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Live and Let Live

October 7, 2014

I recently had a friendly conversation with an acquaintance of mine and it had its usual banters and eventually ended with the usual him telling me “you always do like you know more than others” speech. I’ve heard it a number of times before but this time, I had to pause and think for a moment if indeed it was true. I know like so many people – truth most times is a bitter pill to swallow by almost everyone I know and it quickly reminded me of a colleague whom I once told that he wasn’t taking feedback…something he always accused me of.

In life, we always want to be right; we want to be heard; we want to feel we are making an impact. While the dominant ones amongst us will make their voices heard, the very reserved ones will just keep quiet and allow things be – they couldn’t be bothered at all by all the noise we make after all it doesn’t add money to their bank account or does it? I also recall when another colleague once told me of a story a very senior member of staff had given them when we first joined the company. At that time we were all fresh and bright (I hope) and bustling with ideas. We felt the world was ours to conquer and we had ideas, very good ideas and we did everything together. Either when someone was getting married or having an event and we contributed to support the wedding or marked an anniversary.

Fast forward a few years down the line, we were now competitors and with fewer positions available to compete for, it becomes survival of the fittest; dog eat dog kind of thing and everyone trying to outwit the other to get a shot at what was available. This is the point where friends become foes and foes become real enemies. It’s always very easy to look at the other person and tell them a million things they are not doing right. Once the table turns and we are now faced with the same set of criticism, we get all defensive! It’s what we all do and I know enough to admit I know am good at it.

Having been in the service industry for over 15 years now, I know a basic principle – the customer is always right! However, I try to modify it a little bit and say, well most of the times. The truth is that everyone has a right to express him or herself but when your right of expression now transcends boundaries and infringes on the right of the next person then in the words of one of my former manager, ”you need to be very careful”. You may be right but when we sometimes take things into the right context, you may actually discover that you could be wrong.

Like a good friend used to say that “no two birds have every collided in space”. There’s enough God has created in the world to satisfy mankind. We are most times all competing for the same thing and then creating artificial scarcity which obviously leads to increased demand. If only we can take a step backward and ask ourselves truthfully what we really need in life, the world would be a better and happier place to be in. We would be satisfied with what we have and even when we want more, we would go about it in a civil manner.

Don’t get me wrong because everyone deserves the good things of life so it’s easy for someone to say “oh well, you are comfortable so you can open your mouth and tell us to watch and pray”, far from it. I’m just saying that we can all succeed as God has blessed us differently. We need to come to terms with the fact that not everyone will be the MD of the company for example; neither will everyone become the Head of the town or Governor or President! There can only be one at a time and we can all play our roles wherever we find ourselves. The main point here is that we don’t need to bring each other down in order to climb up.

It is interesting that this not only happens in our work places – even the houses of worship are not left out. Competition for who will be head of the choir or usher, name it! In the families, one person is seen as he favourite “son” or “daughter” and the rest of the bunch will just hate. It’s not new –as it was in the beginning, so it is, and so it shall be, forever…every parent no matter how much they try will always have that one child who they have a soft spot for; a manager would always have one staff he adores; the pastor of a church will have some member of congregation who he calls upon; we all have bff’s that we would tell everything.

A friend once told me how she struggled to select a chief bridesmaid for her wedding. Her girlfriends had all been expecting it to be one of them and she realized she risked upsetting so many of her friends no matter whoever she chose amongst them so in the end, she went for her sister but that did not stop the brouhaha. This is a constant struggle so many girls have to deal with when the time comes to select the most important role to be played on her happiest day. The guys re not left out as well – oh yes, men get even more jealous than women!

While trying to be a better person, I have decided to put my money where my mouth is – to be more listening and more patient when people give me feedback that doesn’t sit well with me. Because I have come to accept the fact that we can only do what is within our control and not bother about what is outside our reach. You can’t please everybody in life – that’s a fact that we all have to accept. Some people will never like you no matter how nice you are to them. So don’t expend energy trying to figure out what you have done wrong. However, while you shouldn’t reduce to their level of envy and hatred, you can love them with the love of God and wish them well.

We can all be better in what we do if only we can concentrate our energies on improving ourselves and making sure we use our skills right. Going around hating your neighbour, friend, colleague or even enemy can only make you miss your opportunities. Life has a lot to offer and its too long to go on a long thing. There’s so much to do in life that you realize at some point that all the fighting makes no sense – its all ego and vanity! We can all be better, go faster and even further in whatever we choose to do only if we free our minds and harness our talent in the right direction. The sky should be your take-off point!

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From → General, Lifestyle

One Comment
  1. Nkese Udousoro permalink

    Will love to join this training

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