One of the habits I have constituted over time is that of reviewing my activities for the day, and my planned actions for the following day, before going to bed at night. With this daily review, I am able to assess my achievements and wake up the following day knowing exactly what to do.
It is a few minutes to 12.00AM now and I am, as usual, doing my usual (mental) review.
My mind goes to the discussion I had with a certain gentleman earlier this afternoon. He is someone I have known for years but we had not set eyes on each other for the last ten years. So when we met today, it was an opportunity to catch up.
In the course of our discussion, he reminded me of how I rendered assistance to him some 15 years ago.
Wow! That was a long time ago so I couldn’t remember the particular incident he spoke about.
But this man remembered every detail. He even told me the exact spot where he made the request and gave me a graphic description of what I did to help him.
Before you start thinking that I am blowing my trumpet, let me quickly tell you that I equally receive missiles from people from time to time. For instance, someone accosted me sometime last month to express his annoyance with me. He felt disappointed that I didn’t bother to find out how he eventually sorted a personal problem he once discussed with me.
He was right, I inadvertently forgot his issue. But he held it against me.
In these two examples, you would notice that I actually forgot the issues, but the people involved DID NOT forget!
That’s how people see our actions; whether good or bad.
You could say things thinking that the other person would soon forget; but he may never forgive you.
You may take some actions against someone without blinking, but such actions may be recorded against you forever.
That’s why a young man would go to an organization to seek for employment and the “Oga at the top” would ask, “Who is your father?” If the poor boy’s father happens to be in the bad book of the top man, that would be the end of his hope of getting a job in that organization.
Yet our big boss would ask another young man the same question and exclaim, “So you’re Chief Bello’s son! What a small world. I know your dad; he’s such a nice man.” You can guess what the outcome of that encounter would likely be.
The summary of it all is that whatever we say or do today, we should always remember that some people are taking record of it. They are not only recording our voices and writing down our actions; they are also filming us! Come 10 or 20 years down the line, they are ready to replay everything to us or to our children.
So, be careful! People remember your actions.
Yoruba people are full of wisdom. They have a saying for almost everything. When it comes to the issue of bad behavior, a Yoruba elder will tell you that Asegbe kan o si; asepamo lo wa. This means that whatever you do today is not forgotten, but it remains in safe custody for usage tomorrow.
He will also tell you that Eni to su lo gbagbe, eni to ko ko le gbagbe laelae. This literally means that someone who defecates forgets about it very quickly, but the person who clears the feces never forgets the experience.
Yes, I know that people can be unnecessarily mean.
I take the fact that some people are so satanic that they don’t ever forget or forgive.
But why should we create the room for such people to have something to hold against us?
My sermon is that we shouldn’t give them the opportunity to practice their bad acts. We should not fall prey to them!
You and I should live consciously. Though we may accept that we cannot be 100% perfect; that shouldn’t stop us from aiming at perfection.
Will I pretend not to know that whatever we do, some horrible people will never be satisfied?
No, I won’t pretend not to recognize that fact.
But yours is to do your best, let your conscience be clear, and then leave the rest for the other party.
Ohun ti a ba se loni, oro itan ni bo di ola – Whatever we do today becomes a history tomorrow.
Watch your steps. We are tomorrow’s ancestors.