I know of a gardener who earns a meager salary of N7,000.00 (approximately $60) in a month and he’s loving it (he’s not complaining). The area earmarked for only him to keep despite his age is so large that his work is tantamount to slavery especially because he uses cutlass and not lawnmower. I once advised him to leave the work and use his strength to farm instead, but he told me blatantly that he hates risks and that he prefers to wait till month end for the small thing that comes to him. He refers to himself as a poor man and he has gladly accepted his fate. His feeling of negativity is even contagious. He walks kilometers to and from work every working day. On a particular sunny afternoon, I stopped a taxi for him with the intention of paying his fare only for him to tell me that he prefers to trek. He however asked me to give him the money instead so that he could buy some cigarettes with it. I was tempted to slap him but I resisted the urge because he’s old enough to be my father. I then concluded that his mindset is his archenemy and that if I’ll ever make a positive impact in his life, I must help him renew his mind. I’m still on the mission and I won’t give up on him.
I also remember a middle aged man with four (4) kids that I tried to help sometimes ago. I observed that he had no other means of livelihood other than farming. He was really suffering and I pitied his wife and kids especially. So I approached him to discuss about his situation and to devise a way of escape from the poverty that plagued his family. I was shocked to learn that he was skilled in three (3) different vocations (auto mechanic, vulcanizing and wheel balancing/alignment). I asked him to pick any of the three vocations he could start right away if he had access to some funds and he picked vulcanizing. He told me he was even saving to fund the plan. I was so impressed with his story that I gave him a substantial sum to buy the engine he needs to start up. He thanked me wholeheartedly and promised to keep me posted with developments. Believe me, that was the last time we ever conversed because he has been avoiding me ever since. I bet he must have squandered the money because his situation has not improved and he didn’t ever start vulcanizing. The thought still rips my heart apart. I blame myself for not brainwashing him before giving him the money, it would have made a difference.
With these two instances I narrated above and others too numerous to mention on these pages, I have reasonably concluded that there’s no way one can help someone with a messed up mentality, except through brainwashing. If you give such person money or other valuable resources, chances are that they will be squandered. And that’s why I strongly believe that of all the plagues that can befall a man, the losing of one’s mind is the worst of it all. Once the mind is lost/messed up, the person’s destiny is sealed because no one can possibly go farther than his thoughts.
The mind (“the part of a person that makes them able to be aware of things, to think and to feel: the conscious/subconscious mind” OR “the particular way that somebody thinks” according to Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary) is the seat of reason and creativity. The mind conceives ideas and then summons the other faculties to bring them to fruition. No one can succeed without a sound mind. As tiny as the rudder is (compared to the size of the ship), it still controls the direction of the ship. Similarly, the mind controls the whole body, actions and reactions of humans. Thus, the first step in the process of emancipation is renewing one’s mind and the need for it to be done from time to time cannot be overemphasized.
Flush out negative thoughts constantly: Refuse to believe that life is harsh. Refuse to believe that you can’t change your fortune. Refuse to believe that you can’t emancipate yourself from mediocrity. Refuse to believe that you can’t challenge the status quo. Refuse to believe that you can’t change the course of history. Refuse to believe that you do not deserve better than where you are. Vehemently reject mediocrity. Vehemently reject failure.
Let in positive and constructive thoughts constantly: Read new books. Learn new ropes. Go via uncharted waters. Rub minds with great minds to discuss ideas. You must believe that life is beautiful. You must believe that nature is lavish (All resources are in surplus: there’s plenty of land for every living human being to build on, there’s plenty of water for every living thing to drink, there are plenty of herbs to cure our diseases, there’s plenty of food [plants and animals] for all to eat to satisfaction. The list is endless). You must believe there are opportunities everywhere. You must believe in possibilities. You must believe in miracles. You must believe that dreams come true. You must believe in love. And most importantly, you must believe in yourself.
Once your mind is renewed, you’ll have clear direction and tactic, fresh energy and enthusiasm to pursue your dreams which will in turn usher in miracles. It is thus evident that to change your world, all you might simply need to do is to change your mindset.
Think change? Think mind-renewal.