1. Do not join the rat race this year
The year is fresh and we are all still in the euphoria of its newness, the dreams and aspirations we have for the year and the soothing feeling of prophecies received at crossover nights. But trust me, 3 months from now, everything will change. One of the things that’ll kick in is the usual rat race. People will begin to find themselves in the continuous, hectic, and often competitive struggle to achieve success or to get ahead of others.
And whether you like it or not, it will get to you. When it does you would have to decide to join the race or not. To those who will not join, the decision is made ahead of time, and today is the time.
For me, that decision is already made and my mind is fixed. I am not joining any form of rat race this year. I will run only the race that my God has ordained for me – which is to strive to be like no one but Him in all I do or say. My advice to you is to do the same.
Don’t join the rat race. It won’t lead you to your dreams or aspirations for this year. Instead, it will drain all the sap of life in you and leave you without a reward. If there is ever anyone to get ahead of, it should be who you were by 31 December last year.
If there is ever anything to get ahead of, it should be the things you didn’t do or get right last year. But by all means, do not join the rat race because you will lose.
2. Do not try to keep up with the ‘Joneses’
Despite the first point, some will still join the rat race. And some who will join the rat race might make it – by one means or the other. Notwithstanding, some people will not join the rat race and still make it in terms of their dreams and aspirations. These people will be at your face throughout the year.
If you lose focus on yourself and what you want out of the year, then to you, they will become what is figuratively known as the ‘Joneses’ – those friends, neighbours, peers, colleagues or social media connections of yours who are perceived as being successful or fashionable.
The year is still fresh, but very soon, they will begin flaunting their new car, house, certificate, wife, husband, child, photos taken abroad, etc. Now is the time to decide how to respond.
When you are in the rat race for too long, the next thing you will begin to do is to try to keep up with the Joneses in your life. This is a very dangerous spot to be in life. Instead, find ways to do what’s most important in your life – which is to be the best version of yourself; you will spend your time and resources trying to be like others or impress them.
The Joneses you try to keep up with may have paid a huge price to get to where they are. And, they do not even see how much you are trying to keep up with them. They are simply focused on getting better.
So, why would you waste all you have trying to keep up with others? As for me, I’ve got no time to keep up with anyone. I just want to find ways to be the light and shine in the darkness of others this year. If I can achieve that, I’ll be fulfilled by the end of the year.
3. Do not waste time engaging in celebrity gossip
Make sure you see only what you want to see or listen to only what you want to hear this year. Avoid clickbait this year. Refuse to be a dumping ground for clout seekers this year. One-click on gossip can derail your thoughts and focus for the next 3 hours clicking through stories that do not add value to you in any way.
There is no worse way to waste your precious time than to wake up daily and spend it in pursuit of what’s making headlines for the day. Instead, spend your time working on yourself so you will become the ‘good’ news others will seek.
If I have time to read anything this year, it should be stories and tales that will inspire the greatness in me to move into action. And that is what I hope you will do this year.
And 1: Keep your focus on your goals
By all means, I want us together to look back at the year and be proud that we made the right choices concerning how we spent our resources on only the right things and how much of a light we were in other people’s darkness.
Apeh Omede, PhD