The Smile for the Camera Relationships

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Growing up, I realized quite early that God made my feet annoyingly big. My dad and brothers couldn’t pass down shoes to me because as early as 17, I had outgrown everyone’s shoe size.

During Youth Service, the NYSC officials couldn’t provide me with a shoe that could fit. I wear 46/47 and the most they had in my camp was size 45 so I was the only corper exempted from wearing boots. I wore slippers and my own shoes around the camp. It was that bad.

Have you ever seen a shoe you like but heartbroken that it doesn’t fit?

I go to the market to get shoes and come back depressed. The gorgeous shoes I see aren’t my size but with anger coupled with optimism, I buy one or two that fit a bit.
I wear them out to occasions and get the “beautiful shoe” compliments left, right and center which should be enough to offset the pain my feet is feeling. Right? WRONG!!!
When no one is looking, I find a place to get the damn shoes off, stretch my feet and let them breathe. It’s never worth it.

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Does my shoe struggles sound familiar with some relationship problems?

She’s beautiful, hot and quite presentable. She’s like a trophy wife. People keep gushing about her looks and poise but inside no one knows what you are enduring. She’s difficult to handle. She’s disrespectful. She’s lazy. She’s contentious.
He’s handsome, hardworking and funny with a very healthy bank account. He’s every girl’s dream. Girls are envious of you both and guys are jealous but inside no one knows what you are enduring. He speaks to you in a condescending manner, shouts at will and strikes you when he can’t stand your complaints.

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Let’s look at this “smile for the camera” type of relationships we keep having from another angle.

You are to travel from Abuja to Lagos by road with your family and given two options;
First is an unpainted Sienna bus with a regularly serviced engine, tires and a well-trained driver.
Second is a 2017 Range Rover Sports Utility Vehicle with a faulty engine, tired looking tires and an aggressive Fast and Furious driver.
Which of the automobiles would you choose to travel in?

Easy choice right?

So why do we stay in abusive relationships because of what people will say?
Why do we stay in stale relationships that look good on the outside but toxic on the inside?
Why do we keep managing relationships that are leading to nowhere?
Why do we keep praying for the wrong man to change instead of praying for the right man to find you?
Why do we keep entertaining a promiscuous partner with the excuse that “the devil you know is better than the angel you don’t”?
Why do we keep forgiving a partner that slaps and beats you at will because he loves you and maybe “it’s my fault he slapped me”?
Why do we smile for the camera (family, friends, colleagues, social media contacts) like we have a perfect relationship when we are dying on the inside?

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It’s time you drop what people might think and stand by what you think because at the end of the day, “no one knows where the shoe pinches, but he who wears it.”
Don’t be the sad and bruised girl in a Range Rover Sport looking out of the window and admiring the happy and joyous girl in a taxi.
Life is too short to be unhappy.
A broken engagement is better than a broken marriage.
Stop sitting on the fence and take that leap of faith.
Who cares what the camera sees when you are hurting in camera (pun intended).
Get out now while you still can.

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Making Genuine Friends Doggystyle

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WAYS TO MAKE PEOPLE LIKE YOU

#Principle 4:
Anytime a friend pays me a visit at home, the first question they ask before even entering the gate is “hope you don’t have a dog?” It seems the innocence and beauty of dogs have been defeated by the way we use them in this part of the world which is mainly for security purposes. Let me not even talk about a particular tribe in Nigeria that eats dogs (their judgement is in Heaven..lol).
It was not until I traveled out that I knew why the dog was called man’s best friend. Dogs are treated like citizens, they have their clothing lines, some even have their own charities where people donate money monthly for their upkeep. Dogs eat three square meals like humans not in Nigeria were we give dogs the remnants of what we eat. Why do you think dogs are so loved abroad? Its simple. Dogs love people genuinely and they show it. You could see a dog coming down the street, when you get within ten feet of him, he will begin to wag his tail. If you stop and pat him, he will almost jump out of his skin to show you how much he likes you. And you know that behind this show of affection on his part, there are no ulterior motives: he doesn’t want to market a product to you, he doesn’t want to ask you for money, he doesn’t want to sleep with you, he doesn’t want to marry you. They are just genuinely happy to see you. A dog makes his living by giving you nothing but love.
The dog shows us that you can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you. Have you ever met someone that always talks about themselves, how much money they make, how many cars they have, the company they work for. They derive pleasure by trying to make you like them by bragging about themselves and their achievements. Have you noticed that those people hardly make sincere friends because instead of making people like them for who they are, they make people like them for what they have (when the money is gone, such friends are gone also).
People are not interested in you. They are not interested in me. They are interested in themselves – morning, afternoon and evening. Day and night. Rainy season and dry season. When I say people are interested in themselves I mean their careers, their lives, their children, their families, their jobs and anything that concerns them.

If we merely try to impress people and get people interested in us, we will never have many true and sincere friends. Friends, real friends, are not made that way. Alfred Adler, the famous Viennese psychologist, wrote a book entitled What Life Should Mean to You. In that book he says: “It is the individual who is not interested
in his fellow men who has the greatest difficulties in life and provides the greatest injury to others.”
I have discovered from personal experience that one can win the attention and time and cooperation of even the most sought-after people by becoming genuinely interested in them. One of the lessons I learnt in preparing for an interview is never talk too much about yourself and your achievements, tell the interviewers how you can help their company move forward and help make them money.
If we want to make friends, let’s put ourselves out to do things for other people – things that require time, energy, unselfishness and thoughtfulness. If we want to make friends, let’s greet people with animation and enthusiasm. When somebody calls you on the telephone use the same psychology. Say “Hello” in tones that bespeak how pleased you are to have the person call. Many companies train their telephone operators to greet all callers in a tone of voice that radiates interest and enthusiasm. The caller feels the company is concerned about them. Let’s remember that when we answer the telephone tomorrow.

Don’t forget that you can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you.

PRINCIPLE 4:
Become genuinely interested in other people.
Reference:
How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie