FACING YOUR FEARS
Let me go down
memory lane a bit. In my senior year, I can say I was fairly popular. They
called me sparks!! (rolling my eyes). I had a group of friends, 5 of them,
making a total of 6 troublesome girls, but we were not bullies……or so I
thought.
Trouble started
when a new student was transferred to our school, she is very short and talked
a lot!!! We decided to pick on her for no good reason at all!! We would laugh
when she passed, make snide remarks to her hearing and all, but there was no
direct confrontation.
Unknown to us, she
was fed up with our attitude and decided to “bully her bullies”.
Confronting us was out of the question because she identified her weaknesses,
she stepped up her game…and we kept walking about feeling fly *smh*.
She reported us to
the Senior Boarding House Mistress!!!! If you attended any of the Unity
schools, mine was FGGC, Calabar, this is usually the most dreaded person, the
mention of Mrs Ijeoma would literally make you pee in your pants. Oh yes!! She
had the boldness to approach this woman because she was unfairly treated by
some “rascals”.
Believe you me!!
(Mrs Ijeoma’s favorite words) as she firmly touches her chest with both hands.
We were summoned and I, the ringleader was practically shaking, I became the true
version of “puss in boots”. I was shivering in broad daylight. All atom of
pride and toughness just divorced me.
She asked us what
this girl had done to us, I can’t vividly remember what I said, it didn’t make
sense…….but the resounding slap that followed made sense…then the caning
made sooo much sense!! (I dare you to shine your teeth and lose some!!)
 Imagine the shame!!! kneeling before your
victim, crying as you are caned (Bless her heart, she didn’t laugh once), and
then we had to apologize to her. The bullying died that instant.
 Funny enough, we became friends after the
incidence, still friends till date, and oh…she still talks a lot, but on TV
now.
Some few weeks
back, I received a mail, saying I should process my CIBN exemption, else my
account WOULD BE DEBITED BY MONTH END. Infact, they colored it red!! For my
mind…I just dey say…”make person no try me ooo…in this recession?? If Nigeria
is just crawling out of recession…people of God, who I be???….After some
days, I received another counter mail from HR saying “we would not be debited”
with a very nice tone. They were kind enough to encourage us to learn and
improve ourselves professionally…it felt good that my bank was on the lookout
for me and not trying to coerce me.
Bullying comes in
different forms. Whatever you allow have control over you…bullies you.
1. The fear of
speaking up: Many of us have been seeing the survey about “a great place to
work”. You just dey press delete abi?? This is the time to tell it all ooo. You
don’t know who is listening..abi reading. Talk as e dey do you!!! And it is
anonymous sef.
 When I was filling my survey…naso I just dey
see options like “almost true…..forever wasn’t true…..sometimes never true”…I
just weak!!! At the final stage, I saw a box for comments…oh boy!!! I
downloaded everything there..
 (a) Flexitime no go work for branch level ooo
(lemme not disgrace my generation here) amongst others…..*side eye*
Tell them the
changes you want now ooo…speak or remain silent ooo…you want to go on leave and
no headway, put it there!! You didn’t like your appraisal….gbam!! download am.
You close too late from work…No life work balance….talk am….You are 1000yards
wife material and the brothers in your branch are dulling…Sister talk am as e
dey hot!!
 About the Author
Here is what Andikan Inyang also known as ‘Sparks’ has to say about herself………………….

As
a Chemical Engineering graduate, former Immigration Officer and present
day banker…..and most importantly, a foodie, I hide behind my
pen…….therein lies my strength. I hope to pursue a career in writing
and explore the world of poetry. So help me God.
Oluwole Olusanya
Oluwole Olusanya is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of one of the fastest-growing lifestyle and entertainment website in the country. He is a banker, writer, blogger, public affairs analyst and a tax consultant. He anchors Trending Topics on SHEFFA where he shares his thoughts and opinions on trending issues. He is currently studying for a Master’s Degree in Business Administration at the University of South Wales, Wales, United Kingdom. He has diplomas in Banking and Finance, Investigative Journalism, Creative Writing, and Linguistics from Lagos State Polytechnic, Isolo, Lagos, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, Scotland and The Open University, Milton Keynes, United Kingdom.