HOW EXAMINATION MALPRACTICE SAVED MY LIFE (A Lesson Learnt) – Part 2

*This is the second and final part of this article; if you haven’t read the part one, you may read it here https://wealthymotivator.wordpress.com/2014/02/12/how-examination-malpractice-saved-my-life-a-lesson-learnt-part-1/

I HAVE ALWAYS THOUGHT highly of myself – there’s nothing worse than being caught cheating; I felt the greatest punishment was to be shamed before my course mates, and my girlfriend was sited next to me. I quickly resolved that it was more honorable to ‘fail’ ‘gracefully’ and come back for the re-sit the next session than be shamed for malpractice – malpractice!

I walked out (not like Morpheus as I had planned but like a chicken beaten in the rain), without writing a thing on my answers script.
I learnt a great lesson that day that has stuck with me till today and I have resolved to tell my kids and grand kids this story over and over again to teach and remind them of that important lesson – which is, do not, for whatsoever reason, be caught unprepared. Be always ready. Do your due diligence.

Of course we already know it that success in any endeavor – life and work – does not just happen; it takes preparation and action. You can only act rightly when you are properly prepared. For that examination, I wasn’t and I failed.

Understand, for everything that you will ever want or desire to accomplish in life and whatever work you may do, there are certain courses of action that you would need to take to get yourself ready for success. If you’re not prepared you will fail, no doubt. And if you’re not prepared you’ll know it.

In life, sometimes, you will get ideas, thoughts, inspirations, on the right course of action, make a move while you still can; learn all that you can and or need to, because judgment day will come when you will no longer have the time to do anything but face the gavel.

The lack of preparation will cost you more than the lack of capital or so called ‘experience’.

When you are really prepared, you can stand in the day of trial and defend your honor, proudly, with your shoulders high.
Robert T. Kiyosaki, said, “The future will be very bright for those who prepare for it today.” Myles Munroe said “Your future is bright, whether you get there is up to you.” Read, research, ask questions, do what you have to do, get ready.

Opportunities will come, challenges will rise. If you’re not ready you’ll give up in the day of trial, which would mean that your strength is small, which would mean you were not properly prepared – you’re not ready. It pays to be ready. Don’t do what I did – you can cheat in an examination but you can’t cheat in life.

*Do you have any lessons that examination mal-practice taught you? Or any other? Please, do share with us in the comments section.

Follow me on Twitter: @WealthyJack

Stanley G. Jack is the author of “Who Took My Job?”(@WhoTookMyJob) and his next book “GOOD TO GO: How To Succeed In Life & Work After NYSC”, out in June 2014.

HOW EXAMINATION MALPRACTICE SAVED MY LIFE (A Lesson Learnt) – Part 1

*This is the first of a two-part essay; be sure to read the next instalment.

I WILL BE VERY FRANK with you here, and not try to bullshit you, in no way; during one of my examinations, many years ago, in my second semester of my Diploma in Law programme, I walked into the arena, as bold and poised as Don Corleone in the movie ‘The Godfather’. As far as I was concerned this particularly exam was already a walk-over, done and dusted and at a 100% grade. We were sitting for ‘Constitutional & Administrative Law’ by barrister Felix.

Few minutes into the exam my boldness and Don Corleone’s poise suddenly dissipated, my heart began beating faster than I could spell my own name; I began feeling like a smuggler who had wraps of cocaine concealed in his pants and here standing before the smart immigration officer who had detected and arrested the two others in front of me. The examination arena became uncomfortable and I had started sweating – like a Christmas goat. My God!

I looked at the exam papers before me, seeing that I was ‘familiar’ with every question in it was no consolation – it rather made me feel worse. I looked at the answers booklet, it was empty – I hadn’t written a single word on it except my examination credentials.

Something significant had happened the night before; at about 10:PM, I had picked up the course materials. As I opened the books I instantly and ‘miraculously’ began feeling like Moses receiving the Ten Commandments from Jehovah on Mount Sinai – I mean, I was getting strong inspirations and conviction on some particular topics – my spirit and mind and all my body language were in sync, saying to me (sort of) “Jack, read these places. Don’t dull now. They’re coming out for the exam tomorrow.” For some inexplicable reason I chose to not heed the ministration of that still voice; instead I cut out tiny pieces of paper and copied out these topics that were ‘jumping’ at me.

The lecturer for this course was a jovial personality until he chooses to really get serious. We liked him more when he was jovial. The morning of the exam, in my socks, and under the lining of my belt and wallet were tucked different pieces of tiny papers containing possible answers to anticipated questions, so that I knew where to touch for each item.

So that as soon as I starred at my question paper and to my uttermost amazement, they were as exactly as I had written them out in these tiny pieces of paper I now had on me. With these tiny pieces, all I had to do was root them out one after another and literally ‘pour’ them unto my answers booklet and then the examination would be over and I would walk out of the arena feeling cooler than Morpheus in the movie ‘The Matrix.’

Then I got the biggest shock; five minutes into the examination, two of my course mates had been apprehended cheating, with ‘exhibits’ – to nail them, their scripts torn apart, and disgracefully they were thrown out of the examination arena. We all knew what that meant – automatic failure and ‘carry-over’. Not only that, if they got charged to the Examination Disciplinary Committee, they were facing expulsion. What an embarrassment.

Now, there I sat, paralyzed with fear and inaction. I kept thinking how in the world was he able to pick out the two smartest cheats, in the whole of the arena, in just five minutes of start time? How? Was he using some supernatural influence? I couldn’t understand it. Would I get caught if cheated too? I couldn’t tell.

A very simple examination, this was, yet I couldn’t write a word on paper because I didn’t do what I was supposed to do the night before – I didn’t read. And now, I couldn’t bring out my ‘bullets’.

To be continued…

Please drop your comments. Thanks.

Follow me on Twitter: @WealthyJack

Stanley G. Jack is the author of “Who Took My Job?”(@WhoTookMyJob) and his next book “GOOD TO GO: How To Succeed In Life & Work After NYSC”, out in June 2014.

SOMEBODY GIVE ME A JOB!

I got to know Fred few months ago when he was just about to be discharged from the National Youth Service. I asked him what he would be doing after service; he said, “look for a job”. It’s over six months, and he’s still not engaged with work – waiting for someone to give him a job. He had being brainwashed.

Our society has succeeded in brainwashing us that we need work in someone else’s business after graduation, instead of creating our own work and building our own businesses. It did not start today. Many years ago before the amalgamation of what they called ‘Southern and Northern protectorates’ in 1914 by the British colonial lords, every people who occupied the spaces that made up Nigeria were naturally entrepreneurs. For instance, the people of the Oyo Empire, the Benin Kingdom, the Kanuri Empire, to mention a few, had already established for themselves a civilization and entrepreneurship-based economy. They farmed, produced and paid royalties or taxes to the ‘Landlords’ or the king – everyone and every family worked for themselves.

When the British colonial masters arrived and defeated these native people through the superiority of their boats and weapons they changed the prevalent economic order and established a different kind of civilization and economy, one based on employee-ship.

They built factories, schools, churches and other businesses. They needed cheap labour to run and grow these establishments; it is interesting to note what they had to do – train the ‘primitive natives’ with just enough information and expertise to be dependent and never self-reliant — just enough to be able to do the jobs as the white man required. Those natives who gained British education were promoted as the most-refined, best and most intelligent and superior human beings among their kinsmen; everything and everyone else were regarded as crude and barbaric. Soon, everyone began believing in the theories and superiority of the white man; then no matter who you were, you worked for the colonial masters as an employee one way or another. Cheap labour and loyal employees were what they wanted and what they succeeded in instilling into those who went to school. Those natives who studied and chose their own paths were labeled ‘rebels’ who must be disciplined.
Nigeria was established as a base of cheap labour and raw materials for the British and foreign industries. After ‘Independence’ from British (and colonial) rule in 1960, our political leaders inherited a system and economy designed not to ‘empower’ and ‘liberate’ people economically but a system of servitude – where most people are only educated enough to serve or do the work required for a fixed amount of money that would never be enough. It has been a long time, and people have forgotten how to be entrepreneurs – productive and self-reliant. The mentality had been formed and perpetuated – to go to school and prove how a zombie you can be by taking orders and doing as you are told (slaves without creative thinking). Then you get fired at the caprice of your employer/master.

Today we have a society where most people, like my nice friend, Fred, think the only thing they can do is seek a job as an employee upon graduation from College or University. That is the effect of the brainwashing. And we have become worse for it. Young people graduate and many months or years after can’t find or create their own jobs. It is pathetic (!) and there needs to be a change. We need a re-building of our mentality, a re-orientation; one that is geared towards self-reliance, individual value and productivity.

When people seek employment it’s not necessarily because they love the job or their boss; they need the money that comes at week or month-end (this is the carrot which keeps the donkey working harder until its back breaks).

In less than six days thousands of Batch “A” ’13 Corps members across Nigeria will be ‘passing out’ from the National Youth Service. My question is, will you be asking “Somebody give me a job!”? If nobody wants to give you a job, create one for yourself and become a job-provider for others.

I say, think differently – your target should be to create and own your work. Kill the brainwashing.


Culled from the book “GOOD TO GO: How to succeed in life and work after NYSC” by Stanley G. Jack, coming out in June. All rights Reserved.

Follow me on Twitter: @WealthyJack

Stanley G. Jack is the author of “Who Took My Job?”(@WhoTookMyJob) and his next book “GOOD TO GO: How To Succeed In Life & Work After NYSC”, out in June 2014.

Mum! Help! There’s a Snake in My Room

I was in the secondary school, my first year, and I was 11 years old. I had gone out with some friends and got home late, tired and feeling sleepy. As soon as I had supper I hit the sheets the fastest I could. In the middle of the night, at about 12:30AM, I opened my tired eyes to discover that I had a snake in my room. It had coiled itself on the cane—sitter. How in the world did it get there I had no idea. Sleep disappeared from my eyes. I jumped off the bed and ran out the fastest way my scared mind and legs could carry me and locked the door outside.

Knock, knock, knock – “Ma, ma, ma!!! Open the door, there’s a snake in my room”. I was scared and breathing heavily. I didn’t want to go back to my room that night. I passed the night in my mother’s room; couldn’t sleep again, I kept thinking and permuting how a snake could have gotten into my room. How? I couldn’t just wait for the break of dawn so I could get some older person to kill this unlawful intruder. But what if it succeeds in hiding somewhere in my room that I become unable to locate it in the morning? That was the scariest possibility.

As soon as it was morning, and the sun was out, I walked gently– tip toed, like a criminal in a night operation, opened my door the gentlest way possible without making a noise. I was now carrying the longest stick I could find that could kill a snake from a considerable distance. As soon as I opened the door, tip toed toward the snake and raised the stick I was carrying to kill it…that was when I saw it – I couldn’t believe my eyes. I hit it a couple of times then picked it up with the edge of the stick and took it to my mother. “Ma, look at the snake that intruded my room last night!” My mother looked at me as if I had spoken in Hindi, as if it was a joke…then almost at the same time, we burst out in laughter. It was my black belt all along, not a snake. My tired eyes had deceived me in the night.

When I got to the room tired and sleepy I had thrown my clothes around the room in many directions and my black belt fell on the chair and coiled itself like a snake. I couldn’t stop laughing. Often I tell the story today, and we always have a good laugh at home.

It Was Just a Mirage!
Life will play that Snake-in-my-room trick on you many times, circumstances will come at you, and challenges will rise against you. You will be scared, no bullshit. Your first natural instinct will scream “Run, baby, run!” Your mind and even certain people will audaciously say to you to give up, but if you toughen up and look closely you’ll discover it is all a mirage; it isn’t real.

Challenges are a fact of life and all they want to do to you is to scare the shit out of you. Fear will make you blow things out of proportions — a man can never think straight at moments of fear.

Yes, problems do arise and things will not go as planned. But success would require that you be fearless; bravodo is a virtue; have staying-power, to persevere and not give up nor give in; to not allow yourself be intimated by internal or external fear and that’s how you will win many of life’s battles. You should win. Be fearless.

*This article original appeared on http://www.omojuwa.com

Follow me on Twitter: @WealthyJack

Stanley G. Jack is the author of “Who Took My Job?”(@WhoTookMyJob) and his next book “GOOD TO GO: How To Succeed In Life & Work After NYSC”, out in June 2014.

2015: The Biggest Show-down In Nigeria’s Political History (or not?)

Between July 1967 and January 1970 Nigeria was at war; our country men were killing each other with guns and grenades. Men died in the thousands at the frontlines (including my uncle, Blessing Frank Jack) fighting a course that most of them did not even understand and women and children starved to death at home and in the bushes in Biafra. It was a terribly bloody and devastating civil war (one of the worst wars ever fought in world history), which should never have happened in the first place – the war could have been avoided.

If the Biafran civil war could have been avoided, why then did it happen? Simple: because of the ego (massaged by sycophants) of two men; one at the Federal level and the other at the Regional level – Gowon and Ojukwu.

It is 2014, 34 years after, two men (again) have risen, their ego driving them – in like manner, one at the Federal (President – Goodluck Ebele Jonathan ) and the other at the State level (Governor – Rotimi Chibuike Amaechi).

One year before the war, aids and supporters were making all manner of inflammatory statements and employing all manner of desperate propagandas (it is happening again, 34 years after).
The same calibre of propaganda machinery employed by both sides, one year before the Biafran war, is being employed by the APC/PDP today, one year before the general elections. Both sides are showing signs of high desperation in attempt to cultivate public sentiments.
For both sides it is fight to finish, as defeat is perceived as total irrelevance or demise.

My mother, Margaret, jokingly tells us of the war that Ojukwu said “To keep Nigeria one there must be attack,” and Gowon responded “Attack must be done,” and then there began the war.

GEJ’s men have declared “PDP will rule Nigeria for decades” – 50 years? And RCA says “Only a fool will vote for GEJ.” Now the ‘armoury’ is being stocked for the BIGGEST show-down in Nigeria’s political history.

For political (and personal) gains, the rule of law has been despised, state institutions such as the Police and other Law Enforcement agencies have been ‘hijacked,’ judicial processes are been abused, bomb scare, Boko Haram, accusations and counter-accusations, have being injected into the political-propaganda machinery; we had the worst civil war in world history, now, we are going to have the world’s biggest/fiercest political battle. We no dey carry last – ever!

In all of these things, one thing is certain – Nigeria will never be the same again after 2015 (for better or worse). And history will hold these two men (The President, Goodluck Ebele Jonathan and the Governor of Rivers, Rotimi Chibuike Amaechi) to account whichever way the pendulum swings. May there not be the re-enactment of the 2007/2008 Kenyan political situation on our lands. We don’t want the repeat of the political violence that followed the 2011 general election. Amen! Or, do we?

*This article originally appeared on http://www.omojuwa.com

Follow me on Twitter: @WealthyJack

Stanley G. Jack is the author of “Who Took My Job?”(@WhoTookMyJob) and his next book “GOOD TO GO: How To Succeed In Life & Work After NYSC”, out in June 2014.