#My2012Lessons : Lesson No. 1 ~ Japheth J @omojuwa

Published:20 Dec, 2012

I feel like doing conventional blogging as the year ends. I have been doing a lot of soul searching and strategising for the coming months. The year 2012 has been an extraordinary year for me. From the first day of the year when the President unleashed the petrol taxes shocker to yesterday when my piece to Nigeria’s most crucial generation – the teenagers – went viral and reached most the teens I intended it for, it has been a year where dreams were fulfilled and new dreams were birth. I cannot state all of the things I have learnt this year but I will state the ones that come to mind in no particular order: Some are new lessons, others old lessons relearnt.

1. Man proposes…God smiles, so be ready:

I had my plans for the year. I wrote them all out and I mapped out a strategy to achieve each one. Everything changed when the new fuel prices were announced. I was at the forefront of the quest for Nigerians to march against the unwholesome policies of the Jonathan administration. I did virtually all of these online and on television. When the new prices were announced on the 1st day of January, I realized I was in a binary position. I either step or march against this government bullshit or shut up forever. It was an easy decision. I stepped out to the Eagle Square Abuja the next day. Several months later, stepping out has come to define my year. I also travelled down to Lagos to be part of the Lagos end of the protests. I did not do this without leaving the right instructions and direction in place. I worked with a team that believed in me and essentially entrusted me with a leadership I found myself in. While in Lagos, I developed tactics for the Abuja team, connected with protesters in Kaduna, Kano, Adamawa and other cities. I was online almost all day coordinating, giving direction and explaining the issues. My blog www.omojuwa.com went bonkers. It became the go to page for information on the protests. None of this was planned. I found myself at the centre of the biggest phenomenon I had ever experienced my whole life. This changed my year and even though my life story will be written with many stories of challenges and victories, this will always rank amongst the most life shattering because without any plan or strategy on my part, I found myself at the front of a war. The story of my participation and experience during the #OccupyNigeria movement is one for chapters and not just a paragraph. These events changed my plans for the year in a way that looked like I had no part in it but I did have more than a part in it. For me, the fact that the Nigerian people could do what they did taught me a great lesson in leadership; never write the people off. Many who said it would never happen later became part of the street protests. Many today are saying Nigerians will never come out again in the way they did in January 2012 but despite never doubting the fact that the January ones could happen, I have a lot more faith today more than ever that if the people get pushed to the wall again, they will bounce back. What amounts to being pushed to the wall is what I cannot define. When the time comes, I hope to be there on the street again voicing my angst against a leadership that looks like its destiny is to nail the coffin on Nigeria’s destruction. I never planned what happened to me in January. Yes, I had done a lot of underground work to be part of the people that made it happen but no, I never imagined it would shake the world the way it did. Nigerians marched in some 32 cities. I have a lot of moments I have been proud of my Nigerian heritage, January 2012 is up there with the best of them. This was the beginning of the year but like the morning that defines the day, this beginning defined my year.
Lesson 1: Make your plans and be sure to map your strategy but be ready for when life throws a challenge at you. Things do not always go according to plan but never run from life when it throws you on the battleground. Fight the fight of your life. If you win, you move ahead. If you lose you learn new lessons and there are some battles you fight and leave because you will need to fight another day.

PS: I will share more lessons but that will depend on how many of you share your own lessons in through comments below. Let us share and learn together

~ This is @omojuwa

  • @dreamygiorgi

    The first few times I saw Japheth’s tweets as RTs from handles I was following I felt he was a woman! Then I followed him,he followed back,I DMed my phone no…he called me a few hours later,I was tongue tied for a bit then I started screaming…then we met(he gave me Kilishi that could have fed a family of 12!,I’m not kidding) this was July of 2011. Fast forward to January 2, 2012 Eagle Sq…Japheth led the protests,police men/SSS/soldiers wanted to pick him up,he didn’t run away he said they couldn’t take him anyway but he wasn’t going to leave the SQ…ppl who were hesistant were enboldened by his courage. We called friends,relatives,the SQ started filling up. Ppl camped at the SQ,even gave the police who were there to send us away food and water. Japheth left for Lag,he directed me to Azeenarh who was coordinating while he was away. One night ppl were beaten,laptops stolen…I learned that together we can achieve just about anything,especially when the person leading knows what he is doing,shows courage,carries ppl along,is selfless,committed…#occupyNigeria#Abuja changed my opinion of my generation thanks to Omojuwa,Zeenarh,Henry, Phareedah,Ashifa…etc

  • M’ADE

    Lesson 1: Never give up on yourself and do not compare your achievement with others. At the begining of this year i tot iwas just living and not making impacts or gaining from what life has to offer bcos iwas comparing myself with those who dinned with De cream de la crim of ? walls of Naija! Instead of copying, I took ? new/different turn. today DCDLC wanna dine where i dine cos major ideas flow on dt table. Alhamdulilah

  • Wait for your time. That is the number one lesson I’ve learnt this year. But I see everyday of the year teaching me a new lesson. @abimart4ever on twitter.

  • Modee Santuraki

    first of all i followed you on twitter towards december last year and your tweets were like a light on my path. This year many things happened to my life despite the fact that i was challenged in many ways but i also achived a lot. Most of your words really helped me and am really greatful for that.
    We must learn to understand issues base on circumstances, we must continue to fight against bad leadership even if it means putting our lives on the line for the country. Nigeria belongs to all of us so we will go further, go farther and go harder to protect it.
    God Bless the federal republic of Nigeria.

  • fatee

    Very inspiring. Will heed you advise and plan for the coming year. I always believe life takes care of it’s self, I guess I now know better,we have to get up and fight for ourselves

  • @xahido

    One thing dat keeps ringing in my medulla is ‘LIFE MUST GO ON’ as short as life is thou some are too blind to see it with their eyes wide open and devil has pee-ed in their ears so they won’t listen to any good advise,I see that if you set down and stare at d four walls of ur home,u’ll never see beyond that but if you can summon d courage to strive and search for opportunity trust me,it will be banging on ur door b4 you know it. I see omojuwa as some of grand cerebral intellect ordained by God himself cos he’s way too over his head with wat he’s pulling off because without special immunity and sense of direction for God he won’t be at d forefront of he’s humanitarian service.I believe he’s a gentle,cool,calm and collected dude cos someone dat interviewed him once told me dat. I don’t know how I feel if I don’t read he’s blog on daily basics. Omojuwa is one of its kind.

  • I was one of those who has total disbelief in this our beloved country due to our ancedents as a nation. I saw every Nigerian as a religious bigot. All this changed when I started following you on twitter. For the first time in a long time I saw a Nigerian who called a spade a spade notwithstanding what was at stake.

  • obi 1

    From u japh…I learnt to love and bleed nigerian!I learnt integrity,I learnt to believe in myself…thank u so much for being our beacon…U too much!!!

  • @Omojuwa…its been graceful you know: doing the unprecedented this year owes to faith and not essentially courage. I wouldn’t say i achieve alot bt what merries me is the exposure i get through ur ilk of a man.

  • This year has been a remarkable one for me. Against all odds, I graduated from the university with the result of my dream. According to Oprah, ‘ there is almost a lesson in almost everything that you do, and geting the lesson is how to move forward. It is how to enrich your spirit.’ But among numerous lessons and principles that shaped my year is this: ‘Never set limits, go after your dreams, don’t be afraid to push the boundaries and always trusting God for the best.’

  • @Omojuwa…Aye its been graceful you know. But doing the unprecedented this year, I think, owes to faith and not essentially courage. I wouldn’t say i achieve alot bt what merries me is the exposure i get through d ilk of ur personality. 2012 for me, is a year of my political upbringing. I can vouch: my eyes don sharpen to national matter!

  • This year has been a remarkable one for me. Against all odds, I graduated from the university with the result of my dream. According to Oprah, ‘ there is almost a lesson in almost everything that you do, and getting the lesson is how to move forward. It is how to enrich your spirit.’ But among numerous lessons and principles that shaped my year is this: ‘Never set limits, go after your dreams, don’t be afraid to push the boundaries and always trust God for the best.’

  • jordypapa

    No 1 lesson don’t worry urself abt what pple say abt u…do what u knw au to do best and of all put ur TRUST in God…I started following JJ early dis year,uve encouraged me through ur words,I only read his blogs n twits I don’t gve comments,dis is my 1st and am doing this to let u knw dat I love and respect yu a lot….even though I don’t like envying others my brother I envy ur “solid brain” ur always on point,always making be bliff in dis country and myself…am glad I followed u on twitter…am glad cos I knw a lot now abt life now…I come to twitter to open ur page and keep refreshing it to knw wat u r up to….u r a great guy…God bless u

  • ade

    I lean God does things d way he want,even if u pray everyday and your prayer is against his will or d time he program, he will not answer d prayer .@japheth am proud of u,i thank God we are brother,

  • we have kee the virsw

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