DEALING WITH CHANGE

Just as the earth rotates around its axis, revolving around the sun, triggering day and night and different seasons and weather which inversely impacts human daily activities, so is life dynamic. There is nothing constant in life. Even the earth on which we live our daily lives changes its position to give us time and seasons. No wonder it is said that there is nothing constant in life except change. Therefore, whatever we do in life, we must expect and be open to change whether Favourable or unfavourable.

Human biological formation and growth is itself dynamic. The sperm and ova come together to form a zygote, transport itself to the womb, forms a baby, comes out of the womb and the growth or changes continue till death. human life and its environment have to deal with change. Therefore change has been a major part of human existence.

We experience transitions in work and relationships, changes in our physical and mental health, or a loss of a loved one. Many people spend a great deal of effort trying to avoid change especially when it seems inconvenient or unfavourable to us. Most times, it forces itself on us.

On the other hand, we may long for change hoping for it to be favourable.We keep adapting to changes every minute of our lives unknowingly. Imagine sleeping late at night very weak in very cold and rainy weather. Within a twinkle of an eye, your alarm blares reminding you that you have to wake up and prepare for work, you inconveniently struggle to rise from your bed and so on. None of these is convenient but you adapt because the world moves on and doesn’t wait for you even in your inconveniences. Therefore is it a necessity and mandatory that you deal with whatever changes; negative or positive because life must continue.

POSITIVE CHANGE: when we talk about positive changes, it does not necessarily mean that they will be favourable or convenient. It is positive probably because it was what we desired. For instance, most secondary school graduates would desire the good news of being offered admission into a higher institution of learning. A very laudable transition but would take lots of inconveniences to scale through it. You study day and night, you attend lectures even at your inconvenience and this is you dealing with this positive change of being in an institution of higher learning. You have to inconvenience yourself to scale through.

Positive change can either comfort you or discomfort you. There is lot of good news that demands more inconvenience to handle.

NEGATIVE CHANGE: Just like the case of a positive change, not all negative changes are unfavourable. An example is a broken relationship that leads one into a relationship that is perfect and happy ever after. The death of a loved one or dismissal from work opens more prosperous opportunities. Some negative changes can help one leap into areas of growth, nevertheless, the negative changes have to be dealt with as humans.

Ultimately, change requires adjustments. Sometimes these can be small things like finding a new way to do something or adding a new step to some of your daily routines. In other cases, you might find that change introduces significant disruptions to the way you live your life. This can create stress or feelings of anxiety and depression in some cases.This doesn’t mean change is always bad because even good changes you are excited about can be stress-inducing. Things might not have been perfect before, but you may have been comfortable in your previous state of equilibrium. You had a routine. You knew what to expect, so you weren’t thrown off by surprises or unexpected challenges.

As change happens, your routines are disrupted. You suddenly have to adapt as you are pushed further and further out of your comfort zone.

Finally, whether change happens unexpectedly or not, you have to keep an eye on the future and prepare yourself mentally. The way you think about change plays a major role in determining how well you deal with it. Being closed-minded can undermine your ability to focus on the positive side. When negative thoughts bog you down, it becomes more challenging to have faith in your coping abilities. You can’t always control change, you can manage how you respond to those changes.

Developing a positive mindset is a great way to promote resilience. Make lemonade out of a lemon.

Happy new month Brilliant people. We wish you the best of the new month!

Learning To Forgive Yourself

Yes, self-forgiveness is a thing. It means having compassion for yourself. It means letting go of the resentment and anger you have towards yourself for a past mistake or failure or a decision you made when you didn’t know any better.

Some people are open about how they find it hard to forgive themselves for an injudicious decision they made that probably ruined the perfect plans they had for themselves.

It could be that you didn’t prepare well enough for an exam you could have easily aced, which made you repeat a semester or getting pregnant at a young age which slowed down your dreams of finishing school in time and kicking off with a profitable career like the rest of your peers.

It could be how unfairly you treated someone when you were not as enlightened as you are now, it could be not voicing out how you truly felt about someone when you had the chance to. It could be hurting a friend or disappointing someone who depended on you. It could be knocking someone down with your car and they died. It was an accident yet you can’t seem to forgive yourself for not being careful enough. It could be all those terrible things that you now regret doing.

Whatever it is, we are human and because we are imperfect, there is that tendency for us to do things we would regret in the long run. Because we keep evolving and learning as we grow, we would realize that there were decisions we had made in the past that if only we had known what we now know, we would have done better.  Everyone has felt this way. I have. I’m certain you must have as well.

What is that one thing you cannot forgive yourself for?  How have you managed to live with a terrible past?

An author named Brennan Manning once told a story of a time when he spent 28 days in a treatment program for alcoholics. One day during a group therapy session, everyone was encouraged to disclose to the group the truth about the extent of their drinking.

They sat in a circle, and each person took the opportunity to elaborate on their drinking history. Everyone except for a successful businessman named Max. He said, “I never really drank that much.” The group members told him, “You’re in an alcoholic treatment centre. Be honest with yourself and admit you have a problem.” He said, “I am being honest. I’ve never had that much to drink.”

Later on, the group had to answer the question, “Have you ever hurt anybody while you were drunk?” Everyone shared their truth until they got to Max, who said, “I would never hurt anyone, sober or drunk.”

The group leader replied, “Max, we don’t believe you. What would your wife say if we were to ask her?” The group leader eventually did call Max’s wife on a speakerphone for everyone to hear. Max’s wife answered and the leader asked, “Has Max ever mistreated you or any of your kids when he was drunk?”

Max’s wife said, “Just this last Christmas Eve he took our 9-year-old daughter shopping. On the way home, Max passed a bar and noticed cars belonging to his friends, so he pulled in. That night, it was only 12 degrees with a high wind chill, but Max left the car running so the heater could stay on. He told our daughter he’d be right back out.”

Everyone looked shocked, as she continued. “Max went inside and started drinking with his buddies, and he didn’t come out until midnight. The car had run out of gas and shut off. The windows had frozen, so he was unable to open any of the doors. When the authorities came, they opened the door and rushed our daughter to the hospital. Her thumb and forefinger were frostbitten so severely that she had to have them amputated. Her ears were so damaged by the cold that she’ll be deaf for the rest of her life.” The group turned to Max, who had fallen off his chair and was convulsing on the floor.

Max was convulsing on the floor because of the truth about himself. The truth was a reality he couldn’t handle, so he had been living in denial. He was living in a fantasy world because he couldn’t forgive himself and move past his mistakes.

Self-forgiveness is not easy because it involves recognizing uncomfortable thoughts and feelings. Some view the act as a reminder of not being a perfect person. People want to move on but find it hard to do so without doing what is necessary to make peace from within. One way to find peace from within is to forgive yourself and let go of your imperfect past. An article by verywellmind says that there are 4Rs to self-forgiveness. Responsibility, Remorse, Repair and Renewal.

In the story I shared a few paragraphs above, Max was not willing to accept responsibility for his actions. He had not confronted it nor accepted that he had scarred his daughter for life. Notice the twist in the end when he was confronted with his actions. In the journey to self-forgiveness, you need to accept responsibility for your mistakes. Yes, you did it. By taking responsibility and accepting that you have engaged in actions that have hurt others, you can avoid negative emotions, such as excessive regret and guilt.

Secondly, Show Remorse. Following your action to accept responsibility. You’d experience a plethora of emotions from anger to guilt to disgust. It’s okay to show remorse and feel bad that you did what you did. It’s okay to cry it out if you need to.

The next thing is to repair the damage your action caused. Was it someone you hurt, reach out to them and apologize. Was the damage done to yourself, write yourself a note to apologize for the years you held such hatred and resentment towards yourself. Do whatever you can in your power to rectify the wrong done. This act will make you feel better and help you foster positive thoughts about yourself.

Lastly, focus on renewal. You have accepted responsibility, showed remorse, and repaired the damage the best way you can. The next and final step to self-forgiveness is to learn to gradually move on from that bad experience. This will not be easy as it sounds. Occasionally the guilt will creep in and you might want to wallow in regrets all over again, but this is the point you remind yourself that you have put effort to repair the damage. Focus on your emotions and be sure you have fed yourself enough positive affirmations to counter these guilt trips.

Feeling compassion for ourselves in no way releases us from responsibility for our actions. Rather, it releases us from the self-hatred that prevents us from responding to our life with clarity and balance. – Tara Brach

Today, I forgive myself for the hurtful things I have said to people. I forgive myself for thinking a friend was faking her illness when in fact the illness later took her life. Today,  I forgive myself for the deliberate and unintended hurt I caused people.

What do you forgive yourself for?

We hope you enjoyed reading from us today, let us know what you have forgiven yourself for. We look forward to reading from you.

SELF-DEVELOPMENT AS IT APPLIES TO YOU

Whenever the concept “self-development” is introduced, lots of ambitious and career-conscious individuals only focus on academics and courses which build on their careers and acquire certificates for both short and long-term courses. Personal development is looking inward and focusing on ways to better yourself. It increases your self-awareness, and your self-esteem increases your skills and fulfils your aspirations. 

Human beings operate as a system with many units so developing one section and leaving the rest can cause a collapse of the entire system. Imagine a bank that has good marketers but ill-mannered customer service. While the marketers are greatly doing their job to attract customers,  the customer service is de-marketing the bank with their ill-mannered approach. 

Self-development involves your social, psychological, emotional, spiritual and metaphysical (just to accommodate the atheists) growth. Self-development is working on who you are, bringing into existence the best of who you are. Moving from bad habits, moving from bad temperament, changing those orientations that pull you down. Learning, unlearning and relearning. Most times self-development naturally forces itself on us. You fashion out the way you want things to go for you, but life keeps drawing you to what you never planned. It could be life teaching you to self-develop.

Self-development could come in the following ways;

Valuing your personality: Here you meet people. It’s either you are influenced or they are influenced by you. Sometimes, the influence of other people’s appraisals on us may be so strong that we end up internalising them. For example, we are often labelled in particular ways by others, perhaps in terms of our accent which never limited the Chinese and Italians or even the likes of Dr Ngozi Okonjo Iweala from communicating in English despite their accents. If you are ashamed or intimidated by foreign accents, you might mistake self-development as discarding yours and westernising your accent. In this context, it is our minds that limit us. The realisation that your nature, your location, your mother tongue, and your background cannot limit your success is a big self-development.

Recognising your SWOT(strength, weakness, opportunities and threats: Before you decide what you need to work on, take some time to acknowledge your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. You can make resolutions on how to better utilise your strengths or improve on those weaknesses.  I used to be the “shy” type.  It bothered me until I started working on it, trying to make contributions at meetings, gathering younger ones and talking or teaching them.  I had my strength in my passion to communicate excellently.  Then my weakness was shyness, and opportunity was gathering younger children and talking at meetings. I overcame my threats, which was the fear of being laughed at when I spoke. Now I can confidently preside over meetings of both old and young people. 

Determination: Lots of individuals have had many resolutions to build either on their spiritual, academic, mental, emotional, physical life and so on. They have tried giving up on a particular thing but it all turned out to be worse. A chain smoker who stops smoking didn’t achieve that by the mere mention of it. It took sacrifices, psychological battles and determination to achieve. Waking up every morning to exercise or pray takes determination and that practice is self-development. Determination is freedom of consistency, but ironically consistency on its own seems like a restriction on your freedom. consistency takes sacrifices on some certain freedom. Self-development is about creating a particular positive skill in your subconscious and conscious mind and putting efforts to make it a part of you.

Aspects of self-development

Spiritual growth and development: This could be termed connecting with yourself on a holistic level. People experience spiritual growth in various ways depending on their culture, beliefs and experiences. Some prefer a structured approach to spiritual growth, such as practising a religion or meditating regularly while others work on improving their spiritual health to connect with a supernatural being as they feel they need it to balance other aspects of their life. Spiritual growth matters because it can help you manage stress and build confidence in yourself and your abilities. It gives hope where there is hopelessness. Gives faith to those who are in doubt.

Emotional development: While challenges such as stress and anxiety can contribute to burnout, emotional growth can help you overcome those challenges. This can assist you in expressing your emotions effectively and discussing your opinions with patience and open-mindedness. When you are in charge of your emotions, you can minimise conflict among friends and colleagues. Many people have a bad temperament and think it’s a plus because everyone fears them. They use it as a compliment  “I easily get angry, don’t try me”. They do not see any need to work on it. Many actions out of anger are most regrettable.  You only need to work on it.

Physical /health self-development: Physical growth involves taking care of your body and using it in productive ways. Your physical condition affects all other areas of personal growth and development, as a healthy body facilitates effective brain functioning. You can focus on physical growth by eating nutritious meals, exercising regularly and getting adequate sleep. When you feel better physically, you may find it easier to work more efficiently. People form habits of taking substances that cause negative changes to their body such as addiction to alcohol, smoking, and beverages with high sugar content and high calories. Reducing or disciplining oneself on this consumption is self-development. Working on various aspects of your body through physical exercise especially to look fit and healthy can boost not just your health but your confidence. 

Skill/academics development: this has been the main focus of individuals when you talk about self-development.  Human beings have been able to make life better through science and technology. To even be able to survive in this dynamic world, skill/academic pursuits are paramount. This is where the acquisition of knowledge comes to play. Acquiring knowledge is not just limited to university degrees and online courses or learning crafts and trades. Daily experiences and personal encounters in our various families, workplaces, neighbourhoods and any environment we find ourselves in are all learning points. We are not to discard them as they form part of our self-development.

How well have you been able to develop yourself emotionally,  physically, socially, spiritually and otherwise?

Humanity needs a balanced life. Your social development shouldn’t overlap your spiritual development,  your Spirituality should not engulf your social life, and your academics and career shouldn’t take a toll on your health or emotional status. What areas of your life have you neglected? You were becoming more spiritual or were focused on your career line and forgetting to build on your emotional or social life? You never deemed it necessary to develop relationships with people because you could stay indoors, do online courses,  make money online and repeat? All these have ways of limiting the fulfilment of and satisfaction of our living.

Please create a balance.

We hope you enjoyed reading from us today. We’d love to hear from you as always. Leave us a comment.

HAPPY FATHER’S DAY!

I belong to the 1% of the population who believe that Fathers are not celebrated enough! Do you agree with me?

 Let’s be honest, fathers don’t get as much attention as mothers do and to be fair, their roles as fathers are not any easy.

This year alone, we celebrated Mother’s day a little over 3 times I suppose. At some point, it seemed like every Sunday was Mother’s day somewhere. Different religious bodies picked turns to celebrate mothers and as much as I love that our mothers are recognized for their invaluable roles in our lives and the society, I couldn’t be happier to wish all the fathers reading this a Happy Father’s Day!

What a crown you wear on your heads for the heavy responsibilities you shoulder. It is indeed an honour that you are a father; dedicating years of your life to constantly providing, nurturing and guiding. I read somewhere that fatherhood is a lifetime responsibility with challenges, sweetness and bitterness and I couldn’t agree more.

Sonora Smart Dodd, a woman from Spokane, Washington, is credited for founding Father’s Day, according to the History Channel. Her widower father raised her and her six siblings. Her mother had passed away while giving birth to her sixth child. Sonora Smart Dodd, who founded Mother’s Day in 1908, intended to create a similar celebration for fathers. To seek support for her concept of honouring fathers for a day, Sonora went to local churches and the YMCA, as well as met with shops and government leaders. Sonora was a success because of her hard effort when Washington State celebrated the first Father’s Day on June 19, 1910.

Even while Mother’s Day gained traction quickly, Father’s Day would take years to gain traction.

Presidents Woodrow Wilson and Calvin Coolidge supported Father’s Day in 1916 and 1924, respectively. President Coolidge went so far as to encourage state governments to observe the holiday. Father’s Day was not officially recognized as a national holiday until decades later.

The observance of Father’s Day makes fathers feel that their contributions are acknowledged in the society and also by their children. They feel proud of themselves ! For, most often children take love of their parents for granted. Celebration of Father’s Day makes them ponder for a while on the important role their father plays in their life.

There are more than a million reasons to celebrate Father’s Day today and every other day. When you think about your father, why do you think he deserves to be celebrated? As a father, don’t you think you have done more than a handful to be recognized and cheered for?

As fathers, you are seen as a breadwinner, and disciplinarian, and pose as an authority figure at the same time. When you were growing up, how often did you hear your mother say, “just wait until your father gets home!” Traditionally, our culture has often put fathers into a very difficult role. They must be aloof but intimate; must earn the wage, but be present; must be compassionate, but disciplinarian.

Fathers deserve to be celebrated because of their dedication to providing for their families. A whole lot of success stories are tied to fathers. Fathers who had to toil day and night to make ends meet and send their children to school, Fathers who did menial jobs and accepted derogatory remarks because they needed that money to settle a thing or two in their homes, Fathers who wouldn’t buy anything new for themselves all year round just to buy new wrappers for their wives or pay fees and rent. Often, fathers feel the burden of their responsibilities but are conditioned not to show it. That sometimes interferes with both their ability to express affection and our ability to recognize it.

Fathers must be celebrated because they serve as a moral compass for their children. Fathers are their children’s role models, and so they have to be sure to maintain a sound level of discipline not just in their words but in actions as well. Imagine always being on your best behaviour because you outrightly know that your child is watching and will most likely do what they see you do. Regardless, fathers manage to raise incredible children serving as a behavioural mirror for their children.

Again, fathers should be celebrated for their stability and consistency. From the day they take up the responsibility of fatherhood, they do not back out. Fathers are catalysts for their child’s motivation. They never give up on them no matter how challenging it can get. And they continually spur them to do better, work harder, care deeper, and excel to the best of their abilities. Here’s a quote by Coach Jim Valvano that attests to this.

“My father gave me the greatest gift anyone could ever give another person: he believed in me.”

As we celebrate Father’s Day today for that special person in our lives who we call father, I’d like us to take the opportunity to call them up and appreciate them for their sacrifices. Wrap up some thoughtful gifts and send them over to him. Take him for dinner at his favourite restaurant if you can afford to or do that one thing he always appreciates you doing for him.

As a father reading this, celebrate yourself today. Give yourself a pat on the back for a job well done. You have committed to your responsibility and regardless of your social class, you have managed to provide for your family and keep things running. You are indeed a blessing and the world is a better place because of you.

Happy Father’s Day!

Breaking Free From People Who Take Advantage Of You

Have you ever felt you were taken advantage of? Exploited and simply taken for a fool? Have you ever had the feeling that someone is using you to their advantage? Or that they are more interested in what you can offer them than in you? It’s possible that you’re being used in these situations.

It is natural for people to take advantage of each other. It is easy for people to ask for or expect more than is fair or reasonable from you especially when they perceive you as kind or available.
Family, friends, colleagues, partners, kids, acquaintances and other people in your life can take advantage of you. It could simply be collecting more from you than they are ever willing to give you. It could be your friend refusing to pay the money they owe you, but not because they don’t have it. They feel entitled and use the fund for personal dealings not bothering about how you can make ends meet.
They feel you are fine and don’t need your money back. However, that was not the impression they gave you when they needed you to help them with the promises to pay back as soon as they can.

Have you experienced being taken advantage of? How did it make you feel?

Being taken advantage of can wear you down quickly. Nothing makes a job miserable faster than a boss who takes advantage of his workers or senior colleagues who do likewise.

Have you realized that all too often the reward for good work is more work?
In fact, there’s now evidence that those who appear to enjoy their work are more likely to be taken advantage of at their jobs. People who self-identify as being “passionate” about their work are often the most likely to be mistreated.

Overachievers are more likely to be asked to work unpaid overtime, leave the family on weekends to work, and complete work that isn’t in their job descriptions, according to researchers. According to findings, some managers really regard more work as a reward, or just believe that workers who enjoy their employment would have volunteered to take on more.

As an employee, do you get used? Do you feel your colleagues or boss takes advantage of you? Did your boss call you on your day off, or ask you to take notes at the staff meeting, again? Did your coworker take credit for your work? Were you asked to work overtime but not paid for it?

All these and more are signs that you are being taken advantage of at your workplace.

It is also very possible to be taken advantage of in your relationships. It is difficult to know when you are being taken advantage of in a relationship because you constantly feel obligated to go the extra mile for your partner. You may think they are entitled to everything they demand from you and be blind to all the red flags.

Dr Carla Marie Manly, a clinical psychologist, lecturer, and author of the Date Smart, believes that a spouse can be using you to avoid loneliness. They may begin a relationship with you to fill a void in their lives, find sexual fulfilment, or relieve a financial load, without recognizing that they are toxic and unjust. Because your spouse is utilizing you to meet a need without the aim of contributing more or giving back equally. This is a typical case of being exploited.

Why do people take advantage of others?

The truth is that some people see kindness as a weakness, and I believe this is for many different reasons. One is that genuinely kind people care, they want to help and give of themselves because it matters to them, people matter to them; hoping that in return, people have the same kind of heart that they have to treat people kindly.

Another reason people will take advantage of others is that they don’t know how to set boundaries. You don’t know when to say no, when you say yes, or when to clearly state that a particular pattern doesn’t work for you or is unacceptable. Setting boundaries around what you can do for people can reduce or eliminate unhealthy expectations and demands from you.

If you realize that you are being taken advantage of, the first thing you need to do is assess the situation. Make an honest assessment of the situation(s) that make you feel threatened, inferior, or intimidated. What about this situation makes you feel this way? Process your thoughts thoroughly and drill down until you reach the root of the problem. Are you accepting more tasks outside your JD because you are trying to outdo a colleague or scared you may lose your job if you stood up for yourself? Are you letting your partner take advantage because you’re scared to lose them and fear you may not find anyone else? Are you intentionally blind to your friend taking advantage of you because you are only better off with them?

Secondly, Recognize who you are and your worth, as well as the worth of others! Break free from preconceived notions about yourself based on what your peers, coworkers, boss, or others say, or what you believe they are saying. Remind yourself that it’s okay to say “No” to anyone who interferes with your goals, passions, beliefs, or even schedule. You are not required to say yes to everyone.

Also, without losing control, advocate for yourself.
Even if the other person has control of the situation, you can still advocate for your position. You can try to persuade the other person to see your point of view and possibly reach an agreement.
Losing control, on the other hand, prevents the other person from hearing our point of view and rarely gets us what we want.
Instead, losing control can cause situations to quickly devolve and lead us to act in ways we later regret.
There’s no guarantee you’ll get your way if you calmly advocate for yourself. However, losing control ensures that you will not get what you want.

We hope you found this article useful? We hope to read from you.

It’s Almost Half of The Year!

Just yesterday we said our happy new year and now, the year has run into half surprisingly.

There are a whole lot of tasks I have been procrastinating on and would reassure myself I still had enough time to do them because “the year is just beginning”. I probably lost track of time because the year is obviously not so new. As hard as the pill is hard to swallow, the year is gradually winding down.

Some people have got some goals checked from their goal list, some others like me have procrastinated with the illusion that the year was just beginning, and there’s also a handful of people who are not ignorant of the speed of time, but simply have no goals set to reach. Whichever one you are from the aforementioned group of people, this article is the nudge you need to create a balance in your life, self-reflect and prioritize the things that are of high importance to you.

If you are in my group of procrastinators, who comfortably play ignorant, there’s no better time to clear the decks and get to work on all the things lined up for you to do.


By now I’m certain you have defined goals for the year. I am convinced you have devised strategies in place to achieve these goals and have set KPIs in place to track your progress. Now, get to work on the first step. Procrastination is associated with a variety of dangers and negative effects, including worse academic performance, worse financial status, increased interpersonal relationship issues, reduced wellbeing, and worse mental and physical health.


The worst part about procrastination is realizing that you’ve aged two, five, or 10 years and nothing has changed. This is a terrible feeling since you can’t turn the clock back; you can only live with the hopeless feeling of regret. Nothing is more frustrating than feeling angry at yourself because you know things could have turned out differently if you had just taken that first step.

If you are in that phase where you have set plans and goals in place and things are slowly pacing causing you to put undue pressure on yourself, you have to relax for a bit and understand that the constant pressure and anxiety you give yourself doesn’t make anything better. it doesn’t make those plans take shape. It just deteriorates your mental health and self-esteem.

Setting goals for yourself can be one of the most beneficial things you can do for your health. Our desires are fueled by goals, and they inspire us to be our best selves. While reaching them can feel priceless, the pressure we put on ourselves to do so can be exhausting.


According to psychiatrist Vinay Saranga, oftentimes one of the first signs someone is being too hard on themselves is when they begin using negative, pessimistic language to describe themselves and their life.

Rather than pressurizing yourself unduly for not accomplishing goals, you might want to be sure you have not set unrealistic goals and expectations for yourself from the get-go. You need to set small achievable goals, and then break them down into smaller action items and try to catch up to them. Evaluate your progress over time. If you have achieved your goal, great! If not, it’s time to reflect, and rework the action items and techniques. Even though you have set SMART goals and things are not falling into place as fast as you want them to, be patient. Good things take time, great things take even longer.

If you are yet to find your bearing this year, it is not too late to critically analyse your life and determine what you want to accomplish. What your dreams are and who, what and where you need to be to achieve these goals. First start by discovering your strengths, and weaknesses and leverage your strengths.

If you are not ignorant of the time speed yet feel lackadaisical about achieving anything worthwhile for yourself, this is the wake-up call to take responsibility for your life.
Taking charge of your life also entails living a life with meaning and purpose. It is having a clear understanding of what you want out of life, making a strategy to get there, and making purposeful decisions that get you closer to your goals. It entails doing the right thing although it may be unpleasant or painful at the time.


Taking control of your life allows you to move from the passenger seat to the driver’s seat. Rather than just going with the flow of life, you seize the reins and start steering it in your preferred path. If you don’t love yourself enough to take charge of your life, you are never going to live up to your full potential.

In all of these, take time to appreciate every moment of your life that passes. It’s easy to get caught up in the fast lane and forget to stop and appreciate what you already have. A thankful life is a life well-lived.
Gratitude does not have to be reserved for life’s “major” events. The habit of being grateful begins with appreciating everything wonderful in life and realising that nothing is too tiny to be thankful for.

Today, I am grateful for the big and small wins. I am grateful for the gift of self-awareness and self-love.

What are you grateful for so far in 2022?

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Warm hugs 🤗

PRIORITISING REST

Are you the proverbial jack of all trades who does not rest? You want to finish every task as soon as possible and jump to another without rest. You undermine rest and force your body and mind to work even when you know you have hit rock bottom. Even machines are turned off to cool when they start to heat, what more you, a human being.

“Rest is not idle. It is not wasteful. Sometimes rest is the most productive thing you can do” – Erica Layne

According to health experts, rest/sleep helps your body cells rejuvenate and refresh, and in the absence of rest, your body system weakens causing a physical, mental or emotional breakdown. Lack of rest and insufficient nap time worsens illnesses like increased risk of heart disease, kidney disease, high blood pressure, diabetes and stroke and most times affect our immune system.

How can one become productive when his body system is not functioning properly? When it comes to being able to optimally function in important areas of our life, it is all about balance.

Psychological models suggest that we must obtain a balance between work, play, sleep, and rest to be able to do any of these things well.

A video made rounds on social media about a world-famous billionaire who mentioned he only took 3-4 hours of sleep daily. Thinking about it, there’s nothing wrong with how a person chooses to live his life, only that it made people criticize themselves and blame their “sleeping” habit as the reason they were still within the poverty line. When did fewer hours of sleep equal success?

Do you know some people barely rest but are up doing nothing productive? Nothing beats proper time management. If you can manage your time properly within your tasks, you should have covered a reasonable percentage of it and still have up to 6-8 hours of sleep daily.

The Impact of Rest on Productivity are the following;

The first is Efficiency: the reason most organisations have launch time and break periods is not necessarily for staff to eat but for them to have some rest because one may have been exhausted and not be able to carry on more tasks if no rest is taken. One of the best and hardworking mechanics at my workplace has a strategy.

Whenever a particular task gets tough, he leaves it, washes his head with water and takes rest in the form of naps. The next time he comes back to work, he gets the job done perfectly. Having some rest can boost your mental and physical capacity to get a job done faster and better. It is said that energy is the ability to work.

While we work, our strength depreciates and the velocity of work reduces which reduces output. We become more productive when our strength is at its peak. It builds a ​healthy workforce: When there is a healthy workforce, there is usually an increase in productivity as both mental and physical strength are applied in their best forms. The effects of rest on health and productivity are often underestimated, yet sleep deprivation remains a substantial risk factor for decreased workplace productivity, work errors, as well as occupational injuries which cost employers fortunes, are some side effects.

Chronic sleep deprivation frequently yields decreased attentiveness and vigilance with slower response times, which limits a worker’s ability to make proactive decisions. This results in a lot of work errors which may include errors of commission and omission, which can affect the sustainability and profitability of a company in the long run. ​

Emotional balance: Psychological models suggest that we must obtain a balance between work, play, sleep, and rest to be able to do any of these things well. For many people, work and play fill most of our active hours, sleep is easily compromised, and rest is forgotten, making us feel overwhelmed with stress which quickly gets our emotions skyrocketing into depression, which in turn affects every aspect of our lives and renders us less productive.

Stress from our daily activities, lack of adequate sleep and not getting enough rest can lead to trouble concentrating on the tasks, weaken your immune system and cause mood changes. These have been identified as part of the factors that throw us into emotional imbalance; they take a toll on our mental and emotional health which affects our physical health and strength. There is this personality change in a way that seems different from your person. you involuntarily get agitated or display anger, anxiety or moodiness And tend to Withdraw or isolate yourself from others.

You are stuck in the middle of your emotions, and then it becomes hard to think clearly. In all of these, what we simply need to get our emotions stable and under control is rest/sleep.

Rest fixes emotional well being and mental stability. It Relaxes brain neurons or nerves, refreshes brain cells and makes you emotionally stable to kick off for work.In conclusion, rest is sacrosanct to human development.

Rest is not necessarily something one just achieves, but rather is a process we have to be intentional about. Resting primarily involves the ability to psychologically and physically detach from work and play and every other thing that makes up our mental and physical strength.

Therefore, to be energetic and productive, one should realise that rest shouldn’t be a reward but a right. Denial of a reward doesn’t hinder progress, but denial of a right is an infringement on the wheel of success. Therefore rest must be a routine for the body. Even machines made of iron, steel and hard materials break down when overworked let alone delicate human nature.

Do you believe rest is productivity? Share your thoughts with us in the comments. It is always a pleasure to read from you.

The place of rest in our individual lives and our productivity level cannot be overemphasised because Health is Wealth. We do hope you found this article useful?

FAILURE: A LEAP INTO SUCCESS

A journey of a thousand miles they say begins with a step. The journey to success is like the story of an adventurer who has many hurdles on his path but in the end, the challenges make the story interesting.

Failure can be likened to a mountaineer who encounters wild animals, harsh weather conditions, stony and rough grounds, slippery ground etc. Most times, the climber slips back to areas he has overcome. There are possibilities that the climber would remain stagnant at a place for days due to these challenges, but they build him and make him stronger. He might be faced with some thoughts of giving up, but his target (the mountaintop) becomes his strength.

Success is like a finished product. Every finished product has rough or raw processes that build it to a beautiful commodity. To refine gold, it must pass through molten stages, which require extreme hot temperatures. When you see a beautiful shirt, you should realize it was once a plane fabric which passed through cuts and stitches to make what you now admire.

Now I want to let you know that failure is just a vocabulary standing on its own. In a story of success, it is a process in the actualization of a target (success), therefore giving up because things didn’t go the way you want means you have accepted failure, but not as a means to an end -success. The journey to achieving your goals starts with action – a step.
One can have the finest dream, but without action, it is as good as dead. Therefore, a step kick starts it, not minding if it turns favourable or not.

Anyone who thinks failure has a negative effect should look back at the serial failures of James Dyson, who created the bagless vacuum cleaner, Dyson took five years and 5,127 prototypes before he got his vacuum cleaner right. But the 5,128th model was a huge success.

Thomas Edison claimed to have conducted 10,000 experiments before he made a light bulb that worked properly. But he ended up with 1,093 patents to his name and was a founder of General Electric, (now just called GE) one of the most successful companies of all time.

Hundreds of famous failures became famous successes but more often than not, the struggles through their success are not as highlighted as their now success.
Failures/ mistakes help you restrategise. It repositions and refines your dream. Rather than see failure as the result, see it as the means to an end. As a stepping-stone to success.

Rediscover/reposition: When you fail, it helps you to rediscover and reposition your way to success. This can best be illustrated in the story of ALBERT EINSTEIN who graduated from the renowned Swiss Polytechnic Institute at the age of 21 and was struggling to find employment. To make matters worse, Einstein had a terrible reputation as a student. He skipped classes, and his professors never took him seriously. Moreover, Einstein never performed spectacularly in school. He was only good in mathematics and physics but did so poorly generally that he nearly decided to drop out, and just sell life insurance.

Eventually, he found legitimate employment as a patent clerk. Every day, he would sit down, review patents, and analyze mathematical equations (patents had a lot of math in them) and Einstein loved it. His work transformed the way physicists thought about light, gravity, and space and remains to be one of the most iconic physicists of all time.

In the story of Albert Einstein, thinking that he was a failure just settled for a patent clerk job, even on the job, he discovered his passion for analyzing mathematical equations and it helped him build a career in physics which ultimately led him to success.

A quote by Oprah Winfrey says, “There is no such thing as failure. Failure is just life trying to move us in another direction”.

Restrategize: Failure helps you restrategize. It aids you in refining your steps towards your dream. When you make corn pudding and it becomes watery, you may want to know the reason why it happened and how to do it better, it should not stop you from ever taking corn pudding. This is exactly how you should see failures and challenges.

A practical example of how failure helps one restrategize steps to achieving one’s dream is the story of Oprah Winfrey.
Early in her career, she worked on a failed news show and was demoted from her primetime co-anchor role. However, Winfrey’s empathetic style later found traction and she gained her talk show, which rocketed her to international success.

After a quarter-century of success with her talk show, many wrote off Oprah’s OWN network as a failure when it initially struggled to build a viewership or turn a profit. She didn’t give after what seemed like failure.
She made several changes, such as redesigning programming and collaborating with other creators, Winfrey was able to turn things around, and the network stands to this day.
Winfrey took each setback in her path as a lesson. Her failures weren’t unscalable brick walls; they were stepping stones toward her success

Motivation: Some of the most successful people in the world had to overcome failure at some point in their lives. Rather than giving up and allowing their failures to define them, they used setbacks as motivation to make a lasting impact in their field. The story of Michael Jordan illustrates how failure is a motivating factor.

Micheal Jordan says,
“If you’re trying to achieve, there will be roadblocks. I’ve had them; everybody has had them. But obstacles don’t have to stop you. If you run into a wall, don’t turn around and give up. Figure out how to climb it, go through it, or work around it”

As a child, Michael had a very close relationship with his father, this stemming from their mutual love for sports. Baseball was their sport of choice and they bonded greatly over such games. Michael, however, chose to play basketball to follow in the footsteps of his older brother, Larry, whom he looked up to.

In his early years at Emsley A. Laney High School, Michael tried out for an open position on the basketball varsity team. He hadn’t grown to his full height yet, nor did he have the skill he clearly showed the world in the years to come. He was not chosen for the position. Instead, the team opted for someone taller and bigger and—he believed—a less competent player than he was.

People who saw Michael grow up claimed that he was competitive in almost everything. He liked winning and was, in fact, a sore loser. Consequently, he took it hard when he did not make it to his high school’s varsity team.

When another spot opened for the basketball varsity team, Michael again tried his luck and was accepted as a team member.
He was disappointed, however, as he was barely allowed to play in the interschool games. He was mostly on the bench, handing out water and towels to the tired players.

Long story short, He never gave up, he believed he can do it, and it motivated him more to keep trying. His resilience and relentlessness later paid off.

Never accept failure as an option, that is why in a success story, failure is considered a process to your success, you might be rejected, criticized, mocked and looked down on but this negativity should be the reason you should push on to prove everyone wrong.

In conclusion, even if you fail, it becomes an experience. Someone with experience is better than one who has not tried. Struggling is always part of the process of success.

Building Positive Psychology

Positive psychology is based on the idea that building on our strengths is often a more effective path to success than trying to force excellence in areas we are simply not suited for. In practice, this technique involves identifying one’s strengths and working to provide yourself with more opportunities to use them.

Martin Seligman, the father of Positive Psychology says that for a person to be truly happy and live a meaningful life, that person must recognize their personal strengths and use these strengths for the greater good.

Growing up, I sucked at math like most people. I didn’t like to solve it & would get sick from the mere thought of something as basic as LCM/HCF. I was, however, good at English. I loved to write stories and to be frank, they were captivating enough because I was always the go-to person for my classmates when they needed a storyline for a drama presentation.

My parents weren’t impressed with my math grade so they got me a math tutor. To be honest, they didn’t pay much attention to my commendable English grade.

Now, this tutor would tell me on several occasions to forget English and focus on math. He said math was my weakness and if I should be putting effort into anything, it had to be math, not English.

“You already know English. Focus on math”

At the end of the term, I still didn’t top in math and my English grade dropped from excellent to fair.

Positive psychology is a scientific approach to studying human thoughts, feelings, and behaviour, with a focus on strengths instead of weaknesses, building the good in life instead of repairing the bad, and taking the lives of average people up to “great” instead of focusing solely on moving those who are struggling up to “normal” (Peterson, 2008).

When it comes to strengths and weaknesses, which do you think you need to focus on to be more successful and lead a happier life?

Culturally we tend to not focus on our strengths and we are pressed to conform to the social norm of being modest, even self-effacing. As children, we are indirectly taught to focus on our weaknesses and this habit continues into adulthood. Where again we tend to focus more on our weaknesses than our strengths. This way of thinking is incorrect in that we believe it is our weaknesses, rather than our strengths, that are our greatest areas of growth.

Professor Alex Linley, defines strength as “a particular way of behaving, thinking, or feeling that is authentic and energizing to the user, and enables optimal functioning, development and performance.”

With that definition, you understand that people who focus on their strengths are more confident, and have higher levels of energy and vitality. They are also more resilient, perform better at work and are more likely to achieve their goals.

Strength is your ability to consistently produce a positive outcome on a specific task. It helps you increase positive emotions, enhance your self-confidence, and gives you the greatest potential for success. You’ll get the biggest bang for the buck by honing the skills you already have. Focus on what you are good at, instead of what you are not.

If you are good at writing and bad at making music, it is only wise to focus on ways to become a better writer and ways to hone your writing skills for a sustainable means of income rather than spending your entire day at the studio trying to record a song that will most likely be a disaster to the ears.

Have you identified your strengths? Do you know your weaknesses?

Employees have long focused on fixing weaknesses to increase their chances of success. But recent research suggests that this long-standing advice may not be the best coaching. In fact, when leaders, teams, cultures, and individuals focus on strengths, they have a better chance of winning than if they focus on improving deficiencies.

Imagine what would have happened if Oprah Winfrey chose to sing instead or Elon Musk chose to be an architect? Imagine your best world leaders and role models focused on their weaknesses and not the strength you know them to possess. Imagine how your life would have turned out if you focused on your strengths and expanded your knowledge of them.

Instead of spending time criticizing yourself, and focusing on the wrong things, try to take an objective approach to understand your journey. Performing a SWOT Analysis is a great way to retrain the way you think about yourself. S = strengths W= weaknesses O = opportunities T = threats.

Now you may ask, what should I do with my weaknesses then?

Albert Einstein didn’t need to be a good painter, baker or tailor. He could enjoy art, eat cookies and wear suits all made by somebody else. Spending more time trying to improve his pastry-making skills would have robbed him of precious hours to develop general relativity.

In essence, you can outsource your weaknesses while you learn mastery of your strengths. Someone may not be able to write that poem just as you can or play the piano or create that software, but someone else can cook better than you would have ever cooked (because it’s not your strength), you can choose to outsource to these people who do well in the field.

Secondly, you can choose to safely ignore your strengths. If you’re a writer who isn’t very funny, you don’t need to be comedic in your prose. If you’re bad at math, you can avoid making your career rest on numerical virtuosity.

Also, you can choose to improve your weaknesses. A saying goes, “sometimes a weakness is merely an undiscovered strength”. It’s often through lack of practice, rather than genuine lack of talent, that our weaknesses hobble us. Therefore, if you want to improve your weakness, that might be the best sign to work on it more than anything else.

We hope you found this article useful. Which of these approaches are you applying in your life already? Outsourcing, improving or ignoring your weaknesses?

Kindly drop us your insights. We’d love to read from you!

Compromising & Adjusting for Others

Have you been in positions where you want to do something for your benefit and as it suits you, but then someone else want you to do something contrary.

Disagreements ensue because of your refusal but then again, on second thought, you both decide to meet halfway? Compromise is an agreement between two or more parties to settle differences between them by mutual concessions. Something midway between two or more conflicting, different, or opposing things.

For example, imagine your shift has ended and you are about to head home but because it’s happy hour, you have more customers’ troop in than ever which means all hands need to be on deck to meet these customers’ needs. Your boss asks you to work for 2 more hours to support the few staff left but you know you cannot work 2 hours as you have other engagements. Then, you propose to work for just an hour which your boss agrees to. From this positive compromise, both sides made concessions and met somewhere in the middle to foster understanding and end the brewing dispute. Compromise is not an act of weakness as most people see it to be.

Compromising is a way of demonstrating your confidence in the fact that a situation can be worked out, and your commitment to actually doing it. Think about it as strength.It is vital in any relationship, whether it’s with coworkers, friends, family members or your partner. It’s important to know when to stand your ground, but also to know which battles are worth fighting. It only demonstrates that you care for something or someone beyond yourself. Compromises can be used in virtually any setting. Compromises are used at work to make a more cohesive environment that centers on collaboration and teamwork. This concept can be used in the home to bring peace to the people that live there and delineate responsibility between people.

Think about the times you had to compromise and the result thereafter. Did it foster peace and understanding or did it salvage a relationship that was on the brink of collapse?

“A good compromise, a good piece of legislation, is like a good sentence; or a good piece of music. Everybody can recognize it. They say, ‘Huh. It works. It makes sense.’” — Barack Obama

Janelle is working hard as a nurse in a special needs facility. She is requesting a raise from her current boss, who has been with the company for several years. During the meeting, her boss suggests a promotion instead of a raise. Janelle would get a title change, more responsibilities and an increase in her wages. She happily agrees as she is bored at her current position and looking for more of a challenge; this benefit her organization, as her boss was bogged down by the amount of work she had, it also benefits Janelle as she would enjoy an increase in her wages and a new exciting position. Compromising is an essential tool, as it is used to ensure a peaceful environment; this is seen as the give and take necessary to create a balanced situation to end a disagreement. It keeps things running smoothly by avoiding clear “winners” and “losers”.It can help smooth over conflicts in a variety of situations and settings.

Compromise will promote collaboration between people.As much as this article advocates for compromise and making adjustments to foster peace and understanding between parties, it is also important to know when not to compromise and stick your ground. What are the terms of the agreement? Is it something that is at least mutually beneficial? Is it healthy and are you compromising with someone who genuinely has your interest at heart or a narcissist who is only for their own gain? In your relationship, does your partner want you to compromise on something that is totally unhealthy to your mental state and on something against your belief?

The end point is, know when you are compromising and making adjustments that are mutually beneficial and when you are been taken advantage of. Whether you’re trying to compromise with your partner, a family member, or a coworker, the process will look similar. Start by finding out each person’s stance on the issue. Then, work together to come up with different ways you can resolve the issue. It can also help to avoid some common roadblocks that prevent successful compromise, like being disrespectful or focusing on winning.

First you need to know where you stand on the matter and why you have taken such stance. Try to see things from the other person’s point-of-view by stepping into their shoes. Envision what the experience is like for the other person and what may be driving their actions.

Secondly, suggest multiple options or let the other party suggest multiple options. When people have the freedom to make decisions, they’re generally happier. And when a person has two or more options instead of one, they’ll generally be more willing to move forward–not to mention being happier with the end result. If you want to offer an effective compromise, instead of suggesting just one option for meeting in the middle, suggest multiple options. Lay out multiple paths forward, and open yourself to other options too. This method of multi-option presentation will make it easier for the two of you to find a mutual ground you can both agree upon.

Also, bear in mind that not all compromise attempts will work. Some people are fundamentally unwilling to compromise, and sometimes, there really isn’t a middle ground for two diametrically opposed positions. This is rare, as when two people work together to find new, creative solutions, there’s usually room for at least one potential path forward, but failed compromises are a reality you’ll need to prepare for. In such cases, it is appropriate to stand your ground as you wouldn’t want to be in a position where you are the only person willing to compromise.

Compromise has saved numerous relationships be at work or at home. It is fostered communication and peace. The world is not a battle ground today because nations were able to come to an agreement.

Ultimately, it is better to bend a little than to break.