You Are a Person

Sometimes, all some people want is for you to be a role: husband, wife, father, boss, son or friend. And that’s all. They aren’t interested you, your likes or dislikes,and so on.

As far as you play your role like an actor following his or her lines, they are fine. They’ll reward you. After all, that’s why we have the Oscars.

But the problem is, because they don’t see you for who you really are, they lose a lot. And this is sad, both ways . It deprives you of the opportunity to be a blessing to them while depriving them of a similar opportunity to be blessed by you.

In many mentor-mentee relationships this is very common. Blinded by shortcomings, or the personal need to understand their own selves, some people leave when they should stay; run away when they should stick around; judge when they should pray. And all of that.

If you’ve been blighted by such a gaff in any of your relationships, it’s the tale of most of human existence; that all of us, somehow, want to be loved for who we are, and not for the roles we play; for being a person, not a colleague or a driver or a mother or a step son; that we get noticed for the haircut or the new dress or the freckles that are strewn on our faces; to know that we can connect with you in a visceral way when you ask, ‘How are you?’ It appears that when we know this, that you truly care, then we whip out the person that we are—good or bad.

And yet, when striking up a conversation with any person for the first time, we often clutch at platitudes for follow up questions like ‘What do you do?’ or ‘Where do you work?’and answers like, ‘Oh I am an accountant’ or ‘I am a house wife’ not mattering who asks… or who answers.

We quickly look past the person to what they do or rather, what they can do…for us; never really bothering what we can do for, with and through them.

It’s a shortsightedness that almost all of us have been socialized by; to look past a person to their the commercial, social or emotional benefit without thinking; to look past ourselves to what we do, more than who we are.

You are not what you do for me or her or anybody. You are a person–with an essence. And if you ever find someone who focuses on who you are–your worth– you should never let them go.

May your week be blessed with victories.

Advertisements

The Measure of Intelligence, Redeeming Nigeria from Moral Precipice and the place of Public Policy

Intelligence is often measured by way of standardized IQ tests which in a sense, is parochial. I bring up this argument in my recently published book, The Code: A Simple Story about Raising Great Women. And while I broach the subject of how we measure intelligence from a broader perspective; as a means truly understanding the strengths of our girl-children in order to harness it, my underlying premise aligns with the popular quote, often attributed to Albert Einstein which says:

‘Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.’

How true! In my book, I devote a chapter to the eight original intelligences as described by Harvard professor, Howard Gardener in his book, Frames of Mind, adapting them to parenting; how moms and dads share the responsibility of understanding which of the eight their children have high quotients in, as means of helping these kids develop until they reach some sort of genius.

The eight intelligences, more popularly referred to as the Theory of Multiple Intelligence include;
· Linguistic intelligence (word smartness)

· Logical-mathematical intelligence (number/reasoning smartness)

· Spatial intelligence (picture smartness)

· Bodily-Kinaesthetic intelligence (body smartness)

· Musical intelligence (music smartness)

· Interpersonal intelligence (people smartness)

· Intrapersonal intelligence (self-smartness)

· Naturalist intelligence (nature smartness)

If you look very closely at the quick definitions I put in parenthesis beside the eight intelligences, you may agree with me as to the veracity of my argument. Simply put, people are smart differently and standardizing the measure of intelligence in for of IQ tests is nothing short of an anomaly. We just aren’t smart the same way. Some people are word smart and others are music smart. Even music maestro, Fela Anikulapo-Kuti alluded in part to this phenomenon when he said;

‘Book sense different from belle sense’

That said, I have been studying a rare form of intelligence, called Moral Intelligence; a smartness of right from wrong. And while this article makes no judgement as to political views or religious leanings, a recent piece of legislation regarding granting amnesty to economic saboteurs in Nigeria perturbed me into writing this piece and raises the question as to whether there are morally intelligent people in the country’s political leadership.

As with all intelligences, I hypothesize that moral intelligence is both inborn and can be honed. And that in creating a society that is morally intelligent, the government, by way of its education and national orientation policies can emphasize moral instruction as a means of improving the overall moral intelligence average of the country.
Without doubt, some people are morally smarter, without the input of any religious or moral instruction while others aren’t. We have all come across the truthful hedonist or the degenerate religious leader who fails to practice what he preaches. The multi-dimenionslism of human beings speak to one thing: People can in character lead double live based on their moral smartness. And so policy makers, in public and private sectors, have the onus of looking for ways of measuring and funneling  the moral intelligent  into leadership…by way of robust human capital development policy.

Need-to-Have vs Want-to-Have


While I typically write for a select audience as you might realize, the ideas I write about are designed to help my readers, in any part of the world arrive at conclusions that help them live phenomenal lives. 

No matter the country you live in, some businesses are failure-proof with little or no need for go-to market strategies or promotional marketing.

These businesses deliver products and services that are ‘need-to-haves’ and by this, I mean things that are essentials like food and safety. Need to haves give you a sort of certainty that with little or no advertising, someone out there will need to eat or a place to stay that’s is affordable. Need-to-haves are your opportunity.

Want-to-haves however, are where most of the people venturing into business play. By ‘Want-to-haves’ I mean, things that are non-essential, things that people can actually do without like books, luxury goods and all-things that require some sort of advertising and promotional effort.

Now, the Bible says there is profit in all labor which for Christians is fantastic if you actually believe the Bible. So wouldn’t you rather start a business of ‘Need -to-haves’ than ‘Want-to-haves’?

I mean, if you started a diner in a place around a construction site or university campus, wouldn’t you be guaranteed business success almost instantly, particularly if your food is great and moderately priced?

Think about it:

Need-to-Have vs Want-to-Have

What Problems Am I Solving?


Every day, I see people–great, loving, wonderful human beings-struggle financially; live from paycheck to paycheck; stay glued to cul de sac jobs where they work at for decades. Sometimes, these folks are just unable to find work  because the job market is tight. What’s true though is  that being Mr. Nice Guy doesn’t pay bills.

Money only comes to people who are -in one way or the other- solving problems. Every job on earth is designed to solve a problem or set of problems in exchange for money. 

I find that making money is often the primary or sole motivation for many people, but it never satisfies like if actually aligning yourself to fix a problem would. 

A person of faith, realizing how important motivations are, cannot be downplayed because with the right ones, anybody can become an enterprise that meets  a need, employs others and takes in profits by the millions.

So what are the motivations that can help you solve problems and change your earn ability forever?

Love


Love can. The Bible is a book that teaches humans beings to love God, love themselves on the basis of their love for God and then, love their neighbour as they love themselves. It means that if I love my neighbour as I love myself, I am immediately a problem solver. Part of the being a human being is self-preservation. And this attribute, parlayed into the biblical teaching on love can help  you create products and services that people around you need to live better. In essence, all wealth is created by love for others, because loving is giving, solving problems and helping to preserve others, even at the prospect of getting paid.

Hope


Hope is expectation. And several times, all through the Bible, it teaches how having hope can be important. The Bible teaches us to expect profit from all labor. It teaches that the expectation of the righteous including, solving problems in exchange for profits, can not be cut off; the God’s plan for us is to give us an expected end of good. Hope means that success is guaranteed me no matter the business I choose to engage in.

Faith


Faith is taking action based on the hope of success. It is the confident assurance that you believe the guarantee of success that the Bible gives to believers. You start that food business or any other business with the expectation to succeed. Faith is the cherry on the top. It is actualizing the motivations of hope and love. 

As you re-fire and relaunch  out this final half of the year, it is important that you let love, hope and faith drive you to solve problems and create value for others. 

Let the drive to help others, not the quest for money underpin your business venturing. 

If you are finding it difficult to get a job, make one. Your destiny is in your grasp. It is my firm belief that God created you to solve a problem in this world so step up and be counted.

Maybe you can cook, clean, audit, plan or manage money well. Remember this: 

You are the answer to someone’s cry; the solution to someone’s problems.

What you need to do now is get a sheet of paper and write on the top of that page this question:

What problems am I solving? 

From that point, start attempting to answer this question with as many thoughts that come to mind by writing down the things you are good at. Reread the three Bible motivations for solving problems and let it drive you to start a business or reorganize the one you already have.

May the rest of the year turn out in your favour.

Stories of My Fatherland: The Chronicles of Chief Justice Adetokunbo Ademola

Justice-Ademola.-First-indigenous-CJF-1

Courtesy of Naijapot.com

If you have ever been to Victoria Island in Lagos, or to Wuse in Abuja, it is almost certain that you would have lavishly found some many semblances between both locations in their respective cities. Dotted by prime housing, banks, eateries and shopping malls, Victoria Island and Wuse share deeper commonality- major roads named after one Adetokunbo Ademola.

As a matter of fact, Sir Adetokunbo Ademola was Nigeria’s first indigeous Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Nigeria. Born in Abeokuta on February 1, 1906 to the prominent Oba Ladapo Ademola II, the Alake of Egbaland, Adetokunbo was tutored at St. Gregory’s College, Obalende and King’s College, Lagos. Having rebelled against his father’s wishes of becoming a medical doctor, he went on to study law at the University of Cambridge from 1928 to 1931 and was called to bar at Middle Temple in London in 1934 – the first African ever to achieve such a feat at the Bencher’s Inn.

Young Prince Ademola returned to Nigeria in 1934 to pursue a career in law working first as a crown counsel at the Attorney General’s Office and later, as an assistant secretary in the southern secretariat in Enugu, Eastern Nigeria.

Adetokunbo Ademola practised law from 1936 till 1939 when he was called to the bench as a Magistrate of the protectorate court. In 1949, He became the third Nigerian ever to be appointed a Puisne Judge. Upon the granting of autonomy to Western Nigeria; Sir Adetokunbo Ademola became the first Chief Justice of Western Nigeria in 1955 thus becoming the first indigene to head a judiciary in pre-independence Nigeria.

With the imminence of an Independent Nigeria, Sir Ademola was again appointed the first Chief Justice of the Federation in 1958. He was knighted by the Queen of England in 1957 and conferred with the national honour of Grand Commander of the Order of the Niger in 1958.

Worthy of note was Sir Ademola’s extremely influential role in keeping Nigeria from disintegration at the coups of 1966. After the counter-coup that ousted Aguiyi Ironsi, an Igbo Military Head of State, Gowon and his colleagues had thought to secede from Nigeria on the grounds that “the basis for Nigerian unity was not there.” What had not been told was that Ademola and the British High Commissioner had saved Gowon and Nigeria from the mistake of balkanisation by meeting with the northern leaders and successfully arguing that since the Northeners had taken political control and were now in government; they had no reason to leave Nigeria; the result being that the northerners stayed in Nigeria.

Chief Justice Adetokunbo Ademola served on several advisory boards and international committees including the United Nations International Public Service Advisory Board, the International Commission of Jurist and the International Olympic Committee among others. A Hall at the Nigerian Law School was also named in his honour. 

Sir Adetokunbo Ademola died on 29 January 1993 aged 86.

So when next you drive on a major road named after Sir Adetokunbo Ademola,  I guess it might make more meaning to you that there once lived a Nigerian who believed and laboured for a Nigerian unity that should even mean more to us today.

If Today Were Your Last

live-life-today

If this today were your last day on Earth, what will you be remembered for?

What legacy would you have left behind? How many lives would you have impacted, if any at all?

You see, you weren’t born for yourself; to wallow and live a life of despondency, living from paycheck to paycheck. You were born to resonate; to connect ; to be great; to be an answer to the cries of so many people out there.

You were born with love in your heart. And part of loving is giving you.

Don’t live your life the easy way. Easy is a lie. The ideas, dreams and gifts given you need you to give them life. You have so much in you. You have books, products, kindness , brilliance and endless possibilities that we can benefit from. You are more. Don’t get to your last day only to realize you never lived. Don’t!

You were born to live full and die empty.

Mindshift

Mind Shift.jpeg

                                         Courtesy of haikudeck.com

Nothing is as painful as living off people especially if you’re a millennial and have had to work and earn money until you somehow became unemployed. It humbles you, makes you come to terms with one of life’s tests as to whether you are producer-minded or a lowly consumer.

For some, this state of mendicancy quickly becomes transient. They reach within themselves and find that Grammy-winning song,  the New York Times bestseller or an Oscar-winning screenplay. They learn that the way up is deep down within the recesses of their minds; blessing the world with the gift God put inside them.

For others, the many, who continue begging; blaming and bitching about how life dealt them a bad hand, this is for you: Wake up! People around you may not all be frank with you but let me say that nobody owes you anything-not even God.

You are the scum of the Earth if you can’t use your mind to create a plan to meet one of the many needs around you. You should never be given another handout if you haven’t the sense to look for knowledge or a skill that can serve many people because therein is the money you seek. Your mind is your wealth. And if you have a poor mind that cannot come up with an idea to make our lives easier, how great is your poverty.

This year, make a decision to renovate your mind. Borrow books if you can’t afford used ones. Books will open your mind to new possibilities for you because they will share what others have done to come out of lack and despondency.  Three books I recommend are;  Think And Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill, Maximum Achievement by Brian Tracy and The Power of Positive Thinking by Norman Vincent Pearl.

Let this be your year for a Mindshift. Trust me, you’d be thanking me by the end of the year for this.

Thank you for visiting my blog. Please like the post or leave a comment. You can also engage me on Twitter: @NehiWrites