job at staying out of my business…because i never let it out of my business😂😂. Grace said this at a time I was worrying too much about a future I hadn’t yet even faced. I feared failing to achieve things and forgot the things I’d achieved so far; the things I’d overcome. My shrink fixed that. She actually inspired the inception of the project.


Allan Mwesigwa
Allan’s Dad and mine (RIP) were close friends before any of us learnt how to use a pencil. It’s no surprise, therefore, that me and this crazy guy are inseparably stuck together. Allan said this on my birthday this year. We’ve been through very good AND tough times together. As we grow, both the good and the bad will keep coming. As long as I have him here, I’m good. Hakuna Matata. He made sure I was aware of that, and I am.


Shannon Ruth Kalyebara
Don’t be fooled by the wink; she’s just as much a principled Margaret-Thatcher chic as she is a free spirit, and a beautiful soul too. She believes in me so much it gets scary sometimes. Many of the things I do today are to make people like Shannon proud. She said this recently, at a time I was frustrated with sluggish results of my work. I take Shannon’s words very seriously, because she has more foresight of my visions than I myself seem to have.


Derrick Mitchell Rwebembera
Ha! If you know me and you don’t know Derrick, my friend, you don’t know me. Nope. Well, what I’ve been through with Derro in 10 years needs a dedicated Facebook page and Instagram account. That pretty much explains his birthday message to me this year. He can be crazy (no, he’s always crazy), but he’s a hell of a friend whose loyalty knows no limits or boundaries. His ambition to achieve our dreams is overwhelming. I love this man like my own blood.


Angella Hildah Kemirembe
My right hand. Big Beautiful Eyes (we call her BBE) couldn’t have come into my life at a more deserving time. In 3½ years, we’ve gone to school together, worked on projects, gone to parties, hunted for work, attended interviews (yes, for the same one-man jobs hehe) and built dreams. She’s literally my female doppelganger. Angella said this at a time I was frustrated with how things were going for us. Thankfully, the pieces are coming together now.


Mary Kayonjo
Mary and I have been classmates and friends for three years. When she talks to you about SMD Uganda, a charity project I’m putting together, you’ll think she’s my twin. You’ll think she’s ME!! Mary said this about SMD Uganda. I’ve lost count of how many times this quote has been the only thing standing between me and giving up on my dream. I can recite it by heart; it’s my doctrine now.


Lilian Tushabe
This is my anthem; my song. This was the Friends’ speech on the greatest day of my life: My Graduation. I’ll never forget these words. When I build a home, these words are going to the wall in a frame. I’ll take these words to the grave with me. I’ll probably die singing them in my head.

Gratitude to the seven friends I honored. I thank you. To clarify on one thing, these aren’t the only friends that have been there for me or inspired me. No! There’s tonnes of those around me, and I appreciate each of them. Who knows, maybe next time we’ll have our own award ceremony. Just keep inspiring, people. Not just me, all your friends that need help.


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