Someday is here and now!

procrastination-breaking-habit

Someday, I’ll go to school
Someday, I’ll learn a skill
Someday, I’ll learn Chinese

Someday, I’ll ask her out
Someday, I’ll settle down
Someday, I’ll tuck the kids

Someday, I’ll quit my job
Someday, I’ll be my Boss
Someday, I’ll run a web

Someday, I’ll write a book
Someday, I’ll trot the globe
Someday, I will live my dreams

Someday, I’ll be at peace
Someday, with God and man
Someday, I’ll walk the talk

Someday, I’ll grow too old
Someday, I’ll leave this world
Someday, will never come

Someday, is mine to grab
Someday, is here and now
Someday, is here today

NDUBUISI.

Why am I a Woman?

Credits: iamawomanofgod.com
Credits: iamawomanofgod.com

When I published my article titled ” WHY AM I A MAN?”, I threw out a challenge for a female to respond with “WHY AM I A WOMAN?” A young lady, Adaeze Ezeani has responded to that challenge. Read and Enjoy! will appreciate feedbacks.

WHY AM I A WOMAN?

1.Not because I am a weaker gender but because I obey God’s word by submitting to my husband.

2.Not because I have fair skin, long hair and all the features that represent external beauty but because I have a good heart and I’m beautiful inside.

3.Not because men admire and desire me but because I preserve my body for the husband God gives me.

4.Not because I have a womb and bear children but because I bear fruits for Christ by my lifestyle.

5.Not because I can cook to satisfy physical hunger but because by the gospel I preach, I satisfy the spiritual hunger of many.

6.Not because I would marry a man I expect to provide all my needs but because I’m a virtuous and enterprising woman who would contribute to the home’s growth.

7.Not because my Children call me “Mummy” but because I will train them up in the way they should go, of which they shall not depart from when they grow.

8.Not because I am meant to keep the home clean and in order but because I know that cleanliness (internal & external) is next to godliness.

9.Not because I was formed from the rib of a man but because I was created to be the help meet of the man.

10.Not because People call me a woman but because I meet up to the criteria enumerated above.

Ezeani Adaeze

Why am I a man?

credit: onenorthside.org
credit: onenorthside.org

1.Not because I am not female but because I am a representation of the creator

2.Not because I have the ability to impregnate a woman (What! Even Artificial insemination can do that) but because I have the seed of God in me and the ability to create.

3.Not because I am strong and resilient but because I can withstand the pressures of life that push from all corners.

4.Not because I have money in my pocket, but because I have unlimited riches on the inside and the potential to reach any height beyond even my imagination.

5.Not because I have a louder voice but because I can influence my world for good and be a voice for the voiceless.

i-am-a-man2

6.Not because I can fight many battles, street fights and fistfights but because I can fight for the truth and stand up for Justice

7.Not because I am handsome and well-built but because I have a goodly heart that wish all men good and strives to live in Peace.

8.Not because I have some extra hairs on my chin but because I can bear my responsibilities responsibly and respond to emergencies.

9.Not because I can run a mile in less than 4 minutes but because I can lead a people to maximize their potentials.

10.Not because I am better than the woman, but because she complements me.

Now here is an opportunity for a woman to complement this article, Ladies , write an article titled why am I a woman? Mail it as a reply to this message or inbox me on Facebook. I will publish the best I get.

Keep Hope Alive!

ND Egwim

www.NewDimensionLife.com

Quelle heure est-il? (What time is it?)

what time 1

From the desk of ND Egwim: On a visit to some of my relatives home, I observed a funny scenario. My Aunt asked my little cousin, “Baby, check the wall clock and tell me what time it is”. The chubby little man replied instantly without bothering to check “Mum, it’s time for lunch!” We all burst into uncontrollable fits of laughter but it was clear the boy had made his point. He didn’t know if it was 12noon, 2pm, or 6am. All he knew was that lunch be served. Nothing else mattered.

This event reminded me of my early French lessons in secondary school. My Benin republic born French teacher would always ask us “QUELLE HEURE EST-IL?” (What time is it?). Just like my little cousin, my colleagues and I had different versions of answers. While some answers brought smiles to Mon Francais Professeur’s face, the other answers like “It’s time for break” only infuriated him. Today, I put this same question to you, but I urge you not to answer too quickly in the manner of my cute petite cousin. Wait till you finish reading this article before you give your answer. For we all are in varying times & seasons in our individual lives & experiences, so our answers may differ a bit.

THE TIMES OF LIFE:

In my secondary school days, though I majored in the sciences, I loved Literature-in-English and the subject loved me in return for I won consistent awards as the best English & literature student with A1s to boot in both subjects. It was at this stage of my life that I studied, LION & JEWEL, a masterpiece by Nigerian born Nobel Laureate Prof Wole Soyinka. I observed that though the story seemed to have lasted a lifetime, but by a dint of literary genius, the white haired wizard of words had divided the novel into 3 periods viz Morning, Noon and Night.

For the purposes of this article, I wish to divide a person’s life into those 3 stages:

MORNING: 1-25years

AFTERNOON: 26-50yrs

EVENING/NIGHT: 51-75yrs.

EXTRA TIME: >75yrs.

MORNING: 1-25yrs:  The Mornings are usually bright with few exceptions. The sun shines on our hopes and our aspirations glow. At this level we dream of a bright future and give no place to cynics and pessimistic entities who will otherwise rob us of our enthusiasm, fire and passion. The Mornings are also times of self-discovery, preparation, times of intense learning and equipping for the future. It’s during this period that we go to all sorts of schools, Universities, Institutions. Some also get to learn trades as apprentices. PAY the price in the morning so that you can PLAY later. It’s always better for a man to bear his burden in the days of his youth for fellows who play away their mornings suddenly find themselves racing against time laden with grief and regrets. This might be your case but don’t give up entirely. Keep Hope Alive!

 

AFTERNOON: 26-50yrs. The Afternoons are periods of work, work and more work. Anytime you come across a young person sleeping in the afternoon, the first thought that races across your mind is “Is that fellow alright?”

The Afternoon presents you opportunity to put your energy, skills and training gathered in the morning to work. The Sun may beat down hard on you and intense pressures of family, work and tight schedules may press you but hey! you are still young, full of life, zeal, zest, vibrant, enthusiastic and invincible.

However, a wise man in his afternoon will realize that it won’t always be that way. He will make plans & investments for the times of his life when he can no longer work as hard as he did in the afternoon. The Afternoon also is usually more financially rewarding than the mornings. Most of the income is active though, directly related to work but a wise man works to convert some of it to passive income via investments so that his resources can work for him, when he no longer has the energy to work.

what time 2

The consequences of not working in the afternoon can be dire. Usually one that does little or no work may soon find himself laboring late into the evening/night when he ought to be resting.

One of the most uncomfortable sites I have seen is when elderly men do laborious work like truck pushing, Motor Park tout or even Security men & drivers for younger folks, as young as their grandchildren. It’s not usually a pretty sight as at that point they lack the energy & drive for that. Their zeal is gone & their zest exhausted.

I used to know an elderly night watchman who usually slept on duty only to wake in the mornings to rush to another work. Needless to say, he slept through most of the day time work too. It was quite saddening for me and even sadder when his restless life was ended by a careless accident. As Master Jesus said when He was on earth, “I must work while it’s day, for night cometh when no man can work”.

EVENING/NIGHT: 51-75yrs.

Having read the earlier portions of this article, you surely have an idea of what the evening looks like.

By evening, the sun is setting. The glow is rapidly dimming and the energy is really going down. It’s time to rest a bit. The Evening times are usually for times when you advise, counsel, mentor and younger folk consult with you as an elder. In such periods, you reap the fruits of your labor in your family, work, finances, society and otherwise. The Institutions and companies you have helped established speak for you.

The Evening times are hardly for intense work but many who wasted their mornings and afternoons have to consistently work hard in the evening to sustain themselves. The disadvantage in this is that they find it hard to remain competitive in a society filled with smarter, more innovative, more energetic young people. For instance, in today’s corporate world, the young are more technologically oriented. The new dotcom media and web 2.0 are exploited more by younger folks. Older typists and secretaries in offices are being replaced by younger computer-savvy ones as the rules of the game keeps changing to a more Information and technology oriented pace.

what time 3

 

QUELLE HEURE EST-IL?

Once again, I ask my friend, what time is it? What time is it in your own life? Morning, Afternoon, Evening. Whichever stage you are, Keep Hope Alive! If you have wasted some portions of life, it’s not too late to make amends. If you are still in your Mornings, don’t loaf about. No slacking. Don’t be slothful. MAXIMIZE THE MOMENT and KEEP HOPE ALIVE!

Dr Egwim Ndubuisi is founder of Brand New Dimension Resources, a platform via which he inspires African youth.

A passionate believer in a greater future for Africa & the MDGs, he is a much sought after speaker in Youth conferences on Leadership & Entrepreneurship. To read more of his work, visit www.NewDimensionLife.com

 

 

QUIT REGRETTING!

“Regret is the murderer of optimism and the evangelist of despair. It breeds in dark places like mold on crusted bread”

Bishop T.D Jakes.

RegretsQuote-642x250

No need crying over spilled milk. Ok, you messed up,you feel like dying, you feel like you let everyone down including yourself, family,society and even God; you had a baby out of wedlock or you even aborted a would be world-changer perhaps, you were expelled from the University because of indiscipline, you made a bad investment and lost a fortune or you even made a mistake in your relationship or ruined your marriage with bad decisions and disrespect to your spouse. OK! that’s the past. Get up and move on! It’s time to push forward.

Listen and learn from Apostle Paul:

“Not that I have already obtained, or am already made perfect: but I press on, if so be that I may lay hold on that for which also I was laid hold on by Christ Jesus. Brethren, I could not myself yet to have laid hold: but one thing [I do,] forgetting the things which are behind, and stretching forward to the things which are before. I press on toward the goal unto the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus

After you have used the last box of kleenex and soiled your last handkerchief with tears, get up wash and dry your face and start again. You may want to use some make-up(ladies). Grieving time is over. Don’t spend your time regretting and crying over something you CANNOT change. You cannot change the past but you can WRITE THE STORY OF THE FUTURE TODAY! The ink is in your hands now so start writing and Keep Hope Alive!

Picture credits: howtoquitworking.com

IT’S A GOAL! Setting SMART goals by Dr Egwim Ndubuisi

2015 is a year filled with possibilities. Are you ready for it? Setting practical goals will help a lot to guide you. The original version of this article was published on www.NewDimensionLife.com on Wednesday, December 30th, 2009. I got a great number of feedbacks from readers who found it useful and a few who read it mid way into 2010 felt they would have set better goals for 2010 if they had read it before the year commenced. I have published it here again in a modified version. Hope you find it useful. Keep Hope Alive!

IT’S A GOAL!

The game of football is one that arouses all manner of passion from its fans all over the world.

One of the high moments is whenever a player succeeds in getting the ball into the goal post of the other team and then the field really erupts in unbridled excitement and shouts of “it’s a goal!”

Just for a while, imagine a game of football without a goal post or basketball without a Rim or even Golf without a Cup (hole).

If these games will make no sense without set goals, then why should anyone want to live, run a business or lead an organization with a goal-less approach, knowing full well that life is not a game but serious business.

It’s important that we sit down and set clear goals, dream bright dreams, cast great visions and aspirations for the next year. The beginning of the year offers us the best opportunity to garner momentum to launch into a new dimension of impact and fulfillment. It’s also an opportunity to break old habits and acquire new healthier ones.

I went through my written down goals for 2007 through 2010. I look back in amazement today as I discovered that most of the dreams, visions and goals I had written down had materialized that same year and some later. I even took some for granted.

It’s a funny thing, even strange; but the truth is that life will give you exactly what you persistently ask for and not a dime more. No wonder Master Jesus kept insisting that we ask and we shall receive, we seek and we shall find, we knock and the door will be opened to us. He insists that we have not really asked for anything in His name.

Don’t be carried away totally by the festivities that accompany the yuletide. Enjoy the moment, celebrate the season but never forget to sit down and commit to paper your goals and plans for the incoming year.

Setting SMART Goals

Whatever you dream or aspire to be is fine but it is not a Goal yet, until you commit it to paper (Physical or digital). Write the Vision. Make it clear!

A very simple way to check the viability of your goals is the SMART goal check method. If you have been in management or any form of Leadership, you probably have come across the mnemonic-SMART.

• S-Specific

• M-Measurable

• A-Attainable

• R-Realistic

• T-Time bound

Check your Goals for these:

SPECIFIC GOALS:

Are your goals Specific. By specific, I mean the What, Why and How of the goal.

What- refers to the action you want to take: Write, Study, Learn, Start, Build, Develop, Lead, Organize, Discover, and Make. Examples: “I will write a new book”, “I will study French Language”, “I will learn Web design”, “I will start a Charitable Organization for Prisoners”, “I will build a new library”, “I will organize a Youth Conference”, and “I will make a million dollars”.

Why- refers to your motive. This will be your primary motivation. Motivation =motive + action. It is the reason behind the action that drives you. An example of Specific Why is this: I want to lose 10kg in 2015 so that I can be healthier and live longer. When you have a strong enough WHY, you will find a HOW somehow. If you say you want to lose weight in next year, that’s not a SMART goal. It’s not specific. If you declare, you want to make a lot of money by 2011, it is not specific. It is not SMART. A specific goal will be more like, “I will lose 10kg in 2011”or I will increase my annual income by $100,000 in 2011.

How: The how of your goal ensure it’s not just a dream but a real goal. It includes step by step details on how you are going to achieve the goal. How are you going to achieve the goal? Example: I want to lose 10kg in 2011 by jogging for 30 minutes every morning and watching my diet. Is your goal specific?

MEASURABLE GOALS:

Great people and organizations measure their goals and results objectively. Without measurement, there can hardly be any objectivity. If you don’t measure, you might deceive yourself into believing that you are progressing towards achieving your goals while you are busy running around in circles. On the other hand, you might be depressed at your apparent failure, not knowing that you actually improved.

Let your goals be measurable. It is even better to set sub-goals that are measurable within each main goal. For example, you might want to read 24 personal development books in 2015. 24 is a measure. It’s better than saying I want to read a lot of books. A better way is to have a goal of reading 2 books every month in order to enable you reach your final goal of 24 books. Is your goal measurable?

ATTAINABLE GOALS:

The word Attain comes from the Latin word “atingere’ meaning to “reach to” and also “tangere”-“to touch”.

While I don’t believe in setting uninspiring, impotent goals that that will not motivate me, I also believe in setting Attainable goals. Don’t set Untouchable goals that will only frustrate you.

While it is great to dream and everything is possible through God, you must realize that even great dreamers like Joseph in the Bible didn’t jump to their dream palace in one night. There is always a process. If you are still a freshman in the University with no political background, a goal of becoming the next Governor of your state in the next year’s election sounds quite unattainable. What do you think,duh?

REALISITIC GOALS:

Most Cynics are gonna love this one. All our lives growing up, we have had people telling us-“Wake up!”, “Stop daydreaming!”, “Be realistic, and grow up!” Your dreams are like your wings that allow you fly beyond your present circumstances but there seems to always be a good supply of dream killers who are more than willing to clip your wings. Dreams have the capacity to propel you to a height of achievement and impact you only dreamed of. I believe it’s great to dream.

But no matter how beautiful a dream is, it is not yet a goal. As much as I believe in dreaming big dreams and daring for more, I still think our goals should be do-able.

Our training, resources, and relationships should be able to realize our goals without breaking us. The idea is to stretch yourself and your imagination, not to break you.

TIME-BOUND GOALS:

This is a very vital ingredient in the goal setting soup. If the goal is specific, measurable, attainable and realistic but not time-bound, then it can best be described as a dream.

Let your goals be time-bound, not just as a whole but in segments. A salesman may set a goal like this: I want to get 100 new clients for my company in 2015 by December 31, 2015 (specific time).

Subgoal: Get at least 10 new clients by the end of every month.

Invite God: I learnt from a friend to sign at the end of my goals, “Lord you are welcome to interrupt my plans and goals for you know what’s best for me”. I encourage you to also pray this prayer for God sees the end from the beginning.

Take Action!

If you set the best goals and do not take action, you will just keep riding on your wishy horses. Until you start taking action on those beautiful goals you set, they will just remain wishes, a long wish list which a beggar will gladly ride if only they were horses. Get moving! Act Now! I wish you a Golden year. Keep hope alive!

ND

www.NewDimensionLife.com

$5 Service Company!

I like to outsource every single task that doesn’t require my personal input. Why wash your car or your clothes when there are professionals that will do it faster and better, thus freeing you up to be more productive in another area that you are an expert? I moved into a new neighborhood last year and with the move came a challenge; there was no proper solid waste disposal system. I needed someone to pick up my garbage regularly. A neighbor gave me a referral for someone that could help me do this. The waste disposal guy showed up the next Saturday. He’s barely in his teens. We discussed terms. He’s to show up every Saturday to pick up the garbage and dispose of it for One thousand naira (N1,000) i.e. about $5 (five dollars) monthly charge which amounts to about $60 annually.

waste disposal                                            Picture credits: dailymail.co.uk

I got talking with this young entrepreneur and discovered that he was serving over twenty other clients like me in the same neighborhood. He doesn’t work full time. He schools full time and only comes around on weekends to pick up the garbage which he carries in his hand pushed cart to the designated waste dumps in the state. So working just one day in a week for a few hours, our young CEO pockets about N20,000 ($100) on monthly basis which may not sound like much until you remember that some full grown adults earn the same amount for some full time work in the same town. While some other individuals may spend hours talking about how the government has failed to provide a waste disposal system for the state, this smart young entrepreneur is already making a minimum of N240,000 ($1200) on annual basis working only part time, solving problems.

garbage                                         Picture credit: trashpaddler.com

Scale it up

Scale up the services being offered by this young CEO in a few years. Maybe a truck or even several large motor driven trucks may replace his hand pushed cart. He could even employ several young boys in the same neighborhood or several neighborhoods all over the state to assist him in same tasks, thus becoming an employer of labor. The N240,000 ($1200) annual income may become N240million ($1,200,000) annual income depending on how many families he is able to serve and in how many towns.

wheelbarrow of money                                        Picture credits: Livetradingnews.com

While he is packing garbage right now, someone much older is wearing his white collar and black tie with his large envelop of resumes going from office to office looking for a J-o-b while at the same time calling this teenage CEO dirty “dutty” boy.

It’s great to think big but ok to start small. Keep Hope Alive!

ND

HIDE IT IN A BOOK!

Some years ago, I traveled to visit my parents. My Dad told me a story that made me laugh so hard. It reiterates the popular belief that if you want to hide anything from an African, you hide it in a book. I hope the new generation of Africans will be those from whom nothing can be hidden in a book.

hide it in a book

It was 1978. He had graduated the previous year from the University of Ibadan, Nigeria and was doing his National Youth Service (NYSC) at Gombe which was then in Bauchi State.

On a fateful day, the Youth Corpers had gone out for community service and upon return to their residence, they discovered to their chagrin that they had been robbed in their absence by a pseudo-corper who had claimed to be one of them. This was quite tragic as most of the corpers had just received their “allawi”- allowance of Two hundred naira (N200) that same day which was quite a sizable amount of money in those days.

nysc
Picture credits: today.ng

 

Most of my Dad’s colleagues bewailed their loss bitterly but he lost not a dime despite the fact that the hoodlums had ransacked his place thoroughly and overturned all the clothes in his bag. His allowance of N200 was safe and untouched. Why? Because he kept it in between the leaves of the novel he was reading before he left. The unwelcome visitors had flung the book aside and never bothered looking in between the leaves. Thus, was his cash preserved.

If the new generation of African Youth, the future leaders of the continent, are going to rise above bad leadership, mediocrity and poverty that has ravaged the continent for centuries, then we must become a reading people for READERS ARE LEADERS.

The industrialized nations of the world are global leaders, because of their wealth of intellectual capital. They have and acquire the best in every field and area of knowledge whether Science and Technology, Finance, Military, Business and every other area. So naturally, they lead the world. Africa MUST INCREASE ITS INTELLECTUAL CAPITAL to grow to meet the challenges of the 21st century.

Let’s go beyond reading compulsory work and school stuff that you must study for exams to reading wide and voraciously. My primary area of training is Medicine & Surgery but my private library includes hundreds of books which cuts across several areas like Shakespeare, Management, Entrepreneurship, Spirituality, Personal development, History, Fiction Novels, National Development & Nation Building, Technology, philosophy, psychology and of course Medicine & Surgery and much more. No knowledge is a waste.

A piece of information from British history I had known for about a decade came in handy in my final exams in surgery. My examiner fancied it. In my Public speaking & writing career, some piece of information I gleaned a long time ago, sometimes come in handy in front of an audience.

I invite you today to join me in a lifetime of consistent Personal development. Make a commitment to be a great READER, hence a great LEADER. Equip yourself for the great future God is taking you to. Join the ranks of Africans who NOTHING CAN BE HIDDEN FROM IN A BOOK. Your future is great so you’ve got to Keep Hope Alive!

Action Plan: Read at least one book every month to help you grow. If you do this, you will read at least 12 books in a year. This is quite significant, considering that 80% of your peers do not read a single a book in a whole year. Keep Hope Alive!

http://www.NewDimensionLife.com

NO OFFICE? NO PROBLEM by Ndubuisi Egwim. Published in Business Day Newspaper, April 1,2009

More often than not, I get approached by young aspiring entrepreneurs with bright ideas for great enterprises. Most point out that the much required capital they need to bankroll their project is not available but one of the commonest challenges I get to hear quite often is that there is no office space available for them to launch from.

It is true that a nice office can really help in facilitating your business meetings, transactions and generally promoting your corporate image but it’s also important to accept the fact that not everyone will have the necessary start-up capital to rent plush offices furnished to their taste. This is especially true when you are not born with a silver spoon in your mouth.

We can take solace in the fact that some of the world’s greatest creative businesses were not started in executive corner offices located in high rise buildings but in dormitories, garages and rented rooms. Michael Dell of Dell computers fame, launched his company from his dormitory room as a freshman (1st year) in Texas University.

Garage where google started. Pic credit: eyeopening.info

When I started my first company I had no office. I didn’t even have a computer or laptop. I had a great idea for a hot untapped market and a lot of determination to make up for what I lacked. I used my website and e-mail as my contact point but most of that changed within a year. There are many other examples of international businesses that took off without an office at first.

For instance, Google Inc. is a billion dollar corporation today that is worth far more than all the companies listed on Nigerian stock exchange put together. They own the Googleplex, the complex that serve as their corporate headquarters but it is also important to note that Larry Page and Sergey Brin started Google from their dormitory room. Jeff Bezos started Amazon.com from his garage. Hewlett-Packard (HP), the giant computer firm also started from a garage. Mark Zuckerberg, who Forbes rated as the world’s youngest billionaire, started his billion dollar facebook company from his campus room.

googleplex
There are several other examples, Nigerian and foreign but time and space doesn’t allow me to mention more. Start from where you are. Focus on what you have and keep getting better. Your other needs will fall into place with time.

In this our present days that everything is going online, it will also be wise to give your business an online presence. If you cannot afford a full dynamic, interactive website, with unlimited bandwidth, complete with forums and blogs like mine (www.newdimensionlife.com), you may try getting a free blog at blogger.com or wordpress.com. It’s also important you make quality promotional materials and complimentary cards. It doesn’t have to be so expensive but you will really have to bring a lot of creativity to bear.

Another way you can overcome the NO OFFICE BARRIER, is sharing an office with a friend. In this case you use your friend or partner’s office as a contact point. You can set up meetings there and you can also receive mails and calls there until you are financially strong enough to rent your own place.

The ideas are in your head, the vision is burning in your heart and like the Reverend Martin Lutherking Jr of blessed memory, you say, “I have a dream”. Yes, it is good to dream big even if we lie on a small bed today but until we begin to take steps to achieve our dreams, until we stop waiting for everything to fall into place before we move, all we would have will be just a DREAM, a figment of our imagination. You are unstoppable. Keep hope alive!

www.NewDimensionLife.com

BLINDNESS: WHAT’S WORSE? by Ndubuisi Egwim

steve wonder

Several years ago while I was in medical school, I walked in for my pediatrics clinical exams, I prayed silently. I was quite apprehensive as I wondered what case I would meet and who would be my examiner. Would my patient be co-operative? Will I have time to finish the exam and type down a diagnosis before the time was up?

My fears were rested in a couple of minutes as my patient was assigned to me.

She was a cute 3 years old but her health challenge was obvious. Her left eye was almost bulging out with a tumor of the retinal part of her eye (Retinoblastoma). As I interacted with the mother, my heart really went out to the little girl especially knowing the fact that due to how late they presented, the tumor was so advanced that the treatment for her condition would be surgical removal of all the contents of the affected eye socket(exenteration) therefore leaving her blind on one eye. I felt it wasn’t fair that this little innocent angel would start out in life already blind in one eye.

However I was consoled by knowing that she could rise above her challenges and that there was something worse than being blind in the eye and that is the BLINDNESS OF THE MIND.
I was confident of this fact because as a freshman in the University, I was privileged to live for about a year in the same room with a middle aged man who was blind on both eyes. He was quite a jolly-good fellow who had made up his mind to make something out of his life despite his physical challenge. We all fondly called him “Oga John”.

He tape-recorded his lectures and got us to help him do the same for his textbooks and print materials. How did he write his exams? He carried an old type-writer to every exam or test he ever had in that Institution and with it he typed away. We served as his mirror to make sure he looked great. He would even laugh at us whenever there was no light and we tripped over things because he had mastered his environment without light. I was glad when he graduated with honors.

Through him, I was also privileged to meet other physically challenged people. On several occasions, he would come across a blind beggar and recognize the voice as one of his Classmates at the Primary School for the Blind. He would call out greeting them but knowing that he had taken his destiny in his hands. For him, blindness of the eye could not stop him because he had a vision, yes, albeit, not physical, he had a vision of the mind because he wasn’t blind in the mind. Such was his attitude that among his friends were Government officials in his state, Student Union Leadership, town hall executives, Dean of his faculty, lecturers and of course his fellow students.

3 years later,I was privileged to speak at a Rehabilitation centre & home for the Physically challenged. I cited Oga John’s Story as an example and many of them were inspired in no small measure.

One may be blind in the eye but something far worse is to be blind in the mind. If you tell a blind man that there is a ditch 20 meters ahead of him, he will understand and change his direction but a man who is blind in the mind may even go ahead and walk into it.

Leadership by people who are blind in the mind is obviously one without VISION. What better definition could there be? Such a Leadership will fall into the ditch but that’s not all: the real tragedy is that they will also lead their followers into the same ditch they fall. No wonder, the Holy Book asks “Can the Blind, lead the Blind?”
A Nation, Company or any organization that has no vision is headed for the ditch and it is only matter of time.

Listening to Cobhams Asuquo’s Music is so refreshing. In case, you don’t know him, he is a multiple award winning Nigerian Music professional with a powerful vision-no, not physical vision (He is blind in both eyes). He is very inspiring.

There have also been many other individuals in History who have gone ahead to prove to their generation that the Blindness of the eye is not the same as that of the Mind. Time fails me to tell you the stories of the likes of Helen Keller, who was a great speaker, activist, author and lecturer; Stevie Wonder, a musician of great repute; Louis Braille, who later invented the Braille for blind people and of course Governor David Paterson, who made history by becoming New York’s first Black and first physically Blind Governor in 2008.

Despite the fact that the burden of Blindness of the eye is quite high in some parts of Africa today, no thanks to Onchocerciasis, yet the real problem that has really plagued the continent for years is lack of vision. As high impact leaders and creative entrepreneurs, we must create clear cut visions and see farther than where we stand from the eyes of our mind. We can make a change in our continent. We can make a definite impact. Let’s Keep Hope alive.