How Most Nigerians Waste About 6 Months Yearly Doing Little Or Nothing, by Philip Obin
Posted On Apr 3, 2018
Think about this…
There are 52 Sundays and 52 Wednesdays in the year 2018. 52 days is about 2 months. 52 x 2 = 104 days and almost 4 months.
2-4 months is enough time to learn one or more of the following:
1. Web Design and development
4. Graphics design
5. Digital marketing
7. Photo and video editing
10. Public speaking
11. Basic Car Maintenance
12. A foreign language
And the list continues…
However, in my Nigeria, most people spend these 2-4 months at worship places or churches. Some worship on Sundays and Wednesdays, while others do Sunday, Wednesday, Friday plus other early morning and evening programs, all in search of miracles or an attempt to ‘please God’. But the question is “Are we really pleasing God?” Does the huge amount of time we spend at worship houses reflect in our daily lives as a people?
Why are all manners of crimes rising within a people where the average 30yrs old has spent about half of his life in religious houses listening to the word of God, which teaches us to do good and abstain from anything bad or evil?
As if that isn’t enough, we also waste another cumulative 1 month celebrating Christmas, New Year, Easter and Sallas, yet, most of us also don’t work on Saturdays. Sunday is a no-go area for the majority. They can’t even imagine themselves going to work on Sunday – God forbid! What about the plenty unnecessary events events we must attend most weekends or even during the week?
Almost every Nigerian has a ‘man of God’ they call or go to for prayers, yet very few of us have a business, personal finance or personal development coaches, mentors, consultants, a lawyer or even a doctor!
Just today (Easter), I drove around the whole Surulere, Yaba, Mushin, Aguda and environs looking for electricals shop to buy some electrical fittings that just went bad last night, in preparation for my 7day digital entrepreneurship training holding in Lagos from tomorrow 2nd through 8th of April. I couldn’t find the fittings I was looking for, as almost all the shops were closed for Easter.
But on the hand, while I was driving around the highly deserted city of Lagos, I noticed certain businesses were fully open and operational. Amazingly, these business premises witnessed usually high traffic and patronage as a result of the many competitors who had shut down for Easter. I decided to take stock of the businesses that were open, and shockingly, the majority of them were foreign brands and companies; the likes of Shoprite, KFC, Mobil, Spar, and so on.
The few Nigerian companies that were open, are actually big and established brands that have already made, yet understand the importance of time and so don’t play with their business! The average Nigerian businesses were all shut down for Easter. The same struggling businesses that needed this opportunity most to maximise turnover.
Funny enough, only Nigerians who run their own small businesses or work for others don’t go to work on Sundays of festive seasons. But Nigerians who work for foreign companies are made to work on weekends, including Sundays and festive seasons. Can you spot the difference?
It’s good to worship God, spend time in his presence and also socialise. I don’t have issues with that, after all, ‘we cannot come and go and kill ourselves’ in the name of working hard or hustling. LOL. I am not against all that. My point is that we must learn to strike a balance.
However, my problem is that a lot of Nigerians prioritise religious activities against their source of livelihood and business, even as some have left their jobs on account that the place of work is too far from their church or that the job doesn’t allow them adequate time to attend their religious activities. Some have also rejected a couple of job offers on account that such jobs are against their religious beliefs. Really?
My questions for this kind of Nigerians are:
1. Has your man of God ever shut down his church on a Sunday to attend to frivolities or your own business?
2. Do they have ‘welfare’ departments that look into your economic well being other than your spiritual well-being?
3. Does your school also run a business school or just Sunday school?
4. Is your church amongst the many modern churches that don’t even bother to capture your details in their database and only interested in your offering and tithes?
5. How do we make meaningful progress as a people with this kind of mentality and culture?
Like former Lagos State Governor, Babatunde Fashola once said, a country with more religious houses than industries can hardly make meaningful progress.
The average Nigerian needs to learn about the value of time and time management, if we must make progress. Time, not money, is our most precious resource, as humans. Everyone has some dreams in life. Dreams demand time and effort. We think we will have plenty of time later to do things. Later, we realize that if we had done it earlier, it could have been better. Most of us only understand the value of time after we lost it.
Some other group on Nigerians, especially the younger ones, who managed to escape from the religious trap, are trapped on social media where they waste an average of 6hrs daily debating Jonathan vs. Buhari or PDP vs. APC, or just debating some random trends, forgetting that time lost is like a life lost. It can never be recovered; not even with any amount of money.
Late Steve Jobs once said that his favourite things in life don’t cost him any money. He said it was really clear that the most precious resource we all have is time. Until you value yourself, you won’t value your time. And until you value your time, you will not do anything with it.
This reminds me of the fact that the average Lagosian spends an average of 4 hours on the road commuting to and from work daily, which about 1,460hrs in a year or about 2 months. Millions of Lagosians lose this huge amount of time on the road daily, without knowing there are a couple of things they could do while stuck in traffic, especially for those who aren’t driving but use commercial vehicles.
I have always advocated for a 24hr Lagos, as one of the limited ways to ameliorate the traffic situation in the state. As a mega commercial city, imagine a Lagos where about 30% of its workforce work at night; the manufacturing sector, the ICT related industries, and just about any other industry or corporates who care to, especially where security is somewhat guaranteed. This would slash the unending traffic congestion in the state as well and swell the economy of the state further.
But until then, some of the things you can do while stuck in a traffic jam include:
1. Digital marketing
2. Listen to good radio stations
3. Reading a book
4. Call or chat a family member you haven’t in a while.
5. Say positive affirmations to yourself
6. Make new friends
How we Spend our Time:
Check yourself. How you spend your day? Are you just getting lost in your daily activities? Are you getting close to your goals in life? Often we think so much but never find time to make it happen.
Does negativity eat up your time? Sometimes we focus on the negative aspect more than the positive. Negative thinking tries to keep you in the same place.
Shift your focus from “What cannot be done” to “What can be done”. Spend your time to move forward in life.
Let us see some quotes about the spending our time wisely:
“If you spend too much time thinking about a thing, you’ll never get it done.” ~ Bruce Lee
“Most people spend more time and energy going around problems than in trying to solve them.” ~ Henry Ford
“Don’t spend time beating on a wall, hoping to transform it into a door.” ~ Coco Chanel
“Ordinary people think merely of spending time. Great people think of using it.” ~ Author Unknown
“Time is what we want most, but what we use worst.” ~ William Penn
Do you dare to Waste your Time?
If you think you are wasting time, you are wrong my dear. Actually, time is wasting you day by day, so you must learn to use yourself as much as you can.
Here is what they say about wasting time:
“Men talk of killing time, while time quietly kills them.” ~ Dion Boucicault
“Dost thou love life? Then do not squander time, for that is the stuff life is made of.” ~ Benjamin Franklin
“Time = Life, Therefore, waste your time and waste of your life, or master your time and master your life.” ~ Alan Lakein
“Lost time is never found again.” ~ Benjamin Franklin
“You can’t make up for lost time. You can only do better in the future.” ~ Ashley Ormon
I do not have Time:
We always complain about the lack of time. We all have equal 24 hours and we can do a lot in those 24 hours. It is all about priorities.
Often we spend a lot of time on the things that are of less priority such as watching TV, gossiping, reading newspapers, wasting time on social media, and walking here and there.
It is good to make time for enjoyment. However, manage your time to work on the important things as well. You will always find time to do things that you really want to do in life.
Here are great sayings for you if you say you do not have time:
“Lack of direction, not lack of time, is the problem. We all have twenty-four hour days.” ~ Zig Ziglar
“You will never find time for anything. If you want time you must make it.” ~ Charles Buxton
“The essence of self-discipline is to do the important thing rather than the urgent thing.” ~ Barry Werner
Do not Wait. Start it today:
Time is precious. Time is limited. Do not wait so long to do anything in life.
I have seen people who wait for the perfect time. They wait until they have a clear picture. They wait until they will have all resources. Patience is good but you cannot wait forever. If you keep waiting for long, you will regret later.
Do you find time to work on your dreams? If not now when?
Enough is enough. Take the first step. Move a bit every day. Experiment with where you are and what you have. Your vision will become clear when you take the initial steps.
Here are some quotes that tell us to start using our time right now:
“Don’t wait. The time will never be just right.” ~ Napoleon Hill
“Better three hours too soon than a minute too late.” ~ William Shakespeare
“Determine never to be idle. No person will have occasion to complain of the want of time who never loses any. It is wonderful how much can be done if we are always doing.” ~ Thomas Jefferson
“The best time to plant a tree is twenty years ago. The second best time is now.” ~ Proverb
“One day at a time–this is enough. Do not look back and grieve over the past for it is gone; and do not be troubled about the future, for it has not yet come. Live in the present, and make it so beautiful it will be worth remembering.” ~ Unknown
To be continued…
CEO @ Potech Ltd
President @ Club080.com
Founder @ Wazobialand.com
Business & Media Consultant
APC Chairmanship Candidate,
Biase LGA, Cross River State,
08027196002 | @PhilipObin