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Food for Living: Success and the Imperatives of Setting Boundaries

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By Henry Ukazu

Dear Destiny Friend,

The difference between successful people and really successful people is that really successful people say no to almost everything – Warren Buffet.

One of the qualities of great people that ever lived on planet earth is focus. Without focus it will be difficult to get any work done. This is because when you are focused, you will define what you really want and what you don’t want. To succeed in every profession or vocation; be it academic, relationship/marriage, business, politics etc. you need to define boundaries.

The question now becomes what is boundary and how do you define boundaries? According to Psychology Today, “boundaries are the limits we set with other people, which indicate what we find acceptable and unacceptable in their behaviour towards us. The ability to know our boundaries generally comes from a healthy sense of self-worth or value for oneself in a way that is not contingent on other people or the feelings they have toward you.”

Boundaries help to define us, and states what we accept and what’s unacceptable. Boundaries can be likened to values. To understand how boundaries work, imagine a car without control; a man who has an uncontrollably anger problem; or a loose lady who has no respect for her body. Boundaries help you to protect yourself from distractions in life. As a result, every living creature needs a boundary. The simple reason we put boundary in our life is because you don’t want to accessible to just anyone.

Boundaries come in different shapes and sizes. As a rational mind, there are acceptable ways of communicating and engaging on social media. Civilized beings don’t use uncouth words. In a professional environment such as companies, organizations, institutions etc, boundaries are spelt out as a policy, rule and regulation.

When you decide to take a new route in life, it’s always good to inform those around you or your associates of your intentions, and expectations from them. They might be uncomfortable with the development, especially if it’s a radical and fundamental difference from the status quo. Those that care will respect you, while those who don’t literally value you, will show their true colour.

The advantages of creating boundaries are priceless. It gives you clarity and sanity of mind. It makes you understand what is important, and gives you a better understanding of who you are. It tells you about other people and most importantly, it defines you. Boundaries give you the ability to guard how you spend your time and resources. Setting a boundary gives you strength to say no, and to focus on what’s important. It is worthy of note as well that setting a boundary helps prevent obstacles.

It has a way of causing havoc, when boundaries are not properly set. For instance, without healthy boundaries, we can become resentful of the work we love; we can become resentful of those we love, especially if they don’t  value or appreciate our time or what matters to us. As rational human beings, boundaries mean different things to us. Whenever your value is trampled upon or you feel disrespected, you are bound to react.  According to an anonymous saying “Lack of boundaries invites lack of respect.

When you set a boundary, communicate it to people in the best possible way whether formally or informally. Let them know your plans and intentions. For example, you let them know when you are available and when you won’t be available. You can decide to put your phone either on silent mode or better still, switch it off. Boundaries must have limits.

Boundaries help you to understand people. For example, if you don’t show people who you are and what your capacity is, they will put you through anything. Why? Because you have shown that you value nothing; nothing, not even yourself. Be advised, if you don’t stand for something, you will fall for anything and everything.

Naturally, human beings will test your boundaries. They will push you to the wall to see your reaction. The first way of attracting disrespect as a man or woman is when you don’t show boundaries. People will literally take you for granted.

A relationship is like building a house. When you build a house, you put gates and other security gadgets to protect you, your loved ones and what you value.  Relationship entails making a choice. Choice defines marriage. Your choice defines what you want, it determines what you admire in a person, what’s tolerable and intolerable and what makes you feel you are compatible with the person.

Boundaries play a role in marriage or any form of relationship. This is because your partner needs to know what you like? When people complain about their spouse, it is sometimes because their spouse is not aware of their concerns. Therefore, it’s imperative for you to communicate with your spouse. If you decide to keep quiet, how is your spouse supposed to know?

Marriage is supposed to be enjoyed as opposed to being endured. There’s a difference between endurance and tolerance. Endurance is accepting the things that cannot be changed, while tolerance is adjusting to things while hoping people will change.

If you don’t state your boundaries, it has a way of coming back at you. The reason many people get drained in life is because they are concerned about what other people will say. They wonder what will happen if they decline a request, they wonder how their friends and the world will perceive them.

In some instances, we want to look to our partners, colleagues at work, children or close allies, just because we don’t want to offend them. We fail to understand that, we might lose the relationship when the coin is flipped. We might even harm them in the long run in the process of trying to protect them. Isn’t it true you can spare the rod and spoil the child?

In some situations, we are afraid of the circumstances. For example, in a professional environment, where sexual advances are totally prohibited, a lady or a man might be afraid of setting clear boundaries to his/her boss because of the policy. Due to the retaliation which might follow suit, they might be tempted to allow their boundaries to lay low, especially when their job performance is low.

In conclusion, according to Robert Frost, “Good fences, make good neighbors.” Sacrificing ourselves therefore, for others, does more harm than good to the relationship. It is imperative to always show the green, yellow and red light where necessary. In that way, we save a lot of situations and dramas.

Henry Ukazu writes from New York. He’s a Human Capacity & mindset coach. He’s also a  public speaker. He works with the New York City Department of Correction as the Legal Coordinator. He’s the author of the acclaimed book Design Your Destiny – Actualizing Your Birthright To Success and President of gloemi.com. He can be reached via info@gloemi.com

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Safeguard the Nation or Be Removed, NSCDC Boss Tells Zonal Commanders, State Commandants

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In view of the prevailing security situation in the country which has made it imperative to redouble effort towards ensuring effective delivery of the Corps mandate in the enforcement of peace and development of Nigeria, the Commandant General of Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, Ahmed Audi, PhD, mni, has charged all Zonal and State Commandants to function optimally by stepping up their operational activities in securing the nation and safeguarding critical assets and infrastructure.

A statement signed by the Director of Public Relations, DCC Olusola Odumosu, noted that the CG made this known during the Commandant General’s Conference at the Corps National Headquarters, Abuja, where he emphasized the need to justify the confidence reposed in the Corps by the Government through concerted effort and by making significant impact in the protection of Critical National Assets and Infrastructure, Disaster Management, supervision of Private Guard Companies and the protection of farmers and farmlands.
According to the CG, the wave, dynamics and sophistication of crisis such as terrorism, banditry, kidnapping, militancy, ethnic agitation, kidnapping, oil bunkering and so on has led to very serious devastation particularly on the economy, hence, the need for the corps to develop strategies that could best address this social menace.

Speaking further, Dr Audi decried the spate of Insecurity in Nigeria which has recently assumed an alarming Asymmetric dimension and affected every facet of Nigerian life, thus, leading to severe unimaginable social consequences across the six geographical regions but particularly the North-East, North Central and South-South.

He gave a stern warning to all zonal and state commandants to resist any attempt by criminals or any group of individuals to unleash terror and destroy the peace of Nigeria. ‘’The only way to justify your existence is to carry out your duties beyond reasonable doubt; our mandates are very clear, so, we must resist any attempt by criminal elements to subvert our peaceful coexistence and be able to show to Nigerians that we are collecting government salaries’’ Audi said.

He directed all the state Commandants to renew and strengthen their anti-vandalism drive by closing down more illegal refineries, arrest and prosecute oil thieves, illegal bunkering suspects and tankers loading, reloading and transloading crude oil across borders. Reiterating that, safeguarding the nation’s critical infrastructure is a task that must be done as it impacts directly on national prosperity, human capital development and survival of the people.

Therefore, any state commandant that perform below expectation would be removed immediately without delay.
The CG reminded the Corps formations of his vision to rejig, reinvigorate, revitalize, reengineer, refocus and reposition the Corps towards building a strong, virile and proactive organization that is knowledge driven, bearing in mind the need to improve on quality of service, productivity, professionalism and operational efficiency.

That one of the focuses of his administration is training and manpower development, bearing in mind the need to enhance the capacity of personnel to effectively deliver on its mandate and every State Command have been mandated to key into this policy.

He promised to introduce career development progression courses for each category of officers which will be the main determinant for their promotion and progression in service. In his words, the CG said ‘’What this means in essence and as a matter of policy is that you must have passed a prescribed career development course before you can be considered for promotion to the next rank.’’

Dr Audi encouraged the managers of affairs of the Corps to continue to sensitize the public on security consciousness and to seek their cooperation in getting credible information that could help in nipping crime in the bud.

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Food for Living: Time As Man’s Most Precious Gift

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By Henry Ukazu

Dear Destiny Friends,

Time is one of the most precious gifts available to man. And one’s time unarguably is one’s time. Note that one of the greatest ways to know a man/woman is to study the way they invest their time and what they spend their time on. It’s easy to say you love or care for someone, but the effort or measure you put in will determine how valuable the person is to you. It is also instructive to note that we are not too busy for anyone we care about. You can never be too busy for your family and close friends. In the same way, if you cherish a commodity like gold/diamond you will treat it like a priceless jewel or asset.

Time is largely underrated. Sometimes we think we have all the time in the world, especially when you are young or have no project at hand. If you want to know you have no time, start a project or vision that is bigger than you. Sometimes, we think we can always have a second chance to make a first impression; that may be true but that’s not always the case. The phrase time waits for no man is simply another way of saying that the passing of time is unstoppable, and it will march on regardless of what anyone says or does. So, if you are still thinking of the time you will invest in any project, you will be surprised to know that time will come and go, and the task will remain undone. Moral: Don’t look at the time you will spend if you’re passionate about a worthy cause. You can explore options to know what’s reasonable and attainable.

When you host events or training, people are not merely paying you because they like you, they are paying you for your experience which is your time. The same principle is applicable in any job, employers are always concerned about your experience and what you have done to prove you love the opportunity in addition to being the best for the position.

Attention is the price you pay for value. According to Gary Chapman in his book “The Five Love Language”, the five love languages are words affirmation, gift, services, time and physical touch. Any creative man who knows how to use this five-love language will not have a hard time getting a lady of his choice. Of interest to me is the value of time. This is because when you lose money, you can easily get it back if you play by the right rules, but if you lose your time, you can never get it back.

Time is more precious and valuable than money. When you spend your time on any lady, it has a way of showing your attention and in most cases, that’s what love means to you.

In the journey of life, we will never have the perfect time to do the needful, but we will always have time to do what we want to do. To know how to use your time, the best question to ask yourself is what is the best use of my time right now. If we are honest to ourselves, good things don’t always come easy, if you desire to be a published author, you have to put in the work, if you desire success in your academics, business, relationship/marriage, profession, spirituality, politics etc., you must invest your resources into it, but most especially your time is what will make the ultimate difference.

The question we should be asking ourselves is what is my attitude to time? How do I spend my time? Who do I spend my time with? How intentional are you with your life? And most importantly what legacy will I like to be remembered when I depart this sinful world? As a rational and progressive being, it is always important to examine your life by taking stock and evaluating the progress you have made every day, week, month, year or decade. By doing so, you will come to the sublime realization that we don’t really have time to do the needful. You will also realize that you may have made mistakes by investing your time in projects and endeavors that didn’t yield much fruit. Some of which can be regarded as frivolous.

Whatever is the case, we always have time to reset our lives. According to an African proverb, ‘whenever a man wakes up from sleep, that is when his day begins’. This adage simply means, you are never late when you begin to live your life on purpose. So, it doesn’t matter how old you are, it doesn’t matter how far you may have gone out of your path, it doesn’t matter what your past may have been, you can still hit the reset button if you are intentional about living a life of authenticity. It doesn’t matter if you have been fired from your job, if you are divorced, or whatever your situation might be, if you can look past those challenges and setbacks and ask yourself what lesson did I learn, what is it I should have done better, and how can I move from here. This is a healthy way of living and learning from life.

Trust me, time runs faster than light. If you really want to make an impact with your life, set a timeline for a vision your dream of or have in mind. By the time you set your calendar by drawing the plan on what is needed, you would wish you started early to engage with the right people, association, in addition to doing the needful which entails your own personal effort because before anyone can raise his/her finger to assist you, they will like to see the effort you have invested in yourself.

By the time you are done doing the numbers, you will release that indeed, time waits for no man. It is on such occasions you may begin to have regrets, and once regrets begin to set in, you may begin to lose the inspiration to be fired up. But like I mentioned earlier, you are never too late to live a life of purpose. Whenever you wake up from your slumber, that’s when your day begins. You can move with your determination, and time which is the arsenal you need. If late President Nelson Mandela can spend 27 years in prison and still win an election, that should ring a bell for you. You might say, his case is different, but the point and message I want to emphasize is that he was determined to fight for a cause he believed in and it paid off.

In conclusion, as you move along in life, ask yourself, what is the best use of my time now? It is only by doing so you’ll truly realize how valuable time is.

Henry Ukazu writes from New York. He’s a Human Capacity & mindset coach. He’s also a  public speaker. He works with the New York City Department of Correction as the Legal Coordinator. He’s the author of the acclaimed book Design Your Destiny – Actualizing Your Birthright To Success and President of gloemi.com. He can be reached via info@gloemi.com

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Wonders of Wisdom, Grace and Positivity

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By Tolulope A. Adegoke

As you walk in God’s divine wisdom, you will surely begin to see a greater measure of victory and good success in your life.– Joseph Prince

As the Scripture says, “wisdom is profitable to direct” (Ecclesiastes 10:10). Just as this is especially apt in activating the hero within. I have to point out that in seeking to activate and maximise the seed of greatness that God has deposited in you, wisdom and the leading of God’s Spirit are vital – so that your efforts will not be in vain.

 A revered man of God once told the interesting story of two different individuals who activated the hero within them but got different results. One emerged a hero, while the other remained a zero. Here is what happened. Just at the time that the idea of an external elevator was about to be transmitted to the world, a man got inspiration. It was meant to be his avenue to greatness, but he missed the opportunity.

 Here is what happened. There was a specific structure owned by a large company in one of the major cities in the United States of America at the time. The owners of the structure had installed internal elevators but, soon after opening the place, the number of people who used the elevators had exceeded the owners’ projection. It was obvious that disaster was looming and the managers of the building began to frantically think of how to salvage the situation.

 Days passed by and the managers hadn’t been able to find a solution. However, one day, as they deliberated, a man who usually served them tea and had heard of the burning issue, surprisingly told them: “There is no big deal about what you have been discussing. The solution is very simple. Go outside the building, break down the entire wall of a section from the top downward, then fix an elevator inside it. You will have enough room for people to queue and then the problem will be solved.”

 Just like that, the tea server ignorantly shared the multi-million-dollar idea, which the company implemented; but he didn’t receive much for his idea – just because of the careless way he presented it. He obviously lacked wisdom.

 On the other hand, there was a janitor, whose highest qualification was a high school certificate. He worked for a toothpaste company, whose Board of Directors had been looking for a means of increasing the sales of their product for almost a year. One day, the janitor approached the Board of Directors and told them he could guarantee a significant increase in the company’s sales. He added, however, that he would only release the idea on the condition that the company signed an agreement that clearly stipulated that he would be entitled to a certain percentage of the company’s profits on the product and that he must be a member of the Board. After some consideration, the Board agreed to his request.

 Now, what powerful idea did the janitor have to share? Well, at that time, the orifices (or mouths) of toothpaste tubes were so tiny, making it difficult for consumers to use large quantities at once. So, the janitor simply told them, “Expand the orifice of the paste tubes and there will be so much wastage by the consumers. This will make them buy more.” The company’s directors were all stunned at this idea and wondered why it hadn’t occurred to them earlier.

 As soon as the company implemented the idea, what followed was a massive increase in their sales. The janitor, therefore, was promoted and made a member of the Board of Directors of the company. He also soon became rich as a result of the percentage of profits that he got from the product.

 The interesting thing is that he himself had got the idea that changed his and the company’s fortunes by listening to the complaints of the buyers and users of the product who passed through his gate every day. He simply maximised the information that he had and that took him to the top.

 This is why you need divine wisdom and guidance to know what to do with your vision and ideas. We often pray to God Almighty to meet our financial needs and turn our lives around for the best, but the truth is that, most times, God does not send money. If He were to send money, what currency would he send? What God gives are ideas that can transform our destinies, if we can apply them with the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

Thank you all for reading.

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