National Security, Democracy and Good Governance in post military rule Nigeria is the title of Dr Dan Mou's latest book. It is in two volumes; this is volume one. It belongs to the genre of Mou's tracts on Nigerian politics and society after military rule. First published by Author House in December 2016; the book is massive in volume, printed on glossy paper-back. The book highlights that Nigerian security, economy, political and social problems have been intractable since the civil war. It says Nigeria's challenging security, democratic and governance problems would get better depending on what happens to the 71 percent of the population still living below poverty line.
This is so, despite the billions of dollars realized from crude oil over the past half a century. This volume reveals that one does not have to be a prophet to predict that without good governance, team work and inclusive growth, Nigeria may witness civil disobedience, insurgency, kidnapping and the breakdown of law and order. Besides, more of her citizens will check out of the country to become migrants. Sadly, Dr Mou's predictions have come true as thousands of Nigerians perished trying to cross to Europe through the Mediterranean.
However, under such intense pressures, for self preservation, the Nigerian government will be forced by objective conditions to move against groups and classes in the country. Just as it is happening now, as President Muhammadu Buhari is exposing corruption such as the Ikoyigate and the like. Those who have long captured and hijacked the Nigerian state and its resources for their exclusive use are now being exposed.
National security's first volume has 14 chapters, three parts, 16 appendices and 856 pages. This book shows that Nigeria's social classes which were hitherto very docile, are now very active, even nearly becoming militant. They are now demanding the dividends of democracy. These new militants countrywide have long eluded the 71 percent of Nigeria's population now languishing below poverty line. According to the National Bureau of Statistics, in spite of the billions of petrol dollars Nigeria has garnered as revenue over the years, the majority of the people are still so poor that Nigeria is the worst country for a child to be born in as at 2016.
This book warns that the demands of the down trodden such as poverty alleviation, inclusive growth and equality before the law, if not met, will culminate in social fragmentation in the years to come. Thus, Mou is looking like a prophet as militancy grows by the day organized by the Oodu Peoples Congress, the Movement for the Actualization of the Sovereign State of Biafra and the Indigenous People of Biafra. Indeed, Mou continues in his testament that within the Nigerian reality, the federal government will be forced to move against the corrupt elite which has ruined the country to the detriment of the Nigerian people. It is only after political, social and ideological reforms have taken place that national security, democracy and true federalism will become internalized by the Nigerian people.
It is after this projected social transformation that Nigeria would have started on the road to actualizing its destiny's role due to its size and prosperity as the authentic African giant. And we're living witnesses to the collapse of despotism around the world. This has aggravated agitation for political participation of the youth and the poor. Just before the publication of this book, participation revolution has engulfed Nigeria. However, Mou has addressed here, the form this revolution has assumed within Nigeria. Particularly limited is our knowledge of how and why these agitations and the demands for autonomy have come to affect our national security.
Indeed, this widespread dissatisfaction is bringing about great challenges to the government. But it is noteworthy that the army voluntarily relinquished power to civilians. They did not wait till we had our own Arab Spring before doing so. More so Mou is able to resolve some mistaken views of Nigerian politics. The first mistaken view is that national security cannot thrive in a democracy, that is to say only the military can guarantee security. Secondly, that our economic conditions affect national security. Here, Mou asserts that a democratic environment is a conducive place to pursue the goals of national security and good governance. Finally, poor security arose due to weak political institutions and poor leadership. Actually, leadership determines the quality of our national security,democracy and good governance.
Severe economic conditions such as depression generate cleavages and class based conflicts which undermine security. Each group attempts to capture state power to favour their exclusive interests. As the prosperity of a nation shrinks, these cleavages increase and the struggle becomes more intense. Corruption also exacerbates instability as public servants engage in primitive accumulation of capital for their private benefit.
It is such failings that have culminated in Boko Haram insurgency and militancy in the Niger Delta. Mou reveals that in Nigeria good governance means social welfare, consequently,not only corruption is ravaging the country, disparity in income is also subversive of national security. Unfortunately, Nigerians have come to realize the fallacy of prosperity trickling down that will cushion their suffering. What is more the state managers are restrained by the thieving elite from taking drastic measures that will provide succour for the people.
To that end budget surpluses were venerated. It was used to slow down economic development. This practice of hoarding money slowed down industrial growth and our growth has been declining since 1993. The author, Dr Mou is currently the chair of Centre for Poverty Eradication in Abuja, Nigeria. A graduate of political science of the University of Ibadan, he obtained his PhD from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, USA, retired from public service as Adviser to National Security Advisers of three different administrations in Nigeria. He has written seven books on public policy analysis.
Owing to our growing knowledge of nutrition, children grow up very fast nowadays. Before you know it, they are out there in the real world; you are left hoping you've done enough for their workaday encounters. As parents, often we feel concerned about our ward's well-being and education. In fact from research we've discovered the well-being and education of wards as heirs are more important to parents than anything else. With heirs running all over the place asking questions about everything under the sun, we are compelled to share so many truths for the well-being of the future generation of Nigerians.
Thus, here are some useful canons that can transform the world of the coming generation. One, learning how to think is more important than learning what to think. Your future is determined by the decisions you take in the present. Which is why you must take wise decisions. Your present situation in life was determined by your past decisions. So it is important to learn how to think. Two, life is not a bed of roses, but you get stronger as you play along. Allow yourself and heirs the freedom to experience things on their own terms. Let heirs learn from life firsthand. Journeying through life on your feet is a learning process. You become stronger, become more confident learning from experience.
Three, a major disappointment in life results from misplaced priorities and expectations. Our expectations balloon with each passing day. Approach life with a positive mental attitude. Four, worry is an enemy of personal growth. It steals your joy and keeps you busy doing absolutely nothing. With worry you use your imagination wrongly by thinking of the evil that may befall you, whereas, what you imagine becomes your reality. Use your imagination to express the way you wish to be.
Five, being grateful makes you happier and healthier. A lifelong pursuit of happiness means finding meaning in life. Having a clear-cut goal enables you to keep track of your life and add meaning to it. The pursuit of happiness is far more elusive, if it is not based on any particular circumstance or goal. What you can really pursue is meaning; living a meaningful life. Six, the right journey is in the destination. The most beneficial experience is not in actually achieving what you want, but in seeking it. It is the journey towards your goal that matters because goals move forward with you as you chase them.
An example of a moving goal is the pursuit of the Nobel Prize. It is awarded yearly. It is the world's greatest award and it determines how creative a people are. Nigeria with a population of 180 million has one Nobel laureate. Compared to Israel which has 8.3 million people and with nine Nobel laureates. From this comparison you can affirm that Nigerians are not as creative as they believe they are. That is why we are in the governance mess that we are. As you pursue such goals, your life becomes more meaningful and you learn along the way. Within such a journey, passions are realized, love is found, strength and sagacity are gained. You cannot gain any of that without firsthand living. Which is why the right journey is in the destination.
Finally, the most effective road to victory is to embrace what you want. Never think of what you do not want. By focusing on what you want you abandon the negative. Action speaks louder than words. Children are never good at listening to their parents but they never fail to imitate them. Let your heirs watch you set good examples in all that you do. Then reinforce actions with verbal guidance. Ultimately, what you want in life comes from what you really do in life.
In your lifelong pursuit of excellence, your willingness to work smart, go the extra mile will open doors for you. The best way to help your ward is teaching him to endure some discomfort. This is because the best things are hard to come by; and if you shy away from difficulty and discomfort, you will miss out from lessons. Mastering a new skill is hard. Building a business entails courage. Writing a book is tiresome. Marriage and parenting are hazardous. Staying in shape and maintaining physical wellness are hard. But all of these are amazingly compelling and well worth every bit of effort you can muster. When you become good at doing hard things, then you can do anything you put your mind to.
However, in life, uncertainty is inevitable and must be embraced in order to achieve your life ambition. Acting within the spectre of uncertainty forces you out into the open where opportunity is waiting. Thus, learning to live with uncertainty early in life is indispensable for your greatness. Starting a business for example, could be very worthwhile, but if you are scared of uncertainty,you will skip it and miss the bounties therefrom. Continually cowering in the face of uncertainty spells doom for prosperity and entrepreneurship development.
Indeed, lack of initiative holds more people back than intelligence ever could. It does not matter if you own the intelligence of a genius, you cannot change anything or make progress without diligent efforts. There is a huge difference between knowing how to do something and actually doing it. Knowledge and intelligence are useless to a person unwilling to take action. Always praise your ward for making effort by taking action, not for his intelligence. When you praise your child for his effort, not his intelligence, you are bringing attention to something he can control. This is immensely beneficial because it teaches him persistence; that progress through hard work is possible. This gives him confidence, for he then sees himself "in control" of his success in life.
Conversely, emphasizing his God given intelligence takes the sail out of your child's control; providing no good formula for responding to failure. In turn, your child may begin to think of his innate intelligence as an end in itself; making him to disregard the importance of initiative, courage and effort to learn and grow. But not everything in life goes as planned. Tell your ward that failure isn't a bad thing. Unexpected obstacles may crop up to shift perspectives and strengthen his resolve to pursue success. Besides, the career destination your heir is in love with may not be feasible after all. For example the esteemed diplomatic career I trained for, was truncated by military rule. But my subsequent shift into journalism and academics and journalism was no less satisfying.
Focusing less on the future but more on what you can do now, will be beneficial no matter what the future brings. Read inspiring books, learn and practice useful skills to build yourself into an Internet guru. Be adventurous by seeking real world experiences. Cultivate healthy relationships for such efforts will assist you in any future circumstances that come your way. Incredible distance can be covered over time with tiny steps. Most people fritter away their time on frivolities such as watching television, social media and football. A year of the rigmarole invested in practising painting, website designing or writing a blog will earn you accolades as an opinion leader or man of learning.
Besides, goals don't make things happen, only rituals do. As a parent, your goal must be to be a great role model while your ritual should be the time and effort you commit to setting good examples for your heirs each day. As an entrepreneur, your goal is to build a great enterprise while your ritual is your daily work ethic combined with your marketing, management and sales strategies. You will triumph over evil if your life is founded on integrity, you hang around people of character and you are generous to others.
Life is like chess, you can only move half the time. The other half you have to wait for the other person to make his move. Half the time, God is waiting for you to make a move. Wisdom gained from experience is the key to success in public life. Coming together is the beginning; keeping together is progress and in working together everyone achieves more. But half the time you wait for Allah to make His move. And that's very difficult if you're impatient.
Perhaps you're single, waiting to meet Mr right. It is frustrating. When is he going to walk into your arms? Perhaps you are praying for a job, or working on your start up. Or you are waiting for your first baby and so far, despite all, your prayer has not been answered. And yet you are waiting. Do not stop waiting. Summarize the operating system in the world as follows: If you are in control, work. If you are not in control, wait. You must work passionately or wait patiently. But this is easier said than done. Nice in theory, difficult to apply.
These strategies are difficult to apply because many people confuse the two worlds of working and waiting. More often we do the opposite. We wit when we are in control and work when we're not in control. For both, it is disastrous. What is to be done? You must work passionately or wait patently. I have met people who wait and wait; even when they can do something about their situation. I have met students who complain to God: "Lord why did you make me fail my exams?" even when many weeks before the exam, all they did was playing around. I have met people who complain to Jehovah, "God why do I lack money?" even though they never save; never invest and don't develop themselves.
A major weakness of religious fanatics is that they hate hustling. They never work with with passion believing their religiosity will compel miracles from heaven. I am not only a critic I am a teacher of finance and prosperity. Conversations with a brother-in-law, an Internet expert and employee of Google, forced me to acquire financial intelligence. Which is why I encourage you to be crazy at your work; keep improving yourself by reading, attending seminars and finding mentors.
And after doing all you can, stop. I have met workaholics, who work and work; even when in an area where they are no longer in control. These are perpetual worriers. Here is my definition of their malady:worry. Worry is the seeking to control what you can never control. It is like seeking to control your kids, your spouse, your relatives and friends. Stop trying to control everyone. You can only inspire, influence and instruct others. Thereafter, let go, leave them to God, otherwise worry will kill you.
Remember the Babel people were impatient, which was why they fell from grace. The people at the Pentecost waited for nine days; they received the Holy Spirit, and from there stood firm and walked on to spread the gospel of Jesus. Work smart, work passionately; but at a point wait patiently for your dreams to come true. Of all the gifts we have as humans, the one most outstanding, giant-like, standing above the others, is our creative abilities. It is responsible for the technological progress we enjoy today: air travel, the world wide web, facebook and the global system of mass communication. Therefore, think smart, think creatively.
"We must not build in vain" is the title of the opening address of the Grand Administrator and director, Supreme Board of AMORC, Dr Kenneth Idiodi at 2017 Lagos conclave of the Rosicrucian Order, AMORC, held on 13 May, 2017 in Ikeja, Lagos. The seminar was attended by hundreds of AMORC members and thousands of their friends. In his address Dr Idiodi said socio economic development was a most welcome theme for Lagos zone's conclave, coming as it did during these austere times in Nigeria. He said because of the enormous blessings that God has bestowed on Nigeria in human and material resources, our country has often been described as the jewel of Africa.
According to Idiodi, Nigeria should have been an advanced nation by now with multiple highways and fly-overs crisscrossing the land; elegant suspension bridges hanging over valleys and rivers; high speed electric trains running on railways and sub-ways below; clean mega-cities efficiently administered with uninterrupted power supply and adorned with beautiful environmentally friendly buildings; world class educational institutions churning out acclaimed scholars; vast farms producing quality food; industries of all types producing equipment and various devices for the populace; tourist friendly recreational facilities bustling with activity and a place where peace, security, prosperity and opportunity abide.
The grand administrator continued, "when you visualize this and compare it to the present situation in Nigeria, the contrast is so stark that it is pitiful. And why is it that Nigeria has failed to become the pride of Africa and the black race?" The blame falls on all of us as citizens. There isn't any justification to place the blame on our leaders. Our leaders are the products of this society. The problems of the leadership are rooted in this society.
"And this is why Rosicrucianism is of vital importance in the world today. The greater the number of individuals equipped with the techniques of resolving personal problems, the better the society will be and of course the better nation. "The Rosicrucian path incorporates both metaphysics and mysticism. Metaphysics is that which covers intuition, visualization and healing techniques. Mysticism is simply the process by which you may experience the conscious union with your creator, Divine mind, universal intelligence or what some Rosicrucians call the God of their Hearts."
This is done by learning and applying natural laws which allow you to experience Cosmic consciousness. The Rosicrucian Order does not define the deity. It leaves you free to discover this by reflection. Soon a deep yearning for self improvement and moral rectitude develops in the Rosicrucian student as progress is made along the path of self mastery. Chief Idiodi concludes by saying, "the pursuit of health, wealth, happiness and peace are the main goals essential for national prosperity."
Rosicrucianism for socio economic development as the theme of the conclave was amplified by Dr Augustine Agugua of the Department of Sociology, University of Lagos in his lecture. Therein he discussed a heart rending scenario upon which Nigeria was adjudged the worst country for a baby to be born in as at 2016. For the welcome address on behalf of the Lagos Zone of the Ancient and Mystical Order Rosae Crucis (AMORC), its chairman for the 2017 planning committee, Chief Amobi Nwokafor thanked everyone in attendance, rejoicing over the tumultuous presence of members and well wishers. Chief Nwokafor further disclosed that the global events today, particularly the current economic recession in Nigeria necessitated that "we develop the capacity to frequently engage our minds in activities that will shape the thinking of of the members of our society."
Nwokafor said that it was for that purpose that the Rosicrucians convened the gathering. he said it was part of their contribution to the socio economic development of Nigeria. He intimated us of Dr Agugua's Improvement Agenda for the Socio economic development of Nigeria. As he had predicted, after the lecture, our lives were never the same again.
Our lives can be seen as a box; when we do good, we fill the box with good things and vice versa, when we do something bad, we fill it with bad things. Throughout our lives, we randomly pull something out of that box. The more good things you do, the more likely that you will pull something good out of the box. Most of the choices are not conscious choices, everything is left to chance. This means that doing good deeds will not always be rewarded; and doing bad deeds will not always be punished.
There is something much more significant and important. That important thing is how you choose to live your whole life. Really, if you want something to happen in your life, you should actively act to achieve it. This is something you forget at some stages in your life. You cannot always hope that things will just happen as you want, without necessary effort. You should never rely on things happening spontaneously without propelling them with action. You should always control yourself.
Indeed, it is yourself you can only control. You cannot control what others do. But you bear full responsibility for your own actions. Your life is your own creation. You decide which direction to take while you are the sole controller of your destiny. Failure will continue to persist in your life until the lesson is learned. One of the rules of karma is that until the lesson is learned, we will continue to make the same mistakes. The story will continue to repeat until you learn something. This is true for both nations and individuals.
The successes that happen to us have value only when we have worked to achieve them. The true value of things does not come from how much we have spent on them; but of how assiduously we worked to get them. The biggest personal victories are those that are beneficial to everyone. If you get rich, it is good for you, but you are just an individual. The greatest victories are those that benefit the whole community. Dedication to the good of a nation brings positive karmic influences which in turn provides a tremendous popular support.
And the most important universal law of abundance is being happy all the time. The energy of happiness is very powerful and does erase bad karma. Bad karma can be cleaned through making others happy. Meditation, visualization and chakra cleaning can also erase bad karma. To be happy, invest time, energy and money into yourself everyday. Happiness comes as a side effect of learning new skills, challenging yourself and helping others. Adapt and stretch yourself to accommodate new ideas and new information.
When you invest in yourself, you develop higher levels of creativity and you can never lose the battle for prominence. And over time you will change the trajectory of your life, since you are the product of what you know. The more time, energy and money you invest acquiring pertinent knowledge, the more control you have over your life. The one lie you learned when you were young is still holding you back. Starting all over again isn't an option. That is the great lie that is hindering your progress.
The idea that starting all over as being bad is baked right into our educational system. We send children to universities at 18; telling them to choose careers that they will be happy with for the next 40 years. But what if you choose wrong? And that is what often happens. Over time through bouts of failure and hardship, you learn the truth through experience. Then you change to new career paths. The truth is that no one wins in a game of chess by only moving forward. Sometimes, you have to move backwards to put yourself in a position to win. This is a perfect metaphor for life. Often, you feel running into a dead end. That is actually a sign you are not on the right path. Gradually, life teaches us U turns are allowed. So, turn around when you must.
There are many ways to heighten your happiness. Actually, health is wealth. It is important to take care of your health. Good health creates happiness. No matter what, your health should be your first priority. Sadly, the moment it comes to taking care of ourselves, we procrastinate. Do you know that those tired, sunken eyes might not be due to lack of sleep or overwork? It could be prolonged dehydration. Those unexpected bolts of pain on your leg and back could be as a result of calcium deficiency.
That giddy feeling and persistent headache could be low levels of haemoglobin. Put simply, you may look healthy from outside, but sickness often starts from inside. We should always keep in mind that sound health starts from within. Ignoring a problem only aggravate it and leading to further complications. So, whenever you feel changes within you, seek for help to restore your health without delay. Remember a law of medicine, prevention is better than cure.
The steps you take to maintain your good health, definitely act as good and effective mechanism against most illnesses. They also contribute to your gaining a long and healthy life. Therefore, the best thing you can do for your happiness is to take care of yourself and your personal health. No matter how busy you are, find time to take care of your health. Regular checkups and tweaks in your diet and lifestyle will help you more than you ever think.
What are the real health challenges you can face? If there is none, glory be to God. But if there is, tell a doctor or pharmacist without any further delay. Thereafter, savour the joy of simple pleasures. The best things in life are free. They are governed by Mother nature and appear right in front of you at various locations and times. Holding hands with someone you love, taking part in such moments frequently bring unpredictable bursts of happiness.into your life.
Look for health and happiness in the right places. When we were young we looked for happiness in drugs, sex and alcohol, parties, fast cars and extreme sports. When we got older, we looked for happiness in more mature ways- a stable life partner; romantic getaways- walks along the beach; jazz music, the cinema and a night at the bar with friends. Surely some of these things make us happy and sane. They raise our health and happiness temporarily.
Since humans have a baseline of happiness, certain events heighten our outlook: like an unexpected windfall. But the answer is for us to raise our happiness level, enjoying the moment but never ignoring our long term goals. What will you be proud to have accomplished or failed to gain, five years from now? To deepen your happiness, perform random acts of kindness on a regular basis. Pay a stranger's bus fare. Buy your office girl flowers, just to say thank you. Help an elderly with her groceries.
Nothing is more rewarding than putting smiles on the faces of your neighbours. Always help others whenever you are able, you get what you give. When you make a positive impact on the life of others, you are making a positive impact on your own life as well. Share time with people you care about. The quality of your personal relationships correlates directly with your overall sense of worth and happiness. In the midst of life's chaos, we forget to do the little things that remind us we're part of something greater than ourselves.
We need a certain amount of contact with others to feel fully human and alive. You need only a certain number of friends to be happy. You don't need many friends. Accept things when they are less than perfect. When in a fix during decision making, make an educated guess on the next logical step. Your failures along the road to your goals are opportunities to learn and grow. The world does not reward perfectionists, it rewards those who get things done. Which is why you should invest time, money and energy on yourself everyday. Happiness is a side-effect of learning new skills and bettering yourself.
To pray for abundant prosperity is to feel and live in gratitude. Live to give and you will live larger and better than you have ever lived. Close your eyes and imagine you are being born again. And this is the very first day of your new life. Take a deep breath and open your eyes. Look around you; take note of your pristine hearing.
Are those birds chirping? Is the wind rustling the dry leaves? There are no flaws with your rebirth. Your mind is a tabular rasa, it is as clean as the slate and you are the author of this chapter of this book. Imagine this new day and this new you as a gift of the universe. It is a new day to climb mountains, to fly, to touch other lives more positively and to gain a new appreciation of the little things that were so often missed.
Your rebirth is the gift of gratitude. Gratitude is the essence of being thankful, the feeling of elation for every thing your senses experience, for all the items that help establish convenience in an otherwise chaotic environment; for knowing that you have the ability to make of your life, what you want it to be.
Now in charge of your life as the pilot, able to navigate your way through this messy world of chaos; into brighter skies.Gratitude is your aircraft. It is at the ready to be used as a vessel to show appreciation for those who are kind and even to the ignorant. It gives you the opportunity to be a gardener, to plant friendship, kindness and compassion. Thus, you are able to cultivate the qualities of gratitude. With the breaking of this new day, and this new you, learn and practice the prosperity prayer, the most powerful prayer in the world.
The seeds of my happiness today were planted two years ago, and the seeds of my happiness two years from now, are being planted today. The seedling of my being transcends what I am seeing, as discontent plows into divine countenance, nothing to be counted. When the bucket is empty, it is always filled with any water. Which is why I am a flowing reality; all I am is now, I smile because I am in this sunny Cosmos. I am so grateful and so blessed; thank you dear Lord for enabling me to serve.
During the growth of your new life, remind yourself of the positivity of the present while reciting the prosperity prayer. If you have lost your job, it is a new door opening. If you experience loss, you may look deep down and see that the energy is still connected with yours ; you must feel grateful for the memories. Be elated today at having experienced all the good and bad qualities if the people.
Surely, life teaches us lessons and for that we are thankful. You must rise above your ego and recognize that ego and gratitude cannot exist together. As Buddha said: "Let us rise up and be thankful; for if we didn't learn a lot today, at least we learned a little. And if we didn't learn a little, at least we didn't get sick; and if we got sick, at least we didn't die." The ancients say that gratitude is the shortest shortcut to happiness. Even in your rebirth, you must struggle to learn proven ways that will help you manifest calmness and gratitude. Always approach negativity with new frames of mind; instead of focusing on the negative, spend time searching for the positive. Surround yourself with positive influences by listening to your intuition. It will keep your body and mind aligned. You must be able to care for someone without being around them.
Always speak up, you don't have tomorrow; you only have today.Express your thankfulness to all you know. Identify negative thought patterns, for negativity has the ability to creep upon you unawares. Practice self awareness in order to stay teachable. Watch how you breathe through meditation. Keep a journal for being human you are naturally forgetful. Read your notes of elation to remain grateful to man and God. Volunteer your services freely, for the best part of compassion, kindness and gratitude is in giving back. Action is the substance of compassion. Endless rewards are created when you give freely to others. Practising gratitude is a rewarding experience. Science has proven that practising gratitude leads to higher quality of sleep, increased energy and motivation. Also, gratitude reduces physical pain, decreases anger, regret and resentment. So open your eyes feeling grateful for successful living means living today as if it were your last.
Every human being has fears, for fear tends to evolve and change over time. A child might be afraid of the dark while youngsters are afraid of embarrassment during speech making. Newborns are afraid of loud noises. All fears are learned. What have you learned to be afraid of? Losing your life, illness, discomfort cause you fear. If it is only your ego taking, you will know fear isn't in your best interest. That is the fear that keeps you tied to your comfort zone.
Thus, you must reframe your situation. That you are physically uncomfortable should not control your thoughts and actions. When you are agitated by anxiety, take it as a sign that a lucky break is in the offing. Step out of your comfort zone and take advantage of the opportunity. Use fear to your advantage for it cannot be avoided. Embrace fear by making a list of your fears. It might be the fear of success or the fear of being isolated. By understanding the essence of your fears, you are able to conquer them.
By addressing the core of your fears you are able to eliminate them. Use fear to propel you forward. Champions have been those able to conquer their fears successfully. Conquering one fear makes you more capable. The next fear will even be easier to manage. The confidence gained through conquering your fears will spread all over every area of your life. Recognize that fear is self induced. It is only your perception of events that creates your fear. Even then, fear is just a feeling; even with physical symptoms, it is a mere feeling. Fear is just a guess. When you realize that fact, you will be able to conquer the fear.
Use fear to enhance your personal and mental discipline. Discipline is the ability to do things you don't feel like doing. You don't need discipline to do things you enjoy. Fear gives you the opportunity to learn about yourself. It should enable you to examine your belief system, your religion and freedom of thought. The secret of happiness is freedom. And the secret of freedom is courage. Use courage to conquer fear. The first freedom is bravery, without bravery no real benefit can ever come from any task we undertake. Conscience is the root of all true courage.
To conquer fear and gain the freedom to be happy in life, you must cultivate courage and bravery. One, promise yourself not to hold your past, your previous mistakes against yourself. Take the past as a lesson learned. Your experience helps you to grow and make better choices today. Two, live a life that feels right to you; not one that looks right to everyone else. Follow the path of your personal happiness. To gain something great, you have to let go of something else; which could be a relationship that wants to keep you at their level.
Three, give up relationships that limits you. People come into your life simply to teach you something. They are not meant to live with you for ever. Four, never allow any situation to permanently steal your joy. Always reflect on things that have lasting meaning in your life. And then rejoice about how far you have come in achieving your set goals. Rough situations build strong people. Finally, keep stretching yourself beyond your comfort zone. Every great success endured many stresses and struggles before becoming celebrated as champions. Struggles make you stronger and smarter. The more time you spend grappling with problems, the faster you learn what it takes to be a winner.
While reading messages sent me by readers of my newspaper columns, I stumbled on an interesting one which read in part: "I just wanted to thank you for giving me the strength and hope to stay alive. As I was fighting cancer, I read your columns in the hospital. Your words kept me high when I needed it. And the 20 percent chance of survival my doctors gave me a year ago became 99.9 percent this month. My doctors concluded my cancer is in complete remission."
Indeed, her email reminded me that too many of us wait too long to live our best lives. We keep putting everything off until tomorrow. Like my reader, make today the beginning of your second chance at life. Take time to achieve what you want. Take time to scrutinize your religion or belief system. Your religion may not permit you to realize your goals. You must take time to take risks. To attain your aims you might have to change jobs and residences to the chagrin of your pastors.
One, you must accept that this moment is all you have. Your life is between now and your next breath. So live every moment in full without fear or regret. A lifetime isn't very long. Which is why you have to fight for whatever you believe in. Two, the sacrifices you make today will pay dividends in the future. You should be willing to live some years like many people won't, so that you can spend the rest of your life like many people can't.
Three, happiness is when you feel good about yourself without feeling the need for another person's approval. But be aware that behind any great life, there have been some pain. So regard it a priceless gift to struggle and overcome challenges in your pursuit of excellence. Pain forces you to use your imagination. But imagination isn't bound by time, space and rules.It is an expression of your divine munificence, a limitless thought form. Society and religion have conditioned us to disbelieve our imagination. But our perception creates our reality. Our imagination was free to explore the universe until religion preconditioned fear into us.
So free yourself from the limitations imposed by tradition. Tradition is the enemy of progress. It is the tribes and clans that have adapted to environmental and climate change that have survived till today. For example, do you know there is a religion of empowerment called Wicca? It teaches you to take control of your life and future. Wicca is living in tune with Nature and creating a balance between all things both masculine and feminine. Wiccans believe in the Goddess that gave birth to the universe including the God who is Her consort. This Goddess is in all things making the universe to be divine. We are all connected to each other biologically and the universe atomically. It is a scientific fact that we are made of the same stuff as the stars.
Adherents of this old religion believe in peace; there is no Satan or devil in Wicca.The devil was inherited by Islam from Christianity both of which are sects of Judaism. There are no demons; Wiccans believe in a divine law that decrees 'harm no one' for karma says that any bad we give out will come back to us. In this new millennium, our imagination is challenged into higher realms. The human race is shifting its collective consciousness from the fourth to the fifth dimension. People are now waking up and asking more questions instead of sheepishly accepting what they are told as truth. This is the process of ascension each of us is going through at this moment; whether you are aware of it or not. Human life isn't going to be the same again, so what you experience will be unique to you. There is no right or wrong; there is only what is true to you at this moment. For success, I offer you this blessing: May the road rise to meet you; may the wind be always at your back, may the sun shine warm upon your face. And the rains fall soft upon your fields. And until we meet again, may God hold you in the hollow of His hand.
In this day and age, life is hectic, very demanding and it is easy for you to feel life spiraling out of control. However, you can bring balance into your life if you make life a priority. It is so easy spending all day chasing your objectives; only to feel you have accomplished nothing at the end of the day. Most of us have experienced this. But it does not have to be that way. Balancing your life is possible. A busy life can be injected with meaning, candor and vigour. Here is how.
One, get started in the first hour of the day doing something you are passionate about. For me, it is studying, finding encyclopedia explanations to topics of the past week, building my online business of blogging. Also, I browse with my desktop and walk to the office to keep me physically fit. I always look forward to getting out of bed with excitement. Time is such a valuable resource that how you utilize it will determine how rich and happy you become in life.
Two, simplify your life through planning and budgeting. In today's world, it is easy to buy more things than you need and take on more responsibilities than you can manage. You may even be subsidizing the profligacy of others without knowing. Every extra item and responsibility in your life creates imbalance. Take time to analyze and eliminate things that don't serve you. Harmony and happiness will come to your life thereafter. This might mean saying no to demands from friends. Moreover, people knowing you work to schedule mitigates nuisance. Adherence to plans promotes and maximizes creativity. Have you ever noticed how solutions appear when your mind is relaxed? That is your intuition getting a chance to speak.
Three, give your health a priority. When life gets hectic, our first response is often to sacrifice ourselves for everyone and everything else. We eat convenience food and cut back on exercise. That is a mistake though I used to eat junk food when I am broke. Without good health life is ruined. If you don't give your health the priority it deserves, your resulting bad health will hurt you eventually. Do not take your health for granted; so take time to look after yourself, your health is your life.
Four, learn to be more patient. Your life might be more balanced than you realize; it is hard to notice this if you are impatient. A lack of patience makes every situation more challenging. Impatience renders you less capable at your job. Five, spend more time on activities that mean the most to you. Your family should be a priority. Working shouldn't be the only priority in your life. Not having hobbies, not hanging out with peers will affect your enjoyment of life. The more time you spend on enjoyable activities, the more you will enjoy your life.
Six, make yourself your biggest priority. When you take good care of yourself, you can take better care of others. When you are at your best, your work performance will be at its highest. Be selfish in prioritizing your needs and happiness; for everybody will benefit from that mindset. The Spanish philosopher and humanist Ortega Gasset affirms that self centeredness is the very basis of ambition. One must love himself well before he can become great.
Seven, get enough sleep. Research shows that performance increases by 80 percent, when subjects receive at least seven hours sleep every night. You will get more done by sleeping adequately every night. Eight, spend time on your relationships. This includes your romantic relationships. Keep up with your friends and extended family. Spend more time with the people that you love and enjoy hanging out with. Finally, define what having a balanced life means to you. Balancing your life is impossible until you clarify what balance means to you. Measure the time you spend at work, the time you spend with family at5 home; and the time you spent on leisure. Create a balanced life by choosing your priorities wisely.
Assume the sun striking a newspaper on a Nigerian beach. If even the paper were to remain there for ten years, there would not be much sun damage. Indeed, the pages would only become yellow and fade, for the most part, the tabloid would remain intact. But if we were to use a magnifying glass to focus the rays of the sun, we would set the newspaper ablaze in minutes. Such is the power of focus. Which is why loss of focus equals loss of direction.
Like the sun, you have enormous potential power. But it will not bear much fruit if it is not focused. Your good ideas and intentions can easily evaporate if not focused. One reason so few of us achieve what we truly want is that we never direct our focus; we never concentrate our power in a particular direction. Most people dabble their way through life, never deciding to master any skill in particular. If we really understand the great power within us, we would act differently. Instead we dissipate it, but those who harness their power achieve greatness through being focused.
However, to help you focus on your dreams, write them down. When you write down your ideas you automatically focus your full attention on them. Few if any of us can write one thought and think another at the same time. Thus, a biro and paper make excellent concentration tools. But don't just write down your goals, write down your plans on how you will reach your goals. Planning helps you remain focused. Asking yourself questions is another way to remain focused. What is the best way to spend my time now? is a useful question to keep you focused. What step can I take now that will bring me closer to my goal? What do I need to do differently? Champions realize they are not immortal. We have limited time to achieve our goals, so we must act immediately. Reminding yourself that you cannot live forever helps you remain focused.
Here are the main things to focus on in your march toward stardom. One,focus on your choices. What you have become today is as a result of what you decided to focus on in the past. What you will be tomorrow depends on what you choose to focus on today. The locus of your focus determines your future. Two, focus on what is relevant to your ambition. You will never be able to read all the books on entrepreneurship, so concentrate by narrowing your focus on what you want. The elephant hunter does not stop to throw stones at birds. Three, focus on success. Success does not come by accident, success comes to those who worked for it.
Four, focus on the present moment; it is the only moment in your power. Now is the only time we have to focus on; we must act on our plans and monitor our progress. Only when you consciously focus on the moment can you receive the gifts, the lesson and the delight that it has to offer. Five, focus on your strengths. Spend more time focusing on your strengths than your weaknesses; for your strengths will propel you to glory. It is what you are good at that will define you; offering you opportunities to excel. Always focus on doing your best. Never underestimate your commitment to doing your best. It could just be the best the world had yet seen at that moment.
Early this month, President Muhammadu Buhari launched the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan(ERGP). The Plan is to restore the Nigerian economy from recession to growth by 2020. The ERGP is to reduce inflation from 19 percent to seven percent. Two, it is to restore the growth of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) through agriculture. Three, ERGP is established to boost power, the energy mix and renewable energy. Four, it is to make Nigeria become an exporter of petroleum products by 2020. Finally, it is to boost the anti corruption and national security efforts.
In the aftermath of the failure of previous administrations to fulfill their economic promises such as house for all in the year 2000; visions 2010 and 2020 and others, it looks pedestrian for Buhari to launch another short-term National Poverty Alleviation Programme. Since ERGP isn't captured in the 2017 budget, it is assumed the Federal Government (FG) will borrow to execute it. However, we believe it is unwise to borrow money either internally or from abroad to finance ERGP. Though this plan aims at lifting the economy from the doldrums, the quality and value of spending has to be better than those of previous administrations.
Indeed, the expansion of the economy which ERGP connotes, must have a limited lifespan otherwise it will crowd out lending to the real sector comprising infrastructure, employment and a new electrical power structure. The data released for the end of 2016 by the Debt Management Office (DMO) shows that the debt burden has soared from N354 billion in 2010 to N1.23 trillion in 2015. Domestic expenditure accounts for more than 90 percent of the total debt service because government's obligations are predominantly loans obtained from multilateral and bilateral agencies which are cheaper than its domestic borrowing.
The debt office's medium term debt strategy seeks a 60 to 40 split between domestic and external borrowing, compared with 76 to 24 blend at the end of 2016. However, the Eurobond of February 2017 was a great success because it revealed Nigeria's healthy external trade balance sheet. Total debt service in 2016 reached 35.4 percent of FG revenue. This ratio is particularly alarming because revenue collection in Nigeria have been very poor. The plummeting oil price since 2014 highlighted the derisory level of non-oil tax collection.
The ERGP will force up the total debt service ratio further to 38.1 percent by 2018 before easing out to 34.5 percent by the end of the plan period of 2020. The foregoing shifts deficit financing from 54 percent in domestic matters to 66 percent by 2018. By 2020 our external debt will amount to 72 percent deficit. In the circumstance, DMO will need to procure a deficit of N1.25 trillion in the 2017 budget- through raising funds from its monthly auction of bonds. That was started by Buhari through raising N535 billion from auctions in february 2017.
There is need for caution however, for sourcing for money via bonds will lesson a rigorous management of public finance. The ratio for the public rather than the sovereign debt stock would be about 25 percent after making allowances for domestic borrowings of states; AMCON bonds and takings from NNPC. The FG debt of N2.2 trillion unearthed last December adds to the impropriety of borrowing to fund ERGP.
For the last leg of the ERGP mandate, to boost the anti corruption war and national security. This administration has too narrow a definition of corruption. Theirs is only to catch a thief. They are doing nothing on cleaning the stable and building institutions that will stand the test of time. Sadly, our culture has become corrupt. This means to curb the malaise, our economic team must contain disparate disciplines. Like in the USA, the Council of Economic Advisers which overlooks the economy is staffed by about 30 people, 21 of which are professional economists, statisticians and demographers.
When you catch thieves that you cannot jail, it means the lawyers, the prosecutors and the judges are corrupt. How then do you hope to beat corruption? It means to win this war government must evolve a strategy. One way is to install expenditure tracking, a mechanism which must include tracking government foreign transactions, even including the presidential medical vacation abroad. This economy isn't as buoyant as it is made out to be. Corruption funded companies are folding up and laying people off. Unemployment is exacerbated by tertiary institutions graduating students which cannot get jobs.
Indeed, the economy will only be better when the north drops its opposition to the Host and Impacted Community Dividends clause in the Petroleum Industry Bill. This gives members of the host community a stake in the wells in their communities. Such recognition of the host community guarantees zero vandalism for the simple reason that one does not vandalize one's own property. Northerners opposition to the passage of PIB amounts to making Nigeria poorer in order to stop your neighbour from getting richer.
Finally, to make ERGP work, both the FG and the states must appoint boards to monitor, manage and execute its strategies. Also, the budget minister must ask for a separate budget for the plan. Better still, Parliament should create the Council of Economic Advisers to supervise the economy to enable nigeria overcome her economic backwardness. Fortunately, the International Monetary Fund came calling weeks ago urging Nigeria to take urgent steps to revamp our economy. It advised that priority be given refurbishing infrastructure, enhance the business environment; improve access to financing small and medium enterprises and strengthen the anti corruption war.
Also, the Fund specifically recommended that FG increase value added tax, excise duties and the removal of oil subsidy and the harmonization of our many exchange rates. Furthermore, a CBN release shows FG had a deficit of N3.2 trillion carry over from 2016. This huge domestic debt makes it necessary for us to fix the debt burden through the enthronement of a proper team of economists. Thus, FG and state governments should stop domestic borrowing for it crowds out SME lending. We should cultivate greater self reliance if we are to improve our economic fortunes.
Make a deeper commitment to participating in your personal unfolding by identifying and activating the emerging patterns of your soul's calling. Learn to let go of parental and societal influences dictating how you should be - and embracing what you were meant to be. Embrace what you were meant to be with gusto, love, acceptance and joy; and become a vibrant conduit to manifest your vision.
Allow yourself to be pulled by the dynamic vision already coded within you, instead of being motivated by outside influences. Learn how to express and radiate your unique giftedness, let it emerge with guided inspiration to actualize your mission and purpose. Finally, live in a field of pure potentiality, and radiate the dynamics of peace and prosperity- truly living your magnificent vision of abundance.
Abundance means wealth and thinkers understand the importance of saving and investing in accumulating wealth. Which is why they direct their mental energy toward accumulating wealth through serving people and solving problems. Here are strategies to fulfill your purpose of building wealth from self made millionaires who have done it. One, develop multiple streams of income. You won't get rich without multiple flows of income. That starts from the income you already have. Increase that income and start adding multiple inflows. You want what they called symbiotic flows. Do not just add disconnected flows. Instead, find other ways you can to add income to the job you already have.
Two, invest your money everyday. In just five years, Grant of Millennial Money went from having $2.26 in his bank account to $1million. On his blog, the 31 year old self made millionaire shares: "The single most important hack", he used to build wealth, "I break down all of my money goals into daily goals. I deposit money everyday into my investment accounts." He started with the goal of setting side $50 a day. He rarely missed a day. Then he tried making as much money as possible everyday so he could invest it. He stopped thinking long-term and thought of making that $50 threshold everyday. His daily goal of $50 deposit soon became his daily minimum. He later started setting aside $70, $80 and $5000 a day.
Three, pay yourself first. This means that in your daily gain, you save your minimum agreed sum in your investment account. According to the millionaire and best selling author David Bach, "There is one proven, easy way to get rich, that is to pay yourself first." That means when you earn a dollar, the first person you pay is yourself. Four, change your mindset about money. Getting rich begins with the way you think and your beliefs about making money. The rich figure out that training your mind to find solutions to problems is the real secret of making money. Riches are possible to anyone who conditions his mind to thinking in ways to transform thoughts into action. With the stream of money finds without investing, you can see that Nigerians condition their minds to poverty rather than wealth.