Recently, I have been feeling a little down, not upbeat like I normally am. There was so much I felt was wrong and so much I felt hopeless about changing! There was also a lot of change going on, whether I liked it or not, at a pace that was determined solely by the change in itself! And boy, did I wallow in helplessness, I was going to say self-pity, but I didn’t actually wallow in self-pity, there is really nothing in me that allows me pity myself, but I felt like it was beyond my control, like I could not get to where I wanted because there were so many variables and I could not control any of them.
You cannot understand the level of despair you can sink into once you allow yourself. And remember the law of attraction? It works! Think one negative thought and another one follows on its heels and another one and another one. Before you realize what is happening, every action by another person, every change in the weather, the slightest traffic and hitch you find on the way, is just your luck! Suddenly, you are unlucky; you that used to brag, “I am not lucky, I am blessed”, suddenly, the world is bleak, you that used to brag, “I am a weather maker, I make my own sunshine”…
Luckily and blessedly for me, I believe in systems and I believe in structure. So recently, in the depth of my despair (yes, I take responsibility for the despair), I started to ask myself, “How did I not feel this way before?” I mean, nothing really has changed in my circumstances, the traffic is the same, the environment of Lagos is the same, the challenges are the same, and the people around me are the same, in fact, if anything, things have actually gotten better, so why has my personal atmosphere changed? My dear friend, Tony Robbins says, the quality of your life, is determined by the questions you ask! Truer words have never been spoken, because I asked myself this question and I asked “how do I get myself from where I am to where I want to be?” and that my dear, was the beginning of my very own renaissance. First thing I did was ask myself, “Who am I? Am I what people say? Am I what people expect, good or bad? Who and what defines me?” You guessed it, I looked in my Bible. I asked, “Since I did not make myself, what did the person who made me say I am?” (Questions!) And the answers I found? I am a child of God, I am fearfully and wonderfully made. I am the apple of God’s eye. I am the head not the tail, above only never beneath. There is no condemnation and the price for my joy has been paid in full. I am chosen, I am beloved, I am God’s workmanship, created to PRODUCE good works.
You see why I said I believe in system and structures? Once I went back to my belief system, to ask myself what is my foundation? What is the basis of me? The despair started to lift, but I didn’t stop there. I have always read. I am a firm believer that to improve, two things are crucial, the people you associate closely with and the books you read. So I went to a book I always have around me “the Success Principles” by Jack Canfield. I have a copy in every room in my house and one in my car, just in case. But guess what, when I was feeling down and despondent, I didn’t open it. I also hardly opened my Bible, for some reason, I felt inert, lethargic, truly helpless BUT help was always close by. Anyhow, in the process of picking myself up, I took “The Success Principles” and started to flip through it and the part that struck me is where he says, to be successful and truly live the life of your dreams, you must always take 100% responsibility for everything! BOOM!!! That hit me like a thunder bolt! Taking 100% responsibility for your life means you give up all your excuses, all your victim stories, all the reasons why you can’t and all your blaming outside circumstances! Wow! Has this guy been in my life the past month or so? I realize that is ALL I have been doing. Depressed because help won’t come when I want it, so it’s the “helpers” fault; upset because love won’t come as I want it, it’s the “lovers” fault”. Upset because Nigeria seems to be in chaos, its Nigeria’s fault. There is traffic in Lagos, it’s the fault of every other “driver”! I mean, Jack couldn’t have said it any clearer. I was playing the victim. It’s always about others and never about me. This revelation was really interesting to me, I would never have thought I could slip into a place where I gave other people the “power” over me like that! Where I let my barometer be on the inside rather than on the outside! Never, because I am always so strong, always speaking to myself and always speaking my vision not the facts. This brought another scripture to mind. The one that says “take heed, you who think you stand, lest you fall!” Hmmm….
Now I am firmly on the road to total recovery! Why? Because it’s up to me! No one else has to do one thing for me to operate at excellent where I normally operate! And now, I am taking excellence up by a 100 notches! I choose OUTSTANDING! If one person can thrive in adversity, then that one person is me! If there is a quarter of an opportunity in Nigeria- including the opportunity to improve the country- then guess who is in a position to make the most of it? You guessed right? It’s me! If you want loving relationships, love! If you want to be shown care, care! If you want support, please be supportive. You have direct control over the things that matter: the thoughts you think, the image you visualize and the actions you take. How your own life turns out- the one life you have, cannot be in the hands of another person who has their own life to live. Or in the hands of others whose approval you seek.
So why did I decide to share this? Because I want you to know that it is natural to fall! It is natural to know something and act like someone who does not know it sometimes. But you know what is really bad? To fall and to stay down! That is failing! Failing forward on the other hand, is falling, rising up and building on the mistake and processes involved in the last fall, so that you don’t fall in the same way again. I am comforted by my friend David, he asked himself “oh my soul, why are you downcast?” so I know that getting downcast is not wrong, it is staying downcast that is, because staying downcast usually means that you are forgetting the Lord and all the benefits He has bestowed on you! So as I heal and re-learn the lessons and triumph and come out strong and as it seems as if all creation is falling over itself to give me favour… I will share my journey with you. Perhaps, you and I will get strong together and be outstanding and take the world by storm!!!
Notice how I have carefully chosen my friends; Tony Robbins, Jack Canfield and King David! Methinks with friends like those, I am certainly on the right path!