"Every day before 8:00am CST, someone, somewhere is doing what I said could not be done; with less time, money, and resources than I thought it would require; in a manner far better than I believed it could be accomplished. And at 9:00am, I’m still making excuses” “– Abi Adegboye
On New Year’s Day, I thought, ‘what’s the best way to make my resolutions stick in 2016 better than in previous years?’ Two options immediately came to mind – 1. Don’t make any resolutions; and 2. Make one that can be quickly accomplished and thereby score cheap points. I chose neither option. Instead, I opted to find out what jeopardized former resolutions and to design ways to overcome them this year. This is what I uncovered and the game plan going forward:
- Get over excuses – as evident in my quote, everything I thought was impossible, is being done by someone else, effortlessly and superbly. I remember wanting to create a children’s cartoon for the Nigerian market. For years, I thought and talked about it; even tried some sketches but could not wrap my head around how to go about it. Then Adamu Waziri did it with the Bino and Fino cartoon. The first time I saw the cartoon, I posted it on my FB page – AfriLeads, LLC and tagged the friend who’d emphatically agreed with me that it could not be done! Same thing with my African doll idea. Kudos to Taofick Okoya for the execution of that dream – Queens of Africa dolls rock!
- Create a personal plan – I remember trying the South Beach diet. I’d bought the book on the recommendation of a friend who’d lost double-digit weight on its guidelines. Eagerly, I jumped on the bandwagon making spinach and ricotta cups and other recipes I would normally not consider edible. By Day 3, I was drained of energy and spirit. What can I say, “I don’t handle hardship well” ;) Needless to say, I fell off that bandwagon and many others afterwards until I realized that the fundamental requirement for weight loss is EAT LESS, EXERCISE MORE, period. So, I’ve created a plan that would work for me – eat smaller portions of the foods I love adding as much fiber as I can and dance for exercise. Would my plan produce dramatic results? Unlikely, however, I am more likely to stick with it and it would bring about lasting results.
- Prepare to slug it out for a while – when Owanbe: Yoruba Celebrations of Life was first published, I declared it was my million-dollar seller. I confessed and believed feverishly but after six months of lackluster sales, I gave up. Now, I understand, “an overnight success is a closet slug.” To wit, the person, who appears to have ‘struck oil just like that,’ has been working on the process for years, striking out yet pressing forward. Terry McMillan is my hero on this – she wrote 3 novels that generated mediocre sales before she hit the jackpot with Waiting to Exhale. So I plan to invest the time, effort, and resources diligently for a while before expecting outstanding rewards.
This year, I’ll keep it simple – do one thing each day to achieve my personal goals. Make a plan that works for me and stick with my plans for the year regardless of whether I see the results or not. Come along with me.