Somizi has recently released his first book ‘Dominoes: Unbreakable Spirit’ and we, fortunately, got a copy to indulge on.
Somizi co-wrote the book with journalist and author Lesley Mofokeng, sharing his life, the spotlight, entertainment biz, childhood days in Soweto, the role of his parents Ndaba Mhlongo and Mary Twala, his sexuality and friendship with the late Lebo Mathosa.
After a week of reading the entire book, here are valuable lessons we picked from the chapters:
1. Never let the situation at home become the situation forever. You have the power to do better and be better. Change for the better.
In Somizi’s words:“There weren’t really that much of guidance and role models. We didn’t have anyone to look up to who was educated. So I looked outside for inspiration”.
2. When your career starts, no position is too small or beneath you. Make the most of every opportunity and make them realize why you deserve better.
In Somizi’s words: “I got my break at age six for a play by Paul Rapetsoa, he was looking for a child to play a small role. And those five seconds on stage would be my debut appearance, and set me on the road to more theatre productions”.
3. Sometimes people won’t understand or even have a clear vision of your dreams but if you believe in your dreams, go ahead, don’t let the world stop you. It is all in your hands.
In Somizi’s words:“I didn’t want to go back to school. I felt it was a waste of my time. I went right in with all my energy and excitement rehearsing with Sarafina! Finally, I could do what I wanted”.
4. Make every moment memorable with your loved ones:
In Somizi’s words:“Remember the last time I saw my father was when we left with Sarafina for Broadway in 1987. Two years later, in 1989, I hadn’t seen him. Mbongeni sat me down and said, ‘I have news for you. Your dad has passed away’, I cried and rolled on the grass. I was a complete mess”.
5. Life can be great and exciting when you are young, wild and free but remember to take care of yourself:
In Somizi’s words:“Something said to me, ‘Somizi go for a medical check up’. “A week later I went to fetch my results and the doctor told me that all was clear, except for one terminal disease- to this day I haven’t had the courage to say which one it is between cancer, HIV and diabetes”.
6. Its okay to say no… do what you believe in, have a backbone in every situation you come across in life. Do not be misled by anyone:
In Somizi’s words:“Everyone knew that Brenda Fassie smoke dagga and was into drugs. At some point she offered me drugs, I said no, not for me. She didn’t like that. She said I was boring”.
7. Be careful of the people you let into your life:
In Somizi’s words:“After a gig I was driving home, and there was a guy asking for a lift…we started chatting…we started flirting, so I said let’s go to my place. We started drinking and touching each other”. I woke up to a knock and it’s two policemen who said, you are under arrest for sexually assaulting so and so”.
8. If you want to be successful you need to learn to pull yourself up whenever you fall:
In Somizi’s words:“Work stopped coming in, no one wanted to touch me. I started losing friends I thought were friends for life. I started struggling. I stopped drinking and having casual sex. I just told myself ‘Somizi face it head-on’, I needed guidance.
9. Being humble will cost you R0.00, being famous or successful doesn’t mean you have to be arrogant.
In Somizi’s words:“When I get bombarded by fans screaming at me running to me and my patience level runs down, the voice within comes on and says “Somizi remember back then you lost everything, remember these are the people that picked you up and put bread on your table”