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Your Better Self with Akanna: My Top 10 Comments of 2017



Akanna Okeke2017 was the year I started responding to comments on my articles.  Initially, when I started writing on BellaNaija, I did not respond to comments. I did not want to.  But I began to see that there were lots of sensible comments and I thought it was important to validate such with my response, so that they may keep them coming, keep thinking right, and know that I appreciate them.

I learnt quite a lot from my readers.  I’ve always kept in mind that I’m not only here to teach, but also to learn from others.

As we begin a new year, I want to celebrate my readers by highlighting 10 Comments from different articles of mine that made me smile, nod and even change my mind on some issues.

So, here are my top 10 comments for the year 2017.  Enjoy, and see what I mean!



Iyanjebu on When Access Trumps Ownership

I love it when I write a parable, and my readers are able to decode it completely.  This was one example:

Thank you for such a lovely article. Reading this brought a smile to my face.

Correct me if I am wrong but the article has to do with:
1. The creation of mankind (the prince) by God (the King)
2. The dominion of earth mandate given to man by God (the separate territory for the prince to rule over)
3. Earthy provision made available by heaven (The father’s kingdom taking care of most things in the new territory)
4. The rebellion of mankind (The young prince not keen on sharing authority with his father…..And refusing to pay his tithes!)
5. The redemption of mankind (envoys coming to deliver the new territory after all went awry)

And my response to this comment was:

@iyanjebu, BINGO! BINGO!! Just BINGO!!! Now get out of my head Lol!



Chrisyinks on A Poem That Changed My Life –Part 2

I love the reader’s takeaway here. Very correct interpretation and I see a personal application underway:

Insightful as always. Learning to understand the difference between what’s within our control and what can only be influenced can mark the journey to a more fulfilling life.



Evah on The Struggle Makes the Butterfly

Evah gave a perfect summary of the entire article with this comment, with stuff I didn’t even think of while writing.  They took it deeper with only a few words:

its not so much about the destination as it is about the process,the journey of getting there…the things we learn,endure along the way will help us stay and thrive at the destination…the struggle does help..great article man.



Funmilola on Three Things You Are Responsible For in Life

I like this contribution to the list that Funmilola made. It’s a truth that’s very hard for most humans to swallow:

#5. Accepting you’re wrong 100% and not blaming others for your actions…
It irritates me when I hear “I’m sorry but you made me…..”
We are humans, we have the ability to think before we talk/act, we have the capacity to change and become better each passing day.
No one, nobody is capable of making me degrade my neighbor without my permission.
Thank you Akanna for a good read and lessons to learn as usual.



Anne on 5 Things You Need But Don’t Want

Now, this one just knocked it out of the park with a mini-article.  I had many takeaways, I loved it:

Nice piece. Correction cannot be avoided in life unless you want to stay small. I did not like being corrected but God gave me wisdom.

How will you move on and become a better person if you refuse correction, do you want those who truly love you to allow you to degenerate.They believe in you and expect that you have the potential to do better. It is simply pride not to want to be corrected.

If you want to be perfect you will be corrected and pruned. Beware of pride. However, we can’t always control the way the correction comes, we may need to put up with some.

You may be able to control the way your spouse,friends and cousins correct you but may not have control over the way a person who is determined to make you a Billionaire corrects you.   In short, if you are wrong, your conscience judges you and that will help severe negative correction from a positive one.

Secondly, the sad reality is this; not everyone is normal in this world and that is not intended to be an insult. If you open your mouth to tell some people you don’t like the way they treat you, it may lead to something you never expected, an extreme case could be loss of life.

Therefore look before you leap. If you cannot confront alone or confront through authority, maybe you should not be involved with such a person at all.

Finally, it is not spiritually safe to confront everyone who hurts you. This generation may not be able to relate with that but what you don’t know can hurt you. Listen to God in your heart, sometimes wisdom demands that you overlook an offence, other times, God wants you to confront. Check your heart.

Imagine you were going through tough times, about to give up, and you came across this comment? Very challenging, very inspiring, very comforting; all at the same time:

No one should feel shame or inadequate for trying different ideas until they find their fit and excel in their chosen path.

Someone once made me feel bad for trying on a new venture. He was like, why don’t you stick to doing ” Let’s call it plan C”. But he didn’t know i had put in my all to make that plan work and it didn’t. Should I die there or move on to plan D?!

I will advice people never to give up, no matter how hopeless things seem, and don’t stop praying to God. You have heard it a million times, but prayers work. The Bible says he makes all things beautiful in his time.

Thanks Akanna for this.



Baby gurl on 3 Kinds of Friends

I love it when readers are way ahead of me, already applying principles in their lives and all my article does is just serve as confirmation that they’re on the right track. And this depicts that. You might want to read Bubble’s comment too:

It’s Akanna again! Fortunately I keep no Comrades. Have no strength to deal with those and have cut them off a long time ago. The constituents are where they need to be. I call them my acquaintances LOL. Thank you Akanna. Yet another bookmark. Also, Bubbles, your comment is so apt!



Truth on Men with Six-Pack Abs

This comment particularly humbled me.  The whole essence of my column is to help people become better versions of themselves.  I was so blessed to learn that it was indeed working (at least for someone):

Akanna, I wish BN would allow us to use emoticons and GIF, so you can understand the joy I feel everytime I see your article, how you bring life and deep thinking from subjects otherwise deemed mundane. How I can so imagine having intellectual conversations with you, I swear you do bring out the best in me and subconsciously contribute to shaping me to be a better woman. P.S your pops sure sound like a great and wise man, well like they say the Apple does not fall far from the tree. #Well done#



Olivia on Is It Wrong To Be Richer Than Everyone Else?

This was very informative, well thought-out and indeed practical.  The third paragraph is an eye-opening example that I’ll start using with those who feel that rich people should ‘share’ their money with the rest of the world:

I believe balance is key in everything. I do not agree with taking up to 50% in taxes on anything, inheritance or income wise. It’s just not fair. With the many ways, the government has their hands in our pockets, 50% is way too much.

If I were in government, I would charge say 12-20% tax payable to the government, and mandate another 10% to go towards pre-approved NGO’s or charities in the country where the inheritance is being transferred. I’ll then offer 40% of the mandated 10% in tax credits on future taxes payable by the inheriting individual or the estate.

You really don’t owe anyone apologies for being rich. Your friends sound a little sad. Let’s give them a winning lotto ticket of $60M and let’s see how happy they are when the government says it’s taking 50%. That’s on money they didn’t even work for, talk less of money they did work for.

That said, folks living in the western world need to get educated about sheltering wealth during their working years and proper estate planning so their children aren’t left with all this stress when they go. Especially those that are working professionals and those in the middle class.

There are plans now where you can pretty much setup your estate for future offspring such that they never have to borrow from banks ever. Your estate would be setup as the gift that keeps on giving only to direct descendants.

Anyways, like i said, you don’t have to apologize for being richer than everyone else. It is what it is. ?



MyTwoKobo on When She Earns More

And…finally, number one!

I most especially liked this comment.  The article was a highly controversial one, and in the midst of all the rage, the reader was able to make a clear-headed comment in quite a respectful way.  The comment also opened up an avenue for me to further explain myself and what I currently believe.  It was refreshing both to read and respond to:

I have seen some of your other articles and I thought that you were smart and a great writer. However, sexist practices need to die asap before this nation will able to improve socially and economically. I really think our backwards mentality is holding us back. You will notice that a lot of the most developed countries in the world treat their women well and do not oppress them.
Some of the comments here are truly meaningful and I hope that you do not brush them aside as “haters” but open your mind to growth.
A man’s feeling of masculinity should not be tied to the oppression and subjugation of women. Men need to grow a pair and find fulfilment in things other than the oppression of women.
How about you write an article for men on how not to let their egos block common reasoning and destroy their homes?

And here was my response:

Hey, Thanks for your valuable Two Kobo ?

Thanks for the complement and I’m glad that you found my other articles valuable.

I agree that sexist practices should totally die. And we definitely need to move forward as a nation.

I also believe that men and women are equal in value however, complementary in roles.
When they both come together in any kind of relationship-be it working, dating, marriage, etc, it is important to recognize the differences between them and use each others’ strengths to their collective advantage; certainly not to oppress the other with those strengths (and this goes both ways).

I know that both genders have abused their unique abilities to oppress the other, most especially the men. But this does not mean that we should all of a sudden begin to play the same roles as though we were not different. That is an extreme reaction. Most developed civilizations were formed with this as a value system, where chivalry was the order of the day – men could hold the door open for women without fear of being reprimanded for thinking that she was too weak to open the door by herself. Now all that is being lost and we are seeing these civilizations deteriorate.

It’s just the result of an extreme reaction to a very important problem. A problem we can solve by understanding true masculinity and femininity and how to bring them together successfully.

Here’s a video I recommend you watch. Leo Gura does a great job of explaining those differences (mind his language and his example a the end of the video though, lol!).

Also, I have written that article about men that you were talking about here [more recently: here and here]. I also intend to write more as I learn and experience more.

I’m sure there are valuable comments up there. And I appreciate them. I also don’t think that I have accomplished anything of significance yet, to have any haters lol!

Thanks for writing in. I loved reading your comment. It was quite refreshing!


Hope you enjoyed reading these comments and learnt a lot from them just like I did.  This year, 2018, I encourage you to read more, study more and engage in more personal development.  Then, come on here and bless me with your well thought-out comments.

Wishing you a Happy New Year!!



  1. Ayo

    January 2, 2018 at 10:38 am

    Happy New Year Akanna,
    Thank you for your thought-provoking articles.
    Though, I didn’t read all of them, yet I learnt some life-changing principles from the few I took time to read, and I look forward to reading more positive content from you this year.
    Well done

    • Akanna Okeke

      January 2, 2018 at 2:46 pm

      Hey Ayo!

      Happy New Year to you too! I’m so glad that you learnt some life-changing principles from some of my articles. It is hard to know this because not everyone comments; but refreshing when some do!

      Thanks for your comments! And, sure, I hope that my articles this year would be even more thought-provoking!

  2. Baby gurl

    January 2, 2018 at 12:01 pm

    My comment made it yay!!! Thank you Akanna for making my 2017. I read every single one of your articles, at least every article from around Feb/March. All thought provoking and extremely relevant articles.

    • Akanna Okeke

      January 2, 2018 at 2:51 pm

      Yes your comment did!! I enjoyed everyone of them and chose this one for its practicality and simple interpretation of the whole article. I think readers learn form your comments as much as they do from my articles!

      I’m very humbled to learn that your read all of my articles since Feb 2017! Thanks so much for that! I hope I was able to consistently deliver value, just like I hope and plan to do this year!!

      Have a wonderful 2018!! 🙂

  3. Olivia

    January 2, 2018 at 6:05 pm

    Awww, thanks for the comment feature! Feeling like a celebrity rai nah (Lasisi voice). Lol.
    So looking forward to your 2018 articles! Happy New Year!! 🙂

    • Akanna Okeke

      January 3, 2018 at 1:31 am

      You’re welcome, Olivia!
      You are a celebrity!! Lol! I’m also looking forward to more of your comments this year 😉

      Have a wonderful 2018!!

  4. Funmilola

    January 2, 2018 at 6:57 pm

    Awww, I’m blushing and my head is swelling like ijebu Garri.
    Akanna is a wise writer and I look forward to more articles this year…..more inspiration I wish for you.
    happy new year!

    • Akanna Okeke

      January 3, 2018 at 1:33 am

      Funmi! Lol @ ijebu garri. Yes, let your head swell! You deserve it. You made meaningful contributions last year, which I’m sure were of immense benefit to others as they were to me!
      Looking forward to more inspiring comments from you this year! 🙂

      Happy new year to you too!

  5. Netizen

    January 3, 2018 at 1:40 pm

    Now I remember why I stopped following your articles lol.

    • Akanna Okeke

      January 3, 2018 at 4:11 pm

      Lol! And why was that, Netizen?

  6. Engoz

    January 4, 2018 at 12:24 pm

    I had a not so flattering argument for your chivalry comments, but it’s the new year- trying to be a good girl for a while. I wonder how long it will last because a Toke Makinwa thread on bad service at a restaurant is about to make me to go a 100. Let me see if I’ll last till the end of today.

    Happy new year. I look forward to attacking your views on BN.??? no hard feeling though, keep writing.

    • Akanna Okeke

      January 5, 2018 at 2:50 am

      Lol!!! Well, I’m sure glad I dodged that bullet!

      Have a wonderful 2018, Engoz!

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