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February 24, 2017

A Word to Our Youths: “Self Development” The Kpim of Financial Breakthrough

 (A Paper Delivered To The Catholic Youths Of St. Patrick’s Parish Umuezeala Owerre Ehime Mbano During Their 2016 Youth Week)

By: Rev. Fr. Oliver N. C. Amaechi Ph.D

The need for human capital development is well known to organisations and firms for optimum productivity. That usually calls for Seminars and Workshops to update the knowledge of the staff on their areas of concern to catch up with what is trending. It is also called personnel development.

Human development is holistic and involves

(1) Physical development which is the growth of a person from conception through birth to childhood; to the adolescent (youthful stage), then adulthood and aging.

(2) Intellectual development involves the growth of reasoning ability which increases as the child matures. It is also called Mental Development.

(3) Spiritual/Moral development: This starts from the age of reason or discernment between good and bad/right and wrong actions and the development of the sense of the sacred, fear and respect for the parents, elders and seniors including fear for punishment. The beginning of youthfulness is the fear of God. How often do you go to Confession and how regular do you receive Holy Communion? Bear in mind that a prayerless youth is a powerless youth. Remember your motto: For God and for Youth, through Christ! You should take the youthful saints as your model; such saints as Dominic Savio, Agnes, and Charles Lwanga (a Page Boy of Uganda) who surrendered their lives to Christ to the point of Martyrdom and are now enjoying perpetual happiness in Heaven. You too can make it with determination and perseverance.

(4) Psychological development: The kpim of every rational being is the ability to control one’s emotions otherwise called emotional intelligence. That is why you must not allow yourself to be carried away by exuberance. You must give good consideration to things before taking action on them to avoid regrets. Cury, (2007) supported this idea where she said that to educate emotions means to develop the most important functions of the mind, like controlling our thoughts, protecting our emotions when in the heat of tension, thinking before acting, putting oneself in the place of others, pursuing dreams and valuing what life has to offer. She went further to say that emotions are beautiful, but naïve. Do not be passive before your sorrows; determine what you want to feel. You do not need a licence to be happy, decide yourself to be. Decide to be tranquil, serene, and cheerful. The field of emotional energy needs submitting to the authority of the self. It is necessary to train the emotions so as to be secure and lucid. Reason should govern emotion, not vice versa.


(5) Social development: this has to do with your ability to mix up well with others as man by nature is a social animal. No one is an island. This is manifested in group activities where every one of you

must identify with all the events of the Youth Week and try to belong to other social groups in school or work-place not anti-social ones. Train yourself to be a good leader and/or a good follower.

(6) Economic development. This is the theme of this paper. It is realized when one is able to sustain oneself and not depend on another person like one’s brother, sister, parents or any of the relations or friend for maintenance and provision of basic needs. One must have a reasonable and regular source of income to take care of oneself and likely dependants. This can only be possible with one who has

developed oneself. Self-development therefore encompasses all the above aspects. What then is self development?



Each Individual is different from other individuals. No two persons are the same even among identical twins. They bear different names, occupy different spaces and can never be counted as one. Hence, development attention must be focused on the “self”. Individual development will bring about collective development and economic growth. Government creates enabling environment for individual development with such things as free education and entrepreneurship learning or skill acquisition. Identify yourself as a unique individual, with natural endowments such as: (a) male or female (b) tall or short, fat or thin (c) able or disable (d) dark, fare, white or albino in complexion (e) likes and dislikes (f) voice tone (g) kinesthetic abilities such as playing ball, athletics, drawing, playing organ or glitter, digging, ridding, driving, teaching, singing, articulation of ides, leadership, literary art, theatre art, charity, service, medication, invention and innovation, sociability or friendliness, etc. Anyone with aggressive tendency can join any of the armed forces, The school provides platform for personal developments beginning from the primary to the tertiary levels.

For proper self-development, you must avoid dropping out of school as it carries stigma very hard to overcome. Any level of education you find yourself, you must endeavor to complete it and get its certificate be it Primary School, Secondary School or a higher Institution. Find out your strength or aptitude and develop it to the best of your ability in spite of constrains. If you fail today, do not give up, you may succeed tomorrow.  Do not be discouraged by any set back in your life. You must have achievement orientation or life-goal and pursue it vigorously. This calls for proper focus in life avoiding distractions. Who do you take as your model in your economic life?  You cannot make it without perseverance. There is no short-cut to success in life.

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Beware of the negative influence of peer group. Do not follow the crowd, you may be unlucky. Do not lead riot crowd. Do not indulge in reckless motorcycle riding or life-style. No procrastination. Do not bury your talent, invest it in worthwhile ventures. Learn a handiwork and irk out your living from it. You can engage in the production of any of our local crafts and commercialize it. Almost every kid knows how to join two cell batteries to a wire with touch light bulb to produce light and throw it away afterwards; now a Northerner has done exactly the same and commercialized it with the name “AFTER NEPA”. The whole Nigerian markets are flooded with the product with the owner wrecking in millions of Naira. You can do the same with any of our local crafts with some improvements on durability. Empowerment funds from government or Banks are loans to be invested and later repaid not money to be lavished. e.g. Imo Youths Millionaire Club fund or grants. Please avoid BetNaija or NairaBet, Wealth services, Computer 419, cult groups, drug abuse and alcoholism.

The road you take leads you to where it ends. If you create way for fortune, it will come to you. If you develop yourself well through good handiwork or trade, money will look for you (via paid job, salaryor profit). When every individual has become self-sustaining, the society will experience economic growth.

Do not jump into the river because someone jumped in and came out with a big fish. You may not know the secrets involved and if you jump, you may not come out alive as the rat should not follow the lizard to move about in the rain. To think that once one jets out of Nigeria and lands anywhere in the world including the war-torn Syria is to find oneself in Canaan (the Promise Land) that flows with milk and honey is to live in a fool’s Paradise. Many nationals of other countries are trooping to Nigeria for greener pasture. After-all, the richest man in Africa said to be Dangote, started his business through hawking wares and with share determination to succeed (that received Divine blessing) he is what he is today. A good number of those whose businesses flourished for a while and collapsed might have engaged in dishonest or unholy means to make the money and as it suddenly came, flourished momentarily, it swiftly vanished like American Wonder which crooks normally call you


to come and see. Remember, individuals differ, discover your charism, develop it and God will help you to succeed in life as heaven helps those who help themselves.

Avoid boy-friend/girl-friend relationship as well as occasions and associations that can lead you to sin, misfortune and regrets. Commercialize your invention or innovation like basket making, climbing rope, small scale agriculture (farm work, poultry, snailry, animal husbandry, fishery etc.). Avoid anti-social trade like marijuana, cocaine, child trafficking, kidnapping, armed robbery, prostitution, etc. Girls, don’t make requests of money or gifts from men whether married or not as you must be required to pay back in kind. To accept gift is to enslave yourself. Avoid it and be safe.  Make sure you have reliable source of income before getting married. If you enter into marriage empty-handed, you will be stranded if unfortunately you are thrown out. It is true that men of nowadays usually go for ladies with good sources of income to complement theirs. Days of Oriaku have gone. After-all, Disabled Paralympic gold medalists got millions of naira due to personal efforts and determination to succeed in spite of their disability. Tell yourself: you can; and you will make it. Develop yourself, and people will come to you for help. In this Jubilee Year of Mercy, you should ask for God’s Mercy, be merciful yourselves, completely trust in Jesus the Divine Mercy and fly to the patronage of Mary the Mother of Mercy and all will be well with you. Thank you all.



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