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RiRi Okoye: Fifty and Lovin’ It!

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How I Got Here

I was born in London, attended secondary school in Nigeria, returned to London and then relocated to Nigeria with my family in 2008.

My husband was itching to return to Nigeria and after much persuasion, I took that bold step. I watched Nollywood movies so I felt I knew what to expect. It was a soft landing when we arrived. My husband got a senior role in a bank. Lagos was booming. There were lots of parties. The city was vibrant and energetic. I didn’t even have time to miss the UK because we were having such a good time. We attended parties, events, award shows, and headed to the beach. Life was good. I was hopeful that things would get better in Lagos. I loved the determination and resilience of the people. I was surrounded by high achievers. However, adjusting to the traffic, the noise, and power interruptions took some time to get used to.

I think I got more than I bargained for.

The Last Decade

When I arrived, I worked for a training company, and then later a megachurch as Head of Events. It was a period of adjustment. I was polite and open but soon I had to unlearn some of those British norms like being too trusting and taking people for their word. I had to shine my eyes.

On the positive side, I belonged to an empowerment women’s group and was planning high society events on their behalf, charity events such as breast cancer awareness, autism awareness, zumbathons, and award nights. My experience as Head of Events also involved planning large concerts, seminars, dinners, and groundbreaking events.

A few years into living in Lagos, my husband left the bank for self-employment, and all the perks of being a senior banker disappeared. My time as Head of Events also came to an abrupt end. Life changed. Things got tough. We had to go through a refinement, especially with our expenses. Travelling abroad was now a luxury. By this time I was in my early 40s. I started to feel insecure. Starting a business was a challenge yet I was surrounded by my peers who looked like that had it all. In addition I was living in a materialistic society. I felt the pressure to belong, to look the part. Finding solid friendships was also difficult. I felt I didn’t fit in. I was happily married but had no real friends.

When my confidence was at rock bottom, I founded a movement called Raising Confident Girls, and it became an NGO not too long afterward. I threw myself into it along with a few other sister-friends from around the world. The NGO was able to sponsor school fees for girls in deprived communities. We also hosted Mother and Daughter events. Before you knew it, Raising Confident Girls was giving me purpose. I regained my confidence and started to meet new friends who were aligned with my values. And I haven’t looked back.

Lessons Learned

There are so many lessons that I learned from the last decade that has shaped the woman I am today. You can’t expect others to be confident in you if you are not confident in yourself. If someone has a strong negative feeling towards you, it’s usually to do with an internal struggle they are going through. My advice to my younger audience is not to dull your shine for anyone else’s insecurities. Don’t own it or take it personally.

You don’t need to be so hard on yourself because nobody is perfect. It’s important to surround yourself with people that truly love and care about you. A lot of times we focus on external things, but it’s so important to believe that you are valuable because you exist, and not because of what you have. Another lesson I learned is to know your values and live by them. Never compromise on your values, otherwise you will be miserable. I am appreciative of my journey and all that I have been through because it has strengthened me as a person.

Last year I launched The Confidence Revolution Events for adults, which focuses on building inner confidence. The events take place in London and Lagos. Last year I held four of such events. I had planned to deliver more live events this year, but COVID-19 happened.

COVID-19 Times

Under normal circumstances, I run an events business called Majestically Rare and I’m a business trainer. I typically host milestones and corporate parties. I also deliver talks on behalf of corporate clients. But it got shut down because of the coronavirus. Like everyone else in my industry, I went into panic mode, but I didn’t stay there for long. I got qualified as an international life coach. I’ve hosted several virtual events.

I launched 4 ebooks on confidence and created a business online course for female entrepreneurs called The Ultimate Formula to Mastering Super Confidence. This package also includes coaching. I’ve spoken on numerous platforms both locally and internationally since this lockdown. I just have not stopped. I’m living my purpose and that’s what moving to Lagos has done for me. I doubt I would have had this much abundance and opportunities if I had remained in London.

Next Chapter

If I’m honest with you, I don’t know how you are supposed to feel at 50, but I am grateful to God. I know I don’t look 50 and I certainly don’t feel it. I am super confident and happy with myself.

The next chapter of my life is all about impact and building a legacy, and that’s why I am a life coach. My mission is to help female entrepreneurs grow their businesses by equipping them with essential business and confidence skills. I will continue producing unique events through Majestically Rare Events, especially virtual ones in this season.

I’m grateful for life and the blessing of aging gracefully. I am confident in myself and my abilities. I’m still growing but I am more content then I have ever been. I remember Michelle Obama once said that she likes herself. I know that feeling. I like myself too. It is a beautiful place to be when you accept all of who you are. I worry less and take life as it comes.

If I can succeed in helping other females achieve inner confidence and develop strong resilience to life challenges, then I would have lived my purpose.

I am truly grateful to God for good health and for arriving at the 5th floor of life.

With love

RiRi

Website: riri-okoye.com
Instagram: ririokoye
Photo Credit: Bash Photos

12 Comments

  1. PRINCEWELL UGOCHUKWU ANUKEM

    October 4, 2020 at 1:37 pm

    Riri as we fondly call her is a super model who has done so much for herself and the world at 50. She has the goal getting mindset. I am so proud to share the same blood with her because i know what life in nigeria will take from anyone to achieve such great works. Her legacy will continue to write in the hands of time God blessings all the way.

  2. ShirleyKach

    October 4, 2020 at 1:54 pm

    This is so beautiful. Nothing here is out if place. I can testify to what an absolutely wonderful person that she is and I am blessed to have her in my corner ❤ ♥

  3. Debbie Oguns

    October 4, 2020 at 4:07 pm

    You blasted 50. You’re still strong emotionally, physically and careerwise on the 5th floor, more grace as you move on to the next floors of decades. Happy Golden Jubilee Riri Okoye.
    Lot of love from Debbie Oguns

  4. didi

    October 4, 2020 at 9:31 pm

    Best seller

  5. Prace Nnadi

    October 4, 2020 at 11:19 pm

    So happy for your girl and welcome to the golden club. ❤❤💃💃🕺🕺

  6. Ehimen Eugene Erhonsele

    October 4, 2020 at 11:44 pm

    If I had a dream years ago that Ogo will add biking to her list I’d tell myself to snap out from such dilusions. Always an inspiration to see people break limits espcially in such a field as biking. This is an inspiration and someday just maybe we might connect on the road, I have a couple of great bikers circle in Abj. I’m honestly, inspired by these beautiful ladies daring such heights. Cheers!

  7. Chineze

    October 5, 2020 at 6:53 am

    Happy golden dear. You don’t look a bit fifty, more like thirty. God bless you Riri. Best wishes always

  8. Temi Tope

    October 5, 2020 at 1:51 pm

    Congratulations sister! You don’t look 50 not even the next day. Wow.. keep up the secrets 🙂 and enjoy many many years to Come

  9. A

    October 5, 2020 at 4:28 pm

    ,

  10. Josie Mudasiru

    October 7, 2020 at 6:24 am

    Awesome. Happy birthday Riri Okoye. I am happy for you. Continue to live your best life.

  11. Uche Ngoka

    October 7, 2020 at 12:06 pm

    Thank you RiRi okoye for contributing so much over so short a time…Your impact can simply be described as on point!Thanks…we await your next journey.

  12. Margaret Newman

    October 9, 2020 at 9:59 am

    It’s amazing to read how far you’ve come from our days of chatting at the seating area BBC at MHS

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