Merry Christmas!

On behalf of the entire Brilliance & Purposeful Foundation team, we wish you a Merry Christmas!

The year has been a rollercoaster of events. From the economic meltdown to the naira depreciation, and then social and political issues that have left some of us in shock about the reality of the world we now live in. Despite the raucousness that the year ushered, we are happy that we got the opportunity to celebrate Christmas today.

Hope your day is off to a great feast? We are pleased to share with you some of our amazing highlights of the year that have served humanity in different parts of the country.

At the beginning of the year, the members of our team rendezvoused and drafted the year’s goal. We drew up a plan to execute 3 projects in sync with our vision to inspire individuals to be influencers and change agents to make the world a better place. To this effect, within the first quarter, we successfully hosted and executed a medical outreach in commemoration of World Malaria Day.

The project took place at a remote community in Bariga Lagos state. Our team members and deployed medical professionals had well over 100 people from the community who tested for/ got vaccinated against malaria. Our overstretched healthcare system and displaced population have succoured the increasing rate of malaria and its mortality rate. Hence, this project was a thoughtful and timely one. We are grateful for its success and to everyone who supported the cause.

Later in the year, we held a virtual program in commemoration of World Mental Health Day. Currently, Nigeria faces a global human rights emergency in mental health. According to a report by Aljazeera in 2019, Nigeria has Africa’s highest caseload of depression and ranks 15th in the world in the frequency of suicide, according to WHO.

We are glad to be a part of the whole advocating for mental health and wellness in Nigeria and the world. We are thankful for our speakers, Director, Communications and Strategy OAM Foundation, Mr Chimezie Udechukwu , and Ayobamigbe Faloye – Health and Wellbeing Advocate, Youth Quake Hub, Nigeria.

To wrap up the year, we held a women empowerment/poverty alleviation project on the 16th of December at Egbeda Major Market, Egbeda, Alimosho Local Government Area, Lagos State. The event catered for vulnerable women, widows and low-income earners. It featured free distribution of foodstuffs, entrepreneurial training sessions, financial/business development advisory services and access to business grants.

To everyone who contributed to the success of this life-changing event, we are grateful to you!

At Brilliance & Purposeful Foundation, we aim at empowering the less privileged in the society. We are a foundation with the belief that individuals are better armed with the knowledge of development and transformation. For this reason, we have dedicated ourselves to an endless service of humanity in hopes to make the world a better place. One person at a time, one place at a time.

We look forward to more inspiring projects next year.

This season, let’s celebrate the purpose of Christmas and share the love that’s in our hearts. Let’s ignore bitterness and overlook hatred. Let’s spread affection and care to everyone on this auspicious day.

Merry Christmas!

Does Overthinking Solve Anything?

In our now very chaotic and enigmatic world filled with over a million and one problems and triggers, it is not unusual to find ourselves in unfortunate situations. It is even more normal that we try to devise means to cope and handle these problems.

A psychotherapist mentioned that countless clients who came into his office thought they had to invest a lot of time into worrying about specific problems. They were convinced that the more time they spent thinking about something, the more likely they’d be to develop a solution (or prevent something bad from happening). While it may feel like overthinking is a perfect coping mechanism, does it really solve anything?

Once upon a time, a psychology professor walked around on a stage while teaching stress management principles to an auditorium filled with students. As she raised a glass of water, everyone expected they’d be asked the typical “glass half empty or glass half full” question. Instead, with a smile on her face, the professor asked, “How heavy is this glass of water I’m holding?” Students shouted out answers ranging from eight ounces to a couple of pounds.

She replied, “From my perspective, the absolute weight of this glass doesn’t matter. It all depends on how long I hold it. If I hold it for a minute or two, it’s fairly light. If I hold it for an hour straight, its weight might make my arm ache a little. If I hold it for a day straight, my arm will likely cramp up and feel completely numb and paralyzed, forcing me to drop the glass to the floor. In each case, the weight of the glass doesn’t change, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it feels to me.”

As the class shook their heads in agreement, she continued, “Your stresses and worries in life are very much like this glass of water. Think about them for a while and nothing happens. Think about them a bit longer and you begin to ache a little. Think about them all day long, and you will feel completely numb and paralyzed – incapable of doing anything else until you drop them.”

Overthinking involves ruminating, worrying, and overanalyzing. It involves dwelling on the problem, rather than developing a solution. Overthinking can affect how you experience and engage with the world around you — preventing you from making important decisions, keeping you from enjoying the present moment and draining you of the energy you need to handle daily stressors. Whether you are beating yourself up over a mistake you made yesterday or fretting about how you will succeed tomorrow, over-thinkers are plagued by distressing thoughts. Their inability to get out of their own heads leaves them in a state of constant anguish.

Over-thinkers don’t just use words to contemplate their lives. Sometimes, they conjure up images too. They may envision their car going off the road or they might replay a distressing event in their minds like a movie. Either way, their tendency to overthink everything holds them back from doing something productive.

According to research, dwelling on your shortcomings, mistakes, and problems increases your risk of mental health problems. And as your mental health declines, your tendency to ruminate increases, which can lead to a vicious cycle that is hard to break. Problem-solving is different from overthinking. Whilst the former is helpful, the latter is harmful. Rather than overthinking situations and imagining extreme possible scenarios and what you did wrong, search for solutions in your thoughts. Overthinking makes you dwell on possibilities and pitfalls without any real intent of solving a problem. In fact, a problem or potential problem may not even actually exist.

“Once you learn to problem-solve rather than overthink, you can devote your resources to productive activity. Problem-solving is “actively looking for a solution.” In other words, you are figuring out how to sharpen skills, employ strategies, and take action steps. You will know that you are problem-solving when you decrease your stress.

Time and mental energy are valuable resources. And you don’t want to waste them overthinking. Investing those resources into problem-solving, however, can help you make the best decisions.

To help draw the line between problem-solving & overthinking, ask yourself; Is there a solution to this problem? Am I focusing on the problem or searching for a solution? What am I accomplishing by thinking about this? To strengthen problem-solving skills, you need to practice Mindfulness.

Mindfulness Can help us to increase our ability to regulate emotions, decrease stress, anxiety and depression. It will help you become more aware of the here and now.

Secondly, set a decision deadline and/or take a break.When it’s time to problem-solve something, set a deadline for making your final decision. Bigger decisions will require more time, so consider taking breaks to distract yourself when or if the decision-making process becomes overwhelming.

Lastly, take action on the things you can control and let go of the things you can’t. As soon as you notice you’re “in your head” about something, ask yourself if your thoughts can be made more constructive — towards making a decision or finding a solution. If your thought pattern can’t be made more constructive, you’re likely dwelling on something out of your control — whether that’s because it’s already happened, may never happen or simply can’t be changed.

The Best Way To End The Year.

In a few weeks, 2021 will be over and we will be welcoming a new chapter whether we like it or not.

The end of the year can be such an emotional time for us all. Whether it was your best year yet or not so great, you definitely start to feel the pressure as the end of the year approaches.

You have probably evaluated your goal list and you didn’t successfully push through most of them. It could be jobs that you didn’t get, contracts that didn’t mature, travels that didn’t happen or even the death of a loved one that has made the year extremely devastating. You probably want more time in the year to achieve these milestones before the new year, or maybe you can’t stand another day in the year and want it to end so quickly.

In all of these, what are the things you are grateful for in 2021?

Just a few things Or nothing at all?

Anthony Ray Hinton spent 30 years on death row for a crime he didn’t commit. He was working in a locked factory at the time of the crime he was being accused of. The police told him he would be going to jail because he was black.

His time in jail was spent in solitary confinement in a five-by-seven-foot cell, allowed out only one hour a day. But, Hinton quickly became a friend and counsellor to other inmates and the death row guards, many of whom begged Hinton’s attorney to get him out.

A unanimous Supreme Court ruling ordered his release and he was able to walk free. In an interview he is quoted saying:
“One does not know the value of freedom until it is taken away, People run out of the rain. I run into the rain…I am so grateful for every drop. Just to feel it on my face.”
Hinton was later interviewed on 60 Minutes. The interviewer asked if he was angry at the people who put him in jail. He said he forgave them all.

The interviewer asked, “but they took 30 years of your life — how can you not be angry?”
Hinton responded:

“If I’m angry and unforgiving, they will have taken the rest of my life.”

How much of your life have you spent angry or complaining about far less suffering or circumstances out of anyone’s control?

Unfortunately, many spend part of their life grumbling about failure, unmet needs and desires just as it could be the case for the majority of us.

Gratitude benefits us on many levels. It’s good for emotional balance and positively affects our personality. This carries over into our social life and career as it makes us more likeable and able to connect with others. It also helps us take a step back and appreciate the things we have, do and are in our lives, giving us the chance to feel good about them rather than focusing on the nagging feeling that keeps telling us we need to have, do and be more.

This year-end, it is okay to take the time and pat yourself on the back even for things you did not achieve. The world is hard enough. You fought through the ravaging covid, the economic meltdown, the raucous in the world and other personal issues. You have spent most of the year grumbling and trying to outdo yourself. You put in the effort and you tried to get to your life together. We must now appreciate moments like this that allows us to continue afresh.

What you can do instead.

  1. Spend time with family and friends. Spending time love ones is one stress buffer. It is one of the best ways to create memorable experiences. When you and your family spend quality time together, you can prevent these stress-related health issues and avoid unhealthy stress coping mechanisms.
  2. Visit fun places around you. Oftentimes, we don’t value the interesting places close to us. For those that won’t be travelling, you can visit fun places within your state or area. These places will include the mall, cinemas, restaurants, parks or museums. Just ensure they are places where you don’t have to spend a lot of money especially when you don’t have it in excess. Also, you can go with friends to reduce your expenses.
  3. Spoil yourself at home. Consider binge-watching all of your favourite Christmas movies back to back and eating whatever you like guilt-free. Get as lazy as you want, take a shower as many times as you want and sing in the shower as loud as you want. Sometimes the best fun moments are spent with oneself.

We have ahead of us another 365days to go again. This may be the only time we get to fully unwind with full gratitude. Bearing in mind that we will never have these moments back.

In ordinary life, we hardly realize that we receive a great deal more than we give and that it is only with gratitude that life becomes rich.

Until you learn to be grateful for the things you have, you will not receive the things you want.