Slow and Steady

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I was going through my records recently and came across an essay I wrote in my teen years. Back then, I wasn’t a fan of writing so you can imagine how good or bad the essay was.

Although I loved scribbling things on anything that was close to me whenever I found myself holding a pen or pencil, I hated writing essays. I never paid attention in class; I found the stories & novels boring when they were read out in class. I prefered to watch a movie adaptation of the novels.

This continued until a friend
of mine who I usually depended on during assessments ridiculed me and this made me angry. I channeled my anger towards learning literature on my own. I would spend time correcting and correcting my essays till I was satisfied.

The first time I actually wrote an article was back in 2008 on a hospital bed and since then, I’ve come ease to myself into it – slowly but steady. I am still learning though and do have writer’s block once in a while.

The mordern world depends on technology and thence built on speed and immediate results. As a result, we are often in a hurry to get things done. Even when it isn’t necessary, we act and feel something is on our heels.

However, the process of learning is a very slow one. Any business, skill, vocation or situation worth learning or mastering, requires time, effort and focus. Philip Stanhope once said “Whoever is in a hurry shows that thing he is about is too big for him.”

It is important for one to have a sense of urgency for whatever s/he is doing however we often mistake hurry sickness for sense of urgency. Sense of urgency is the ability to identify things that require urgent attention and acting upon them ASAP but when one is in a hurry, s/he feels there’s need to rush everything even when there’s no reason to.

Assuming you have been given a deadline to submit a coursework/project/proposal. A person with a sense of urgency will start working as soon as possible, giving himself ample time to finish and go through his work over and over again before the deadline. In contrast, someone who is in a hurry will rush the work and give little or no room to cross-check his/her work.

You can’t get much done if you lack sense of urgency but by doing things hurriedly, we reduce our effectiveness, lower quality of our work and possibly make avoidable mistakes. Take heed to the words of Earl Monroe, “Just be patient. Let the game come to you. Don’t rush. Be quick, but don’t hurry.”

There’s no need to be in a hurry. Be quick but agbana speed. Speed kills. Slow and steady wins the race.

Nobody Is Out of Your League

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I went for a wedding with some friends  a fortnight ago where I met a pretty nubile damsel. We got talking; I must admit the conversation wasn’t as smooth as I had hoped but I was lucky to cart away with her phone number and social media usernames at the end of the day.

On our way back home, I was filled with all joy and excitement that overwhelm one when he/she meets a new person. However, my friends were so pessimistic about my chances with the said girl. They all told me, “Guy, forget this girl. You stand no chance, she’s way out of your league.”

I was bemused at their level of pessimism; I mean these guys were alobams. So to feed my curiosity, I asked them a myriad of questions like why do you think she’s out of my league? Is it because you think she’s too “hot” for me? Richer/cooler than me? Too smart or sophisticated? Their answers weren’t convincing so I shouted in my drunkeness, “she’s not out of my league. In fact no girl is out of one’s league so I’m gonna give it a try.”

You see, just like my friends, many people believe leagues exist when it comes to the opposite sex. They seem to think that once a guy/lady is ridiculously attractive, smarter, more ambitious, richer or funnier than them, they are out of their league. Many guys are scared and intimidated to approach such ladies because they feel they don’t stand a chance with them. They find themselves constantly analysing the potential compatibility between themselves and these kind of ladies, oftentimes how can such a person be interested in me? serves as a valid excuse not to push further.

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Contrary to popular belief, leagues are standards set by an individual to protect himself/herself from possible rejection. Standards are subjective; they are based on personal contructs and not completely social constructs. For example, most of us are guilty of asking questions like “how did they end up together?” when we see a person we hold in high esteem with an average or below-average looking partner because we have set certain standards for them.

Back in 2009/2010, some of my female friends were livid when they heard Nigerian A-list actress Genevieve Nnaji was dating singer/entertainer D’banj. Then, Genevieve was bigger than D’banj in terms of celebrity status and international recognition. I wonder what they’d say if Genevieve and D’banj started seeing each other now.

The fact remains that every guy has 50:50 chance of getting a lady’s number or dating a lady but this chance can drop to zero real quick unless one goes for it. All one needs is to gather some liver to approach the lady and say your mind. I mean what’s the worst thing that could happen? She decides to give you a fake number? Lies about an imaginary boyfriend? Ignores your calls? Or politely/coldly turns you down?

Rejections are a norm in life. God has given a man the right to ask the lady out and the lady the right to accept or decline his advances. Everyone has suffered (and will still suffer) rejection in one way or the other. Even the “out of your league” girls we often worry about have their own insecurities. So don’t let rejection thoughts eat you alive when you haven’t even told her how you feel about her yet. She might be interested and patiently waiting for you to make a move or maybe you could go for her and discover she isn’t all that after all. Either way, it is better to try and find out than wondering what if.

We are so hung up on how we see others and the halo effect. Leagues are something we create in our heads. They are an illusion. Nobody is out of your league. Before you limit yourself and say you’ve no chance of being admitted into that guy’s/lady’s life, try and apply first. You can’t gain admission without applying.

Choices & Consequences

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As human beings, we are given the mantle to decipher and choose between good and evil. Everyday, we try to sense what’s right and what’s wrong and make a choice between the two.

Making a choice is one of the most difficult tasks we face. For instance, imagine you are trying to decide whether to marry that man or woman, decide whether to resign from your current job and further your education abroad or continue with the job, choose between two careers/jobs, these choices can be very hard to make.

Even if one chooses to seek the advice of a friend/loved one or ally, in the end it is up to YOU to make the final decision. Life choices are hard to make because of the uncertainty that accompanies them.

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We try to evaluate the options available to us before making a decision. We make choices based on the information at our disposal at that particular time. Life choices are like investments; one tries not to make a risky investment based on opinions but a smart one based on facts & opinions.

Choice and consequences are the central concepts affecting decision making. To every action, there is equal and opposite reaction. Every choice we make in life, whether good or bad, right or wrong, wise or foolish carries maximum consequences.

Our choices have a huge impact on our lives; they can either make or mar us. Our choices determine who and what we are in life whether in the short or long run. We are forced to live with the consequences of our choices.

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However, accepting consequences of our actions can be a bitter pill to swallow for some. Rather than blame themselves, many prefer to blame others for their woes after all it is much easier to do so. Taking responsibility of the consequences of our choices says a lot about one’s character.

We all make choices but in the end, our choices make or mar us. No one is immune to the consequences of his/her actions.

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