…Wake up! Robin Hood Wouldn’t Be There Forever!
When I was little, I had loads of dreams. And one of them was that I wanted to be like Robin Hood. If you were living in my area at that time, you’d have noticed that almost all the kids around had that same dream (except for others who wanted to be like Superman). When it was time for NTA to display the next adventure of our hero, we’d suspend whatever we were doing and got ourselves glued to a TV set because we didn’t want to miss even a soupçon of any episode. After seeing an episode, we routinely came together to chew the fat and wrangle for hours over of the various key moments.
On many occasions, we acted out the role of various characters in our small neighborhood. But since we didn’t have money to buy real bows, each of us creatively made ours using a curved flexible piece of twig and a taut thread fastened to the two ends. While for the arrows, we simply settled for another twig that we sharpened at the very tip. Unfortunately, while we enjoyed ourselves trying to be like Robin Hood, our lovely mums whinged about their missing threads and the mystery surrounding the depleting state of their kitchen brooms. Well, we’re all grown-ups now and therefore, our mums need not bother about their brooms and threads—they’re now safe. Briefly, who’s Robin Hood? He was a legendary hero in medieval England that was highly skilled in archery and swordsmanship. He led an outlaw band known as the Merry Men in daring forest adventures and fought against authority that he considered greedy and dishonest. Robin Hood was well-known for his compassion for women, children, and for robbing from the rich and giving to the poor. Robin Hood was a very courageous hero, which perhaps explained why someone like me wanted to be like him.
Recently, I started reflecting on the whole adventure of Robin Hood, and I’ll like to share with you one powerful truth that I discovered. Even though I still remain an unabashed aficionado of Robin Hood, I strongly disagree with his poverty eradication formula: robbing from the rich and giving to the poor! No doubt, his PE-formula brought smile on the faces of those indigents, but it failed to address their problem from a long-term, sustainable standpoint. Perhaps, what Robin Hood didn’t understand was that, the state of their penury couldn’t be truly solved by him just doling out stolen bucks. Unarguably, Robin Hood tried his best, but no matter how much he did, those indigents still couldn’t make it to the class of the truly rich. Well, I don’t really blame him; I only blame those indigents who relied on him as a solution to their state of penury. If they’d known that the real solution to changing their status was right inside of them, perhaps they wouldn’t have placed their fate on a single man. Simply put, they’d have paddled their own boat.
Alas, quite a good number of us today still operate with the same mentality as those indigents in the Robin Hood’s story. Instead of us to wake up to the clear reality that we’re in charge of our own destiny, we hopefully hurl it to our parents, uncles, aunts, friends, cousins, or even to the so-called godfathers (or godmothers). While some of us transverse the field of life with a flawed belief that somebody will one day show up and level the mountains of our lives, others brag about their nexus to a well-heeled third party.
Listen friend, achieving true success in life demands that you take absolute responsibility for your destiny. You’ve to rise up each day and see yourself as the designer of your own future. Stop placing your destiny in the hands of any man, be it Robin Hood, your employer, or anyone. When you begin to take control of the outcomes in your life, when you see yourself as the captain of your life’s ship, the good news is that you’ll be responsible enough to develop the right capacity to attract and sustain success. True success is not for babies—it’s for grown-ups. It’s for those few who’d be man enough to confront life’s challenges and be in control of their own fate. Hence, are you one of them? Don’t chicken out of the mountains of your life hoping that one macho would show up and level it for you. Go ahead and face it! If you don’t like the state of your current condition, the responsibility is on you to change it. If you like the state of your current condition but you still want to move to the next level, the responsibility is still on you to get it done.
Sure, someone may take you under his wings, but that should be for a while. If you must soar, then you must learn how to develop your own wings. James Allen, in his beautiful book, As a Man Thinketh, said, “A strong man cannot help a weaker unless that weaker is willing to be helped. And even then the weak man must become strong of himself. He must, by his own efforts, develop the strength which he admires in another. None but himself can alter his condition.” No one has the greatest responsibility to slay the giants in your life than you. Yet, the good news is that all that you need to fight the battle already lies inside of you waiting to be tapped. Now, while it’s usually easier to have a Robin Hood do it for you, it still doesn’t help you build the right capacity to attract and sustain success when he is gone. Like every other hero, the Robin Hood in your life will one day leave the scene. What then would you do? Caveat!
Chinonso Ogbogu is a highly sought-after conference speaker, personal development trainer, prolific writer, and radio personality. He is the radio host of SuccessMatters™ and the creator of the GET INSIGHT, GET INSPIRED™ brand.