Anniversary Confessions: How I Overcame my “Fear of Writing”

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My writing ability remains a miracle to behold: I basically had to pray my way into it. Fear of mediocrity (or yarning dust), perfectionism, over-reliance on self motivation that wasn’t forthcoming and so on held me back like a curse. I would include “write…” in my to-do list everyday and then end up with a blank slate- “nothing to write home about”.

All my adult life I have always had series of notebooks I carry around like a purse. There I write down random to deep thoughts that show up in my mind from time to time. I would question myself, criticize myself, and ginger myself in these notebooks.

However I noticed something… each time I went through such exercise, it was usually accompanied by some kind of serenity or fierce will that previously never existed. It elevated me from mediocrity and momentary bouts of indiscipline to excellence and diligence on several occasions most remarkably while in the university.

I would hold “motivational talks” with myself and sometimes imagine myself speaking to some imaginary audience with me seated in the front row but whenever I tried to articulate them in writing I failed.

English Language turned out to be much more difficult than I thought!

And then one day I summoned courage. My friend had just launched her blog, what a great motivation that was! I got the ginger and set up my wordpress.com blog. I was going to become a motivational writer! Sounds cool doesn’t it? But then who’s a writer without writing? Where’s the content?

***Blank stare***

Then I decided: my random journalistic jottings were going to lead me to one of my most desired purpose in life. Why write to ginger myself alone when I can pass the positive energy on to others? The desire for impactful writing became so strong; I picked up interest in reading deeply inspiring and articulate books and articles.

I would read and then “forget” what I have read; cramming up quotes and all that stuff from personal development books was never a strength that I had, I would end up “remixing” them so I never bothered. However, the positive messages and energy from these great books diffused subtly into my subconscious mind. It was an unconscious process, all the while I kept thinking up ways to overcome my fear of writing, it was already happening, subtly, and eventually all I had to do was “just do it”.

The motivation to write never came, the words never got easier to craft. I had to get over my perfectionism, fear of mediocrity and just write!

It was hard but I ignored the hardship. Back then, I had a habit of literally running away whenever I was having a rough or tough start that caused me to stay stuck in fear but this time I ignored that too and just got right into it. I would pause for minutes thinking up the right or best words to express or convey a thought but I didn’t run. I did this for a while until finally I broke free of the mental barrier I had created for myself against writing.

Then the words started pouring out like… *please insert your preferred metaphor*. It was as though the key to my subconscious abilities had been unlocked.

I would cut out weak, irrelevant lines and add up adjectives with great noun-qualifying strength. I would look up the meaning and use of words that jumped right out of my subconscious mind into my thoughts just to be sure my grammar and semantics were right.

I would research related quotes to add depth to my content and then I would go over my writings again and again to refine each line till it made the most sense (to me and my imaginary audience).

Finally on my birthday in 2015, I put finishing touches to the blog and hit publish. At about 11 pm that day, my very first post came alive! With that first write up, I was able to break free of my self-inflicted fear of writing, all thanks to God.

Fast forward July 5th, 2017…

I really can’t express how much growth I have acquired since I sent out that first post. I now have a more mature outlook on life and personal development has become part and parcel of my life. Writing about personal development has challenged me to work harder at it.

Now I have about 30 posts on my blog. I also have posts on a wedding blog and other websites with more being drafted for publishing.

Because I am a lot more aware than before, life has become a lot more “challenging”. The journey hasn’t gotten any easier and I haven’t attained perfection either. I have become even more aware of the flaws in my personality and that makes personal development an even more challenging activity for me. But I like the challenge. Working at it, though frustrating sometimes, (it can be so darn hard to change and quit our bad habits) gives me hope. When I look back at how I used to be I know that it’s worth the effort.

Something about personal development, it seems so self-centered, but then he who fails to develop himself will be of no relevance in developing his family, the community, let alone a whole nation.

“See a man that labours on improving himself and in no time, he’d become an inspiration to others who only dream to be in his shoes. Soon, people observing him, watching him grow and develop everyday would in no time pick themselves up and assume the challenge. No one likes to be left behind.”

Happy 2nd anniversary, mindconvos.com!

 

Self-Reflection: The Path to a Better Life

 

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Someone once asked me… “Where do you get your write-ups from? Those posts are beyond you!”

*blink* *blink* Awkward silence…

My posts are probably too advanced for where I am at the moment (I mean who am I to tell people what to do with their lives?) but somehow, I just can’t wait till I “get there” before I begin to share my reflections, lessons and observations. That’s like waiting to get home before telling my cousin who’s also on her way home where the keys are.

But then again, who am I sharing these with?

You?

Well, yes you! However, these words are not meant for you alone, but for me too. It is like my “higher self” writing to my normal self and every other person out there that can connect to the topic. I am not just writing to an audience, I am part of the audience. Maybe that’s why I’m able to write with so much passion (or vexation): I am challenging myself as well to make better decisions and live a better life!

The Path to a better life? Reflection! Reflection!! Reflection!!!

I hear people say things like “Don’t take advice except its some accomplished guru telling you what to do with your life.”

Well, one of the most effective advice you’ll ever find is the one that comes from within… your conscience. Sadly people tend to run from their conscience until they hear those same words again from some accomplished guru they claim to respect or admire.

No one knows your journey better than you. No one knows your life mistakes, strengths and weaknesses better than you. It is just that we tend to ignore these things and then wait until someone else comes to validate their existence.

One way to get in touch with our conscience is by reflection… silence. But many run, they flee from this very act. How many people have the mind to stand face to face with the truth, the hard-core-truth?, which is what our conscience presents to us. We’d rather fill up this time with social media, TV and endless bants or rants about other people’s lives and accomplishments.

Lessons from the Past…

One of my best accomplishments in life, all thanks to God, sprang up from a moment of deep, intense self-reflection even before I knew what that was: Me, alone with my thoughts, reflecting upon my then present and past circumstances.

It was back in the university, and no, I wasn’t messing around, I just wasn’t doing enough. I was a bit distracted and was taking certain things for granted.

I started out great, though not on purpose. I underestimated my abilities until I saw my first ever result… a 4.83 GPA, first semester, 100 level. Along the way, I started getting comfortable and my performance started fluctuating. Still on a first class over all but I wasn’t putting in my best effort to not just maintain it but even improve upon it. At some point I consciously aimed for a 5.0 GPA per semester but then instead of hitting it I was sliding even farther behind.

It was time again for exams, second semester, 300 level and I set out to read in an empty lecture room (being a “people person”- interested in people either by observation or by interaction- I concentrate better studying alone than with people around me). I didn’t plan to reflect, it just happened. I found myself writing to myself on a piece of paper:

“What is wrong with you?”

and then I started listing out everything that was indeed wrong with me. In a while I was staring at my weaknesses face to face.

No, I didn’t wait for my parents or anyone to notice and then talk about it. I confronted myself.

And then it happened…

All thanks to God, I hit the 5.0 GPA in first semester 400 level, though I encountered another realization through reflection on why it took so long to get it. I might share that in another post, someday. But remember this:

You do not have to sit for hours at a motivational seminar, or spend days reading motivational books to confront the weaknesses of your life.

Sometimes we get so addicted to reading motivational stuff without really channeling the energy obtained on anything worthwhile.

I got to know about motivational books and all after graduation from the university, thank God for Omotayo B. Adeoye, my friend and then “rival” (haha! jokes. Tayo was an inspiration on her own), who gave me a collection of over 200 e-books. I haven’t even gotten “quarter-way” yet.

My own personal confrontation with myself produced one of the biggest motivations I could ever find, at that moment.

Reading motivational books and articles post-uni has only helped me to improve the process of personal development and has given me more profound things to think and reflect upon. It has helped to refine my thoughts and actions and become even better at self assessment. It has helped to improve my writing skills too, to the point where I can share lessons articulately with you and I.

So my dear friend, what are you waiting for? Brian Tracy’s upcoming book on “Time Management and Productivity”? Done a pre-order yet? Or you’re waiting for your spouse or parents to notice how “slacky” you have been lately and then give you an hour’s worth of lecture before you take necessary steps to make necessary changes?

At every point in our lives, we would always need self-reflection so that we do not lose sight of our goals, or lose focus needed to live on purpose and attain fulfillment in life. And yes, this is me looking back at my journey so far to find wisdom and motivation for the present and then the future.

Go ahead and confront all such weaknesses that are holding you back from your breakthrough. Let your conscience help you grow, God put it in you for a reason!

Laziness is a Sin. Live on Purpose

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Have you ever wondered why you’re so good in mathematics? Highly artistic and intuitive? Or so curious and intelligent?

Have you ever wondered why you find it so easy to interact with people and influence them to take decisions meanwhile your close friend is pretty timid and can hardly initiate or hold a conversation?

Have you ever wondered why you detest disorderliness and would rather take the pain to get things organized and well done?

Have you ever wondered why coming up with (legal) money making ideas come so easily to you while your hardworking, intelligent friends struggle at it?

Have you ever wondered why your kidneys and lungs are still functioning properly while someone your age somewhere is on life support?

Have you ever wondered why you’re still alive and not on a sick bed or six feet under?

“There is something only you can give and without it, someone is being disallowed a healing, a laugh, an uplift to a better quality of life.”

– Asha Tyson (How I Retired at 26)

Being alive is a gift, a favor that cannot be returned. However, the best attempt at returning the favor would be your ability to exude gratitude in your way of life.

When you choose to spend your life being idle and of little use to yourself and others, you are exhibiting one of the greatest forms of ingratitude.

A man can labor for years… on the wrong thing, knowing fully well that his gifts exist to be utilized for a greater cause. He works… 40 hours a week, not less than 200 days a year yet even in the day the nightmare of an unfulfilled end keeps him from attaining that blissful feeling he truly desires.

The “living on purpose” journey seems too hard and uncertain, he’d rather live the easy way… “The way of the crowd”. He is a lazy man in denial.

Why are you alive?

Why were you created?

What is your purpose on earth?!

“I don’t care about purpose I just wanna make money and get filthy rich!”

Many are rich and famous but much later in life they start wincing against the pains of regret, their inner selves begin calling out to them, their conscience constantly questioning… “Is this all there is to living?”

A man can have multiple sources of income and enjoy many of the great luxuries of life. But that has little to do with the purpose of his existence.

Your purpose is that thing you have been “customized” for, that thing you have been given a special ability to accomplish, that thing that only you have been equipped to give, to share, to contribute.

Your purpose is why you were created; the reason why you are where you are at the moment, your reason for being alive.

When you spend your life chasing after status symbols or trying to fit in a particular social status, you are only wasting your time on earth.

Your wealth is of no value if you’re holding on to it so tightly, and you find it difficult to spend on a good cause or give to the ones in need.

Many have had more before you only to leave the world with nothing at all.

Your gifts and abilities exist to be utilized for the good of others. Don’t ignore them, don’t underestimate their usefulness. Don’t live your life in “idleness”. Go out and give value.

You probably think working your butt off at work to get the money, pay the bills and live in sophistication is all there is to your existence but give it some deep thought… What if there’s more?

“yo! It is my life… I can just do what I like. I really don’t care.” 

When you run a business that is fulfilling a need and then you feel you have the power to sit and do nothing because you want to. No one can make you work if you don’t want to. Think about the souls who will be denied the value you bring.

How would you feel if your favorite brand packed up and stopped production or service? If Nestle stopped producing Milo, Coca cola stopped sharing happiness through coke and MTN stopped operation because the economy has become too tough or some people just wanna “rest”?

How would you feel if you can’t get quality food stuff in the market because farmers are tired, the economy has been unfair so they just wanna “rest”?

Someone somewhere would be denied cheap, healthy breakfast because you’re feeling too lazy to stay consistent in your “roadside akara-frying” business.

Someone somewhere would be denied a better quality of life because you have chosen to let laziness rule in your business and now produce or sell inferior products or services.

Sometimes we think we’re doing it for the money but really, if you would give it a deep thought, the value you give by doing your business right, goes way beyond whatever is being paid in return by your customers. Your ability to just show up daily and make things happen is phenomenal and in that, really, lays your great purpose.

It takes great discipline, passion, commitment and grace to consistently provide great value. It takes purpose to do it right all the time.

We tend to think of purpose as some grand idea or grand accomplishment but no, sometimes it is just you going about daily, doing the little things you can to make a significant difference in people’s lives.

The end result of a life lived on purpose is fulfillment.

NICE WORDS TO REMEMBER, TOMORROW

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We live in an inconsistent world…

Life is not constant.

Times are always changing; situations are never always the same.

One day, you are comfortable, all is well with you and then another day, you find yourself in a tough situation but then you just can’t give up. You’ve got to keep going, you’ve got to thrive and not just survive.

Some days you wake up strong, healthy and happy, some days you don’t feel so strong, you probably got flu or something and then some days you’re just not emotionally upbeat.  It just happens but you still gotta work, you still gotta make things happen, you can’t stop yet, you just have to keep going.

Maybe take some time to rest and recuperate but you know you’re going back sooner or later to make your own little contribution in the world either by the way of your work or your time.

So whenever you’re making or taking any life decision like marriage, career, and so on, remember to ask yourself some probing questions:

  • Would my love for this remain constant even in the face of life’s unpredictable circumstances?
  • Would I be satisfied and happy with this no matter how rough or tough life gets?

We can never be detailed enough while planning for the future; we can never be too sure.

However, we can take that leap of faith while knowing in our hearts that regardless of what the consequences are, life is full of second chances, and contrary to popular belief, opportunities “hardly come but once”; we can make positive changes and live mindfully, in appreciation of every single circumstance we encounter along the way.

WHEN HUMILITY BECOMES THE ENEMY

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You don’t value what you have.

 

Everyone sees gold in you except you.

You give excuses to explain why you’re not as great as people think.

You see down-talking yourself as being humble.

You try not to excel beyond the normal.

You don’t enjoy the attention that being excellent brings you because:

 

you’re scared of becoming proud.

you’re scared of not being able to keep it up.

you don’t think you deserve the commendations.

you think it’s just a flash in the pan.

 

But you want the success, and every good thing that comes with it;

The money, the love, the recognition and so on

As long as you stay humble and God-fearing.

 

Well then, you’ve got to decide now!

To have all of these and more, you have to value what you have:

The God-given gifts and abilities you have been blessed with.

 

Let the world know that God didn’t bless you so that you could throw it all away.

You have been blessed for a purpose;

Find it, Cherish it, Make the best of it.

 

Stop hiding now, let your inner light shine through and illuminate the world!

 

THE QUEST FOR PERFECTION: A NEVER ENDING JOURNEY

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We like the beautiful and handsome; the one with all the swag and physical perfection.

We are attracted to the ones with the best diction and accent, the one with the perfect smile, the perfect speech, the perfect ideas and the perfect belongings, properties or acquisitions.

However, in the midst of all that “perfection” lay cast in the shadow the “imperfect ones” longing for love and affection; for a friendly word of hope and encouragement, an uplifting smile or a shoulder to lean on.

We are not even aware of their existence; we pay little or no attention…


  • When was the last time you said hello or smiled randomly at a beggar or a helpless kid you see every day on your way to work?
  • Have you ever stopped to chat with the errand boy or security guy in your work place?
  • Have you ever helped an old man or woman who’s weak and feeble with their bags or baggage on your way out? Do you even notice them?

Most of us in one way or the other are on a quest for perfection: the perfect job, the perfect spouse, the perfect boss, colleague or employee, the perfect friends, the perfect life! And thus we complain when the imperfect happens or is encountered.

We seek perfection in all our endeavors thereby failing to appreciate the little twists and turns that makes our journey more fulfilling and rewarding in the end.

A BLESSING IN DISGUISE

Every day in this world represents a great new opportunity in countless ways: a new business, a new investment, a new positive habit, a new job, a new home, a new idea, a new solution, a new friend…

Amidst the hustle and bustle to make ends meet we do not fail to notice the “perfect ones” among us; the ones with an “extra dose” of blessings that just seem to captivate us all the way.

We fail to recognise and appreciate the fact that life would be lacking greatly in meaning and substance if everyone and everything around us were perfect.

The poor and needy, the neglected kids, the elderly, the physically challenged, the slow learner in your class, the “black sheep” of your workplace or family with all the character flaws in the world- all these and more contribute to the awesomeness of life if only you knew.

The imperfections are God’s way of making us grateful for all that we have and all that we do not have. In the midst of all the imperfection in the world lies our opportunity to show gratitude and to enrich our own lives through reaching out to those in need of our good words and actions.

THE PERFECT ROLE WHICH IS OURS TO PLAY

  • Maybe we were made strong so we can help the weak find their strength.
  • Maybe we are physically able so we can help the physically disabled.
  • Maybe we are rich and successful so we can help the poor and needy live comfortably and probably discover their own path to a great fortune.
  • Maybe we are wise and intelligent so the world can be made a better place by our insights and ideas.

All in all, the lesson to be drawn from this is:

Be it in form of our words or our actions, we all have a favor to do for the man or woman, boy or girl next to us and most times we really shouldn’t wait to be asked before we do it.

We shouldn’t expect to be compensated for doing it.

We shouldn’t expect gratitude either.

We should, however, look up to the One who gave us the wisdom, strength and capability to do all that we have in gratitude and in hope for the grace to do more.

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MY IDEAL PERSONALITY

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My Ideal Personality or person is:

  • Calm but agile
  • Fashionable but not vain
  • Smart, Intelligent and/or seeking intelligence
  • Humble but not easily manipulated

Continue reading “MY IDEAL PERSONALITY”

THE FUTURE DOES NOT EXIST!

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The Future Does Not Exist…

The so called “TOMORROW” never really comes.

We do not wake into TOMORROW, we wake into another day… TODAY.

We expect to sleep and one day, wake into the FUTURE

But NO, the FUTURE is just another day… TODAY. Continue reading “THE FUTURE DOES NOT EXIST!”

WHERE DO YOU BELONG?

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Everybody wants to:

Talk like everybody, Act like everybody,

Dress like everybody and Be like everybody.

But everybody can’t be everybody because… Continue reading “WHERE DO YOU BELONG?”

THE BEGINNING: The Mind Unveiled

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For Humans only (No machines allowed):
The mind is probably the most powerful element of the human “be-ing”:

  • The dwelling place of all our feelings (good and evil).
  • The very origin of our personalities.
  • The source of all great things ever made (by man).

It leaves one in immense wonder, how this powerful gift to mankind is never fully nurtured and utilized by many and is left to rut with neglect. Continue reading “THE BEGINNING: The Mind Unveiled”