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Karl’s Guide to making offline sales in the 21st century

A simple how to manual on the proper way to approach people, tell them about your product and close a sales. It covers prospecting, pitching and closing with examples of pitches you can practice.

Why Sales?

Since the dawn of time, human beings have always needed each other to survive because unfortunately the harsh realities of our world leaves no man an island. This means as much as we may feel we are invincible the overwhelming consensus across all of time has shown that there really is strength in numbers. What does this have to do with sales you may be asking yourself?  Well sales at its very core despite what it is currently being portrayed as, is basically informing people about your new way or thing that betters their life. In a perfect world people would automatically just know the best product to use at any given time and we wouldn’t need to tell them about any new developments but unfortunately we do not live in a perfect world. This means till that day comes, people will always need to be informed about new products and processes and you after reading this, will be fully equipped on how to best serve them.

How do I get started in sales?

The simple answer is find a product. It may seem overly simplified by the truth is, it really is not that complicated. Have a birthday gift? Try and sell it. Have clothes? Try and sell them. Have a phone? try and sell it. The key however is selling those items for higher than you either original bought or “borrowed” them for. The reason you want to do that is because the difference or your profit can be used to get another item capable of fetching you a bigger mark up. Now you have your product and you have someone in mind who may want to buy your product. How do you get started?

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Self employed 101

Is the self employed dream dead or is is the more alive than ever? In this article we explore what being self employed really means

Chapter 1: The Risks

Now to begin, being self employed is not as glamorous as most gurus would like you to be believe. To be very successful on team self employed, you might end up literally creating what you were running away from when you decided you don’t want to get a job. The promise of free time is not that true as most times you end up investing way more time to make the same amount you could have made at a regular desk job for example gig economy drivers in the beginning may have made slightly more than the average worker but as more drivers came into the picture, competition led to a reduction in profits. With most Uber drivers making N30,000 – N50,000 per month in revenue if they are lucky, yearly they would earn roughly N400,000. Now this seems great but this does not account for issues that can arise like flat tyres, engine repair and other unforeseen issues like theft and vandalism. Now someone who chooses this path even though they had the option of a desk job may end up making the same but they have to take on a lot more risks like getting a car, maintaining the car, getting internet connection etc. Now they may or may not have more time and more but the first thing to decide before embarking on the path of self employment what is your appetite for risk. This does not mean, are you ready to jump off a cliff or out of a plane or swim with sharks, although it does say a-lot about your personality, it means are ready to possibly not be able to provide for yourself or your family. This is the ultimate factor when considering which path is best for you because if you feel that you are ready to make the sacrifice of possibly being known as incapable to be a provider no matter your race or gender then the decision will be easy to make. 

Chapter 2: Be prepared 

Now you must be thinking “why are we so focused on finding a job when this is supposed to be about to about being self employed?”. The answer is simple self employment in this day and age should be seen as a last resort if we are being candid. Unless you spot a gap in the market through which your new product or process can fill, you have the adequate expertise and resources to properly deliver you are setting yourself up for failure. When trying to set up a business, there are so many variables you need to consider and the honest truth is you can consider them all you want but if it isn’t for you to be a success then it isn’t for you to be a success. To truly have the best chance of succeeding you need to be adequately prepared to at least counter some of the variables that can either hinder or grow your chances of success. This is why when you really need to identify something unique because the world is filled with people who will always have more information and access than you, so whatever little thing that can help you get ahead needs to really be used to your advantage.

Chapter 3: Go through depression 

Now all hope is not lost, this is not just doom and gloom. If you are reading this and you are still confident being self employed is right career path for you then it’s time to get to work. Now to be self employed in Nigeria, no one really cares about your new ideas that will change the world or revolutionise the way we do things. All those pitches and meeting you went for that were organised by either your parents or their friends or your school or your church, you got really good feedback and they told you how brilliant it was but how many of them gave you money for it? Oh not as many as you thought? Ok how many of them actually bought your products? Not many. Now before you take it personal you need to understand it’s not you, literally everyone who moves back goes through the same thing and it’s common and they know after sometime you will get tired of it because as optimistic as you want to be, you are a no longer in the system you know. Whatever statistics, numbers or thoughts you hear or see about Nigeria, you quickly learn are not the reality in the country itself. You had good intentions with your idea, the best even but let’s face it, the next Facebook or Mark Zuckerberg is not coming from Nigeria. 

Chapter 4: Go Wayward

Now your dreams of glory and super billions and super yachts by 25 have been quenched it’s time to face reality. The reality is you probably live at home with parents, probably have small allowance here and there or maybe you have some money left over that keeping you going. That’s great but you need to stop spending money stupidly, what does that mean? Start eating every meal at home, pack lunch or dinner with you, avoid clubs and for every Naira you decide to spend you must treat it as something you expect you get a return from. This doesn’t necessarily have to be money but it can be whatever you decide or whatever the person can over. What does this mean? If you go to a restaurant you want to build relationships with the bouncers, wait staff, owner or whoever you can and in Nigeria you do that by giving them or dashing them money. Now the trick is you want to match the money you give them to their position in the hierarchy. The bouncers/wait staff usually can be given lower amounts as long as it isn’t lower than 4 digits (accounting for possible inflation in Nigeria) and should be given every other visit. Be sure to get names and possibly phone numbers for next time. For owners you may not necessarily give him money but be sure to compliment him, his establishment, always pay your little bills and offer him a drink. You will need this relationship because when building your business even if you have no idea what it is yet, a space for official or events use may come in handy. 

Chapter 5: A Vision begins to form

Now a majority of your time has been spent being wayward but if you have any sense you will have been using your team to build connections. This doesn’t mean you should have been telling everybody you need a job or even talking money, no you have started to build new connections maybe through outings or just constantly bumping into people. Whatever it is the people you have bumped into while being wayward will eventually trust you enough to enlighten you on how they make money. Now this is not necessarily guaranteed depending on the people you have built connections with but not to worry you can continue to meet people till they eventually do. The beautiful thing about this country is everyone is ready to make money. 

Chapter 6: Ask people how the make money and LIE!!!

By this point you should have realised that everyone in Nigeria is some form of middle man. What does that mean? The simple reason development in Nigeria is sluggish is because everyone wants to be a middle man. What does this mean? No one wants to really produce anything, most people are trying to make money by taking a piece of whatever transaction they can find. It doesn’t matter if they add or reduce value to the country, as long as they are fed everything can go fine. People blame politicians but almost everyone does it. From your local supermarket, to your local tissue distributor most people are in the business of being middle men. Now you understand this you can finally decide, do I want to be a middle man? And if you do what can I be a middle man in? My suggestion is looking into real estate(sales), finance(agent or platform), farming(B2B sales) or any middleman business you can get your hands on. Now once you have found a possible opportunity to be a middle man, the unfortunate thing is you probably will have zero to little experience doing that thing but don’t worry there’s an answer. Lie. Now I don’t mean go and over do, I mean lie and say whatever you can to get the opportunity because the honest truth is you can’t do what you say you can do for the first possible client then that is possibly not the business you were born to do. Never fear however repeat this process until you finally get the opportunity and most importantly show up and give the client absolutely nothing to complain so you can with certainty say, yes I think I can do this on my own. 

Chapter 7: Close another deal and Repeat 

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Post graduate

Leaving school can be difficult so in this article we explore what it means to be a post graduate in modern times.

By Karl Idowu

Competition. Commitment. Consistency. It just so happens that all three of those words begin with the letter C. For that reason we will refer to them as the three C’s any post graduate must become familiar with in order to survive the ever evolving jungle known as the real world. Let’s first off establish what world I’m talking about here. Not the world where your parents come in to talk to an official to move you up the ladder. Not the world where your hard work is guaranteed to give you the outcomes you aspire for. Not the world where failure is alright because you can go home to a nicely prepared meal and a warm bed and can try again the next day. I’m talking about the world that will chew you and your ideals up and spit you right back out just because it felt like it. The world that doesn’t need a reason to take away everything you’ve ever believed or worked hard for. The world that doesn’t care who died in your life because time goes on regardless of whether you can.

• Competition: There are many roles to be filled, but there are many more qualified candidates competing for those roles. You must get used to the idea that no matter how far you’ve gone during your job application or how interested the company may seem in you, it only takes a second for someone better to come along and steal your thunder. You WILL be dropped without a second thought.

• Commitment: You can’t fake it. There is no substitute for hard work and passion. So if you think you can postpone writing that cover letter you needed for the position at your dream firm, think again. There’s someone out there who’s looking over her essay twice and putting finishing touches she discovered from a cool website that she managed to stumble upon just because she put in that extra effort. The opportunity won’t wait for you, so I recommend you don’t wait either.

• Consistency: Understand that failure is just as guaranteed, if not even more certain, than success. You can’t let minor setbacks and shortcomings demoralize you. Jack Ma (Alibaba Founder) was rejected from every single job position he ever applied for, including McDonald’s and even the police academy, but not before he was rejected a position at Harvard business school 10 different times. Your mindset is the most important factor in determining if you can become successful or not. When you fail, take notes, acknowledge the feeling, appreciate the experience, then get up and try again. It will go right at some point. I promise.

I wish this was all there was to it. I wish I could tell you that this is all you need to do to succeed. I wish life was this easy and that the real world was this transparent. But I’m not going to sell you false dreams. There will be situations you can’t predict or expect that will knock on your door and let itself in whether you welcome it or not. The only advice I can offer you is this. Focus less on the situation and more on yourself. The way you react, and respond during the most difficult and trying times of your life will go a long way in determining who you will be in the long run. Be a master of yourself first of before you even think of trying to tackle anything else. Your emotions, your habits, and every little detail you can about yourself. Here’s my reasoning for this; if you don’t even know who you are, how will you know how to react when something unexpected happens? The answer is you won’t know. Causing you to panic, which in turn will just drive you down a path of confusion, frustration and anger which will either be directed at yourself or at those around you. You are now well on your way to developing symptoms of depression, which are actually more common in the average millennial than any other generation (please look it up). Now you’re closer to landing a spot in a mental institution than at the company of your dreams. Its fine though. Things don’t have to go that way, and in fact, things most likely won’t go that way, because you’re reading this, good job! So establish what your beliefs are, the type of person you believe yourself to be now and the type of person you aspire to be in a year, 5 years, 10 years, and never let anyone or anything make you doubt yourself. Trust that as long as you are in control, then nothing can go wrong. And when things do go wrong, still have that belief at the back of your mind that you are capable of handling the situation, because you are! If you are successful in doing this, then no one will ever be able to alter your confidence and self-belief ever again, let it be Bill Gates or Barack Obama. So put on your lab coat, your hard hat, your badge, your uniform, or in my case, the suit you’ve kept at the back of your closet that you’ve been saving for your first day on the job, and go out there expecting the worst but praying for the best.

Cryptopeppers

Set in the wild Wild West, this fiction story starts to look at what could happen if we fully adopt cryptocurrency in our everyday lives

By Karl Idowu

The table is rumbling as Aj hit’s it with anger.

AJ Malone: Who is cryptopeppers ? What do you know about him? Don’t lie to me i will kill you.

Shonda: Bitch if i knew cryptopeppers don’t you think i’d be with him now?.. oooooohhhh you don’t think i wanna be rich too playboy?

AJ Malone: Don’t play dumb. We know you have an Iq of 128 and are a master of disguise.

He grabs Shonda by the neck.

Aj malone: We shall not take it easy with you and your boss. We will get those cryptocurrencies back.

Shonda: Shit… can i have some?

Aj puts the Vicerian brain reader on Shonda and as it falls asleep, we are thrust into the minds of one of the closest known associate of the infamous cryptopeppers.

Shonda met crypto when they where just young boys interested in knowing about bitcoin. It was the 7th of December 2031, the town of Valkrax 1.1 was beautiful and all it’s inhabitants were happy lounging around in their top of the line smart cars which acts as home on the roads, robots are seen picking up the trash, the sun is shining and as we all remember bitcoin 1xx was the hottest thing in the news. Prices were skyrocketing and other cryptocurrencies were falling. Shonda and crypto came together as young 16 year old Level 4 beings just looking to make some money. They had been tracking the markets and it was a warm sunny day when they heard the news about 1xx. You could tell a mile away the excitement in their eyes as they looked on with share disbelief.The reality of their inability to  purchase bitcoin 1xx left them sad as you could only be recognised on your 18th birthday when you reach level 5. They unfortunately were 16. Two weeks go by and we see a young Shonda and after pestering his older brother, we see it running to meet a young crypto.

Shonda: Crypto!!! Crytpoo!!

As he shouted in enjoyment unable to finish the words cryptocurrency. He races through the street and Crypto finally glances over his shoulder and is startled by the words, he yells.

Crypto: Slow down, Shondsss…. I’m chillin’

As Shonda catches up to him

He holds crypto’s shoulder and tries to catch his breathe and points a dark scream to crypto

Shonda: Seeeee

Crytpo: It’s off bro

Shonda realising he needs to knock his device, thinks the code and the holographic out word facing trading figures appears and crypto begins to jump in excitement.

Crypto: You evil genius

They invest the 5,000 bit gold into the account and being to hope and pray. They had each gotten this from work they had done in capital investment bank and this was the only money they had to their names. A week goes by, it is evident the money has been well invested and the investment is worth 17,000 bitcoin gold and they cannot believe it. They wake up

To be continued….

Could your phone keep you safer?

With safety being a major issue in our lives, this article explores a possible solution.

By Karl Idowu

The new-normal, before its emergence had the Old that had by the time of its premature extinction required an overdue mode of fine-tuning which made the new-normal ground rules ‘over’ over-due. However, due to the unprecedented appearance of the new normal, these adjustments are being re-worked still and might take decades to get 100% right. It is then a great delight to note that Nigeria is headed in the right direction with the creation of a preventive mode for the new-normal in the form of safety, security and information, all with the use of technology; on the MyRadar Application. This seem too good to be true, right? Well, I thought so too until I downloaded and installed the application on my device. And then I saw how much power I can wield in my fingers; power in knowing that you just a little bit safer in an unsafe world.As you would find on the ‘about’ of this App, My Radar is exclusively designed to help battle and limit the alarming surge of insecurity in Nigeria. Once you have the app on your device, and provide access to your location, this goes live, but have no worries because this is no way intrusive as it gives you the power to limit the access to your location by having just a much smaller community of people you decide to add into ‘your circle’. So, if you are someone like me who never enjoys picking up the phone to relay your location to ‘your people’ especially when going to new locations, all you just need to do is turn up your location, and voila, your circle knows where you are. If this isn’t preventive security I don’t know what is because as I have mentioned, My Radar is designed to provide plethora of more functions to include automatic access to emergency numbers in whatever location you are in in Nigeria. So, you have access to Fire department, Police and so onThe icing on the cake is that for your much larger community which My Radar also provides, you have the access to follow up with community news, events, traffic news and so on to better stay informed. You become a big part of this community in that you not only have access to get this information, you are also given the ability to provide this relevant information in relation to your location, your neighborhood. My Radar creates one big family of citizens of all demographics that watch out for one another. With My Radar, think daily Communal Dailies, think accessible Neighborhood Telephone Book, think human google traffic maps, think both family online and IRL. Amazing, right? I told you it would seem too good to be true! But, I can tell you for sure that My Radar absolutely delivers. Get it for yourself and your loved ones, available on google playstore.

Conondrum

In this fictional universe, a question on human morality is posed.

By Karl Idowu

As Adam Hampshire a 41 year old, 6 foot, brown cocoa kissed skinned, fairly handsome, 5 o’clock shadow bearded, Hedge-fund CEO from an unknown city wakes up and wipes his eyes. He looks around and to his utterly disbelief he is stuck in a glass rectangular room. He looks up from this foreign feel bed and instead of his view of the city he sees nothing but panels. He panics and looks around to discover he isn’t alone. There’s nothing but a desert and a tar road to his front surrounding  this box like structure right in the middle of what he assumed to be foreign wasteland. As he glances around, he suddenly sees 5 other people begin to slowly regain consciousness.

He looks around and to his amazement he sees Priscilla, his wife, a 39 year old, blue eye, brunette, talent manager to the biggest names in the acting world. She seems to be regaining consciousness and instinctively he races to his spouse’s side but as he runs to her side he also see his mistress Faith. A 31 year old, blonde, blue eyed, Belgian born assistant. He looks shocked but before he can digest the situation he sees his son hunter, a 19 year old some might say younger lookalike university first year student and beside him his daughter Beatrice a 16-year-old Free spirit. Beside them there is another figure. A figure unknown to Adam, a vanilla colored fellow, tall but strikingly handsome and muscular. As he tries to understand what is going on, there comes a voice.

Vuykm: “ Welcome to the cube. I am your host, The Magnificent Vuykm, you have been chosen because you are all filthy and the court of public opinion has deemed your actions immoral. I know, as you are well aware you must face the judgment.

Adam: We have done nothing wrong we are innocent Vuykm

Vuykm: You shall be the judge, I ..

Priscilla: What is wrong with you, you sick bastard

Vuykm: Silence

As the tone of his voice changes she immediately loses her ability to speak. She gasps for the words but nothing. She is without speech. This little show shocks everyone and leaves the stunned room in silence.

Vuykm: Now without interruption i shall continue. You can either be lucky or unlucky today the choice is yours. Your choices in life have led your here but today you have the chance to either survive or die. You must choose one person to die in 2 hours, failure to do so will result in you all dying.

They shriek in panic but without making the faintest of noise

Vuykm stops to see if any wanted to go against his wishes but no one was that stupid.

He Continues

Vuykm: Now to help you with your decision every 10 minutes your sins related to just each other will be streamed on the walls around you. All these misdoings should be considered when making the decision.

Suddenly they hear a loud siren and before they regain composure.

Vuykm: 1

Before they catch a whiff oxyhogen, the solution to carbon emissions, videos showing Adam having passionate intercourse in his office with faith begin to stream all around them.

As they all try to avert their gaze, the bombardment of noises leaves them trapped wishing it to be over. In the video  Adam is viciously bending over and slowly  passionately thrusting into faith, as they both look into each other eyes as they exhibit passion you hear them saying.

Adam: Urgh! my wife will never be as good as you. Oh my God, you feel like heaven!!!!!!!

Faith: I am heaven baby. Forget your wife, she has no place in our new happy life.

As this is looped repeatedly Priscilla regains her voice and begins to scream and cry at Adam for his wrongdoing.

She is in shock and screams

Priscilla: You whore you should die for destroying my family as she races towards faith. I hope you die you disgraceful shit

As tensions begin to escalate, insults are thrown; a fight begins to break out. Panic is all over the room and suddenly the voice of Vuykm shouts

Vuykm: 2

A siren resounds throwing them back into a state of confusion and suddenly another stream appears this time. It is Priscilla in her daughters bed with this man who had been unknown to Adam. In the video we see Priscilla going down on her knees and grabbing Diego the man previously Supposedly unknown to everyone. As this stream plays Adam and the family turn and look at Priscilla in disbelief and he cries

Adam: You hypocritical, lying, good for nothing bitch. how dear you insinuate I die when you have been doing the exactly the same thing.

They seem to be spurred on as everyone begins to choose a side but this doesn’t last too long although the intensity and obvious increased disdain can obviously be felt in the air.

Faith: I told you she was bitch

Adam: I should have believed you

Hunter and Beatrice finally after looking in disbelieve this whole time begin to criticise and curse their parents.

Hunter: You should die for being so selfish and not realising the impact of your actions

Beatrice: I can’t believe this

As they continue to throw accusations Vuykm voice reappears

Vuykm: 3

Streamed across the room Is a video of hunter in a hotel. He is walking towards a room and the Closed Circuit television recording shows a woman open the door and we hear a voice which sounds exactly like faith is heard saying “been waiting for you baby”.

As they bicker faith and hunter deny any wrongdoing but as they try and do this Vuykm’s voice reappears

Vuykm: 4

A stream reappears showing faith and them engulfed in a heated passionate exchange in the elevator of the same hotel.

At this point they are white as milk and grasping for whatever space they can find to escape Adam charging at them. His obvious mannerisms aren’t being led by anger but by confusion. He finds his world crumbling and knows no one to blame and as we are left in his head as he charges to them his thoughts are engulfed with a need to kill faith for betrayal and a longing to kill his wife for being a hypocrite.

Before he is able to digest any of these emotions

Vuykm: 5

A new viewing is shown. This time it is his daughter. The shock on his face is because this time not only is his young daughter having sex. She is having sex with the man with a man in a bed. This isn’t just any bed but it is the same bed this same man had been having sex with his wife As they all begin to despair looking crushed and unable to decide or speak

At this point Vuykm’s voice reappears

Vuykm: 6. Who die and by the way to help with your decision one of you has been unfaithful to the group and contacted a disease. You are dying anyways but you can be cured. This revelation changes the rule. You can now secretly vote for the individual they believe did it and if they get it right they leave but that person dies.

If you get it wrong they all die.

If the person confesses or shows any sign of accepting they all die.

If someone falsely accepts responsibility they all die.

As they ponder who it may be, the lights go down and a timer comes on. This countdown is 30 minutes. As they are sat in silence and disbelief, each begins to think about their lives and how they got into this situation. Questions involved the likes of what do I do? Who do I pick? Should we all just die? Are we all as bad as the other? They look around at each other but hear and see nothing but the countdown to the end of their lives.

To be continued……..

Alone

In this article, we explore what it is to be alone and does being alone really make us lonelier or is it just a natural part of life. Continue reading to find out more

Before you continue have you felt true loneliness? Not the easily remembered kind like friends going out without you or being stuck in a rut after a breakup. No not that loneliness but i mean a feeling of loneliness that can only be described as a longing to belong, a longing to understand yourself. I’m referring to a constant loneliness that is derived by an inability to look past previous experiences. This kind of loneliness creates a bubble in which the outside world is perceived as nothing but your attackers and enemies. Although you know physically you’re fine this loneliness consumes every fiber of your being. It tells your brain you cannot trust, you cannot love,you begin to convince yourself you’re a burden to the world and to people around you.

You feel truly cast out from society (an outcast) but not necessarily because you are an outcast but this feeling i’m talking about is able to consume you and make you feel truly alone even in a crowded room, with friends and family. Every little moment becomes a search for acceptance from the people closest to you. Every task in life you secretly don’t want to do but have to because people expect a large amount of give and take.You are never truly able to find peace due to this constant obsession with finding the answers the mortality, purpose and sometimes life outside the bubble.You have this constant pressure put on you by others, you live in a constant state of fear of public opinion, public scrutiny and lack of general acceptance over who are. This is the loneliness I am referring to. It is a dark, cold and empty place only you know the feeling and only you can understand how to deal with it obviously but if it was that simple you would have the answers and probably would have already eradicated the issues but you don’t or can’t seem to.

This loneliness often leads you to create a bubble of comfort.These comforts keep you happy, entertained and allow you to temporarily forget about your problems but these are not replacements for the hurt you feel and you know this. They are distractions from the real world. They help make you feel empowered when you’re not, beautiful when you feel ugly, rich when your skint but to each their own. Some people turn to food as a way of suppression, some turn to alcohol and some turn to marijuana like substances (drugs). These at some point begin to seem like the only hold you have to reality, your only grip on sanity or even your only true way of getting through interactions with others. Now these substances allow you to close your eyes at night and not have those long conversations with yourself like you used to. They help you forget there’s noone there.They help reduce your fear of tomorrow.They help you feel like you have a purpose and you aren’t just another remnant from the big bang. These substances are not to be touched by others because they are your only source of inspiration and motivation, they cause disputes with friends, family and cause relationships to fail. An example may include a push from a girlfriend asking you to stop smoking weed or friends not consulting  you because these substances cloud your judgement. They begin to feel used, unappreciated and see themselves as your substance providers only needed when you feel an itch for abuse.

You begin to feel that these substances are your only escape and only hope for survival in this crazy world. The bubble they create is wonderful and it keeps your sanity but for how long will that last?The bubble is thick, closing in and suddenly you are beginning to feel as if your creation is killing you. The bubble is your safety,it has your connections, it allows you interact with others without real physical interaction, you feel safe but we forget it’s just a bubble. Back to the first question,have you felt true loneliness? Is it a figment of the imagination or maybe it is just part of the process of growth in life.Detachments, anxiety and continued depression are just things we as humans have to deal with, some more than others. Most instruments of pleasure tend to slowly but ultimately reduce our best before date  so why do we decide to reduce our lifespans in an effort to curb the loneliness.It is a question i have no answer to but i would like to say you are not alone in these feelings. Maybe knowledge of that might bring some sort of warmth or maybe it may not but one thing remains certain and has been proven time and time again.

The bubble will burst. It may not be today , tomorrow or even in a timeframe you can imagine but it will because it’s either you find a solution or allow the bubble consume you. Nothing replaces human interaction as a cure for the loneliness described above. Not the human interaction gotten from posting a picture for likes or the interaction from the likes of twitter but real personal close quarters interaction. The anxiety that comes along with being able to share and open up with people will always remain an issue but what remains important is being able to understand human interaction will always be a give and take because life is filled with these moments. Someone will stab you in the back, others will talk behind your back but all i can say is you never know what the outcome will be without trying. Substances create a wonderful short term experience but will ultimately be your downfall when dealing with issues of loneliness because they don’t deal with the long term issues but create a short term bubble for you the stay in a state of utter confusion about where life is headed and when the day is done you see that you’re not any better off than when you began.

Tornado: A political dialogue

In this fictional post apocalyptic world, the leaders of the space race convene in space to discuss our way forward.

By Karl Idowu

The year 2027

Date : Unknown

Location: Space X moonbase

A white light shoots across the windows as not so young peter thiel looks down at what he once called home. He is joined by his pals,a rogue gang of new world leaders, Richard 76, Mark 42, Elon 56 and Jeff 63. They all grab their prepared drinks of choice as they wonder into the dining failities which houses the crew and families of the select survivors chosen to start life after the war which no one could have predicted, has whipped out most of their loved ones and distant family members. I just an engineer, in this case a fly on the wall, in the grand scheme of things listened in as they spoke and I must say the conversation really had my mind wondering. Not because of the severity of the issues addressed but because of the perspective they viewed the world in. This conversation ranges from what went wrong that year? Where the signs there? How could it have been fixed? Was it wrong we didn’t explain the true severity and how did they get away it?

Now for the average engneer like myself lucky enough to be prevy to survive, my recollection of events portrayed the violence as a necessity at the time due to false propaganda and an uneducated understanding of what was really going on. I was none the wiser of the consequences of the actions of our leaders and the absolute thirst for power which led to were we are today. All i cared about just like the mere masses were miniscule and none revolutionary or even important matters. There were signs but hey who cares what’s going on 2000km away? As long as i was safe and had my little material things, yes my little ideas of comfort and success.  My sense of danger idle and keen eye for economical and political developments left me uninterested after a while. Now as a reader I know you’re dying to read what was said to find the answers to the future you seek, before i proceed i would remind you that my account may be abit woozy and this was only based off what i was able to overhear however i still feel it will be insightful and helpful in preventing us getting to this point if found in the past.

The conversation from when I started listening in, began with Elon

A little background on the chums

Elon. He stands counting earth days at roughly age 56 which is why we call him Elon 56. Elon according to earth records was a South Afrrican-born Canadian-American business magnate, investor, Engineer,and inventor. He started a number of companies just like his counterparts  and their genius led them to success but absolutely noone could have predicted the failure of his car venture or solar power demise.

I mean how could they? It had over taken ford and Gm in market share and was well on the way to becoming the greatest ecological protectionist company on earth. I mean everyone saw and believed in his vision so what went wrong? How could this have happened? we also wondered. The answer to this question was being answered by the powerful man himself.

Elon 56: It’s funny how shortsighted they were.

Jeff: Oh not this again Elon!

He excalimed to the unwavering tongue of elon

Elon ignores with an arrogant stare away

Elon 56: I’m just saying I feel the real the problem was the shortsighted approach we all had as human of earth 1.

Richard: Not all of us he sniggers with content

Richard: Some of us saw and predicted it before others

Jeff:  “We’ve all heard your virgin stories as he glances at Richard and continues but as you know old man it’s not who did it first but it’s who did it best.

Elon 56: Technically guys I did it first. Needless to say we all did it pretty successfully or else we wouldn’t be here. Now back to what i was saying. I believe the short sighted nature of the human race led us to lose trust in the global agenda which led to a fall in our faith in humanity which ultimately led to our demise.I should have showed and expressed my vision more. I blame myself.

Mark: That an easy cop out for not choosing not to understand the root cause of the actual problem i feel was connecting people to each other and this over flow of information accelerated our destruction. I blame myself

Jeff: You can’t blame yourself for wanting to revolutainze the world. Look at amazon who knew that the enhancing delivery and processes like i envisioned would lead to new ways of transporting the worlds worst encrypion and products. I blame myself.

Richard: Nah I’m fine really, I did nothing but good for the world and that’s how i will be remembered.

Mark: Oh really? you feel that way, we had viison of changing and helping the world. were they perfect i think not but are none of us here without blame? It is irresponsible to sit down here and say we all weren’t to blame for the human race are the blame for where we are and that unfortunately includes us as well as the perished.

Richard: I was not responsible for the attrocities of the war but was just a mere survivor. If having prior knowledge about the events due to my ability to keep informed and be prepared made me a bad person then who are the goods one left I ask?

Silence across the room.

Richard: I grow tired of the buffonery exhibited when throwing blame from one person to another. We were part of the solution but were shunned , who fault is that.The events were present for everyone to see and the outcomes not so difficult to deduce.

Elon; You say this like they were there for the naked eye to see

Richard: Well if you must make us recollect the events i believe we have enough time.

Mark: We’ve studied this and know this

Richard: yes we have but you still are as clueless today as you were decades ago don’t forget your sheltered harvard life. Now I think events really began in syria. Let’s put aside, for the time being, that the Trump administration openly admitted it had no clue what it was going to do in Syria after the airstrikes. Or that key members of Congress and in the administration were clearly eager for “regime change” in Syria with no plan for the aftermath. And the fact that hardly anyone seemed to care that Russia’s former president Dmitry Medvedev said that the strikes put the US “on the verge of a military clash with Russia” – a nuclear power with thousands of warheads.

Mark: We all know this didn’t start with trump

Elon: True trump was a mad man but this started with bush and blair

Jeff: I’ll have to admit that this began before Donald. It really had to do with Oil money, power,corruption and greed. This was in the system before him. I mean are we going to act like the attrocities committed in countries which included Libya, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Sudan, Iran, Somalia, Afghanistan, North korea beginning in 2003 till 2019 all began with donald?

Mark: Murdoch and the media had the people fooled the cover ups and promotion of the singular western ideology was a terrible doctrine looking back. I mean i remember the first real reports that got to me. It involved US airstrikes claiming the lives of 200 civilians in Iraq, as well as dozens being killed in separate strikes supposedly aimed at Islamic State in Syria and several more women and children died in a raid gone awry in Yemen.

Richard: Those were just a few examples of the many attacks launched under the pretext of defeating Isis, don’t be naive how much good were these attacks that wreaked havoc on civilian populations? i mean the US military ramped up its bombing campaigns in multiple counties but were never tried.

Elon: At the same time, the Trump administration was expanding official US “war zones” in Somalia and Yemen, while working to “make it easier for the Pentagon to launch counterterrorism strikes anywhere in the world”.This alongside loosening restrictions on preventing civilian deaths that were put in place by the Obama administration was only going to create more problems than it was ever going to solve.

Peter: I’ve heard enough of these naivity, the best and most appropriate course of action was taken I believe, like are we going to sit here and pretend Bashar al-Assad  wasn’t a monster and a butcher? Do you  also want to pretend the people of Syria didn’t suffer incredibly? Or are we now going to pretend North Korea wasn’t potentially dangerous and unpredictable? Iran was far from innocent on the world stage which was the same with Iraq and Russia not minimising all the other threats to world peace.

Richard: The issue wasn’t these countries intervening in the American way of life but America intervening in these countries and situations that didn’t need them. We aren’t here talking about what ifs because we’ve seen what happens. We are on a space station looking at the wreck! the real issue here is how without knowing the protector needed to be protected and the defender became the defended. How could the blind lead an army?

Peter: Stop stop stop, we all knew other things were going to kill us. We had climate change in full force, uncontrollable weather disasters, religious wars, famine, droughts left and right. If anything the nuclear tensions were a distraction from all these things.

Mark: So because all these were coming, it wasn’t our jobs to save the world?

To be continued.

Unique: A philosophical insight

In this article we explore what it means to be unique. Are we unique? What makes us unique and if everyone is unique doesn’t that mean no-one is unique?

By Karl Idowu

Questions to ponder before progressing.

Are you unique

Are you religious

Do you believe in God?

if you believe in God, why do you believe?

if you can’t explain an event, do you automatically turn to God?

If you don’t believe in God, what do you believe in and why?

You are unique. Oh! yeah, I never heard that before you might think to yourself but are you unique? Are you one of a kind? Are you the only one of your “kind” that exists? The simple answer isn’t all that simple. Our opinion on our levels of individuality are subjective but are you unique? Yes. yes, you are. Now you know you are what does this mean? Does it mean it makes you better than your fellow man? Does it make you smarter, stronger or even more special than your fellow man? No, in reality, it doesn’t so what does the label unique really mean? Everyone has an answer but if everyone has a different answer does this mean there is an actual answer? A scientist asked might go into a scientific argument of genetic composition etc while a religion sympathiser will make claim to God’s and their powers. Others might say things like you are a combination of factors which are only specific to you. All in all, everyone seems to have their own views and ideas about what makes an individual unique. It doesn’t make me cynical to believe we have our views on our unique attributes, it’s just based on people’s historical behaviour. Now another question to ponder, should the search for answers to questions about life, it’s true meaning, our purpose and finding true happiness divide or bring us together? It brings me to my favourite saying “birds of the same feather flock together”. it’s not just about being unique but it’s the understanding of the fact that you may be unique in your being but in reality, you are just another sand in the hourglass that is the days of our lives. It’s not about thinking your unique, it’s understanding being unique doesn’t make you special. it makes you normal. The view that all reality is one being is called monism, and although I wouldn’t consider myself a monist the ideas shared here have logical merit. One implication of monism is that all entities, including ourselves and the things around us, are somehow parts of one single being. According to the findings of Spinoza each individual is composed of many other individuals, forming a series increasing in complexity. For instance, multiple cells and micro-organisms make up a fish; multiple fishes, plants, stones and water make up a river; multiple rivers, mountains and land make up the earth; multiple planets make up the universe, and so on. The existence of every finite thing is caused by another finite thing. So using this premise would it be safe to say God is not a creator who forms individual things and beams them into existence. Nor did God create the world, or the universe, in this way. All finite modes, including the earth, the sun and the stars, are caused by God as other finite modes. Now as a deeply religious person reading this, you may call this blasphemy before even considering the logical nature of this argument but doesn’t that say more about your religious tolerance than it does my disbelief? Religion dictates People have free will so you choose to serve God but religion also states God has a master plan. Another contradiction of itself.

Let’s see and question some religious beliefs.

●  the belief that God acts with an intention or purpose; Human construct and not proven

●  the belief that God has organised the world for the sake of
human or divine purposes; Human construct and not proven

●  the belief that natural things exist for the sake of human or
divine purposes; Human construct and not proven

●  the belief that the universe has a final purpose, and that the
universe is moving towards fulfilling that purpose. Human construct and not proven

ethics

Spinoza’s ethics argues that these beliefs are superstitions that do not reflect the truth. Now the fact some of the ideas shared in the work is taken from the work of Spinoza could give way to the religious reader saying he was an atheist, devil worshipper etc but I employ the religious to go search and find how condemned him and his work was. I employ the reader don’t just the read the about the fact he was condemned but i employ you to search by who and why was he condemned. The simple answer is the religious community, in this case, the church but this is not about religious condemnation. Not to say the religious are judgemental but the history of speaking out against certain beliefs/religions has seen condemnation and still remains a trend in modern day society.This brings me to next point would it be false to say human beings developed an image of God based on a maximised version of their own abilities and tendencies? No, it would not be. This is because every finite mode naturally regards things from its own perspective. As Spinoza puts it, humans think of God as eminently human; if a triangle could speak, it would say that God is ‘eminently triangular’”. Our human-centric view of the world leads us to judge things and events according to what is most useful to us. Consequently, human beings have developed a series of value-terms with which we judge natural phenomena: good, evil, order, confusion, beauty, ugliness, etc. Since people have different experiences and different purposes, we disagree with one another and differ in our judgements. Evidence of this can be found through the fact, most rural tribes and people believe in God’s of their own creations without ever witnessing or seeing an outsider’s God’s. Most writer start of writing a piece of literature, usually with the intent of having of a conclusion this piece does not try to do that. It is trying to help shed more light on the issue of the religious division so we can continue a dialogue as we can no longer be silent about the religious path of destruction the world is on. There shall not be another world war this time based on religion for we shall not be silent. Religion and God are superstitions that keep people ignorant. Only by breaking free of this superstition will we be able to seek true understanding of the universe, thereby gaining true insight into ourselves as the unique human beings.

The Leader

What does it mean to lead? In this article we explore what it means to be a leader

By Karl Idowu

Throughout history, much has been written about what it means to be a leader. Ancient Chinese military general and Art of War author Sun Tzu described a leader as one who cultivates the moral law, and strictly adheres to proper methods and discipline." Nineteenth-century historian Thomas Carlyle believed leaders were born and not made, while English philosopher Herbert Spencer argued that leaders were the result of the society in which they lived.

The decades that followed brought countless studies and research reports that detailed a wide variety of leadership skills, styles and characteristics, with researchers identifying a distinct leader. Some authors even devoted their work to all the personal factors that influence an individual approach to management. With all of these differing schools of thought, it’s clear that there is no single definition of leadership. What works for one leader may not necessarily work for another, depending on the circumstances and personality type. But there one thing that nearly every academic, historian and even leaders themselves agree upon a true leader must be able to inspire his or her team.

Leaders can get the best out of people.

Top leaders are consistent with their approach, get their hands dirty and create a company culture that will last long after he or she has left. Comfort zones are almost nonexistent under strong leadership because each team member is pushed to their full potential. Great leaders also hire and inspire other great leaders, whom they trust to carry out the company mission and instil a sense of purpose that touches each and every staff member.

Leadership is all about giving and serving.

It is lonely at the top, but that is no excuse for not giving generously of your time, your experience and your encouragement to your team — and never expecting any of that in return. You are the person in the unique position of finding or uncovering strengths in people, leveraging them and celebrating them. If you’re going to lead, and lead well, you have to put it all out there every day, regardless of the outcome.Leaders who hold back will eventually hold their teams back

Leaders are described with a mouthful of adjectives, such as passionate, visionary, charismatic, motivational and encouraging. However, I propose leadership is something simpler. It is ambition. Ambition creates hard work, determination and an unconditional desire to achieve. It generates an absolutely contagious energy that people follow and join naturally. If you are a leader in your organisation, there is only one thing you need to understand about your role: never let your ambition fade.

Good leaders have a good attitude. A good leader can hold his or her emotions in check, especially in tough situations. For example, maybe you lost your best client, or a deal you’ve been working on falls through. Regardless, it’s important for leaders to guide a team through challenging times, encouraging them and remaining positive along the way. Team morale is heavily contingent upon a leader’s attitude.

Leadership means being in touch with your people.

A leader places the people around him or her in a position that sets them up for success. This is a difficult task because a leader must have an in-depth understanding of each individual, such as understanding their career goals and knowing what motivates them. By being committed to helping each person achieve their own personal goals, the leader sets the organisation up for greatness. Leaders are [also] good listeners. They listen to verbal and nonverbal cues to understand [what is] occurring in the organisation. This allows you to address problems before they become big issues.

Leaders set the right example.

Leadership is setting an example in the way you act each day while focusing on the bigger picture. It is about setting the tone for your team and organisation in the way you interact with your own staff, your business partners and your customers. As a leader, it is your responsibility to establish goals, innovate, motivate and trust. A passionate and compassionate leader can energise a company. Set an example of cooperation, trust and openness. Focus on solutions and positivity instead of finding faults and blame for actions.

Leaders cannot stand alone.

The out-and- out leader in today’s volatile and uncertain business environment had better not distance him or herself from the heat of the action.Demonstrating the competence to assess, decide and execute in a growing business drives confidence in the leader. Similarly, a great leader of an enterprise stands on the shoulders, not of managerial Muppets who obediently do as they are directed, but of other leadership giants who have different and complementary leadership skills. A business with only one leader will remain forever a small business.