Our cognition, emotion and action add up to form our personalities. A changed person is one with a changed personality, in other words he has got a fresh orientation which is a renewed cognition hence a transformed emotion and action.
Thank God for the gift of life, we’re now in February! How many so far had been and would continue to be faithful to their resolutions for the year 2014? Many had tripped and fallen on the track-field of goal-setting and resolutions and smeared their snow-white shirts with dirt and dusts; many more would retreat into their old skin and refuse to clad a brand new attire before the end of the first quarter so very few – handful not more will breast the tape at the end of the game. Endorse the molting attitude of snakes NOT the unrepentant and unapologetic attitude of leopard that refused to shed its spots or the dog that returns to its vomit.
But what usually asphyxiate our goals and finally bury our resolutions? Change, we fear change that’s why the passion wasn’t there in the first place or smother along the line. Passion and determination are the two legs that move our goals to their destinations but when they are amputated, things fall apart. For those who had their foundations fractured or dislocated perhaps amputated, all hope is not lost for you could remedy. Go for splint … or prosthesis as the case may be. Stand firm in the storm and march steadfastly to your stardom.
Yes we thank God for His abundant grace, flowing mercy, definite, infinite compassion on humanity. Housewarming, baby-christening, promotions, raise in salary, new, lucrative jobs, weddings, admission at schools, coronations … are all positive stimuli and hence good news but the mother of all testimonies is being alive because only the living have the opportunity to achieve their goals, dreams and heart desires!
When we’re asked to come out and testify to the goodness of God perhaps in the church or wherever sometimes nobody comes out and pastors usually say, “No testifier to the goodness of God today; what happened?”
But indeed all of us are living, walking testimonies because we’re all alive. That’s one of the best testimonies we could ever think of. The year is still brand new, in fact till the end of February it’s still straight from the factory. ‘Chassis!’ ‘Ochara!’ ‘Tear-rubber!’ name it.
As humans we strive to be better, healthier, richer and greater that’s why we want to change some habits, hobbies about us that seem to be a kind of logjam, setback to our achievements, success and progress in life. Since the year is new we want to start it on a fresh note that’s why we make new plans to achieve new things in the New Year.
The birth of New Year Resolutions!
Even the snail hates it when she hears ‘snail-mail’ and loved to be like e-mail so her wishful-resolution was to be fast, very fast this year but if wishes were horses beggars would definitely ride. The rat prayed from 11pm to 12:30am on December 31st to January 1st and resolved not to come out to the open to avoid being captured by her No. 1 enemy – cat so she could live longer. Now she’s suffering from agoraphobia (fear of open space.) The buffalos in the wild made a resolution to stay in groups and be more watchful of the cats most especially lionesses this year….
The wife-beater, the alcoholic, the obese, the overweight, the smoker, the promiscuous, the spendthrift, the procrastinator, the hot-tempered, the gossip … would like to become better so they adopted New Year Resolutions as blueprints to guide them in addressing and arresting their shortcomings, flaws, faults and inadequacies. Even the learner (toddler) carrying no placard with letter “L” emboldened on it, had resolved on New Year’s Day to walk better this year but you never knew. For the umpteenth time, how many had been truthful, faithful to their resolutions so far? Must we make a resolution before we change? Maybe, maybe not!
However, the strategy to achieving some goals in life is to avoid strategies. People can change at any time of the year and it must not usually be in January. So if you’d fallen by the way, get up and get going. Kudos for trying! There are many who never did! Falling is commendable for you fell because you rose, attempted to rise or in a race already; someone on the floor can’t flop because he’s fallen already. Falling and refusing to get up is where the problem lies. So it’s never too late to start all over again.
We tend to consciously or unconsciously loathe change but change is the only permanent thing in life. To this end change is inevitable to mankind. We fear change because we are anxious of the unknown and tend to be okay in our comfort zone which makes us complacent. I’m a living example!
Humans have overt, covert, implicit and explicit desires for pleasure and as a matter of fact, all what we do are governed by an underlying need to enjoy the luxuries of life, long or short-term! To this end, anything that seems to stifle our convenience, peace, tranquility, happiness, we tend to run away from such the way chicks bolt away on sighting or sensing hawks or buzzards. We love and strive to be great, wealthy, famous because we like the pleasure inherent but dislike the pressure embedded.
People who lose weight easily would have no need to diet because in the first instance they are never overweight or obese. But if they do they would lose weight dramatically by fasting but for obese or overweight persons fasting to lose weight is self-defeatist. This is because the systems of such would embrace survival modes and thus store the little food that comes in as quickly as possible as fat in order to avoid starvation which the body already had a premonition of. In the long run such would add more than lose weight.
Aside that, fasting and skipping meals is dangerous to your holistic health, what with ulcer, starvation. Eat small regular (healthy) meals to induce and fire up your metabolism. In fact, eating small regular meals five times a day is better than eating one big meal in one fell swoop.
If you eat small but regular meals you signal to your body to speed up its rate of metabolism similar to when you put small quantity of water regularly on fire, you notice that it boils within a short time each time, unlike when you put plenty of water on fire which takes a much longer time. In the same vein if you burn small refuse at a time the time it takes to burn all is little compared to when you burn the whole refuse just once.
The old mantra now a cliché says that you’re what you eat. To this end if you eat healthy meals you’ll be healthy and vice-versa. Therefore choose to be healthy. Eat healthy meals and stay healthy! Remember to exercise regularly as well. Strolling at dawn or dusk is a refreshing exercise. The body and soul love it.
If you’ve a medical condition please consult your physician before you start an exercise regimen. Sunflower oil, corn oil, soyabean oil and olive oil are particularly good for your overall health. Of course don’t forget to consume fruits and vegetables and oily fish – salmon, tuna and mackerel and less of red meat. Note: the fat in white meats (poultry) is stored in the skin so once in a while you can take care of that. Egg-yolk is the seat of cholesterol in eggs so note that as well.
It’s not too late to start again. Our respondents (lettered or unlettered) are still working on their goals for the year, I am too so don’t give up already. Make sure you are well informed about the goals you set for yourself so that you don’t end up complicating the issue instead of addressing it. You climb a ladder from the lowest not highest rung, on this premise if you want to jog start by jogging 1km and gradually increase it as you get used to that. Don’t start by jogging 7km believe me you won’t jog 7m the next day. Therefore set realistic goals don’t try to lose 30Ibs in two weeks if you try to the stress would distress and displace you and your goals.
Your goals must be documented (written on a sheet of paper or diary you might even store it in your phone with a daily reminder) so try and paste it on your wardrobe or bathroom door and read first thing in the morning and last thing before going to bed at night, by so doing you’re employing your conscious and subconscious mercenaries to fight your challenges for you. You begin to see, think and dream it. Nothing is more refreshing and validating than dreaming about your dreams.
Your goals must be specific and definite. Only children are unsure of what they want to become in life. Perhaps last year your child told you he wants to become a surgeon now he wants to pursue a career in petroleum engineering don’t be surprised if he comes up with the idea of piloting a plane tomorrow. I want to marry before this year runs out is vague, flimsy, blur.
Be precise, be specific! “I will marry in September this year,” is more specific than “I will marry this year.” As a matter of fact if not because families are involved in that decision making you should have a specific day in September by now.
Do you want to learn how to play the guitar, keyboard or compose music this year? Enroll in a music school. Would you love to be computer literate? Start attending a computer school and be passionate about it. The housewife who wants to sharpen her culinary skills, talk to that ‘chef-friend’ of yours.
Do you want to move someone up the ladder from being an acquaintance to friend and vice-versa? Remember I’ll have an idea of you if I see your friends but a true picture of you if I see your best friend. Do you want to work on your self-esteem and relationships? Don’t forget that one of the walls of Jericho encountered in a relationship is when you feel superior or inferior to your partner. Is it your heart you want to heal or mend? Yes you bath your body everyday to keep her clean and fresh but what about your heart? Clean and refresh her with love and forgiveness. Is it nail-biting, nose picking, reckless driving, eating on the street name it?
Is yours a foreign language, perhaps French? Enroll in Alliance Francais. That school dropout, go learn handiwork, be a curious, thirsty apprentice so you could learn fast and become an expert in your field to become a better citizen your country would be proud of.
Talk less and listen more. Your eyes and ears apart from the fact that they are in twos, they are opened always except when you’re sleeping (in the case of your eyes) but your mouths are always shut. To this end talk less and listen more, perhaps God’s indirectly telling us to run our mouths less often. Remember, the more you talk the more you utter gibberish and the more you reveal confidential matters. Men of God and counselors please note!
Set and document your daily, weekly and monthly goals, all these are allies, they work together to make your goals for the year come to fruition. If people embrace daily resolutions they won’t quit if they tried to improve in some areas of their lives but failed because they know that tomorrow is another day which is just around the corner unlike waiting for another year to try again.
MEET OUR YOUTHFUL RESPONDENTS AND THEIR MOST IMPORTANT ‘CHARACTER’ GOALS, AND DREAMS FOR THEIR COUNTRIES:
We ask them what they want changed in their lives and if they had a magical wand, what singular thing would they change about their countries.
A student, and hairstylist at the University of Lagos (UNILAG) says, “Me as a person I’ll like to work on my anger for I get angry easily and for Nigeria I want the issue of unemployment to be addressed.”
A fresh student of Chemistry of the University of Ibadan (UI) trumpeted, “I want to take everything that concerns me seriously; this is because I’m a ‘last-minute’ person. I always procrastinate till the final day then I’ll begin to run around which is very stressful and risky. As for Nigeria, if I have a magical wand I’ll eradicate corruption from the land. There are laws against corruption in the land but in theory, I want enforcement of those laws. When someone embezzles and he’s caught, he should be prosecuted and jailed this will prevent others from doing same.”
A final year student of Food Technology, Yaba College of Technology (YABATECH) didn’t shy away from expressing his mind. “I want to stop procrastinating this year and for Nigeria, if I could have my way I would change the negative mindset of Nigerians toward Nigeria.”
A nurse voiced out calmly but firmly, “I want to be independent in the area of decision making and to make decisions promptly without delay. For Nigeria, I want the everyday people, the typical Nigerian to benefit from the dividends of democracy. To this end I want funds for the health, education, agriculture, infrastructure, energy, security and the like to be disbursed and executed in transparency and accountability so that Nigeria can stop being the common fisherman hungry for fish.”
A bricklayer says, “There are many things I’d like to change but I want God to prosper me so that my nuclear and extended family can enjoy the luxuries of life. As for Nigeria, I want Nigerians to be more pious not religious, and prayerful.”
A year two Theatre Arts student of the University of Ibadan (UI) says, “I want to depend less on my parents this year. In other words, I want to be creative and enterprising businesswise so as to be financially independent. Because I’m a student, one singular thing I would love to change about Nigeria is the issue of industrial actions by university teachers. I want government to allocate more funds to the education sector to forestall ASUU (Academic Staff Union of Universities) strike throughout every session. This way you’ll be able to predict when you’ll graduate from school and plan ahead.”
A Beninese says, “I hate it when people are cheated so I fight to protect their rights but I want to stop it this year. As for my country I would want them to believe in God because an average Beninese is an atheist or agnostic.
A fashion designer and student piped, “If there’s anything I want for myself this year, it’s to be ten times better. I want to make positive impact in people’s lives everywhere I go. And for my country Nigeria, I’d like to change the negative orientation of our leaders for they need to embrace selflessness and eschew selfishness.”
MD, Zaron Franchise cum major distributor Sleek, Ibadan quipped, “Personally, nothing for now because I already worked on one major weakness I had. For Nigeria if I’d the opportunity to change something about her it would be to give home and hope to homeless, hopeless children walking aimlessly on our streets. Children they say are the future of tomorrow, to this end I’d like to protect, secure, nurture and nourish them for a better, awesome tomorrow. A nation with promising children is a nation with promising future. That’s the picture in my mind!”
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