There can be no better time to be creative than now. The time is always right for young leaders to create or do something creative. Recall all the array of opportunities you had to access the internet, good teachers, helpful counselors, library of educating materials, access to information technology devices, and youth’s ability to ponder using the abundant potentials of the brain; as few of the encouraging reasons why you should be creative. Now and not later is the right time for you to unleash your creative potential. One important question calling for urgent answer is; “at what point will I become creative?” Simply put, when can youngsters give birth to a creative effort? The answer is, at the time youth become inspired. The key word to demystify in this column is the word ‘inspiration’.
The Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary defined the word ‘inspiration’ to mean ‘the quality or state of being inspired’, which simply means ‘the process that takes place when somebody sees or hears something that causes him to have exciting new ideas or make them want to create something new especially in art, music or literature. For example, dreams can be a rich source of inspiration for an artist. It could be said that an individual’s time of getting inspired is the beginning of creativity. So, give birth to yours today.
Recall the recently concluded World cup held in Brazil wherein players at different times scored and their goals were overruled. The linesman would simply raise up the flag. The reason most times was the timing of the player when the strike was made, who was probably in the offside position. During the first half of the Nigeria match against France in the round of 16 matches during which Emmanuel Emenike’s goal was disallowed. The goal was scored, but the player was adjudged offside, the strike was taken at the wrong time. This is to tell you that every important strike must be done at the right time. It is wrong, if a good step is taken at the wrong time. Every important step in life has it definite time. And this connotes that thing must be done at its appointed time. Doing that thing at the right time is an imperative for the young leader. You are wrong whenever you do something good at the wrong time. Whatever every youth has to do must be prompt and done at the right time. Continue reading “Ignite: Do it at the right time, by Olurotimi Odejayi”
To be creative requires having a clear mind for thinking as well as for receiving inspiration. This however demands that you have prior skill in a particular field of endeavour and be familiar with the kernel of this field of endeavour. This is preferably what you have been practicing on a daily basis. This daily practice gives you an insight into how you can go about doing things in your own unique way. The next thing is for you to ponder. By this, I mean you think deeply so as to be inspired. This must be a specialized kind of thinking that I call “out of the box” thinking, which should eventually produce a newest distinct concept or idea.
“Out of the Box” Thinking!
The phrase “out of the box” is an expression that describes non-conformal creative thinking. The term is used as an adverb to describe the thinking or as an adjective to describe the ideas. It requires openness to new ways of seeing the world and a willingness to explore new ways going forward. Out of the box thinkers know that new ideas demand inner introspection and pondering. They stay put on this pondering status until a new way to doing things eventually come up. This further needs nurturing and support; they also know that having idea is good but Continue reading “Thinking begets Creativity, by Olurotimi Odejayi”
Madison Robinson’s story is the type of story I like to spread. Such stories inspire others and can galvanise us to action. She is only fifteen years old but she owns her own flourishing business. She is also a philanthropist.
She has created a flip-flop business which she calls FishFlops. Maddies’ FishFlops are beautiful flip-flops, which demonstrate her love of ocean animals and beach. A news article reveals that more than 30 stores placed orders the first time the flip flops were exhibited at a trade show and that so far, no store has rejected them when they have been approached to sell them.
Maddies’ parents and friends have been her major source of encouragement. She disclosed this in an interview: “When I was 8 years old I was drawing and coloring and looked over at my many pair of flip-flops in my room. I thought I would draw some of my favorite ocean creatures on an outline of a flip-flop. I decided to call them FishFlops® and I showed my dad. He was so excited… my family and friends thought the FishFlops® were really neat and they said they would buy them. My family and friends encouraged me to keep on creating.” Continue reading “Madison Robinson, the 16-Year-Old Founder of FishFlops”
In my over 3 decades of existence on the surface of the earth I have had the opportunity to interact with three different teachers. I have been impacted one way or the other by all of them. My experience in life has made me to tag two of them as ‘rich teachers’, while the other one a ‘poor teacher’.
In 1984 I lost my father to the icy hands of death. He died at a tender age! Despite the fact that he died young, he achieved so much. He actually became a director in one of the Agencies of the Federal Republic of Nigeria at 38. This is not a mean feat! I work 9-5 with an Agency of government today and I know it is not easy. My father was the breadwinner of the family. He was our all-in-all. When death called, events in our family took a downward trend. My mother was a petty trader with just a First Leaving School Certificate! Things got so bad that we could hardly have a meal per day. Despite the downturn, she did not give in. The situation brought out the best in her.
One event that qualifies her as one of my rich teachers happened in December, 1984. During the festive period, everybody was preparing for how to make the period a memorable one. People were buying new clothes, chickens, goats, rice and all sorts of things. We became crestfallen and dejected because we knew nothing of such would happen in our homestead. But my mother shocked my siblings and me. She invited a tailor to our house to come and take our measurements. At first, we thought she wanted to do ‘April Fool’ for us, but this was December. We reluctantly allowed the tailor to take our measurements. After the tailor left, we enquired for where and how our mother got the money to buy a new cloth. She further amazed us with her response “I took out some of my old wrappers and loosened them.” From this singular event, she taught me to always turn problems into opportunities. Instead of brooding over any situation, she taught to think out of the box and make the best of the situation. With the simple solution she proffered to a hitherto big challenge in our eyes, we had a swell time at Christmas as we wore something ‘new’. My mother was a rich teacher; she taught me by example. She introduced me to “Problem-Solving 101”. Continue reading “A Tale of Three Teachers, by Isaac Oluyi”
I came across the story of Cliff Young and I was wowed. I just couldn’t resist the urge to share it with others. So please enjoy his story.
In 1983 when Cliff stepped to the line ready to run the Westfield Sydney to Melbourne Ultra Marathon no one took him seriously. He didn’t look like he was ready to complete a 5K let alone the 544 mile race from Sidney to Melbourne. He was a side show clown for the media to dramatize; a satirical distraction from the real competitors who took training and racing seriously. In 1983, a man named Cliff Young showed up at the start of this race. Cliff was 61 years old and wore overalls and work boots. To everyone’s shock, Cliff wasn’t a spectator. He picked up his race number and joined the other runners. He was told that he was crazy and could not finish the race. He explained to them that he grew up on a 2,000-acre farm, with thousands of sheep. His family could afford neither horses nor tractors so, when the storms came, his job was to round up the sheep. Sometimes, he said, it would take two or three days of running. “It took a long time, but I’d always catch them. I believe I can run this race,” he said.
When the gun went off, Cliff immediately fell to the very back of the pack. Soon even the back of the pack disappeared ahead of him. But a 61 year old toothless farmer, racing in overalls and galoshes, was still compelling television so the cameras continued to cover his journey. Calls reportedly came into the station begging for race officials to make him stop. Many spectators believed he would certainly die before he made it even half way to Melbourne. After 18 hours of running, the leaders stopped for some rest. The conventional wisdom was that running 18 hours straight and then sleeping for 6 was the best recipe for success over this distance. The first night of the race Cliff did not sleep. Continue reading “Cliff Young”
Sometime ago, I took my wife to the hospital for treatment of cough and catarrh. It was our first time of visiting that hospital to see a doctor so we had to obtain a new patient’s card. We paid for the card without stress but it was not the same with obtaining the card. Since my wife was not feeling too well, I had to help her obtain the card while she sat down. The queue that confronted me where I was to obtain the card was scary but I did not have any option but to fall in line if I wanted to get the card. There were about five disorderly lines (the disorderliness actually accounts for why I cannot be exact about the number of lines) being attended to by two persons – the number later increased to three.
While waiting to be attended to, I observed something: some people who just joined the queue were attended to before those they met on the line. A man who was behind me found his way to the front and he was attended to before me. My first reaction to the man’s attitude was to wonder at his impatience and disregard for order. But it didn’t take me long to come to terms with what I concluded was the reality of life. I thought to myself that there was no need to blame him because his action only exemplified that life will hand to you what you demand of it and not necessarily what you deserve. In life, some people wait for a good fortune to drop on their laps like ripe mangoes while others go about life with such a determination to make life give them what they want. This does not mean I support disorderliness. In fact, I am a firm believer in the first come, first served principle.
Another observation I made while waiting to get the card was that patients who knew hospital officials enlisted the support of such officials to help them get whatever they wanted quickly. This also did not anger me because I have come to realise that relationships can help you get ahead in life or take you where your knowledge or status may not take you. These patients who knew hospital officials were only enjoying the benefits of the relationships they had developed. And I am not one to blame the hospital officials for calling in favours in their workplace. Where else would they call in such favours if not in their workplace? Continue reading “Two Things You Can Still Do This Year, by Darasimi Oshodi”
Jada, a 16-year-old girl, was invited to a party. When she got there, the host gave her a drink of punch and after taking the drink, she passed out and was not aware of every other thing that happened at the party. A few weeks later, she realised that she had been raped and that her photo was taken while she was lying on the ground unconscious. She only became aware of what happened that night when photos of her naked body started circulating on the Internet. As if that was not worrisome enough, some Internet users started taking pictures of themselves mimicking Jada’s pose while she was lying unconscious on the ground and posted those pictures on the Internet with the hash tag #jadapose, which some have termed as a social media low. Some even posted videos, including dance videos to mock her.
But in a rare show of courage, she has decided to come out and speak about the whole incident. Jada, who revealed that she was angry about the whole thing, said, “I had no control. I didn’t tell anyone to take my clothes off and do what they did to me.” And about her reason for coming out, she said, “There’s no point in hiding. Everybody has already seen my face and my body, but that’s not what I am and who I am.”
What is heartwarming is the support Jada has received since she came out to tell her side of the story. These people have also come up with counter hash tags like: #jadacounterpose and #standwithjada with the aim of drumming up support for Jada and also to discourage attacks on the female gender by males. Even the #jadapose meme has been hijacked and is now being used to attack its initial aim. Continue reading “Drugged, Raped, Mocked but Undaunted: I #StandwithJada, by Darasimi Oshodi”