We are all accustomed to the saying, variety is the beauty of life and one man’s meat is another man’s poison. We live in a world where all everyone is judged by what they say, write, and do. This is the simple reason why the world is governed by perception. Isn’t it true that perception is everything? In order to appreciate this article very well, I will like to quote one of my favorite quotes from Martin Luther King Jnr. “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character”. It is on the basis of this quote this article will be structured.
We shall be discussing how we can change the narrative from your corner. It is a fact that the only thing that is constant in life is change. To change the narrative means that there is a shift in the perception of the public/government/person or group concerned, regarding which version is right and closer to the truth. In order to appreciate this topic, we shall be exploring four different areas namely:
Value: This can be termed the issue of what really matters
to you. Value can be created when you give respect and attention for the change
you want to see.
Problem: The damage or negative harm that has been done which the value sets to correct.
Solution: Bringing to an end the profiling and stereotype
precedent that has been in existence with personal innovations and creativity
to effect change
Action: This is the modus operandi on how success can be the change agent
I strongly believe everyone is destined and poised to succeed in life. This is because success has no limitation if you know your audience and the need of your environment. Your location can either make or mar your chances of success in life if you are not careful, and same way it can facilitate your chances of success if you know your craft very well, however, it’s worthy to note that location is not the deciding factor for success because two people can be in the same locality but they won’t see, hear or feel the same thing especially as it relates to needs of the environment. Moral: We must endeavor to conquer our territories anywhere we find ourselves. That’s why we are survivors and by so doing we’ll be changing our story.
It is interesting to note that we have one hundred and ninety countries in the world and all these countries are categorized in seven continents (Africa, Antarctica, Asia, Australia, Europe, North America, and South America). Each of these continents is known for different reasons based on lifestyle, religion, academic, technology, leadership etc. For the purpose of this article, we shall be discussing how we make the world a better place by changing the narrative with the success we have been able to overcome with our moderate lives.
Change is one of the hardest things in life. To change one’s perception can be a difficult task, but it’s doable. The question now is, can you change other people’s opinion of your being? Depending on you who are speaking to, the answer might be yes or no. But I personally feel you can change the opinion and perception of people when you surpass their imagination by achieving success. We shall go in that discussion/analysis in a few.
In order for you to change the narrative, you must know your purpose in life. It’s imperative to note that you cannot know your purpose in life without knowing yourself. If you really want to know your purpose in life, please find to read my book Design Your Destiny- Actualizing Your Birthright To Success. You can also know your purpose via Listening to what other people appreciate about you, find out what drives and energizes you and what you can sacrifice in order to achieve your vision and mission in life.
Many seem to believe that purpose arises from your special gifts and sets you apart from other people—but that’s only part of the truth. It also grows from our connection to others, which is why a crisis of purpose is often a symptom of isolation. Once you find your path, you’ll almost certainly find others traveling along with you, hoping to reach the same destination—a community.
As mentioned earlier, we live in a world where most people are judged by way of stereotyping and this perception has caused more harm than good. For example, many western countries are under the illusion that many black countries are corrupt while living under the illusion and denial that their country is not corrupt. It’s pertinent to note that corruption thrives everywhere. It has no limitation. As a matter of fact, there’s more systematic corruption in the western world compared to the emerging economies, the only difference is that once you are caught, you must pay the price as opposed to the third world countries where people get away with such acts.
Despite this negative perception many people believe there’s nothing good that can come out of third world countries especially African countries but they forget that many good things have come out of Africa. Of particular interest that comes to mind is South Africa where the former President Nelson Mandela was widely acclaimed to be legend due to the role he played for the emancipation of South Africa from apartheid system of government. During Mandela’s administration, he was able to lead with love and forgiveness while governing with passion and empathy. This singular act made the global world to regard him as A Statesman. This is a perfect example of how one can change the narrative from one’s corner. Moral: As Africans, we are responsible for telling our stories in addition to letting other people know how we want to be treated or addressed. Isn’t it true that nobody will value and respect you if you don’t respect yourself?
Let me share a personal experience with you on how you can change the narrative from your corner. During my formative years in the USA, I joined a 501(c)(3) organization called the Nigerian Lawyers Association as a graduate student studying Taxation law in New York Lawyer School. I later became the Public Relations Officer of the association when an opportunity became available. During my term as the Public Relations Officer, I had challenges with my writing skills which didn’t go down well with my President and Vice President. I can vividly remember the day my President and Vice president used sarcastic words on me because of my writing skills. But fast forward to three years later, by the special grace of God, I was able to horn my writing skills with the right mentors in addition to publishing an acclaimed inspirational book. The moral of this story is that I refused to accept the name I was tagged, rather, I was able to change the negative narrative to a positive experience.
Changing the narrative does not always entail changing negative perception. In a more factual context, it means how can you make an impact in the lives of other people from your angle. Furthermore, it means living a purposeful lifestyle and bringing a positive change to empower humanity. Stories abound of many great men and women who have done amazing work to empower humanity. They were able to do this because they know their purpose in life. Living on purpose is one of the best things that can happen to anyone. The question now is how do you change the narrative? The answer is basically living on purpose and asking yourself what impact do you want to make in the world? Alternatively, what change are you looking at bringing into the word? It’s instructive to know that you can never succeed in life without having a purpose.
Research has shown that all the great innovations that that was invented on earth were accomplished by individuals who not only had a purpose in mind, but they were focused in bringing change with an interest to make the world a better. For example, before the advent of phones, people were communicating via analog means.
In summary, in order to effect change, you must first be the change . Effecting a change is not complicated, all that is needed is for you to have a purpose in mind. We are all agents of change, are you a teacher, pilot, art man, conductor, preacher, writer, cleaner, attendant, laborer, or even a security officer, you can make an impact in life with your lifestyle.
Henry Ukazu writes from New York. He’s the author of the acclaimed book Design Your Destiny- Actualizing Your Birthright to Success. He works with the New York City Department of Correction as the Legal Coordinator. He can be reached via firstname.lastname@example.org