Lesson 1: Become purpose driven

One of the most irking realities of the twenty-first century is that the ideas of gender equality, monogamy, independent women and working partners have really turned men into beings that are more or less an incomplete mutation of the masculine into feminine. So men now live a life of complacency. That original responsibility of providing for and protecting the pack has been taken away from our shoulders and so we have deteriorated into beings of mediocrity. And yet, we still want the best things of life in our mediocrity.

Boom! Twelve years ago, a man entered- or rather re-entered- the Nigerian public scene with a desire that many had and that desire is- to become the next president of Nigeria. At that moment, there were at least sixteen other contestants for that position and this man was from all indications the least eligible of them all. Why, because he has had a past of human right abuse, dictatorship, untried executions and many other hideous crimes. At the moment, he was the least financially capable of all the candidates and as per the future, he was the second oldest. So, from a superficial look of things, he was already facing condemnations from his past, his present and his future. Yet, after twelve years and several tries, this man-General Mohammad Buhari- emerged as the first Nigerian president whose election was most celebrated, even by the international community.

What happened to the other most eligible candidates, how did this man who was at the bottom of the ‘possibility chart’ made it to the top and even
defeated the incumbent government? This and other factors surrounding his transformation from the least eligible to the most desired are going to be the focus of this series of articles.

Posing this question to Mr. Harry Ado, a political analyst and a member of the ‘Change is Possible’ campaign in Gombe State, his reply was intriguingly short: “Buhari was driven by a purpose” he said. “He did not just want to become the president of the country because he had something to prove or because he wanted to gain fame and power to himself but because he saw a problem and he wanted to address the problem. This purpose, speaks volumes”.

A desire is defined by the dictionary as a strong feeling of want for something while purpose is defined as the reason behind your want for something. From the above distinguishing definitions we can understand the power of a purpose. A desire is a feeling and we all know that feelings change. Because some of the candidates of the presidential race of 2003 only desired the presidency, their feelings changed along the line. But General Mohammadu Buhari had a purpose for wanting the presidency. He made that purpose clear to himself and that clarity helped him communicate that purpose to others –and to do so clearly.

He once hinted about the purpose in an interview where he said “…all the indices of good government have deteriorated: insecurity, unemployment, power failures, educational standards, health standards, the justice system etc. Wherever you turn, governance has taken a turn for the worse. Above all, corruption has taken a life of its own eating into every institution and every sector…and we want to fix this”. He was not for the presidency parse but for the opportunities it will give him to achieve his purpose and this led to his ultimate victory in 2015.

Now if you want to win in life, may be in your finances or your relationships or in your academics, you have to find a purpose. Have you noticed the way your family is struggling to make ends meet and you feel it is your purpose to change that? Do you realize that the only way to change your condition is by making a first class degree in Mathematics? Do you feel that you can only make a happy home sometime in the future by committing to building meaningful relationships today? Find a purpose and then find an avenue to achieve that purpose and commit yourself to it-in essence become driven by this purpose- until your purpose is achieved.

This is how to win in life!


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