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Issue 001 2009
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WEIRD STUFF
Genevieve
   
 

Dele_banner

 
 

Ayodele Olusanya unexpectedly found himself in the world of writing; however since the start of the twist in his direction, he has written two books – ‘Thank God it’s Monday; Divinely Inspired’ and ‘Good Heavens, where is my Attitude?’

 

He was asked to give the announcements during the Sunday services at his local church, but he could not stop at just that. He would start off his announcement by sharing a few words of encouragement with the congregation and in return he will get a lot of encouragement back from some members of the church. He was soon to realise that what he thought were mere words would before long became sources of inspiration to many.

 

The exchanges of encouraging words lead to the birth of his website, www.thegreatestasset.co.uk, and his weekly ‘thoughts’ are now read by hundreds of people from all around the world.

 

Most of Ayodele’s writings are based on his personal experiences and they are aimed and encouraging people to wake up and live, and to laugh while they do the living.

 

 

 

 

A Free Preview Into Some Of Ayodele's Weekly Thoughts


Changing the World

 

Once upon a very long time ago, there was a king who ruled a prosperous country. One day, he went for a trip to some distant areas of his country. When he was back at his palace, he complained that his feet were very painful, because it was the first time that he went for such a long trip, and the road that he went through was very rough and stony. He then ordered his people to cover every road of the entire country with leather. Definitely, this would need thousands of cows' skin, and the task would cost a huge amount of money and man power – and also have a drastic effect on the meat available for the populace to eat.  

 

One of his wise servants dared himself to tell the king, "Why do you have to spend that unnecessary amount of money? Why don't you just cut a little piece of leather to cover your feet?"

 

The king was surprised, but he later agreed to the servant’s suggestion to make a pair of "slippers" for himself. This obviously saved the country a lot of time, money, meat & milk – and the idea soon caught on!

 

We are sometimes too engrossed in trying to ‘sort out’ other people, or maybe trying to change the world as we see it. There are people around us who we would sometimes wish they rather behaved in a better way – in other words, behave a way that we’d expect them to. I am not one in favour of ‘following the crowd’ – however; I believe that there are many instances when it’s all good with everyone else.

 

There is nothing wrong trying to change people or situations around you, however; it’s always best to start from within and the rest becomes less of a task.



                                                              How Awesome !!   
 

Earlier this week, I held a review meeting with a member of my Team. During our discussions – I asked her if she realised how key her role was within the Team. She gave me weird look, shrugged her shoulder and said “all I do is the Admin work for the Team.” I gathered my thoughts together for a few seconds then I asked her who she thinks the most important person in the entire office is. “The Group Director, I would think” she said.

 

I asked her a simple question - “If the office receptionist goes off sick for a week, how do you think her absence would affect the rest of the office?” I decided to answer my question on her behalf. I told her that if the receptionist goes off sick, every other department within the entire office would need to find someone for each day of the lady’s absence to cover the reception. This would mean that every department will be at least one person short during her time away from work. However; if the Director decides to go off sick – no one would be needed to take his place. In fact, I continued – the guy could be off for as long as he cares; his absence would have no effect whatsoever on most of the office. So rephrasing my question - I asked my team member who she thought was more important – the Director or the Receptionist? Her face lit up before she said “the Receptionist”.

 

Never undermine your importance, even when the rest of the world wants to make you feel small.

 

You are too important – so important that the world would never be the same without you. There is the possibility that the only person who fails to realise how important you are is you! Your contributions to ‘everyday living’ is crucial and never underestimate your contribution to the happiness of many lives that surround you right now; your contributions to the social wellbeing of your society; your contributions to the economy of wherever you are located; your contribution to the goodness in today’s world.

 

You might not know this, but many count on you and if you fail to realise how awesome you are, you run the risk of letting many people down.

 

This Is What I Think Of You 

A young man needed to change his career. He had done all sorts of odd jobs for years and he finally decided to get his act together and get himself a 'proper' career. The first interview he got was for a managerial position with one of the largest supermarket chains in the country. A telephone interview was held initially and he was successful - the next challenge was the face to face interview that was held at one of the many branches of the supermarket chain. The interviewer told the young job seeker that his first task would be to walk around the shop and make a list of the things that he thought were wrong about the shop. Armed with an A4 booklet and a pen, the young man walked around spot checking. 

Half an hour later, the job seeker was back with the interviewer. The interviewer scrutinised the list, and when he was done - he said that the young man failed to spot three crucial things that were not exactly right about the shop. He was going to give up on the job seeker when he noticed that there was another, but even longer list on another page of the booklet. "What's this list?" He asked. "I took the liberty of making a list of things that are good about the shop as well," he said. The interviewer was so impressed that he offered the young man the job. 

It is often too easy and very convenient to spot the 'wrongs' in other people, 'wrongs' in certain situations, and the 'wrongs' in circumstances - whereas there is always a whole lot of good in the fore listed if only we can take the chance of looking deep enough. It's only a matter of your Attitude towards other people. So, rather than taking the easy option of seeing what is 'not good' about others - become an instrument of inspiration. Your words, actions, energy, even your smallest thoughts will either promote or prevent the growth of those around you. Choose to be the type of person who inspires others to become better and brighter. And guess what Dolapo - while you do this, you'd be loved and respected in return. When people love you, you'd receive a whole lot of favour as a result, just as the young man in the above story above found favour in the eyes of the interviewer.


It's Worth Another Try

 

We seem to give up too easily – whereas, just one more try despite the odds that might be against us could make all the positive difference that we need.    

 

One of my most prized possessions is a DKNY wrist watch that one of my siblings got me as a birthday gift some years ago. I really love the watch – especially being that I wouldn’t ordinarily buy myself anything that expensive; I am cheap you see. I only wore the watch for a few weeks before disaster struck. The thing fell, hit a solid surface and it refused to work afterwards. A few months later I took it to one of those roadside watch repairers. The guy asked me to come back the next day to pick the watch up – which I did. The bad news however was that they could not fix the thing – apparently some mechanical devise was damaged and I would have to send it to the manufacturers for it to be fixed. I am sure you know what that means – it would cost me my arm and leg literally to fix the thing.  

 

Over a year afterwards, I did the stupidest thing ever – I took the watch back to the same shop where they could not fix it previously and this was done out of hope more than anything else. Two days later my phone rang – and I was told that my watch had been fixed. You would have thought I had won the lottery judging by the way I jumped for joy. 

 

There are places where we might have been before, situations in which we might have previously failed to achieve the desired result, and maybe relationships that might have gone a bit sour over time. There is the easy option of never revisiting such situations – however; my strong believe is that if we continue to walk away from every situation that did not pay off initially, we would soon have nothing to walk away from. I knew my watch was worth fixing – so one incident of failure was not strong enough to deter me from trying again; and especially trying where I was previously failed.

 

One of the true ingredients of success is the willingness to strive at whatever is worth striving for no matter what odds might be against us. This might be painful sometimes – but remember that you would never know the good that might come of trying again except you actually do the trying.



Forgive you  

 

I grew up in a high rise council flat somewhere in South West London – and although I think I was a good kid, there are a few things that I remember doing and I am not particularly proud of them. One day I stood on the balcony, just by our front door and I was looking down at parked cars. While my parents were inside the flat, I stood there all alone thinking of something naughty to do. There was a plank of wood staring at me from a few feet away minding its own business. I walked up to the plank, picked it up and wondered what I could do with it. Suddenly an idea came to my ‘evilous’ head. “What if I throw this plank down, would I hit my target, or would I miss – and if I do hit, would it make any damage?”

There was only one way to find out.

 

I lifted the plank and with all my strength, I placed it on the wall of the balcony aiming at my target and as soon as I was happy with my aim, I let the plank go. Watching it take a speedy dive, and a few seconds I heard a loud ‘crash’. Bingo! I smashed someone’s windscreen – mission completed, so it was time; time to run into the flat and hide in fear of my young life. It only took a few seconds before the door bell went...................it was the police and the poor guy whose windscreen I had just smashed. I cannot remember how the episode ended, other than not remembering being locked up among some hardened criminals. I would have remembered that I guess.

 

I was about 9 years old at the time – but I have always remembered what I did, and more to the point, I have never been able to forgive myself until recently.

 

When people offended you, it is relatively easy to forgive their atrocities depending on the circumstances. However; when it comes to forgiving yourself, it is a different ball game altogether. Many of us walk around with the burden of guilt and un-forgiveness towards ourselves, and hence we display anything but a positive Attitude. We get weighed down by the worries of whatever we might have done and we struggle with shaking off such thoughts. Sometimes we wear masks that portray us as anything but carrying the feeling of guilt, or we tend to do so much to compensate for our actions. Try as much as we might – the feeling comes back momentarily and they tend to make our hearts drop.

 

There is just one way to deal with the guilt – forgive yourself; but how do you forgive yourself? Practise forgiving others. Think of as many who have wronged you for whatever reasons and start the process of forgiving them. It might be very challenging – but you can do this. Once you are able to clear your heart of the burden of holding stuff against other people, you’d soon start to find yourself forgiving you.

 

Nothing beats the feeling of freeing yourself from guilt – so set yourself free.



 Life isn't fair - Supposedly!
 

Some very many years ago, a vineyard owner went out early in the morning to hire workers for his vineyard. And after agreeing with the workers for the standard wage, he sent them into his vineyard. At about 9am, he went out again and saw others standing around in the market place without work, and he offered them work for the same amount that he was going to pay the first set of workers. He got a new set of workers in at noon, some at 3pm, some more at 5pm.

 

The moment came when the workers had to get paid for their ‘hard work’, and those who started working at 5pm were the first set to get paid. Everyone was paid the same amount – astonishingly, those who started working at dawn were paid the same as those who worked for just a few hours.

 

Matthew 20: 1 – 16

How unfair was that?

 

True to expectation – those who had started working earlier felt cheated and they ‘rightfully’ complained to the vineyard owner about the way they had been treated; but in fairness to the man with the land, he gave each person what he had promised them – but not necessary what they deserved!

 

Many times in life, the time and effort we put into whatever we do never equates to what we end up with – and this is especially visible when we decide to compare notes. It is not about what you receive, but how well (or otherwise) you put what is received into use. The energy that is expended in comparing notes or complaining would be better put towards making the best of whatever you have, or making the best of whatever situation you find yourself in. The same goes for your natural abilities otherwise called talent. The amount of talent you have is neither here nor there in the scheme of things – what matters is how well (or otherwise) you can apply the little talent that you’ve got for the good of yourself and mankind. 

 

Use the ‘little’ that you have wisely – and those with the supposed plenty would have to come to your dwelling for tips. The first step to using your ‘little’ wisely is to realise that rather than complaining about what you haven’t got; you’d be better expending the same energy that is needed to do the complaining on making the best of what you’ve got. 
  

 

Help .. I crashed The Car

 

One of the most stressful things that you can ever be involved in is trying to impress people - especially when you have to do something that does not come to you naturally, or things that you'd rather not do in your attempt to create the impression.

I once had a manager who I truly loved and respected; I would do almost anything to make him happy - and that was the exact problem; doing almost anything to please him. One late Friday afternoon he asked me to complete a task that we both knew was impossible to complete before the close of office that day. Just before he left to go to his family, he told me that he needed the report on his desk by 9am on the following Monday morning. I stayed late in the office and eventually went home only to return on Saturday morning to complete the task. By leaving the family behind to go into work on a Saturday meant that I ended up putting more pressure on my wife who had to do both mine and her shores in the house. It also meant that I denied my girls the usually Saturday morning fun time that we've always had - all in the name of creating the right impression at work.

The irony of the whole episode was that when Monday morning came, my manager did not as much as ask me about the task - the task that drastically affected my family life. On Wednesday I finally confronted him to find out why he did not as much as show any interest in what he'd asked me to do. "It's not that important - file it somewhere; it might come in handy one day".

I almost lost my mind!

In hindsight, it was not my fault that he only asked me to carry out the task a few hours before home time; therefore, I should have done what I could done within normal the office time and then told him that I would do whatever I could to finish up the following Monday. I tried to impress, and I ended up losing both ways. I lost out on my cherished family time and the task was not needed either - so what was the whole point anyway?

Deep down, I knew that I only went into work to create an impression.

This is what many of us do either subconsciously or otherwise. I am all for putting your best effort into whatever you do, but once the motive is just to impress, then your priorities are definitely in the wrong order.

I think this was first impressed on me when I was a teenager and I drove my mum's car for the first time. I seriously dented the car and there was not even one of the girls who were meant to see me drive the car in sight. This meant I didn't get a girl, but instead a 'wicked' slap from my angry mum.

The best way to impress people Inlaw, is by aiming to always be an improved version of Inlaw. Those who don't appreciate the 'improved' you are never worth the bother of putting yourself through the torture of doing what you'd rather not.

Have a good week.

 

It Happened In Her Car

 

My job involves unplanned visits depending on what 'emergencies' we have to deal with and no two days are ever the same. Anyway - my intention on this day was to stay put in the office and catch up with my overflowing in-tray and ever increasing in-box. Then came a call from my line manager and I had to go out on a visit with a lady who works in a different department.

I was a bit apprehensive - not because of where we were going to, I was more concerned about what the atmosphere was going to be like when I was alone with the lady. I mean, we have hardly had anything to say to each other in the last 5 years that we have worked for the same company and she never struck me as someone who would be interested in anything I might have had to say. Now that circumstances decided to bring us together, I just had to talk to her and it was not going to matter if she was going to be interested in whatever I was going to say or not.

I think that one of the greatest injustices that we 'impose' on ourselves is deciding on behalf of others. There is always a tendency of wanting to pre-empt how other people would react towards us without even giving them a chance to show us what they are really like. The greatest drawback of this rather assumptious behaviour is the tendency to fail to initiate and maintain relationships that would otherwise be of enormous benefit to us. We tend to evaluate people on what we see rather than what we tend to gain by putting in the effort of forming valuable associations.

As far as I was concerned, it was going to be an awkward time together - however; I was willing to make the effort. I walked up to her desk and told her that I would rather she drove (since I am cheap and lazy) and she did not as much as disagree with my blunt request. Once we got into her car, I started to ask her about what she does and it was like someone pressed the 'talk' button hidden somewhere on her body - she did not stop. From assuming that I was in for a boringly tedious ride, it turned out to be a ride filled with laughter and chatter.

Rather than decide for others, make the effort to reach out and you'd be pleasantly surprised by how approachable those that might have previously seemed unapproachable really are

 

 

 

 

Your Act

 

I went on a Project Management Training the other day and towards the end of the two day Training, we were split into small groups and each group was given a mini Project to manage. The Team that did the best job was to win a prize. My team got stuck into what were meant to do and at the end of the time allocated, all the teams met up for a coffee break.

 

During the break, members of the other teams were telling everyone who wanted to listen of how wonderful their project went. As far of the two other teams were concerned, the prize for the best project was going to either of them. Those of us in my team just kept quiet, but in our silence we were confident of how brilliant what we had put together would turn out to be.

 

We got back into the lecture room and I am sure you can guess who won the prize for the best project – my team!

 

At the end of the Training, the Trainer went round the class asking everyone to tell the group what they benefited from the most during the Training. Fortunately, I was the last to give a view and my response was that I have learnt to ‘never tell people of how good you are until the rest of the world appreciates how good you really are’. Basically, let your acts do the talking and not the mouth.

 

I have been around too many people who have used their mouths to build castles and end up using their hands to build mole hills; and the other hand – there are those who would rather let their ‘works do the talks’. These quiet achievers are the opposite of the 'big talkers' who constantly tell everyone (who'll listen) of how good they are - but never forget that deep down the "talker's" confidence is often quite suspect. Anyone who needs to tell you how good they are is either trying to make themselves feel better, or maybe they are feeling intimidated and are trying to unsettle those around them with psychological tactics.

 

There is the need to always remind yourself of how wonderful you are – I am in total alignment with that. Once you are ready to shout to the rest of us before what you are shouting about becomes tangible, then rather than positive confession, it becomes self gratification.

 

Rather than wasting energy in boasting of what they can do, the silent achiever would get on with the task at hand and end up gaining the respect that the boaster could easily lose, especially with the absence of what is being boasted about.

 

Achieve silently – and become the envy of many.   

 

 

Dare I say?

 

Words are like eggs – once they fall to the ground they become unrecoverable, and nothing hurts like negative words being poured out at you. Most negative words are said during times of emotional bitterness and it is sometimes insignificant whether the person who pours out the negativity means what has been said or not – it still hurts. Dare I say that words become even more hurtful when they come from those who are closest to us – but that’s the whole point; such people can only say negative things to you and hurt you because they are close enough. Dare I also say that for such people to be close enough to you for their words to cause you some pain, they must have also along the line done something significantly nice to you in the past.

 

So, which one do you hold on to?

 

You can either hold on to the negative words that you’ve heard, or you might decide to replace the memories of such words with the memories of niceties that such people have shown towards to you in the past.

 

It’s all about focus.

 

When we get hurt by people, what we tend to do is pay the hurt so much attention and give it so much focus that the hurt becomes much more important than it should seem. We start to decipher what has been said a then we give it so much significance that the hurt only becomes magnified. We are human and we are wired up to be pained by strong words – however; rather than ponder on what has been said, we can replace such thoughts with the very many positives that the ‘sayer’ of the words might have displayed in the past. There is always a shred of good in everyone and no matter how bad the words said might have stung – there is no better cure for the pain than to replace your own negative feelings with some good about the person who might have hurt you.

 

There is no point harbouring the wrongdoing of others towards you in your heart – you’d soon grow weary and more so, how many of such hurts would you harbour during your life time? Replace negative thoughts with something good about the person who hurt you – even if it’s about the way they walk.  

 

 

Now is Good

 

I started working for my current Employers five years ago and one thing that I loved about the company, and still very much look forward to is the Annual Staff Conference. It’s the only time during any year when the over 1,000 people that work from our different office gather together and it’s such a fun day. Anyway; the highlight of the day for me is the Awards Ceremony where a few staff are called to the front of the hall and honoured for their exceptional service during the year. I obviously didn’t receive an Award at my first conference being that I hadn’t completed a year at the time, but then came my second Conference and still no Award for me, and at my third conference – still nothing. 

 

I really wanted to go up and receive an Award during the Staff Conference but it wasn’t happening!

 

However; there is another group of people who receive Awards at the Staff Conference – these are staff that have completed a Professional Qualification during the year. They are all called forward at the Conference and given some form of recognition. If I wasn’t going to get an Outstanding Achievers Award, at least I could get on that stage by another means. So, I enrolled for the year long Diploma course with my ultimate goal remaining very much intact. During the following Staff Conference – I did finally get to go on stage; but there was a twist. I went up twice, one for completing the Diploma in Management, and the second time was for being a winner of the Outstanding Achiever Award – the one I had given up on.

 

This week, we had our 2008/2009 Staff Conference, and something interesting happened. Neither the Outstanding Achievers nor those who recently completed Professional courses mounted the stage – just a few other special Award recipients. The management had decided to change the Award process so that fewer people went up to receive an Award.

 

Putting things into perspective – if I didn’t do the Professional Course when I did it, or otherwise put – if I had postponed doing the course, I would have never seen my ambition of climbing on the stage in front of those many people materialise.

 

The best time to do whatever you’ve always wanted to do is now – believe me! The easiest option is to wait another day, wait another hour or even another minute, but those who truly get the job done would appreciate that there is nothing like the ‘now’ – except where circumstance are beyond our control.

 

I know of a few people who wish that they had completed their Diploma when I did mine – you see, they do not get the recognition that I got. The difference was simply this – I did it at the best time which was the ‘now’ time. Your now time is now, so please do that thing that you’ve been postponing forever during the ‘now time’ which is now!

 

 

 

 

Make Someone’s Day

 

A few years ago, I was a boarding student at a primary school that was located in the middle of nowhere. One Saturday afternoon while laying in the upper deck of my bunk bed, the matron called for everyone’s attention. She said she had cookies that she wanted to give out, however; being that what she had on her wasn’t enough to go round, she was only going to hand them out to the well behaved students in the hostel. She had about five to spare and she started giving them out until she had two left – two suddenly became one and I got a bit apprehensive. “I thought I’d been a good boy – why isn’t the Miss giving me a cookie” – was the thought in my head. Suddenly my ‘thought’ became vocal and I told her that I deserved the last cookie. She was absolutely furious! She told me off for asking and even got me to do some extra cleaning as a reward for having the guts to ask.

 

There was a young man who lived very many years ago – you might know him. He grew up to become one of the most powerful kings of the old day Israel. While he was a teenager there was a bully terrifying the living day light out of his fellow country men. David knew that he had what it took to kill the bully, however; David needed a question answered before he was going to take any action. One day while the bully was busy boasting about how he was going to have the Israeli Army for breakfast, David asked a guy standing close by “What will be done for the man who kills this Philistine and removes this disgrace from Israel?” The man told him that “the king will give great wealth to the man who kills him. He will also give him his daughter in marriage and will exempt his father's family from taxes in Israel."     

 

What an incentive!

 

Do you think that David would have fought against Goliath even if the incentive offered by King Saul was not on the table? I think David would still have gone for the guy and defeated him irrespective of what the king was offering. However; by promising to compensate whoever killed the giant, the king increased the zeal in David to get the job done. I called a member of my team into a private room recently and I told her that I was going to nominate her for the Annual Outstanding Achiever Award based on how hard she had worked over the last year. She never knew that she was going to be nominated – and she would have worked as hard irrespective of the recognition.  It really does not have to be anything physical – a mere ‘Thank you’ or ‘well done’ would go a long way in boosting the morale of people around you. The actual recognition of what people around you do, either before they do it, or after the action has been carried out is a sure way of increasing people’s self esteem and giving them a sense of self worth. The mistake my matron made was not about her not letting me have the last cookie – but her punishing me for asking.

 

Make someone’s day by saying thank you – even before they do what you are thanking them for. You would have just boosted someone’s esteem.      

 
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You’re not here to sell Groundnuts

 

 

There is so much trial-and-error stuff going on in our individual lives especially in these days of quick fixes that it becomes easy to start off projects and abandon them at the first sign of a hitch.

 

We sometimes tend to fall prey to the exit clause that seems to be available in every aspect of our daily living. Some of us would bail from any situation as soon as the heat is turned up a notch – staying power seems to have been sucked out of the universe somehow. I sometimes read about people who have ‘hit the jackpot’, however; they have been aiming for years before they eventually got to the right spot. I am also too sure of the fact that the more the options you give yourself, the more likely you’d jump ship at the slightest resistance.

 

In 1968, the Olympics were held in Mexico and one of the most enduring events as usual, was the Marathon race. One of the constants took off at the same time as the others, but he encountered many challenges along the way. He fell along the way causing injury to his head, he also hurt his knee and the worse bit was that he was far behind all those who were still interested in the race. The winner of the race and his followers got into the stadium to a loud applause and after awhile everyone forgot that the race even happened – until an hour later when a gentleman named John Steven Ahkwari from Tanzania ‘painfully’ made his way into the stadium. Half of the spectators had already left the stadium by this time, but those who remained behind witnessed history. John Steven Ahkwari was practically carrying his leg; he was bloody and bandaged. He obviously ran in extreme pain, and yet he continued to half run/half walk around the track until he crossed the finish line. As the confused spectators understood what was happening, a few began clapping. Their clapping increased into a roar as they watched his determined effort to cross the finish line. In the marathon runner John Steven Ahkwari, the spectators witnessed the Olympic spirit at its best!

 

Guess what – I do not know the name of the guy who won the Marathon that year, and neither does most people – but the name John Steven Ahkwari is identified with sporting ‘spirit’ simple because he endured to the end. The option of giving up was very much available to him, but he very much decided against giving up.

 

The best bit of the whole story of this magnificent man was his response to the question he was asked when he finished the race. The reporter asked him why he kept going on despite his injury. Mr Ahkwari simply responded, “You don’t understand. My country did not send me 5,000 miles to start a race. They sent me 5,000 miles to finish the race.”

 

I guess the same should apply to us all, because we are all involved in whatever we do to finish up, and to do the finishing with honours – because I am sure you aren’t here to sell Groundnuts!

 

Click on http://www.ayodeleolusanya.com/John_Stephen_Ahkwari.htm to see a short clip of the race – it would move you!

 

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Respect People

 

I was talking to a member of my local Church one Sunday afternoon just after the service. What we were talking about was not all that important, but it was at least important enough for us to discuss the subject. We were deep into our conversation when the guy suddenly tapped me on my shoulder, told me that he had to go and then he ran off to talk to the Senior Pastor whom he spotted from afar. The discussion never continued afterwards

 

Nothing entirely wrong with that I guess.

 

One day while at work, I was talking to one of my Senior Managers in his office when our Group Director suddenly walked in. Although what we were talking about was not all that important, I got up as soon as the Director walked in and I was making my way out of the office when the Manager asked me to hold on, he apologised for the break in our discussion and he promised to call me back in as soon as the Director was done with him – and he did.

 

So what’s the difference between the attitudes of my Church Brethren and my Manager at work? 

 

I am not that important to either of them and the discussions that were being had in either case was not all that important either – however one of them places value on people no matter who they might be, no matter how lowly they might be, while the other is a bit more selective in who he engages with; I mean their type would talk to anyone provided someone more ‘important’ is not passing by!

 

Those who put others into boxes and only deal with people who they can look up to; those they consider to be on equal par with or those above them, and relegate other people to the reserve bench are doing themselves a whole lot of injustice by being disrespectful to people. You cannot tell who would be the source of a significant breakthrough in your life – which means that you cannot afford the luxury of treating people indifferently subject to where or who they are.

 

Everyone that comes your way is significant and important enough and they should be treated as such. You can not afford the luxury of picking and choosing who to be nice to or who to respect especially when you are in no place to tell who would be there to offer you a very much needed helping hand when the need for the hand arises. 

 

Be respectful to all and sundry; irrespective – and you’d be surprised at the reward of your reverence towards others.   

        

 

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When Boredom Turns Good

 

My sister in law was in her living room feeling the way most people would feel when they don’t have a lot to do – she was bored out of her skin!

 

Boredom is said to be an emotional state of mind which we can all experience especially when we lack any form of activity or when we are not particularly interested in what is going on in our immediate environment. I am trying hard to avoid boring you with the intricacies of boredom, however; it’s useful to realise that our minds never allow vacuums; hence they must be filled with something every time we are awake. Negative thoughts tend to creep up on us when we are bored and in more severe cases, It has been considered a contributing cause to many social problems, including substance abuse, eating disorders, gambling, job dissatisfaction, property damage, and poor academic achievement. It has also been clinically linked to conditions like depression, anxiety, hostility, and loneliness. For those of us who had sword to normalcy, we tend to just sit around and do nothing particularly productive whenever we get bored.

 

My sister in law was bored one day and to fill up the void time, she decided on reading a magazine loaded with useful gist - but there was a problem! There was no magazine at home and the nearest newspaper agent was at least 15 minutes walk away. Should I go or should I do something else she asked herself. Eventually she got up and did the walk. On her way back she thought about the inconvenience of having to walk for just over 30 minutes for the sake of reading about the latest happenings in town. “Why couldn’t I just click on some keys on my laptop and get all the information I need to read about in one place; why hasn’t anyone thought about having the particular chitchat I want to read about in an online magazine?

 

So she took up the challenge!

 

Within 48 hours of her wow moment a new online magazine was born and what I found staggering was the number of hits her magazine was able to generate in its first few weeks. Having an average over 10,000 hits in one day would make any webmaster a happy webmaster. Imagine that – from being bored to generating 10,000 hits a day is simply phenomenal.   

 

We all have wow moments – these are moments when a sudden idea drops into your heart, an idea that if implemented could make all the difference in the world. The reason why we would continue to remain as ordinary as it comes is because we never take these wow moments any more seriously than a mere moment of wow! Moments of inspiration are meant to be worked on and developed into something significant. Most of the great innovations were not pondered over for ever – someone had a wow moment and they decided to treasure the moment, but more importantly work on it almost immediately. Imagine what would have happened if Isaac Newton went ouch when the apple fell on his head and just walked away and got himself some paracetamol? Do you think that the law of gravity would have been established? Yes it would have, but it would have been discovered by someone else and Isaac Newton would have been as forgotten as his then next door neighbour. If my in-law walked back from the shops, sat on her sofa and moaned about the walk without doing something about her wow moment – otherwise called moment of inspiration, the online magazine targeted to Nigerian readers and now getting over 10,000 hits a day would have still been born, but definitely not through my in-law.

 

Work on your wow moment and break out of the gathering of the ordinary!

 

 

 

 

 

To Turn Back or Not To Turn Back

 

 

After intense pressure, I finally boarded the plane to Nigeria with my two girls who were looking forward to visiting the country where their dad grew up for the first time ever. I was to attend the wedding of my brother in-law and I was looking forward to showing my daughters off to my friends back in Lagos and seeing my parents. I went to see my dad and after a long discussion over lunch I left, but with a vacuum in my heart. I decided to travel for another two hours by road the next day to visit my dad again. This time however, I stopped over at the Lagos international Airport to change some English pounds into Nigerian Naira which I was going to give to my dad. I also needed some Nigerian currency to buy my dad a new mobile phone handset.

 

I got to the Airport and asked the first man I saw what the exchange rate was – I was happy with his response so I went ahead with the exchange. He told me how much Naira I would get for my Pounds and I got my friend to confirm that the calculation was right. The man who was doing the exchange gave me the money in Naira and I got my friend to recount it just to be sure. We counted the money twice and then I handed the Pounds to the man. We exchanged pleasantries and my friend and I got into the car and off we went.

 

We hadn’t gone very far when I told my friend to hand me enough money to buy a handset for my dad. I also asked him to give me a substantial amount which I was going to hand to my dad as a gift. By doing this we discovered that the money that was handed to us was N5000 short – or was it? I could not see how this could have happen. We stopped somewhere safe and counted the money over and over again; we looked everywhere in the car but there was no sign of the money. There was no point going back to the man who did the exchange – we counted the money in his presence before we left and we were sure of its accuracy so what would we be telling the exchange man if we went back.

 

What’s the point?

 

This is the question that we get to ask ourselves sometimes when we reach a crossroad or whenever there is the slightest chance that the response we might get would be negative or contrary to the response that we want to get . How many times have you made decisions on behalf of other people? There is no point applying for that job – it’s not my type that they want; there is no point chatting him up – I am sure he dates better looking girls; I needn’t bother asking him for money – he is bound to say no; is there any point asking for a chance to display my true potential? – No one believes in me………..and the list could go on forever. If you do not try; if you don’t ask, you’d never know how far you could go. What’s the worse that could happen? If you ask and the answer is negative, at least you’d know where you stand and asking hardly leads to dying – so go ahead and at least ask before you end up deciding on some else’s behalf.

 

Back to my predicament of the disappearance of my hard earned cash; we went back to the place where the exchange of money happened and fortunately, the man in question was still there. We walked up to him and my friend politely told him that the money he gave us was N5000 short. Without any questions asked, the guy put his hand into his pocket and gave us the exact money. Out of pure excitement, I thanked him, turned around heading for the car. He called us back and asked us to recount the money and so we did. We stopped after a few miles down the road and counted the money again – you can’t blame us can you? The money was right and we finally drove off wondering how on earth the money was short in the first place! Honestly; I couldn’t be bothered with the intricacies of how I was ‘swindled’, I was just happy that we went back to get my money – because if I didn’t I would not have been able to afford replacing my dad’s outdated phone.

 

Maybe, just maybe you’d need to ask that question, ask for that favour, or make that request that you’ve been thinking about making for a while!     

 

 

      

Ayodele Olusanya
www.ayodeleolusanya.com
 
 

   

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