We live in a society where others are constantly criticizing your creativity, talent and even your person. People are so good at picking on your flaws whilst forgetting the fact that nobody is actually perfect.
I always say this to my friends “To survive in Lagos, it goes beyond having a skin tougher than ‘Ponmo’, you must be ready to hustle and remain focused.”
Recently, I was at a filling station when I eavesdropped on a conversation between two fuel attendants and a few by standers. They were talking about Usain Bolt’s 100m (race) win at the Olympics.
As I listened on, one of the guys there kept saying “Bolt no fit run jare, he no fast reach me”. I didn’t know which was funnier; the actual statement or the fact that he was pronouncing “Bolt” as “Bot“. The guy kept raving and ranting about how he used to complete his 100m race in 9.10 seconds back when he was in secondary school (that was 15years ago).
As I was about too zoom off, I smiled at him and said “Na you suppose don win our “only” gold medal for Olympics, you dey here dey make mouth or make we do special “olympics” for you and Bolt”? Everyone burst out laughing and someone said to him “Bros, go siddon jor, you don turn old soldier”.
I drove off thinking to myself, It’s so easy for you to say you’re better than someone else without even acknowledging the fact that the same person you claim to be better than is recognised for what he or she is doing while you are busy “making noise”. That’s a typical case of “all mouth, no action”.
Don’t get me wrong here, It’s good to believe in yourself and strive to be the best. In fact, you should always believe in yourself and say, “I am the best”.
It’s good to appreciate those that are working hard instead of constantly criticizing them. Fine, I know some of these People are constantly in our faces, but how about constructive criticism as against destructive?
A lot of people are so good at saying: He can’t even act, how did he get that role? She can’t speak good English, I wonder how she became a TV Presenter. She can’t even sing yet everyone is dancing to her music! He sounds so flat, how did he get a job on radio? She can’t even defend herself, yet she calls herself a lawyer. She’s a fashion stylist but her clients constantly look like they ought to be arrested by the fashion police!
You’d hear things like: Gosh this food is so disgusting, I thought they said he was the best chef in town? He’s a big boy in the bank, why does his suit look so cheap? She says she’s an events planner, yet the wedding she coordinated was so rowdy! Everyone keeps making noise about this bar, it’s not even on point! She claims to be a writer yet she “gbagauns” in all her articles. This website/blog is so dry yet u go there everyday.
Most of these people you talk about didn’t have it easy. You may see them in the lime light and assume that their journey was easy but believe me, everyone has a story and if you take out time to hear them, you ‘ll definitely appreciate how far they have come.
It’s time to stop dwelling on what others can or cannot do. Why not focus on what you are good at and love doing instead of getting angry at the fact that someone else is living your dream?
Everyone is blessed with a talent, you just have to search within yourself to find it. Put God first, pray for “good luck” *winks*, work hard, work smart and try to build a brand out of it. In M.I Abaga’s words “My moto is, do more, talk less, never get mad at another man’s success so when People tryna make sure I chop less, I say no be your fault, you’re just jobless”.
When you look into the sky and see so many birds flying together without disturbing one another, you’ll begin to realise that there’s so much space for everyone in every sector. In M.I Abaga’s words again “The Sky is wide enough for all. It’s free sitting”.
Everyone is entitled to their opinion but when you feel the urge to criticize someone (especially when it’s done out of hate/jealousy), always remember the wise words of Rick Warren, “Criticizing the success of others will never make you successful”.
Ariyike Akinbobola is a trained Lawyer turned TV Presenter/Producer at Spice TV, a fashion and lifestyle channel. She studied Law at the University of Lagos and was called to the Nigerian bar in 2006. She practiced Law for a few years before switching to the entertainment industry. She also has a diploma in Tv Presenting from the prestigious London academy of media, film and tv. She’s very passionate about issues affecting Women and Children and is always ready to support charitable organisations of this nature. She also organises a monthly event every first Wednesday of the month called “Best of Both Worlds” networking cocktail party. She recently added “acting” to her C.V by acting in the soon to be released series “Lekki Wives”. She’s married and blessed with Children. Follow her on twitter @LadyAriyike to find out more.