“Please Help Me”

“I am truly sorry”

“Can you please help me”

“I ‎need a favour”

Words like these aren’t so easy to say or sometimes admit. Most times we rather keep quiet or even pretend that everything else is going smoothly…. except of course you’re drowning in a pool of water. Otherwise most times, as Henry Thoreau noted, humans often lead lives of quiet desperation.

It requires a certain kind of humility to seek out a mentor. It requires humility to admit that you don’t know everything and once in a while shut up and listen, opening your mouth only to ask questions or clarify. It requires humility to think Win-Win or to understand others before seeking to be understood. It requires humility to read a great self-help book from an author you’ve never heard of prior to now, and still abide by its lessons and principles. ‎It requires humilty to even read your Bible or pray. ‎

‎You see everyone has a shadow. It follows you everywhere you go. Whether you like it or not. Except perhaps at noon. When the sun is high up and blazing in all its glory. ‎

In the same way we also have an Ego that follows us wherever we go. Sometimes the Ego can even appear larger than life. Especially when the light now shining upon us is set at an awkward angle.

As kids we would make shadows on walls using candle light. Then with our fingers as puppets we would make the shadows appear as many things from dragons to talking dogs. To be able to do so, you have to be great with contortions and get creative with twisting your fingers in weird manner like a witch would.

In the same way we can attempt to make our Ego look bigger than we really are; we can act a certain way, talk carelessly and even brag, dress more expensive clothes than we save. Drive a car that is more expensive than our business start-up capital. So we end up contorting our true selves and eventually getting twisted. ‎ ‎

The legendary teacher, Zig Ziglar, once said, “You can either feed your family or you can feed your ego. But you can’t do both of them at the same time.”‎ I completely agree.

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So next time you’re feeling super important, take a full bucket of water, punch a hole in it. When you remove your hand, the hole that is left in the water is just how important you are. ‎

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are snarky, offensive, or off-topic.

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6 thoughts on ““Please Help Me”

  1. Fantastic rendering of the true African pride. It’s often confusing, is the ego borne out of ignorance or is it naturally endowed. We often feel ashamed asking for help,so we don’t come across as beggars, or look stupid when we are rejected. This is a topic that should be taught in a high school career class or leadership class. Moving forward 101.
    Thumbs up Ebuka.

  2. Mmmm in this Nigeria? People don’t let their ego get in the way of asking for things. If they think it will be of benefit to them many ppl will go to any length to better themselves even if it is not befitting. People will ask, disturb, beg even roll on the floor and tear their clothes if the financial benefit is large enough

    • @Judy, I see you make a fine point. That’s very true. But you know what I found out? Our Ego makes us twisted.

      So here’s an example. As an undergrad, I begged, knelt down, implored, solicited, grovelled and appealed for my parents to buy me a car. After nearly two years of begging and passing exams not with an incentive to get a good job, but just to somehow earn a car, my dad eventually caved in.

      Now I had a car in my 300 level and I began to imagine I was a super-star. My ego made me imagine that I was now in the league of extra-ordinary gentlemen and I can still remember passing other students who hadn’t yet mastered the fine art of begging for a car, and turning my nose up. How’s that example for an analogy of the foolishness of pride?

      So yes, people will sometimes roll on the floor in private so they can walk on people’s toes in public. They will swear in private shrines so they can serve in public offices. My dear it’s all Ego.