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Do what you love, love what you do. This is a cliché we tend to throw out the window once real life sets in. Because of this, it isn’t surprising to find out that 70% of employees actually hate their jobs. 

Let’s face it—pursuing a career is easier said than done. You’re stepping out of your comfort zone and trying to get good at something you may know little or nothing about. Chances are strong that it’ll take some time to turn something you care about into cold, hard profit. Not to mention, you’ll probably fail at your first few attempts. So, it makes sense that a lot of people begin with a lot of enthusiasm, and then quickly give up because it goes from fun to frustrating really fast.


It is a common scenario that we end up taking jobs we hate, convincing ourselves that it is only temporary. The next thing we know, years have passed and we’ve become too complacent, stuck on the wrong job, and working for the wrong people.

Keep in mind that one of the most frustrating things you’ll experience in your adult life is to find yourself working a job that you are not really passionate about. Being uninspired by what you do is not only unhealthy but also unnecessary.

What most people don’t realize is that they can find joy in what they do. In fact, they can turn their hobbies into a full-blown career. But of course, let’s understand that it is also a risk. Ditching a career for a startup, for instance, is a daunting thought.

So how exactly do you reduce these anxieties? How do you become one of those people? There’s no one right way, but below you’ll see six ways to make that happen.



1. Unveil your passion.


Your passion should be the thing you enjoy and for which you are naturally wired to excel. There is a huge difference between a hobby and a passion, and it is crucial that you differentiate between the two before quitting your day job. For instance, just because you enjoy painting does not necessarily mean you should make it your profession. You might be better at graphic design, which uses some of the same artistic talents as painting. Keep an open mind and explore all of your options.


2. Determine the demand.

After you have discovered your passion, determine the level of demand for your skills and choose a field. It’s risky to plunge into a career with very low demand, or one with a large number of competitors even though you love it. However, the number of competitors should not be a deal breaker. If you are confident in your skills, it is very possible to establish yourself and compete quite comfortably, as long as you have a strong marketing strategy.


3. Do your research well.

Conduct a detailed search on what it would take to launch your career in this field. You may need to acquire specific machinery or equipment or earn a certification, degree, or special training. You may even need to hire employees or solicit funding. To save headaches later, find out all you can now.

Interview people who have or are in a similar business to the one you’re considering. Learn what they did to succeed and follow their path, especially if you choose to work in a niche market.


4. Make a plan.

Make a detailed plan of the steps you need to take to make your passion a realistic career opportunity. Include what you need to do and how much you need to spend before you launch into your new venture. If possible, always have a Plan B in case Plan A doesn’t work out.


5. Create your own professionalism.


To be taken seriously, you must first become a professional. Having a special skill may not be enough to deem you an expert, so acquire the training necessary to become marketable. Take a night, weekend or online class while you’re in your current job, or a sabbatical to attend an intensive training or internship. As the saying goes, “The more you learn, the more you will earn.”


6. Be bendable.

Your road is not always going to be smooth, so plan for hiccups and make adjustments along the way. Be open to advise and criticism; other people’s insights may open your eyes to something new. No one can succeed alone. That’s why it’s important to surround yourself with talented individuals or to form an advisory board to help you make the right decisions.

Turning your passion into a career requires motivation. Be proactive and take a step every day that gets you nearer your goal. The fruits of your labor will eventually pay off and you’ll be well on your way to doing what you love.  

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Anonymous

I don't like you, I yelled at Nnamdi from my balcony. He looked up and blew me a kiss before getting into his official Lexus car. Stupid boy, I grinned to myself.
I actually do like him, more than normal. I am really trying not to like him more than I am supposed to. My face always lits up when we are together and even when we speak on the phone or chat; my lips are always curved in a bold smile and my eyes always sparkles.


He recently just broke up with his boo, my cousin, last week and I am supposed to be a mediator in their split. Truth is, I have always had a soft spot for the oblong faced chiseled dude. We grew up together, went to the same primary school, reconnected right after WAEC, went to the same University and currently live in the same estate. Our parents must have sworn we would end up being in-laws.

My mum stylishly asks me if he likes literature too. Yeye woman, she is always trying to find out what we have in common.

There is really not much story to tell, I just need advice.
I don't know if he feels the same way,
I don't want to be tagged a backstabber or man snatcher either.
I really do like him, he is my bestest friend in the whole world and I don't want to ruin that because of some lousy overwhelming feeling.
Please help, just drop your advice in the comment session, I will come in to read it.

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We are creatures of habit. Everything we think, say and do is a result of deep-seated habits etched into our minds through years and years of repetitious behavior. Those very same habits either help to propel us forward or to hinder our progress in life. In fact, the state and quality of our lives right now is a direct reflection of our daily habits. 

Here are the top 7 habits to embrace in life: 


1. Focus on what you have.

We spend a great deal of time immersed in our problems. But problems are also a sign of life. The only time we'll lack problems is when we're six feet under. And if you want to shift your focus away from your problems, you have to be grateful for what you have. Yes, even for your problems.

Gratitude is the surest pathway to health, happiness, and success. It shifts our attention towards what we have rather than what we don't have. It's the natural abundance of simple pleasures and opportunities that we've been afforded with and blessed with that we often take for granted.


2.  Begin your day with a healthy breakfast.


Breakfast is an important part of life. Yet, 31 million Americans skip breakfast every single day. And that saying you've heard your entire life about breakfast being the most important meal of the day? It's 100 percent true. If you're serious about success, eat a healthy breakfast every single morning.

This single habit doesn't take much effort. Some planning is certainly required, and if you're rushing out the door every morning with barely any time to spare, you might want to consider waking up earlier to ensure that you wield this habit in your own life.


3. Smiling is good therapy.


Studies have confirmed that people who smile a genuine smile (also referred to as a Duchenne smile) are happier in life. This is one of the best habits for allowing you to find emotional, mental and spiritual peace-of-mind over time -- simply by placing a smile on your face. 

The physiology of our bodies dictates the psychology of our minds. When we frown or slouch or do any number of other things that convey a sense of depression and unhappiness, our mind takes those cues and runs with them. However, once we shift our outward appearance by consciously adjusting ourselves, our inward feelings follow.


4. Drink water with lemon.

One habit that has monumental health benefits is to drink a large glass of water with lemon every single day. Lemons are a natural source of Vitamin C, but also possess other health benefits -- such as helping with your digestion, boosting your immune system, along with cleansing and rehydrating your body.

The water itself is also an important way to flush any toxins from your system early on in the morning when you first arise. 


5. Exercise every day.

One of the absolute best habits to have in life is to exercise every single day without fail. This isn't about heavy weightlifting or running a marathon. This is about doing a lightly strenuous activity to oxygenate your blood and boost the endorphins in your body. 

Not only will you feel physically better when you start this habit, but you'll also feel more motivated, have more mental clarity and be more emotionally sound. 


6. Manage your time at least as well as you manage your money.

An essential habit for succeeding at anything in life is effective time management. How well you manage the precious little time you have says a lot about what you can achieve. And considering that we all have the same amount of time in this world, how you leverage this resource will dictate your potential for success.


7. Seek inspiration.

 It's often difficult to stay motivated for any considerable amount of time. We get discouraged and dissuaded from our goals when things arise in life that sends us on tangents and veers us off track. But one of the absolute best ways you can stay motivated in life is to inspire yourself daily.

Read, watch inspirational videos and get inspired by stories of others who have achieved their dreams. 

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It’s impossible to encounter people with whom you disagree. There are some people you instantly click with and others you can take or leave. And then, there are the select few you just can’t stand!

How can you get along with someone you find difficult, distasteful or downright obnoxious? Well, it helps to remember that you aren’t perfect either. Remember that whatever you might feel about a person, someone else might feel the same about you. We’re all human, after all. We all have our faults.

It’s usually possible just to avoid people you don’t get along with. However, at some point, you may have to work with someone you dislike. That may seem tough, but you can work with (almost) anyone if you just keep a few things in mind. In fact, by using these tips, you might find that a challenging person can still offer useful insights. They may even be able to help you see things from a different perspective.

Successful people understand that if you restrict who you can work with you are only limiting yourself. Use these 11 strategies to empower yourself to deal with even the most difficult people.


1. Accept that nobody likes everybody.

The truth is, we aren’t going to like everyone we meet. The first step when dealing with a cantankerous individual is accepting that you aren’t going to get along with some people, and that’s okay.

Not liking them doesn’t make you a bad person -- nor does it make the other person isn’t fundamentally awful (at least, probably not). But, we all do have to find a way to get along and work with each other. Acknowledging that you clash with someone, without judging who is right or wrong, can remove the strong emotions that often accompany difficult relationships.


2. Mindfulness is the antidote to toxic people.

Dealing with someone who rubs you the wrong way can have a negative effect on your own emotions. A toxic person can drive you crazy . . . but only if you let them. Remember, only you have power over your emotional state. Don’t allow a negative or toxic person to influence your state of mind.

That doesn’t mean that you ignore the person or disregard how they make you feel. Recognize that your emotions, such as irritation and annoyance, are scaling up. If someone is making you angry, let yourself feel that emotion and then let those feelings dissipate. And remember, sometimes all you need to do is smile and nod. There’s no need to engage.


3. Tact trumps temper.

Choose tact over temper Learn to cultivate a diplomatic poker face -- this is key in learning to treat all people with civility and politeness. It doesn’t mean you have to agree with someone you dislike or go along with what they say. You just need to maintain a consistent level of decorum when interacting with them.

Be soft on the person, but firm on the issue. This means that you focus on the issues that need to be corrected rather than attack someone personally. If you learn to do this consistently, you will always come across as professional and positive, which will give you the upper hand in all situations.


4. No matter how they meant it, don't take it personally.

Often people do what they do because of themselves, not because of you. They may be reacting to something in their own circumstances, and it’s just a coincidence that you ended up in their crosshairs. Try widening your perspective on the situation. A broader view can often reduce misunderstanding.

You can also be proactive when dealing with someone you know can provoke you. Think of multiple ways of reacting calmly and decisively. Have a clear picture in your mind of how you’ll respond. This can help you avoid a ping-pong effect, in which you overreact to them and they overreact to you in return. Remember that every situation involves both the person you are communicating with and the issue you are discussing. Concentrate on the issue, not the person.


5. Rise above or get dragged down.

It’s easy to react emotionally to a toxic person, especially if their behavior seems ridiculous and frustrating. But, if you stoop to their level and become embroiled in disputes, you may also be labeled a troublemaker.

Don’t let your emotions get the best of you or allow yourself to be consumed by their antics. Remember that you don’t need to respond to their chaos. You can choose to rise above it by focusing on facts and rational responses. Point out specific issues or problems if need be, but do so diplomatically.


6. Calmly express your feelings.

Often, it’s the way we communicate that leads to bigger problems. If someone’s behavior and communication style annoy you, it may be time to have an honest talk about how you feel. The key is to do so calmly and in a nonconfrontational but assertive way.


Non-accusatory language involves making “I” statements. The goal is to clearly and non-aggressively express how you feel and their role in your current state without blaming them. One formula you can use goes like this: “When you _____, I feel _____. Please do this instead: _______.”

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Boma

Do you know this line guys always use to describe women especially when things aren't going their way? Yeah, the one where they call women 'scum' and 'heartless'.

I get that they refuse to accept that they're scummier than women but seriously, how can someone develop feelings for someone else and expect that person to know without actually telling the person? Do we now have telepathic powers? 

I used to be so cool with the black tall guy in my office. We used to gist about almost everything, and we'd hang out sometimes. Although he is fun and all that, he is also very loud which can be really annoying. Plus there is this uncool thing he does when it comes to taking care of the bills. Of course, I know I'd be paying for my portion of chops, I just think it's unnecessary for him to always point it out. He would be like; so how we dey do the bill?And I'd just glare at him with my mind eye. 

Sooner than later, dude stopped talking to me. He'd say hi to every other person in the office but me. So on a Monday, he came into the office wearing his usual red cans with his white polo peeking out from underneath a navy blue long-sleeve shirt. He said hi to everyone, shook hands here and there, gave out hugs but ignored me. I felt numb, not because everyone else got to talk to him or touch him but because I didn't know we were quarreling.


Normally, I would play deaf & dumb and let his attitude slide but I didn't. I needed to know why he was ignoring me so I went ahead to ask the other youth workers in the office.

One of them said; are you mad? So you don't know.

I was like; hellooo? if I did I wouldn't be asking, would I?

The second person said; anyways, he likes you like mad.

I think someone else said; he has always liked you, too bad you didn't notice.


Honestly, I mentally face-palmed myself. I screamed, rolled my eyes and sighed mentally. None of them were making any sense.

Again, I'd have let it all slide but I didn't, I was too curious to let it go.

So I asked the fat girl that used to hang out with us. She wasn't a bit forthcoming, all she said was; better go and talk to him.


I almost laughed in her face. What is wrong with this people sef, which one is better to go and talk to him? As my boss a as Davido? It's not like he is one very fine boy.


Anyways, I approached him and asked to know why the sudden attitude.

He looked at me with his eyebrows arched in a frown and his lips turned up in a pretend smile.

In the most brittle voice, he said; I've forgiven you o, hope you've forgiven yourself?

I looked at him blankly and asked what he forgave me for?

Again, in a brittle voice he said; so you don't know? You don't know that I loved you big time? Anyways, my love for you used to be 100% but now it's down to 3%.


I studied him for a while, hoping to hear that his crooked laugh and someone telling me that I've just been played. Nothing. My eyes widened in anger and astonishment, my expression dulled up and I just stood there looking at this guy.


Finally, I asked him; how on earth was I supposed to know any of this if you never spoke up or showed anything?

Not like I was going to give him a chance or something but at least I would've been careful not to lead him on or let him get hurt with his bizarre thoughts.


He pursed his lips and said; how wouldn't you have noticed kwan? By the way, I felt you were too expensive or high for me.


At this point, I wasn't interested anymore. I rolled my eyes, clamped my hands together and said for the last time; I had no idea.

He was like; are you being real right now? You didn't know?

I was like; dude I gotta go.


Seriously, this has to stop. Everything psychotic is wrong with this guy and every other person in the office that said anything about his feelings for me. Imagine the fat girl telling me that he always talks to her about his feelings for me. I am just going to stop here.

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We’ve all likely encountered conflicts in the workplace that affect our morale, limit our productivity, and may even lead us to seek employment elsewhere. Some workplace conflict can be really frustrating and discomforting to either the employees or the employers.

When you get a group of people together day after day, conflict is inevitable. The employees you so carefully screened during hiring interviews aren't immune, either.

For instance: when an older employee starts feeling insecure and unwanted in the presence of a new and fresh out of the oven employee, bad blood may begin to cloth.

Also, when a new managing team joins the company and the employees don't know how the activities in the company will be affected.  There are a lot of dirty drains employees and employer could trip into.

Workplace conflict can occur in a variety of ways: between two employees, among entire teams or between supervisors and the team members they manage. As difficult as the issue might seem in the moment, resolving team conflict is possible.

Note that there’s no way to avoid tension altogether, of course. But if you are capable of carefully navigating and resolving such discord, you’ll find you can improve dynamics for yourself and your team—and together you can deliver the results you strive for.


1. Embrace conflict.

When conflict arises, don’t avoid it or pretend nothing has happened. As time goes on, tension will build -- and the conflict only will get worse. Deal with these uncomfortable issues as soon as possible, before problems and bad feelings become embedded in everyday work.

If you notice a conflict between employees, encourage them to find a way to work it out. If a conflict develops between two teams, it's a good time to improve interdepartmental communication. If you have a conflict with one of your employee, address it head on and in private.  


2. Make out time to talk.

Set up a time and place so you can talk for an extended span without outside interruptions.

When you do meet, each person should have adequate time to say what he or she believes the other party needs to hear. Don't let any individual monopolize the conversation or control the topic. Each person should talk about the disagreements and how he or she feels about the situation.

Remember, this is not the time to attack or assign blame. Focus on the problem, not your opinion of the other person’s character.


3. Listen carefully.

It's essential to give your complete attention to the person who is talking. Do not interrupt the other person.

Make sure you're getting the message he or she intends to send. Rephrase and repeat back what you've heard to confirm understanding. You might say something along the lines of, “Let me make sure I understand. You’re upset about _____ because _____.” 

Ask clarifying questions if needed. You can request that the other person repeat a central idea or reword his or her frustrations in a way that makes sense to you. 

Listening always should be about gaining understanding. Don’t let yourself become reactionary to the other person's words.


4. Find an equal ground to land on.

Your conversation primarily will focus on the disagreements, but a resolution is possible only when you find points of agreement. You should emerge from the experience with some positives instead of all negatives.

Shed light on commonalities. Share examples or instances in which you agree with the other person or can see another point of view. For example, if you disagree on new sales tactics, you might share what you liked about the other person’s idea or the motivation to work harder for the team.

Looking for agreement demonstrates your willingness to seek out common ground and build a relationship around those trust elements.

Related: Are People Actually Listening to or Understanding What You Say? Here Are 5 Signs to Watch.


5. Provide guidance, not judgment.

If you're in a leadership position, there are times you may need to mediate work conflict. Don’t take sides, ever. Realize you are there simply to help your employees work out their problems.

You might need to guide the conversation. And if hurt feelings run high, it's likely you'll need to redirect the topic so your employees return to the real problem. If you're in a position to give advice on next steps, highlight the positive aspects of the process and suggest related topics or actions they can work through after the meeting.


6. Be quick to forgive.

Every conflict needs a clear resolution that acknowledges hurt feelings and finds a solution that begins to mend them. 

Apologize. Tell the other person you're truly sorry for any ill words or actions -- and mean it. You'll also need to forgive the other person. Agreeing solely for the sake of appearances can lead to grudges that deepen over time, undoing any progress you've made together.

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“Success is to wake up each morning and consciously decide that today will be the best day of your life.“


Ken Poirot

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Many new business owners feel poorly equipped to handle situations where employees need to change. Here are 7 processes that work without emotion.


1. First, before diving into specifics, set the stage.

As a manager or executive, your pent-up emotion makes it tempting to open with an attack, which immediately puts everyone on the defensive.

Instead, you should start with a summary of your goals and objectives for the role, and emphasize the need for a collaborative turnaround plan. 


2. State directly observed data examples and behavior.

Only then should you describe specific behaviors that must change, and provide your specific examples so the team member can "step into" the past scenarios.

Avoid any hearsay or anonymous sources, since these are likely not entirely accurate, and will provoke emotional debates. 


3. Quantify the impact on the project and other people.

Examples might include instances where the team member missed a deadline, causing the project to fall behind or poor responses to a customer resulting in lost business.

These hurt the company, as well as the specific employee reputation. If not obvious, state the correction required. 


4. Ask for problem acknowledgment and playback.

You will make no progress until the team member agrees that there is a problem in their work or behavior, and the problem now must end.

If you don't have an agreement yet, it's time to go back to step one. You need this common understanding before the employee will engage in finding a solution. 


5. Create a plan together for a specific time period.

I recommend a time period of 30 to 90 days where you agree to meet weekly to track progress. Make the plan very specific in terms of what you need to see and when you'll know the outcome is what you wanted.

Clearly, state the consequences if the turnaround doesn't occur (lost job or demotion).  Note though that threatening your team with demotion or job termination may not work all the time especially when the team isn't happy with the nature of the job anymore.


6. Overtly check understanding at this stage.

Clearly communicate your conviction that a positive resolution is possible and desirable, which will make the consequence irrelevant.

Believe it or not, I find team members often still don't fully understand why they need to change, or why the specifics you ask for are important to the team and the business. 


7. Jointly celebrate small steps and milestones.

Launch the plan, and look for every opportunity to acknowledge and reward progress, rather than focus only on failures. Make sure that all concerned see the behavior change also. Verbal feedback should be supplemented by a written weekly summary to the employee, to prevent surprises later. 


If you think these steps are a lot of work, you are right, but it's the most important work you can do for your business, and well as for your team members. The health and success of your business are totally dependent on the health and productivity of your team.

Managing the product and the processes are only half your job as an entrepreneur or less. The rest is building the team.

Obviously, this task is easier if you hire and nurture the right people, to minimize these situations in the first place. You need resilient teams in these turbulent times, so it is well worth your time to understand what it takes to maintain a team with the emotional agility to adapt to market changes and customer feedback.

Of course, as the leader, it all starts with your own ability to change.

source

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Managing a team to success requires more than just simply appointing tasks to people. A crucial role in cultivating business growth, being in charge of team management requires a fusion of interpersonal, technical, and of course, organizational skills.


1. Assemble the right team.

The most effective way to ensure that the tasks you set out will be delivered at top quality is to have the right people doing them. A crucial step, selecting the most suitable group of people will avoid any skill gaps within your team.


2. Get to know your team.

Leadership is all about how you influence your team to achieve its objectives—something you’ll struggle to do if you don’t get to know your team members and what makes them tick. While it might be tempting to jump in and start making big moves from day one, remember that you’re not there to flex your ego.

Take time to listen to your team members; find out what their issues and aspirations are, gather ideas, and identify potential strengths and weaknesses. Only then can you formulate a leadership approach that stands a chance of success. Getting to know who you’re working with is the first all-important step to bonding with the team and establishing their respect and trust. The old adage of listening twice as much as you speak still holds true.


3.  Communicate! communicate!! communicate!!!.

Once your team is up and running, it’s imperative to keep the communication going to build relationships, assess progress, and identify risks and issues. Plus, you’ll get more engagement from team members if they see you investing time in them and showing interest in their activities. Make expectations and responsibilities clear so that everyone knows who’s doing what, why and by when. This seems obvious but don’t assume everyone has your detailed understanding of the project at hand. Encourage and embrace new ideas. The more your team can contribute to the project, the happier they’ll be.


4.  Make time to lead.


To be effective, team leaders need to invest time in the role. Too often, this responsibility is simply added onto someone’s already lengthy task list, thus setting the new leader up for failure. As a team leader, you need to be visible to the team and available to support them. If you’re predominantly tied up with your own critical hands-on tasks, you won’t be. So, be sure to review and re-negotiate your workload before taking on a leadership role in the first place.


5. Lead by example.

Think about the behaviors you want and expect from your team members and be sure to exhibit those traits yourself. You’re the role model, so what you say and do will impact the team’s daily work habits and attitudes. That said, it’s important to be yourself and to believe in yourself. If you fake it, you’ll soon be unmasked and you’ll lose credibility and trust.

Be open, honest and passionate. Treat everyone on the team fairly, with respect and without favoritism and you’ll find those behaviors returned. Extend the same courtesy to the rest of the organization as well. Never undermine or criticize other individuals or departments in front of the team. Make it clear you’re all there to work towards success for the big picture.


6. Reward the good and learn from the bad (and the ugly).

Be quick to recognize good performance and reward it where appropriate. You might not be in a position to hand out pay raises and promotions but a little bit of verbal praise goes a long way in showing your team you are both aware of and appreciative of their achievements.

Be equally as timely in tackling poor performance issues. The longer you leave them, the tougher they’ll be to fix. Look for the best in people and understand that mistakes will happen. When they do, learn from them and see how they can be prevented in the future. And whatever you do, don’t play the blame game.

If you need to have a challenging conversation, do it in private; no public floggings. And don’t try to win a popularity contest. Not all your feedback and initiatives will be well-received, but if you concentrate more on being everyone’s friend instead of being a strong leader, the work will suffer, as will your integrity.



7. Delegate.

Trust your team to do its job. Being a team leader doesn’t mean you’re there to do other people’s work for them. Be clear on what’s expected of everyone and let them get on with it. When issues or opportunities arise, empower the team to find a resolution themselves with your support—don’t add every new issue to your own to-do list.


8. Be decisive.

Don’t procrastinate. Grab the nettle when you need to. It’s all too easy to defer the difficult decisions, but ultimately costly for the job in hand and how you’re viewed as a leader. If things go wrong, take a breath, gather the information you need to make an educated decision and make it. Don’t be afraid of seeking help (it’s a sign of strength, not weakness). Team management is an ongoing learning process and you will never have all the answers.


9. Enjoy it!

Team leadership is often challenging but frequently rewarding. Heading up a team that’s working well and delivering results is a great feeling, so go do it!

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Som

Big brother Enugu audition was crazy. Nothing like Lagos and Abuja’s mad energy and spider-man stunt but it was pretty heated. I encountered girls, big girls, and BIG girls!

That sh** was legit the biggest thing I’ve ever been to.

I wish I’d videoed every moment, it’s better watched than read. Anyways, I got to Oakland around 10 am. Note, I’d planned to be there by 7 am.

My sister had made this beautiful black net flare skirt for me. It was simply perfect. My brother looked at me and said I was ready. I was super hyped and ready to go in there and wow them as I’d rehearsed with my friend. On our way to the venue(my brother and I), holdup looked down on us with a very bold Cheshire cat-grin and nastily said; “where do you think you are going to? You didn’t hear Atiku is in town?”

 It almost felt like all odds were against me. First was the delay from a girl who came all the way from Owerri for the audition. This girl gave her make-up 1hr +. The second was the rush I put in dressing up which resulted in my missing breakfast and then came to the vibe-killing holdup.

When I finally arrived, I wondered if all these people are here because they honestly think they’ll win N45m or they simply want to have a tale to tell someday.

6 hours later, while some people hustled to be called into the hall, some others (BIG girls) sat in a corner blowing gum and taking selfies. I was hungry, soured and battered with sweat and stress. I had to put on my puppy face, there was no way I’d have auditioned on Friday if I hadn’t. Tears shimmered in my eyes as I murmured, “Please sir, I’ve been here since” and he said, “Oya go inside”.

Hoping that that was it and I’d soon be on my way home to comfort; lo and behold, I was yet again given another tag with the number ‘739’. Color drained from my face. That was it for me. It was already past 7, how will I get home? I worried about my mum; I knew she would have forced my phone into ‘battery save mode’ with her persistent calls. She is always like that and it’s practically one of the reasons I came out for this thing in the first place. I needed to do something for myself without someone giving me lessons about why I shouldn’t.

Still standing in line with an empty stomach, I watched people try to leave because they simply couldn’t stand it anymore. The Owerri girl had already auditioned and was home so I asked my brother how it went for her since she wasn’t forthcoming. After the call, I went online to read about cards, chess and the meaning of each piece and symbol.

Some people were getting disqualified by just saying things as simple as their names. I needed to be over ready.

Fear and anxiety crossed my face. My voice withdrew. Every single vibe I left the house with went into hibernation. I think we were about 20 in a set. We finally went in, 2 men and a lady sat behind a table. Their expressions were rather relaxed, almost too relaxed like they knew this audition was simply to fulfill all righteousness so there was no reason to go all ‘professor’ on us.

They asked; tell us about yourself and why you want to go into the house.

A guy said; My name is……. Student of…….. Lives in……. From……. I want to enter the Big brother house because I’ve multiple personalities.

Like a disorder?

Noooo, I just have different moods and characters. I can be calm, friendly, mean or savvy but I don’t use it to hurt people.

A girl stepped forward and boldly said; I want to enter the house because I have something to offer.

Like what?

I have talents.

With that, she stepped back with this dry broad smile on her face.

Another hyperactive guy stepped out and said; I want to enter the house because I can act. I can act anything you want me to act; anyhow you want me to act it.

If that was a girl they’d probably say she is indirectly marketing herself.

When it finally got to my turn, my heart skipped a thousand beats. I calmed myself; I’d rehearsed this a thousand times, how hard could it be?

I mentioned every vital detail about myself, better than the others. Then I began with; there are 3 reasons I want to……

With the look on their faces, I could tell I was making better sense than the others. I said I hope to change the notion about Big brother house being immoral and unethical. I said I felt the house is a platform for grooming and showcasing talents. I said that I hope to win and use the money to help my dad’s pharmacy. I said I needed to walk away from my tight circle and experience the world for myself and I felt that the house is a good start.

At the end of my over-confident babble, I stepped back. When everyone was done with their nonsense, they said; “None of you have what we’re looking for”.

Choi, so I starved myself for no good reason. No breakfast, no lunch, and no dinner. It was already a few minutes to 11.

We clumsily toddled out, with me dragging behind. One of the men called me back and gave me a 5mins pep talk on considering going into acting. According to him, I can’t go from level 1 to level 100. I explained the situation in my family. I told him how tight and limiting it is at home.

He asked; are you people deeper life?

Noo, we’re actually Catholics.

Are you the last child?

Nop, last girl and second to the last child.

He sighed and said good night.

Few steps from the door he said calmly but audible enough for me to hear; “Or you rebel”. He laughed at himself because unless he has a house for me to move into, don’t ever suggest I rebel.

That was basically how my Friday went. I may not have been selected but I’m glad to have stood out from the rest.

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