By Mitchell Aghatise||
It is said that, so many people take their dreams to the graveyard with them, some will say that it is almost criminal not to pursue ones dreams. It has been bandied in some quarters, that one must even act fast as soon as these ‘dreams’ arrive, in order to ensure that it is fulfilled in the lifetime of the opportunity.
But, we need to pause, what exactly are these dreams?
Are they imbibed upon the individual by the universe, or are they constructed first and then hammered out to suit the individual’s capabilities? It has been my view for some time that, the type of dreams which propel people to excellence and/or success are not those dreams that are stumbled upon in sleep, but on the contrary; although the root idea might be borne of a eureka moment, the dream itself is much more than this.
In Nigeria, this view holds currency. Nigeria has for a long time been experiencing a boom (yes, I am talking about the same Nigeria). There is a boom of opportunity that can hardly be found anywhere else. When two Nigerians meet, after chiding the government’s inefficiencies, the conversation hurries to perch upon the stool of all the gaps within the Nigerian market. The flavour soon becomes “…aah, when I am in London, if I want these shoes delivered, it will be, but for naija, you no go fit find original…” the quote I just reproduced may have been true a couple of years ago, but not today. With the rise of retail outlets like Jumia and the plethora springing up from retail to services, such views are laughable nowadays – this is the boom I speak of, a boom of lack that translates into gaps that are begging for innovative minds to fill. At the time I came to the university, there was a lack in corporate dial in cab companies, as at today, that again is a story for the past as mavericks have not dwelt on this as a problem but have plugged in the gaps that existed in that sector. These holes are not being plugged because ideas came from the sky, surely the complainant in the above quote must have seen this opportunity, but it ties back into the above view I have of dreams. Those who are plugging the gaps in the Nigerian market and I daresay, are reaping the rewards are the individuals who saw the idea, constructed the dream and then hammered it into perfection.
Every time I am in Nigeria, my mind is liberated, I see countless opportunities just waiting to be exploited, but these are the initial stages of the dream that I spoke of. One more step is needed, to think through- for then before it becomes a valid path to Success. The hard work starts at the same time with the dream as your mind must go into overdrive to find out how the dream will be actualised if at all, it can be… Nigeria albeit being a high returns economy is also very high risk and if one jumps in, with all guns blazing, without surveying the field- then it is the humble opinion of this writer that he never had a dream but a mere whim.
There are many people who are going to jobs that they do not like, jobs that are literally driving them crazy. But what we derive from this is that those who act on well thought out dreams derive satisfaction from two things (i) being able to see that all your work and effort is being poured into your own cause and (ii) being able to plug the gaps that exist and of course make a decent wage while so doing.
In essence, this is a matter of perspective. If you are waiting for the perfect idea before you pursue your dream; then you might be waiting for a very long time. The dream is never perfect; for it is the dreamer’s job to make it so. What is your perspective of your environment?; some people cannot and will not dream anymore as they see their environment as a bed of sorrows and concrete ceilings, but if you see that environment as your Launchpad to success, then that is what it will be. I agree that all fingers are not born equal, but we have all been given the ability to MAKE our dreams.
I dare you to dream while awake J.