Babafemi Jay Aderounmu
We live in a harsh society. In fact, many, if not all of us, were born into it. This is the reality a lot of people have died with and perhaps many will still keep until their death bed. Being a Nigerian, the past few weeks have been torrid, to say the least. However, I believe a chord has been struck. We might feel not a lot has been achieved, but despite so much loss, exploitation, and lack of visible changes, seeds have been sown. There has been a subtle shift in paradigm. That is the only narrative I choose to cling to, one of hope; the alternative, which is the current state of things, is not palatable.
I am learning the merits of taking the time to look deeply within me and reflect. I am learning to laugh every day and live my life with grace and gratitude. These are the two habits I have been cultivating and building through what has been a tough year for many like me out there. Knowing that our time here is not forever and each day is a privilege helps me destress a lot. Things still get murky but learning how to overcome such moments is key.
Not everything will go as planned. Not every conversation will favour your narrative. Not everyone will appreciate your value or the relevance of your existence. However, you can’t go on approaching life with a confrontational mindset. You should learn to be graceful, strategic, and practice self-resilience. To be honest, it’s not easy because emotions are hard to rationalize. Still, it is advisable to look at the bigger picture, choose your battles, practice caution, and deal with the situation with calmness. Learn from the past and focus on the present. While some things don’t go your way, many more will do, just ensure that you stay ready by recalibrating and making changes where required.
You have done well by staying alive. That, in itself, is the greatest blessing of all. It’s even better if you’re in good health and living well. We should all learn to acknowledge the privileges we enjoy, no matter how little they may seem. Being conscious that not many people have the same privileges should fill our hearts with gratitude.
Take stock of how far you have come, how well you have done, and the things you need to do better. There is a new version of you required for every new phase, so remember to refuel and re-access per time. It doesn’t end there, when you get to the top of the lift, remember to send the elevator back and help people get to the top.
I hope the time we spend on the road, late nights, early mornings, tireless hard work, strategic alliances and alignment, adulting, and having to withstand constant scrutiny and revalidation all make sense at the end of it all. I hope there is depth to our existence and fulfillment. And more importantly, I hope we keep the faith and continue to push for the change we desire for our respective lives, societies, beloved countries, and the world at large.