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Fola Daniel Adelesi: Throwing Opportunities Away

Fola Daniel Adelesi



When a man or woman is myopic, one of the things that happen to such people is that they end up throwing opportunities away. Many people are looking for opportunities today but are unconsciously losing the ones they have because of the limitations in their minds. Are you looking for opportunities today? Have you checked the self imposed limitations that you have which may be working against those opportunities?

I once shared the story of a grandma who was cutting her fish in a certain way because of the size of her frying pan. Her children followed suit not knowing why she did what she did. I am not sure if it is the same story told in another way but there was another fish related story. A young man would go to the stream to catch fish. Each time he caught a fish he would measure them and if they were longer than a given length he would throw them back into the water. When he caught a small one or the ones that were the exact length he was working with he would keep that one. A man who stood by and was watching what he did eventually approached him and asked why he threw the bigger ones back into the water.

His answer amused the man. He had been throwing the longer fishes back into the water because the ruler he had with him was the size of the frying pan or his pot. What he then decided to do was that any fish that was bigger than his pot would be thrown back into the water but he kept the ones that could fit. The boy did not see the need to keep the big fish because any longer fish would not fit into the frying pan. He did not obviously think about how he could cut and preserve big fish until they were needed.

That boy had a good problem which could have brought him more opportunities. He didn’t see it that way. As far as he was concerned it was a problem and he did not want it. If he had though about other things to do rather than throwing the fish away, he probably would have started selling fish to those other people who had bigger pots or save them the time of trying to fish on their own and be paid. He could also have started a preservative business for everyone. You could go to him with the fish you caught and have them preserved until they were needed. That way you would reduce how much time you have to go back and fish as well.

Many of us are like that young boy in some ways. We throw away some opportunities deliberately because we do not understand how we can work with them. Some people are intimidated by the opportunities they are seeing. Once the opportunities intimidate them, they just let it go.

You have to start thinking differently. You must allow your mind operate in another way. And the first thing to think about is the fact that the opportunities you are seeing are not opportunities for you alone. You get some opportunities so that you can make an impact in the lives of other people.

What that tells you is that a lot of people who throw opportunities away because they are only thinking about themselves. I should say that there are many opportunities you will come across, but they will not be tailored for you alone. Nevertheless, you still have to take them, work with them and allow other benefit from them.

You should stop throwing opportunities right now because you are intimidated by them or you just don’t know how to manage them. When you manage the first one, another one comes and when you do that other one, you will soon learn to live with big opportunities and maximize them. Take those opportunities and get help, if you need help, to use them.

Photo Credit:
Fola Daniel Adelesi is a professional public speaker who also trains other speakers, an author, business consultant and highly skilled master of ceremony with excellent poise and diction. He was on the Debaters TV reality show season 1, presented ‘You Can’ on Radio Continental in 2011, did motivational segments on Galaxy TV from Dec 2008 to August 2009 and has authored 3 books including Writing Business Proposals.

Fola Daniel Adelesi is a professional public speaker who also trains other speakers. He's an highly engaging training facilitator and he holds his large audience spell bound when speaking at gatherings. He's an author, business consultant and highly skilled master of ceremony with excellent poise and diction. He was on the Debaters TV reality show season 1, he presented 'You Can' on Radio Continental in 2011 and he did motivational segments on Galaxy TV from Dec 2008 to August 2009. Fola Daniel has authored 3 books including Writing Business Proposals. He currently talks about Social Media on - An ICT Show on Lagos Television. Fola Daniel trained as a communications professional, works as a business consultant and was also trained at Lagos Business School in collaboration with Google as a Digital Business Manager.


  1. corolla

    January 8, 2014 at 2:30 pm

    Well said.Think outside the box!Turn obstacles into opportunties.You may fail,but you will learn some life lessons!

  2. liz

    January 8, 2014 at 2:34 pm

    Beautiful piece for the year.

  3. Ohboy

    January 8, 2014 at 2:59 pm

    Fola O!
    keep up the good work. I remember you from the Nigmun conference we attended in abuja some years back.

    • Fola Daniel Adelesi

      January 9, 2014 at 6:08 pm

      Thanks man. It’s good to know you still remember me from way back!

    • Japonp

      October 11, 2014 at 10:38 pm

      Inspiring article Fola. I would really appreciate if you have information on NIGMUN for 2015 or know of anyone that I can contact?

  4. jcsgrl

    January 8, 2014 at 3:25 pm

    BN please can you make a NY’s resolution to edit every article sent to you before posting? I thank you in advance. While I admire the writer’s breath of experience in public speaking and mentoring others, his/her writing could be improved.

    • Fola Daniel Adelesi

      January 9, 2014 at 6:10 pm

      Thanks for your feedback. I admit I could have made a few corrections. Thanks and I will look out for that in subsequent posts.

  5. Laury

    January 8, 2014 at 3:34 pm

    Nice one….i almost threw away a career opportunity because of silly sentiments such as..”The island is too far”, “I’ll miss my colleagues and friends”, “The staff in the new firm don’t look tush”. neverthelss I took the opportunity because i was convinced in my spirit that it was the right thing to do and so far so good i’m loving every minute of it, much as its a smaller place compared to where im coming from but there are a small perks that comes with the role . Please NEVER forget to seek God’s voice when making decisions. To crown it all,I have an old colleague ,from way back whom i join 80% of the journey and now I spend only 1/3rd of the amount i was spending previously as Transport fare.

  6. TALK

    January 8, 2014 at 3:43 pm

    Very true, same goes in all areas of life.typical example boy meets girl, they like each other but girl feels intimidated or superior, she feels inferior to guy and thinks who am i to believe he truly loves and cares for me so she bolts. girl feels superior and thinks guy cant match up to her standard or cant wait for him to achieve so she goes looking for a made or more successful guy, in the end regrets are abound in her goes both ways it could be the guy or girl.moral of story dont be limited in your thoughts and ways.God can and will do exceedingly abundantly all we may ask for.The ingredient? FAITH, TRUST and BELIEF in GOD

  7. Dr. N

    January 8, 2014 at 4:22 pm

    Yeah! Eat that frog!

  8. bNigerian

    January 8, 2014 at 6:37 pm

    Thank you!

  9. Suki

    January 8, 2014 at 9:02 pm

    Hmmmm…true talk. Am making a change today.

  10. Abiola

    January 8, 2014 at 9:51 pm

    Well said. I have needy pple ard me so I rarely misuse opportunities. I thank God for that

  11. Firstlaydeee

    January 8, 2014 at 11:05 pm

    Very inspiring.

  12. uju

    January 9, 2014 at 1:53 pm


  13. labelle

    January 13, 2014 at 4:36 pm

    very inspiring…and well said @TALK- i had this opportunity to date someone that i really really liked last year but i bolted and never gave it a chance because our backgrounds and everything about our lives were entirely different, so basically i felt very intimidated. but now i know better, not living in regret but i’ll certainly do better next time. #NOFEARNEWYEAR

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