“People are Work!” Tell me about it.

Once upon a time, I used to hassle friends about not keeping in touch.. until I found myself in their shoes.

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In a time that is desperate to cater to your every need/want/demand on the spot and deliver electronically or right where you are, it’s too easy to live in a bubble.

Yes, I live in a bubble sometimes most of the time. I like that I get consumed by work because it takes my mind off a whole lot of things and causes me to use my time judiciously.

But at the end of the day, when I swipe down from the top of my phone screen, I see how the world and my circles have passed by in the how many hours I’ve been happily submerged in something that requires very little socialising effort from me.

At work, I don’t have to go out of my way much to socialise. The people I’d engage in the process of socialising would often come there to the office and even sit in my front, making conversation and social engagement effortless.

Now, if all my social engagements took this format, I’d be the most social person I know 😀! But that’s not the case 🙄. In fact, I not only have to drag my ass out of bed when I’d rather hog my bed all day, but also have to get my groggy self in the shower, brush for almost 30 minutes, dress up half awake, fully wake up to do my makeup, try to justify why I’m neglecting my bed for another person 🤦🏾‍♀️. The stress is just too much.

Now, let me tell you the real stress. This is my own stress, at least. I live in Lagos, Nigeria. I don’t drive, I don’t Uber myself everywhere because I don’t live inside Central Bank of Nigeria’s vault. I try as much as possible to not go out during the day (08:00 and 20:00) so I don’t get into the lethal Lagos sun.

Even though I go out really early to work and I beat the sun to getting to work, I end up around really stinky people (I have overly sensitive olfactory organs) and I have phobia for unsolicited body contact, which is practically inevitable in Nigerian public transport. I’m always irritated by the bus drivers stopping everywhere (including inside potholes) to pick up even ghost passengers.

I leave work when the sun has long gone to bed so heat isn’t usually my cup of tea when I’m going home. But you see, waiting sometimes forever at my first connecting bus stop for a bus to come, only for it to be so already cramped that I have to squeeze myself in the middle of potentially smelly people is a death wish in itself. Most of the time, going home means hopping on four or five vehicles to get from my office to my house.

When I get home? 🧠💀. Literally. I’m so knackered I’m more likely to fall asleep inside my plate of food, if I even remember to eat. Lagos commute is ever draining for me. Drains my energy and will to load me with tiredness that’s beyond me. I hardly ever remember to return calls when I commute or even messages 😩! I always get people telling me, “You just forgot me”, “You didn’t even check up on me”, “Hello stranger”. I sincerely believe that that tiredness that overtakes me when I get home is uncanny.

Sometimes, I chastise myself and sit up on my bed at night, telling myself I’m going to call this person now or send them a message just to let them know that they’re on my mind. I wake up the next morning to see I didn’t charge my phone through the night.. then regretfully realising that I didn’t go through with the previous night’s plan, hence forgetting to plug my phone in overnight 🤦🏾‍♀️.

Then it’s morning and my phone is sometimes going off the hook with messages from people and I’m just cringing at not being able to message them back to say, “Hey, I’m engaged rn. Leave a message.” But then, if I message every single one of them back — you know how engrossing chatting can get 🙄 — I’ll end up getting distracted from my deliverables for the day.

The sad part is, this is my reality and all that stress is part of my life. I recently saw a Twitter post shared on Instagram where someone attested that “Adult friendships are hard. Everyone is busy and life happens”. But he also dropped a wisdom nugget which I’ve mentally adopted for a while now: texting people when you’re thinking of them and how it goes a long way. Like I said, it’s still a “mental” process for me 🙊. I’m learning.

Unless you have special circumstances that don’t afford you the opportunity to say no to that stress, at the end of the day, it’s left to you 🤷🏾‍♀️. But the reality is that so long as the person or people you’re going through all of that social stress for is/are worth it, that should be enough peace for us busy folks 🌝. Don’t waste your precious time on those whodon’t actually matter.

Credit Alert: X Megawatts of Explosive Anger Transmission

Don’t offload volcanoes of your anger on others; it actually burns.

Did you know that when you get angry and you go about your regular activities, there’s greater room for error, and for things to fall apart?

Did you also know that when in your anger, you talk to others, you are likely to say or do something to someone that will harm that person’s morale and/or whatever relationship you have with the person?

Most people relate these scenarios to romantic relationships. I think we’ve heard enough of those warnings. This one is for the casual, work and other non-romantic relationships that you probably don’t think of, or are indifferent about. 

I’ve witnessed people who have a good thing going with people they’re associated with, ruin it because of their anger. There’s nothing laudable about ruining someone else’s mood or day with your anger, especially when it’s explosive. 

If one person of event pissed you off, there’s absolutely no reason to transfer your anger on other people around you. 

Some people can take other people’s heat; some react by doing nothing and ignoring the agitated person, others retaliate by dishing it back fire for fire. Others cannot handle that heat; they cower and become sullen in disposition. Someone might have just found light at the end of a seemingly endless tunnel, and you just come yelling at the top of your voice, finding faults with things that aren’t necessarily faulty or worthy of fault-finding. In case you didn’t know, it’s nearly impossible that you’ve not just thrown darkness over that newfound light. 

Imaginably so, it’s a very selfish thing to ruin other people’s moods because you’ve just had your bubble burst and you’re exploding with red. A lot of us who are naturally short-tempered typically have a hard time controlling our quick-to-rise anger. One thing that works – for me, at least – is to quietly find a quiet space and either vent out or relax until we actually cool off. Walking about and engaging people and activities is a surefire way to transfer anger or frustration. 

Some of us offload a volcano on others when we’re angry and wonder why they’re not talking to us, they’re afraid of us, avoiding us or offended by our attempts to engage them. It is my opinion that if you think much of a person or the relationship you have with them, you will not have a go at them in your moment of anger. If anything, seeing them soothes your anger. So, if you’re offloading your temper on people that are supposedly important to you for whatever reason, you’re doing something wrong. You need to put a lid on your temper and how you handle it. 

Don’t take your anger, aggression or frustration out on others. It’s distasteful; it’s immature, actually; it’s destructive in ways beyond your understanding and imagination; it’s deplorable. I don’t see the remedy or mitigation in transferring the heat of your temper on others, when you can avoid it in the first place. All you have to do is keep your mouth sealed – since it’s the vent for your temper – and isolate yourself until you cool off. 

Until you see me again, ✌🏾 I ♥️ you!

Why Do People Find it So Hard to Mind Their Own Businesses?

Oh, for the love of those ones who give their unsolicited opinions or advice!

Until one of my Public Law lectures at university, I had thought that the term “busybody” was Nigerian in origin and in usage. I never expected to hear it outside Africa, at most. Meanwhile, as is everything with Nigerians, the term has many Nigerian variants (mostly Yoruba 😐): amebo, gbeborun, ekeebidun, eke is my hobby, ekenotu, gossip-gossip, aproko, pokenoser, I can’t even go on 😂.

Surely, I’m not the only one who needs people to start minding their businesses 🙄. A lot of the time, I wonder what people actually do with their lives 😕. I mean, if you appear to be so preoccupied with my own life, what else is in your head?

As much as I will come across as an open book (because I am), I’m as private as it gets. I don’t like people meddling in my life, even if it’s in something that’s readily obvious. If I don’t explicitly invite you, you’re not welcome.

I’m one of those irritable people so, I pay enormous attention to the way people behave around me. I hate it and it seriously puts me off when someone gives me unsolicited advice and thinks I give a damn about them or what they think. If I didn’t ask, it’s because I don’t care!

I don’t know who else thinks like I do, but I don’t like people asking me questions, especially unsolicited ones. So, I don’t ask other people questions that I wouldn’t want them to ask me, even if I’m the one who wants to ask a burning question 😂. 

Where someone doesn’t give you an invitation to comment on what’s going on in their life, or doesn’t ask for your opinion, you really need not give it. You can’t dictate or recommend to people — with your supposedly innocuous comments — how they should live their lives, or what they should do or shouldn’t do with it. It’s theirs to live; not yours.

It’s not my doing, most certainly, but I cannot remember the last time I poked my nose into someone’s business… oh, wait. I did very recently ask an acquaintance if she got married or engaged because I kept seeing her posts on my timeline that suggested it. I was just happy to see that people are already settling down 🌝. It’s not my business though 🙊. It even took me over a month to ask 😂!

Unless they’re my close friend or other loved one, I really don’t give a hoot what goes on in other people’s lives. My own life, that of my loved ones and what’s available on TV are enough for me.

I don’t know if you like or don’t mind people giving you their unsolicited opinions on matters that concern you, but I think I speak for the average person when I say that it’s unnecessary and unwanted. I hope people stay out of your business and I hope you stay out of theirs.

Anyhoo, until you hear from me again, ✌🏾

Some Self-Love Ain’t a Bad Idea

You come first.

I was feeling the need to appreciate myself today (not like I don’t do it every other day 😏), so I dug up some notes I’d made for future reference. ☺️

**** Continue reading “Some Self-Love Ain’t a Bad Idea”

Parasitic People & You

How Many Parasites Are You Feeding?

Feel free to cut people off, if you feel the need to. It’s your life. You’re the sole proprietor. People who aren’t adding to your life, but are ceaselessly taking away need to be cut off. They’re dead weight of one kind.

Now, the other kind of dead weight: those who drain you emotionally. They always have their own problems and you are always the solution. It’s very bad. You also need a shoulder to cry on sometimes, even if it’s your own shoulder. How can you be there for them and be there for yourself, too? Are you superman or superwoman? (Mind you, I’m not a comics fan so, don’t even come at me with those corrections or objections 🙄).

Emotional dead weights are the worse kind, in my opinion. The emotionally gratifying feeling that comes with being able to make someone feel better, doesn’t let you realise that the person may not fit into any cabinet in your life other than “Needs Moral Support”. They don’t seem to be present in your life, except when they have a problem that apparently only you can solve. They’re emotional parasites; they’re insidious.

It’s always a good thing to evaluate your friendships and other kinds of relationships in your life. The beneficial thing is to do it yourself, else time and circumstances (usually negative) will. Oh, some people are mysteriously good at masking their true nature. You can only hope that they will be revealed before the 11th hour. The good thing about evaluating those in your life is that, you can differentiate between those who are adding value to your life, and those who are dead weight. In case you haven’t been told, you are a boat: if you carry dead weight, you can sink.

“Leaving” those people can be the difficult part of the process. 😪 When you become such a reliable and dependable source of solution for people, they will naturally keep coming back. You’re like a spring of life that they come to feed from, in time of trouble. They become parasitic: they just keep coming back for more.

Here’s my own solution (obviously for myself, I’m not a therapist 😄): I start by identifying what thing(s) they keep coming for. Then, I start to limit my supply of that service and, eventually, my availability altogether. I keep myself engaged and occupied so that, I’m not just there like a helpdesk assistant, waiting for someone to report a problem or come with a need. If you keep calling customer service and they literally keep you waiting for hours every time, you will eventually stop calling, since they’re always apparently unavailable. It’s the same thing with you and your parasitic friend or whoever it is.

Be wise: I’m not saying don’t help people. I’m just saying, don’t let anyone extract all the good from you, and leave you empty and just a shell of who you used to be. Like we say in Nigeria: I cannot come and die. Don’t let anyone drain you out. I hope you’re not a parasite. 🙃