Tips for a Fabulous April – Ifeanyi J. Igbokwe @igbokwe_ifeanyi

One of the greatest mastery possible in the lifespan of a man is that of time, surprisingly it often seems the most difficult. Far easier it is to guide, direct and most of all discipline other people than applying those selfsame principles to oneself, that being the most difficult. Not much people have come to the realization of the demographics of this simplistic fact that time is the key ingredient of life and so should not be used anyhow.

I remember with some keen sense of interest as if it were yesterday that I was appreciating my Christmas break. I had taken my time to make plans for the on-coming year while pointing out errors I made the previous one but here we are, April seemed to have crept in on us as if we weren’t expecting it. January is gone and February and March too.

Below are a few info that would help make your April a fabulous one.

Never Spend On Anything You Don’t Need. One mistake you must be more careful to avoid is spending more than you need this month. A popular saying goes ‘if you spend get the things you don’t need just to impress, you will soon sell the things you have to get what you need’. We live in an age and time where the younger generation is always tempted to believe a lie. We are tempted to believe that the worth of an individual is directly proportional to the kind of apparel he puts on, the kind of watch, phone, tablet PC or the car he uses. Somehow howbeit unconsciously, we have learnt to keep up with the Joneses. I need to get this new blackberry phone ‘cause it is the latest in town. I need to change my car ‘cause a newer model is in town. I need to get that gown ‘cause it’s a little better than what Jenifer wore yesterday. Not because I need it, but because I want it. Not even because I want it but because others have it and so, I must have it too. So people whose salary towers somewhere around half a million Naira see themselves broke at the end of each month. They are already in debt and would even borrow from the youth corper in the office. That is the reason why you get a brand new car on a loan plan that would make you still be paying for the car years after you have disposed of it; not because you don’t have a good car but because the other guy in the offer got a Honda car and you want to show him that you are not in the same class with him so you buy a BMW on a loan plan whose compound interest alone would buy the same car five time but you weren’t aware simply because you have to be like Jimmy.

BE PRODUCTIVE. Don’t be deceived, activity doesn’t necessarily translate to productivity. A thousand and one people out there are simply busy, but just a handful are productive. They hardly have time to attend to other people and things. Many think that all that is required is that they are busy. It can often be annoying to realize that you have worked all day but at the end of the day have not achieved twenty percent of what is expected of you. I will tell you why, it is because you have left the most important things and faced the unimportant. No sane man would argue that you had not been busy, but when your productive co-workers submit their work, your barely-scratched workload will pale excessively when placed by their side to bear comparism. To avoid this, simple make a list of what has to be done starting from the most important, then begin your work starting from the most important. Don’t come to work in the morning and the first thing you do is to check your personal mail, attend to twitter, update ‘Another day at work’ on Facebook and ‘Its gon be a long day’ on BBM. Then you keep going back and forth to check if anyone has commented so you reply, already, your day is almost half messed up, because you may not be able to disentangle yourself from the incessant chatting and disturbances that would bring, well except you work as a social media expert. If you use a blackberry or an i-phone or any smart phone and you are allowed to take calls at work, please change the ringing profile to phone calls only, so your phone would only ring when you have phone calls alone, so you can concentrate on your job.

Don’t wait for anybody to motivate you. Motivate yourself. America uses a phrase I like so much, they would always say, ‘Pull yourself up by your bootstrap.’ Somehow I have fallen in love with that phrase. The day that maturity begins in any being is the day that he or she begins to understand that in reality, you are on your own. Please do not get me wrong, I am not trying to deny the significance of the God factor. If you don’t motivate yourself, I wonder who will. Truth is, except in very few cases of mishap where we may need to be assisted by another, everyman is expected to be up and doing at work. A thousand and one people work at jobs they out rightly hate but sometimes you ask yourself why do they still stick to it for one, two , three, four, five and more years? It is because the desired is not available, the available becomes desirable. They had to motivate themselves to carry on. A man can survive almost any tragedy provided the spirit in him is still encouraging him to hold on, the day his spirit should let go, that would be the end. So pull yourself up by your bootstrap, don’t wait for your boss to serve you a memo or a warning letter to do that. Don’t wait for a sack letter or a balance sheet indicating red before you do that.

Never forget you are your own boss. No matter what happens, under no circumstance should you forget that you are your own boss. Be you a student, self-employed, employed, underemployed, overemployed ( if there is any such word) individual whatever you choose to address your status as, we are responsible for what happens to us. Quit the blame game, stop living in denial and face your responsibilities head-on. Nobody is interested in your excuses, they may be substantial, people may even pity you after you narrate your excuse in details, but the truth is excuses would not pay the bills. No matter how good your excuses may be, people pay for results and not god excuses. If because you don’t like your job, and it is because you are not well paid, so you try to trudge along, going with the flow without adding substantial value to the establishment, I can only tell you one thing, it won’t be long. It won’t take long for your boss to discover. You may think you are doing it to avenge yourself, but one day, he will relieve you of the job you have complained all your life about. If you don’t like the job, why did you take it in the first place? That very job others will do it better than you for half the salary, no matter how bad. So why you are still there, give it your best shot, if not for anything for the sake of the future, what goes around comes around. Some students think they are doing their parents a favor by going to school. Labor market will teach them the necessary lesson they need to learn.

I wish you all good success as this second quarter begins. See you at the top.


Ifeanyi J. Igbokwe is a life coach, writer and motivational speaker with a focus on corporate and personal growth.
Twitter: @igbokwe_ifeanyi


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