Today, I am in a different kind of killer mood. The unction of a teacher or preacher, or both is upon me. If you like some more wisdom and are as ready as I am, let’s play. Can we?
First of all, never forget that first position is no exclusive preserve for the best. Proofs abound of those who should be at the bottom of the league since all they have in their heads is water not brain (read coconut heads) ruling the major league. Now, you understand the osmosis of nature that you see all over the place: Weak pulls strong; poor intimidates rich; ugly dares beautiful; nonsense leads sense; injustice imprisons justice; best is dethroned and worst is enthroned, and what’s worse, we the people cheer on, ‘mumuishly.’ If Nigeria must return to winning ways, number one must not be an all-comers’ dais!
Second of all, realise that the hearts of a majority of those with you are not with you. No matter how dangerous the situation might be, human beings get so easily carried away, or to say it as it is, human beings are wont to play to the gallery. We all suspect that our drummers and singers may not be with us totally but the double-edged sword called benefit of the doubt forces us to dance to their music with our whole being; waiting only to regret it all tomorrow. Our Father who art in Heaven, cause human love to appear on the chest, not (hidden) in the heart; cause human support to show on the forehead, not in the brain; so that we can easily decipher wheat from chaff.
Third of all, understand that most critics will perform worse, given the chance. Being quick to criticise is no guarantee such a one can do better or in fact, even as good. Check all history and around you, which political ‘condemner’ who succeeded went on to positively outperform? My prescription is that we must endure the critic while we enjoy our job/role knowing that 99% of destructive criticism is borne out of hate/ anger/envy, not a genuine interest/ability/ capacity to do better.
Furthermore, always remember that humiliation is what the target says it is. If someone treats you piggishly, but you shake it off and with a smile walk away, it is that Tormentor-in-Chief who eats the sh-t, sorry the humiliation. It is only what you make of something that matters: if someone aims to humiliate you and you accept it as that, then you are; otherwise the humiliation returns to sender. We must rework our perception and reaction faculties because embedded therein is the power to shame our ‘shamers.’
Also, tell yourself that life is terminally insincere: it allows the ready-made afterthought called regret. The person who unintentionally faltered applies the words, sorry/please/forgive me, to make amends; even going on the knees, depending. The same options are open to the one that consciously commits a malicious, dastardly foul; the reason people do anything knowing that if caught, they will simply voice any of the afterthought sweet-nothings. I suggest that, henceforth, those who mess up intentionally must not be allowed to beg on their knees: they must seek forgiveness standing on their heads, their two legs in the air for at least five minutes!
Now, going political, fellow Nigerians, see loyalty for what it is: shifting cultivation. 99% of those supporting an up you today will oppose you to death when you come down, tomorrow. Even worse, 100% of these 99%, after dumping you, will take sides with that same enemy they helped you to make. The way to survive, as I see it, is to never cross the redline in any disagreement.
Next, be consoled permanently that it’s human nature to stoke the fire. Forget all the pretence, human beings are wired to almost always quietly pray or wish that someone else’s something will go kaput. That’s why you and I take sides (sometimes, we support both sides secretly). See, it’s foolishness to listen to third party as an alarming majority of them hardly mean well: they pout at you behind and may disown you at the end.
Another point to note is that the quality of the leader reflects in the quality of own aides. The ubiquitous comment, ‘oh, he is a very good man; the problem is the people around him’ is a disservice to the leader. Or, can a good leader surround self with bad aides, and, on the flip side, can a bad leader choose good lieutenants? My point is: there must be something bad, very bad, about the good leader who refuses to fire a bad aide.
Two more nuggets and we go. We waste too much time on so-called enemies but, they are not our real problems; it’s our friends, our relatives who are. Most betrayals and sundry enmity acts were perpetrated by friends or family. We must entrench a new form of defence because while enemies are too distant to know where to hurt us and sometimes even too scared to try, friends and family know our Achilles Heel and when to strike.
Finally, acquire the mindset that as long as life remaineth, ups & downs shall never cease. No need to lose sleep since all the sleeplessness in the world can’t stop the flow. Life is a yo-yo, willy nilly: always going up and down looking for whom to promote (read bless) or demote (that is, devour). Anyone who has a grouse about how beggarly he/she is or who thinks he/she is Lord of the Manor should remember that only Jesus Christ is Lord, and for eternity!
God bless Nigeria!