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Toolz’ Thoughts: Beware of Dream Killers! 7 Steps To Fulfilling Your Dreams



Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great. When you are seeking to bring big plans to fruition, it is important with whom you regularly associate. Hang out with friends who are like-minded and who are also designing purpose-filled lives. Similarly, be that kind of a friend for your friends.” – Mark Twain.

I love this quote! I stumbled across it a little while ago when I was looking for inspirational quotes, and it absolutely hit the nail on the head.

Can you remember the last time you were telling a friend or family member or even your partner about a dream, a goal you really wanted to achieve? It was probably something you were quite passionate about and talking about it with someone close to you. It got you in high spirits because you could already SEE IT. You could picture yourself opening the door to your new restaurant, salon, clothing store, etc.

The person you are talking to responds to what you’ve said, and your energy changes. You are not so excited any more… the vision you had of opening the door to your brand new establishment seems to fade and disappear. Your spirit now feels low, and that disappointed feeling seeps in and your self esteem drops. If this sounds familiar, know you are not alone. We all have encounters with Dream Killers.

Dream Killers aren’t necessarily bad people; neither are they haters. A Dream Killer could be that good friend/sister/brother/parent who has never really taken a risk on anything because they are terrified of failure. So naturally when you share your thoughts of starting your own business that would obviously involve taking a risk, they are quick to dissuade you with care. They might say things like ‘that will never work in Nigeria‘, ‘I don’t think you can do it‘, etc.

I personally feel it’s important to seek advice from the right kind of people. I’ve been in the Nigerian entertainment industry for just 3 years, and for the first 18 months the rate at which my dreams were being shut-down was stupendous. I’d have an amazing idea, talk to a few people about this amazing idea and before the end of the day, I’d be so depressed because my idea had been stomped on and mortally crushed. It wasn’t like the people I would talk to didn’t want me to do well, far from it…they just couldn’t see my vision.

After a few more months of dream crushing, I decided that I had had enough. I thought about what I wanted to achieve career-wise, and researched people in and out of the industry that I admired. I had role models in and out of Nigeria that I studied and when I got a chance to meet one or two in Nigeria, I must have tired them with my never-ending questions, but hey when it comes to chasing my dreams I’m like a rottweiler!

In my life I have encountered 2 types of Dream Killers – the accidental Dream Killers who care about you, but will unknowingly discourage you from chasing your dreams, and the deliberate Dream Killers who are basically unhappy in their own (most likely) unsuccessful lives, and really don’t want to see you progress.

I’ve learnt that on the journey to achieving your dreams (and greatness) you need to possess the following tools (excuse the pun):

1) Prayer – Pray, pray and don’t stop praying.

2) Self belief – This is not to be confused with cockiness;  just that belief that you deserve to be happy. The belief that you are worthy of success, and that you deserve to accomplish great things IF you put in the work.

3) Have some amazing passengers – Surround yourself with the right kind of people. The kind of people that believe in you and will be honest with you. They will constantly push you to aim for your best. Do not confuse these people with ‘yes-men’ – in fact BEWARE of people that think every single thing you do is amazing. (I may have to write about the dangers of yes-men later)

4) Be prepared to work hard – Nothing in this world worth having comes easy. Don’t expect to achieve anything worthwhile if you are afraid of hard work. My father taught me that. I have never thought I deserved anything just because… If I wanted a new anything I had to work for it; do overtime to earn the extra money or just wait till I could afford it.

5) Be tenacious – You will fail at certain things; accept that. However, knowing how to pick yourself up, figure out where you went wrong, re-group and try again is an amazing skill to possess. Think of the Richard Bransons and Oprahs, how many times do you think they failed before getting it right? As the late Aaliyah famously sang: If at first you don’t succeed, dust yourself off and try again.

6) Be able to reflect – Take time out to think about and celebrate what you have achieved in your life, and likewise think about where you may have gone wrong or what you could have done better, and make adjustments where necessary.

7) Be happy for the success of others – Honestly this one isn’t always easy. You can choose to be envious of other people’s success or you can learn from their success. You can let their journey inspire you to be more disciplined in your own.

There are probably loads of other steps I could add to this list, but these are the ones that I’m currently doing my best to incorporate into my journey. Please feel free to add any useful ones below, because we’re all here to learn.

Let me end with another amazing quote that inspired me:

‘At first, dreams seem impossible, then improbable, and eventually inevitable’
Christopher Reeve

Best of luck on your journey to achieving your dreams!

Toolz is an award-winning on-air personality who currently presents ‘The Midday Show with Toolz‘ on the Beat 99.9FM. You can find out more about Toolz at

ToolzO is an award-winning on-air personality who currently presents ‘The Midday Show with Toolz’ on the Beat 99.9FM (Lagos), 'Afrobeat News' on Capital Xtra (UK) and Ndani TV’s The Juice on DSTV Africa Magic Entertainment. You can find out more about Toolz by visiting and @ToolzO on Twitter and Instagram.


  1. Maureen

    November 20, 2012 at 1:51 pm

    Great write- up Toolz! Weldone!!!

    • Haddy

      November 20, 2012 at 6:30 pm

      One very important point to stress is the SILENCE method. This is where you have identified all the accidental Dream Killers and all the deliberate Dream Killers that may exist around you, then you have to be silent about your dreams. Someone once elaborated the story of Joseph to me and I caught a new revelation. She said, Joseph was already destined for greatness regardless of however it happened, what ever trials he would have passed through and how ever lenght of time it would have taken him, bible says that all things will always work for good for the believer. So even if his brothers didn’t persecute and sell him, which started all his life’s troubles, it would have taken him a different route to fulfilling his destiny, one way or another there would have been a different account on how he became the prime minister not neccessarily starting by being sold by his brothers to Egypt.

      However, had Joseph learnt to say little by way of not telling his brothers the dream that he had, which ignited their envy and jelousy to start fighing him and his destinty, He probably may not have experienced all the pain he passed through in the process of fulfiling his destiny. May be there could have been another biblical account of how he became the prime minister in Egypt with lesser persecution.
      In this life some people can experience delays in the fulfilment of their destiny because of the lack of tact. Learn to say little, by way of not giving out too much information about your personal dreams, revelations and sucess plan. For me, except I know that someone is or will play an indispensible positive role or will be directly required for assistance towards helping me achieve my dream, and I’m convinced that the person will agree to be of help, then will I share my dreams. If not I will not say word. And even if I say a word to that person who will help, I will not give the entire detail. And most times, I prefer sharing it with strangers than to family members. I will only tell the person with minimal detail that I feel he/she requires to hear to assist me. Your dream is like an egg. Guard it with tact, wisdom and carefulness

    • Folashade Thomas

      November 20, 2012 at 9:25 pm

      Hi Haddy.
      I totally agree with you. You have divine wisdom from God. May you remain wise and get wiser than your enemies. I am so blessed by our words and i will take your advise to account.

    • Jo

      November 21, 2012 at 3:04 am

      Great comment Haddy! Until recently, I always thought I had to share everything with my close ones. Oh..but no f*cking more. I have learnt to keep most of my dreams to myself while I’m striving to achieve them. I do my research and I mostly speak to people who I don’t really know but are influential and experienced in the field of business I am going into. And you are right. Do not reveal much. Your ideas are still young and they may get stolen. You do not want that to happen.
      Nice one Haddy.

  2. Wow!

    November 20, 2012 at 1:54 pm

    Gotta luv Toolz. Girl do your thing and forget the haters.

  3. Mz Socially Awkward...

    November 20, 2012 at 1:57 pm

    Toolz, did you secretly listen to the sermon on my church last Sunday? Because you are spot on, luv.

    That last bit of advice about being happy for others… I think it’s the hardest for us sometimes, especially when we see our dreams not being fulfiled but everyone else looks like they’re making it. But it’s the same God at work, if He does it for one, better hold unto your faith because you’ve just seen Him in action and your own achievement won’t be far behind.

    • Lizzie

      November 20, 2012 at 4:08 pm

      hotr by any chance? Pastor Ifeanyi killed that sermon…

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      November 20, 2012 at 10:13 pm

      Sorry, meant to say “in my church”.

      @Lizzie, nope, I go to FOL in Abz. However, the Spirit indeed is at work and must be trynna tell us all something if the same message was being shared in different places on the same day. 😉 Timely words for the end of the year when some people might be giving up on all the drama they had at the start of 2012.

  4. adenike

    November 20, 2012 at 2:00 pm

    Amazing read and right on point! Well done.

  5. Precious

    November 20, 2012 at 2:16 pm

    Very Inspiring!!

  6. chi chi

    November 20, 2012 at 2:24 pm

  7. tflmagazine

    November 20, 2012 at 2:25 pm

    Lovely comment ToolZ….. Really inspiring & motivating… U shud reconsider being a motivational speaker

  8. dandy

    November 20, 2012 at 2:26 pm

    Reviewing ways and history of people that have either failed or succeeded in similar dream as a learning point can influence one’s mindset. Good job Toolz.

  9. lyndah

    November 20, 2012 at 2:26 pm

    tx toolz, i strongly believe in all that u have said.

  10. Eugenia

    November 20, 2012 at 2:28 pm

    hmmmmm! inspiring.

  11. Sadiq Daniel

    November 20, 2012 at 3:02 pm

    Thank you for sharing. One thing I think should be included is PERSISTENCE. It is the only effective tool you have to protect yourself from the blades of Dream killers. Dreaming is like Version 1.0 of a software and You also need ACTION if u want to upgrade to a newer and better version (thus making your dream a reality). Check out this article on how to fulfill your dreams in life by managing yourself in time at Well done TOOLZ.

  12. annie

    November 20, 2012 at 3:07 pm

    nice one

  13. Sunash

    November 20, 2012 at 3:10 pm

    Beautiful writeup…………..insightful.

  14. Keem

    November 20, 2012 at 3:19 pm

    Very inspiring. Love the bit on ‘accidental dream killers’. I had them all around me at a point. They care so much about you and just want one in that easy, comfortable zone. I made them to see my vision and believe in me. Wasn’t easy at all. If you have a talent, be it a song, a book, an
    article, a blog, you are virtually imploding until you let it out anyway. Failure should never
    dissuade. I believe the sky is the beginning for anyone with self believe, determination, tenacity, and of course prayers aplenty. Well done Toolz for this great write up.

  15. Sbaby

    November 20, 2012 at 3:21 pm

    I am insipired, Nigeria is filled with dream killers and destiny delayers but God pass them all

  16. @ayoprytz

    November 20, 2012 at 3:22 pm

    Well said Toolz.

  17. @ellyote

    November 20, 2012 at 3:22 pm

    It’s nice to know that God puts Ideas like this in people’s minds so that it can inspire people when they are feeling down or depressed. EPIC writing(if only we were entitled to Pulitzer)

  18. paul

    November 20, 2012 at 3:28 pm

    Am not hating on her but am kinda suprise that TOOLz could come up with something this good? A lot of women in Nigeria or Africa see there self as inferior due to our society perception on women.they are been describe as too WEAK..been a Woman does not make u less human.women here do all kind of job including driving big BRT BUSES..LOL….more grease to her elbow and i hope to work with her some sef dey come nija soon america don tire me …lol

    • Annie

      November 20, 2012 at 6:24 pm

      Could you be any more patronising?

    • Uche

      November 20, 2012 at 9:19 pm

      The opening question was a bit patronizing but I appreciate the rest of your comments. Women ROCK. Me sef I don tire for this place oh. Lol

    • Miss T

      November 20, 2012 at 11:00 pm

      Paul,I feel sad for you How can you say such a thing about an individual.From your comment,it sounds like you are one of hose ones who think that way about women. You would be suprised how many Naija women ‘GET BRAIN PASS MEN’ Instead of applauding her or refraining from posting anything you come with the thought that you are suprised that she could come up with something like this.Haba………. I fment think that way and you are not hating as you claim,why does your comment not reflect it?

    • pretty

      December 13, 2012 at 12:28 pm

      Naija don change,who tell you so. Women even do better than men in naija

  19. Abana

    November 20, 2012 at 3:28 pm

    Toolz God bless you! I need to print this and put it up on my wall. Running to buy glue now.

  20. kay

    November 20, 2012 at 3:40 pm

    good read!!!!!

  21. Idak

    November 20, 2012 at 3:45 pm

    I’ve learnt that on the journey to achieving your dreams (and greatness) you need to possess the following tools (excuse the pun):
    8) Have a bosom to flaunt in public and a hip to detract from the presence or absence of any genuine talent.

    • ...just saying

      November 20, 2012 at 7:40 pm

      Bellanaija, where is the like button when I need it tthe most 🙂

    • Funmi

      November 20, 2012 at 9:15 pm

      LOL… Haba… The girl is a good presenter though… DEFINITELY better than Eku in terms of charisma and being personable on screen and in interviews. The “tools” are only a bonus.

    • hmm

      November 20, 2012 at 9:16 pm

      Lool..I like toolz but gotta say you made me LOL….

  22. cathy

    November 20, 2012 at 4:36 pm

    you are very right babe

  23. Purpleicious Babe

    November 20, 2012 at 4:41 pm

    WORD…..well composed and put together…

    I will add look and aim to inspire yourself and others too. Always remain positive and encouraging towards others.

    Some of us when we get to the top, we forget where we started from and how difficult it was for us…. never despise humble beginnings.

    Criticism: able to filter the ones that can be used to better one self and letting go of the ones that are full of hate, evil and meanness.

    Manage expectations: making room for people that will fall and likely to fail at some point with their promises.

    Emotions: ability to control and conceal certain frustrations around some people in certain places.

    Yh i will stop now before I write a full blown post (as usual). xxx

  24. Bella

    November 20, 2012 at 4:48 pm

    True Words. Thanks for sharing Toolz

  25. Dee Nina

    November 20, 2012 at 4:55 pm

    This is some awesome advice. Thanks for sharing, Toolz!

  26. beez

    November 20, 2012 at 4:58 pm

    I remember one saturday when I told my Dad I wanted to start ACCA, my elder brother jumped in and started telling my dad how difficult and expensive the Exam is, how he knows of people who are more brilliant than I am and still had difficulties passing ICAN let alone ACCA. He said it was gonna be a waste of money because I might end up abandoning it half way.
    I didn’t let that deter me. Though its not easy exam, I had my days of tears and all that but am proud today to say I am a chartered accountant of international recognition.

    • Uche

      November 20, 2012 at 9:21 pm

      Inspiring! Sitting for the CPA (American equivalent) soon so this made me feel better.

  27. lisa

    November 20, 2012 at 5:32 pm

    I was truly blessed by this :))

  28. Deeps

    November 20, 2012 at 5:59 pm

    In my own little experience, even your nearest and dearest can be dream-killers. My mother accused me of ‘living big’ while i was in College in the UK. It affected me and pushed me back in my shell. Thankfully, i’m coming back out now. Yet another good write-up from our Toolz

  29. Mayree

    November 20, 2012 at 6:44 pm

    Amazing write-up toolz,was really inspired after reading this…thumbs up

  30. ola

    November 20, 2012 at 6:51 pm

  31. ojay

    November 20, 2012 at 7:02 pm

    There you go Toolz! On point.

  32. Greycee

    November 20, 2012 at 7:27 pm

    Toolz your write up is inspiring,I read I† and think of my situation,definately am gonna get my dreams achieved by God’s grace…..and I just added this on my bookmark so I can go back †o I† anytime and get motivated..God bless Ʋ TOOLZ

  33. iamfascinating

    November 20, 2012 at 7:34 pm

    soo true! never listen if you’re sure.try and try and try!make your own mistakes.

  34. adannem

    November 20, 2012 at 8:23 pm

    @haddy you spoke my mind. i my hubby to keep certain things to himself buh he neva listens, as for me i dnt believe in sharing my dreams with anyone(my friends find it weird dnt care as long as am moving forward) i pray for divine helpers. the bible says the heart is wicked n treacherous who can no it. my advice be tackful and God will lead you to your dreams

  35. Bambino

    November 20, 2012 at 9:36 pm

    @haddy….thanks jare God bless you plenty.this is what people have failed to realize o.people will hate you for keeping mum has been a victim of that and I learnt so much from that.i know my friends,they understand that and we understand each other.Also people should expose themselves less on Facebook etc.thanks to u toolz!

  36. T.S.

    November 20, 2012 at 10:37 pm

    Great write-up from Toolz! This is very inspiring. I just finished a life long dream of completing my book. I did not want to be discouraged so I held on to that dream so dearly that only a very few close friends knew what I was doing. I ended up writing 2 books over the summer (talk about explosion)! The books are coming out this December and I’m so excited that I was able to complete them.

    • Mandies

      November 21, 2012 at 12:59 pm


  37. Na-U-biko

    November 21, 2012 at 4:09 am

    Set realistic goals and take it one step at a time.

  38. Tessa

    November 21, 2012 at 1:48 pm

    Surround yourself with successful people who can show you how to chart your course to greatness.
    Do away with the negative people.

  39. Bibi

    November 21, 2012 at 2:54 pm

    Great write up, I entirely agree with you. Thumbs up toolz.

  40. Dotsman

    November 22, 2012 at 10:39 am

    I agree with toolz, haddy also has some points there. I also think some times the dream killers are within. Our own selves; feelings of “I can’t do this, will this person be willing to assist, will this be successful”. I have learnt that no matter how many times one fails, one should continue to try, then pray, pray and pray.

  41. larakingz...

    November 22, 2012 at 1:34 pm

    wow nice article Tolu insightful and Hardy wow that was an eyeopener and a fact. i once read about Adenuga and how his mum never wanted him to enter the Oil industry yet he stood his grounds and everyone smiled at the end. Really it takes wisdom to know whom to share your vision with. I am of the opinion that you talk. If I want to do something, I generally, ask questions and listen, sift the SENSE out of NONSENSE but that which my mind wants to do I would do it so far am convinced. And one thing I don’t neglect is praying and ‘gisting’ with God.

  42. uchenna

    November 22, 2012 at 8:32 pm

    Love the heart and spirit of this article! Here’s my input, Believe God and Trust Him with your dreams, everythingelse can literally go to hell and burn to ashes.

  43. dazzle

    December 2, 2012 at 8:38 pm

    Wow Wow Wow…… Luv it Luv it Luv it.
    Im impressed. Real words of wisdom. Thanks

  44. khadijat

    December 12, 2013 at 4:46 am

    Nice 1 cuming frm a rear beauty,i would love 2 meet u some day cuz ur words of wisdom has always fascinated nd inspire me……Permit me to support ur words with a quote “The best way 2 arrive ur destination is never 2 tell any1 where u are headed”

  45. ibe Tochukwu

    May 22, 2016 at 1:25 pm

    Great tips…prayer is the first tools and key you need in fulfilling your life dream..demotivators will come….
    Change your mindset, change your life..same applies to your friends…Thanks

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