I was rushing to catch up a meeting in the campus of the universities in Nigeria. I was walking closely behind three students. Their conversation suggested that they were in the same level and department. Their subject of discussion caught my interest; I thought within me that there is something to learn from these boys’ discussion. Then I slowed down and walk in the same pace as they were doing.
The first boy, dressed in white t-shirt and a blue jeans said to his friends, “Those who graduate with first class are destined to do exactly that. No matter how much people like us try, none of us can make it to first class.” The second boy was like, “What of if I double up my effort?” “You cannot make it.” the first boy insisted. I wished I could zip my mouth and listened but I just couldn’t.
“How in God’s name do you know that this young man is not destined to graduate with first class?” I interrupted. Looking at my face like you will do when a complete stranger bump into your discussion, the boy said, “I am judging him from his previous academic record.” If you ask me, that is the worst thing to do: to judge someone with his past. I went on to explain to these boys, “What is constant in life is change. Human intelligence, ability, and agility are not fixed. They change on a daily basis.”
Like the first boy in the story, most students have internalized the erroneous notion that academic excellence is feasible for only selected few – and that they couldn’t make it on the list of this precious few. Despite the fact that this notion is untrue, it will be true for anyone who believes it with conviction.
Here is the gimmick: Human beings by nature detest putting their witty effort or attempt to waste their time and resource on things that are unachievable. It has little or no effect when it appears unachievable to other but not you. But trust me, you won’t like to put your effort if it appears unachievable to you; even if it is obvious that it is achievable. The implication therefore is that students who incapacitate themselves with this erroneous belief will not hesitate to withhold the efforts required to produce academic excellence.
Therefore, I urge you to discard all the counterproductive believes that disqualifies you for academic success; discard also the people who reinforce these believes in you.
Academic excellence is at the finger tip every student; it only requires a copious effort to achieve it. It is noteworthy is that this copious effort is always something you can afford. Be willing to put in this effort and academic excellence becomes yours.
There are too many stories that take academic excellence out of view. When I gained admission, like most energetic freshmen, I came with a mindset to graduate with distinction. I heard bulk of these stories and they made my dream to be an academic highflier sick. I walked around the campus with a sickish aspiration until my cousin finally killed the dream.
I was in his hostel to visit him. He entertained me in a little way that an average student could afford. After taking the beans and ‘garri’ he gave me, we took a stroll towards the campus’s health centre. Being a final year student, he deemed it fit to orientate me – a chronic freshman.
“You cannot afford to have carry-over; so you have to do everything possible to avoid it.” He continued, “There are a lot of callous lecturers who are expert in sabotaging student’s effort. Sure there would be at least a highly intelligent person in your class, do everything possible to associate with him or her.” After offering me several good advices, he negligently set a goal for me. He said, “It may require that you sweat bullet, but try to score 60 in all your courses. If you do, you will make our family proud.”
I went home excitedly, drew plans and strategies that will help me achieve my brand new goal. Like he suggested, I sweated bullet before I could reach that goal. What would have happened if I did not listen to my cousin? What would have happened if I refused to slim fit my goal?
Do I just say those stories are completely untrue? No! They are incomplete. They are not the only stories. There are stories of students who were victimized and yet graduated with their desire grade. At least, I knew a student who was victimized because her lecture wanted what is in between her thigh at all course. She took up the case and got justice. I also know hundreds of students who make first class despite these daring odds.
I was opportune to get a second chance. This time, I came with a determination that the potential odds could not withstand. I discarded all those stories and believed the only ones that spelt possibility. I can tell; the result was desirable.
Action point: Get your advices from people you desire their success. If you desire to graduate with first call, don’t gather your advice from people who are graduated with pass.
He is a friend. He was admitted into a state university that will remain unnamed. He did not particularly like the school. He never relented as he continued to seek admission from another federal university. In the process, he missed classes, assignments, test and many deadlines. It was barely three weeks to his first semester exam when he found out that he could not make it to his desired school.
Like most students in his shoe will do, he fell back to admission that he had been lackadaisical about. He employed fire brigade approach; he worked off his finger. His hard work and intellectual ability was unable to rescue him from carry-over. While narrating his experience, he said, “That was my poorest grade ever and I vowed that it will be forever.”
Jude wrote first class in the second semester and beyond – till the end of his days as an undergraduate. But it is painful and dishearten that his CGPA never made it to first class because of his first ugly grade. Here is a practical illustration.
His first semester grade point was 2.46(pass); the second is 4.54(first class). His cumulative for second semester became 3.5(Second class lower). In the second year, he wrote 4.5 in my first semester 200l, my cumulative for that semester will be (2.46+3.5+4.67)/3 which is equal to 3.54.
Action point: Start early! It gives you an unfair advantage; it will save you from unnecessary hard work;
There are two broad means of acquiring education. They are formal and informal education. For donkey’s years now, Nigeria has prioritized the bastardized version of formal education. And it has not been producing our desired outcome. We have place outrageous value on certification and it self-evident that it is not working.
I read recently that Yinka Quadri – a veteran Yoruba actor, movie star who has appeared in more than a thousand movies, went back to school to study theater art, a career that he had gotten to the mountaintop. For what? I amused. Yinka is already an authority in the field; he was supposed to be employed as a facilitator and not a student. But because we are uninterested in the skills but the paper certification, he was admitted as student.
There are practical examples of how ‘outside school education’ has delivered the type of result we wanted. Bill Gate case makes a telling example. Bill Gate was a student in Harvard when he conceive the idea that later became the most magnificent IT firm in the world. He realized that what is been taught in the four walls of the classroom was not only incompetent to help him achieve his dream, it was also a distraction and waste of time. He took a leave of absence to give his dream a trial. His dream worked out and he never resumed his leave of absence.
Today, Bill Gates is considered as one of the greatest revolutionist of our time. His contribution to world of technology has changed the face of education in the world. Yet this man never had a university degree. The same is true for Steve Jobs, the brain behind Apple Inc. He left Stanford to acquire knowledge from an informal setting. Without a college degree, he shook the world of technology to its root. Mark Zugerberg, the Mandela of social media dropped out voluntarily to informally learn, master and work at his dream. And today, his brainchild – Facebook – has provided jobs for many hopeless graduates, yet he is not a graduate.
It is on this note that I encourage my fellow Nigerians who desire to contribute his or her quota to make this nation a better and safer place to live to join the campaign to ‘importalize’ informal education.
Hatred is a deep and emotional extreme dislike that can be directed against individuals, entities, object or idea. It all start from our inner being. Our mind housed hatred. It is more of our thought than our action but trust me evil intention can be as serious as evil action.
Hatred has a whole lot of problem in the world, but has not solved one yet. It wreaks havoc on relationship, breaks up families, and even take away innocent lives. Statistics shows that 80% of the evil deed that exist in the world today stems up from hatred. Mention it. Murder happen in the absent of love. When love is absent hatred takes over. It is almost impossible to rape someone we love. Is that confusing? Love differs from lust. Love is not equal to infatuation.
The ten laws of Moses was summarized in two by Jesus Christ. And the two are based primarily on love – the opposite of hatred. God is love and anyone who desire to relate with must have not only the capacity to love but maximize this capacity.
Apart from being the source of evil, and jeopardize our relationship with our maker. hatred is like an acid that does more harm to the vessel in which it is stored than to anything on which it is poured. It is a burden. In fact, it causes mind ulcer. With hatred, thought of revenge and destruction can cloud our mind. Whereas, The mind the bottled with these thoughts hardly – or occasionally – know peace. Because peace and hatred are cat and rat. Tell me the essence of living in the absent of peace and rest?
There is no escape route to hatred in the bible. The story of a young man called Sola illustrates this better. Sola was tired of his marriage, he went to his pastor to complain. These were their conversation.
Sola: My home has turned to a mini hell. In fact, I hate my wife with passion.
Pastor: But God commanded us to love wife.
Sola: She is not my wife. As a matter fact, we don’t sleep in the same room
Pastor: The bible said love your neighbour.
Sola: She is not my neighbour. Should a tell you the truth? She is my enemy
Pastor: Forget not, God said, love your enemy.
As you can see, the bible left no stone unturned and gave no license to hate. Hatred is evil and every evil is from devil. The only thing the bible permit you to hate is SIN. When I said sin, I mean sin and not SINNER.
Beware life is too short, too precious to be eaten up by hatred.
The most important part of human making use to learn is our MIND. In our mind, I believe, knowledge is organized and structured in a network of related concepts. Zull said new knowledge must connect to, or build upon a framework of the existing knowledge. Learning involves building mental models consisting of new and existing information. The richer the links between new and existing information, the deeper the knowledge and the more readily it can be retrieved and applied in new situations.
As established above, if existing knowledge serves as a foundation for new learning, then it is important that the existing misconceptions, preconception and naïve conceptions are acknowledged and correct during learning process. I believe that is why Thomas Jefferson said “He who knows nothing is closer to the truth than he whose mind is filled with falsehood and error”.
I believe you will agree with me that there are some lessons we have learnt and knowledge we have acquired that we really need to unlearn before we start new learning. The alarming one is telling lies. Though I can’t really pinpoint it origin, but it a eaten up our system. In fact, many see it as an abnormal act not to tell lies. One acquaintance of my equate lying with wisdom.
And there are some values and knowledge that is part of us before but nowhere to be found now. Take for instance, when I was growing up, my mummy taught me to pray each time I want do any sensitive thing like when I want to eat, travel, sleep and when I wake up. But now, I can remember leaving for my daily activity without a word of prayer.
All these make it important for us to learn how to unlearn the counter human development knowledge in our disposal and relearn the good virtues we have lost or those outside our reach.
Skill is an ability that has been acquired from training. Life is not worth living without thinking skill. Though, thinking is a challenging task just as one of the best thinkers in the history of the world Albert Einstein asserted “Thinking is hard work; that’s why so few do it”. That is true especially when positive and productive is involved. But the good news is that positive and productive thinking can be learned. The following will help you:
Acknowledge the purpose of this skill: the reason why human being abuse anything is because they lack the knowledge of how useful it might be. Sense of purpose generate passion, commitment and perseverance, and these three are source of motivation which give birth to stubborn focus. All together keep you glue to your dreams and goals.
Desire this skill with passion: It is always difficult – I don’t want to use the word impossible – to acquire something(skill) you don’t desire. Bishop David Oyedepo said “until a task is a must, no one can take most of it. Your desire had the ability to make a task a must.
Make asking question an habit: Questions lead to answer, inquiries lead to discoveries. When said asking questions, I mean asking oneself questions. An attempt to provide answer to these question dive you into thinking mode. Take for example, millions of people saw apples fall from apple tree, but only Newton asked why? And in attempt to find an answer to his question, he discovered the law of gravity. How Newton’s law has impacted this world cannot be stress enough.
Associate yourself with imagination stirring people and things: make yourself available to things and people that get your thinking process started. Read book – motivational, stories, fiction, spiritual. Listen to tapes. As iron sharpen iron, Surround yourself with good thinkers that can stir your imaginations. Go after things that will stretched your thought
Think on paper: this is another way to improve your thinking skill. Just the way human being prefer to stay in a place they are celebrated to where they are relegated. The same way we love doing things that gives us sense of purpose. After a deep thought, writing the ideas generated from your thought gives us a sense of purpose – writing in the context is not necessarily writing a book or even an easy but just write for yourself.
Why did some people succeed and others don’t? One percent of the world population earns almost 96 percent of the total money that is being earned in the world. Do you think it is accidental or coincident? Two percent of the populations dominate the world. Did you think these great men were specially created? All these questions really stir up my imagination. An attempt to provide a logical answer to this question opened a door of new world to me. And I deem it fit to share it with you.
To start with, anybody can succeed. Success is not and will never be answerable to your neither background nor your physical appearance – colour of your skin, height or shape. Mention it, I have seen a physical challenged people been successful, uneducated people doing exploit, people from rough background performing wonders, short men ruling the world, and women making impact. Thus, it not the function of all these criteria.
God had already deposited in everybody he created what it takes to be great. People who really attain this height were not born special. Though their achievement painted them to be one but at least they don’t have two heads neither born with cloth. Everybody is born naked. What makes the difference is first, their choice to succeed and next to it is their commitment to the principle guiding success.
Success is governed with principles. Satisfy these principles; success will dwell with you for the rest of your life. People who have drawn success to their lives have whether consciously or unconsciously find themselves fulfilling the principle of success. It is possible to fulfill these principles unaware. Take for example Cornelius in the book of life, was fulfilling the kingdom principles, despite he was not aware of these principle. When you fulfill kingdom principle unaware though you will get the result but you might not be able to maximize it.
Every rational human being in his right senses desire success. But not everyone who desires it got it. Everyone – both laze and hard work – show inteRest. Mere interest can take you but nowhere. Giants are committed to doing what makes a giant. Only those who are committed to success, grasp it. Why? Desire without action is worthless. Our commitment drives us into action. We tend to do things that we are interested in at our convenience but commitment never accepts No when they want YES.
“Commitment = desire + action”
The lesson of this write is to reshape you view about success, it is not inherent. It is not a respecter of all persons but only those who obey the principles. It answers when the principles that governed it is obeyed.
Change your status through thought is a series that will run from part one to part four let start with part one
Important of thinking skill
Thinking liberate: Thinking especially at productive level liberate has the ability to liberate people from oppression. Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler understood the unlimited power of thought when he said “What luck for rulers that men don’t think”. Take your time to think, it is a source of power.
Thinking is Priceless
I believed Author Napoleon Hill when he said, “More gold has been mined from thought of man than has ever been taken from the earth” but the truth is that gold tap out, stock market crash, real estate investment can go sour, but human mind with the ability to think well is like a diamond mine that never runs out.
Thinking generate idea: thinking produces idea, and idea rule the world. George Washington believes “idea is more power than guns, we may allow our enemy to have gun but why should we let them have ideas?”