Have you ever wondered while gazing up to the sky as large as it seems, why only few gets the chance to get the top? Opportunities are here and there but only few gets to be celebrated. Yes, I know you must have thought about it at least once, perhaps that’s how you landed on this page. I have many times too, so you’re not alone. Everyone living finds themselves doing something at some point in their lives to make a living for themselves. Hence, the purpose of our engagements(such as job, study, circular responsibilities, social services, an office, etc) is to get rewarded in return. In fact it is understandable that such reward for a job done has been the driving force for which life keeps moving because without those rewards, there will be nothing called job in the first place.
Therefore in this article I’ll discuss the difference that commitment makes in the class of reward for a job-well-done. I’ll also site different instances of people and places where commitment has made a difference when it comes to getting a prize. Although everyone living for a particular something gets a reward for what they do, this is liken to the essence of life because without it there will be nothing to live for at all.
In a lighter vein, we’ll first discuss the nature of commitment. But before we do, what does commitment mean in essence? Merrian Webster defined “Commitment as the attitude of someone who works very hard to do or support something.” It is your devotion to a cause, purpose, dream, job, duty, an office, etc.
The special thing about commitment is that it burns you like a fire; the passion that gives satisfaction to doing a particular thing so much that you cannot but do it with all joy and with all seriousness even when it’s not convenient. You always want to do your best at that thing to the point that you barely know how to do nothing better. When it becomes all your life, even though there is room for other things like family, you still recognize your priorities and you give more time, because this is your life, this is who you are.
Another interesting thing about commitment is that you do not need motivation when you’re devoted because you believe, even when your pairs call you names like “freak” “Overzealous” “nerd” your success at what you do is enough motivation for you to keep you going but “success is not just a finish line in your endeavor, it’s a pathway”. But frankly speaking, even in your devotion to a particular cause, you’ll still encounter glitches on the way, though difficulties are only indications that you’re on the right path but if the road is too smooth then you’re probably walking into a trap.
A student devoted to studies won’t have it all rosy for him/her like it’s a vacation. Frankly speaking “it’s more difficult to learn than to teach,” my professor would say. For someone of his level of experience and expertise, I can accept without an iota of doubt that he must be sure of what he’s talking about. “This is not to scare you but to prepare you for what’s to come” he said in one of his classes at the beginning of the semester in my first year in the university.
But I’ve come to realize that your devotion to that which adds to your essence always pay off. A committed student is bound to expect good result because the yardstick about commitment is that it becomes your character. It tend to reflect every other aspect of your life.
Sadly, commitment can come with pain, that you become weak and feeble. You might even see only yourself and you’re so alone. When this happen, that is not the end but the beginning of greatness, the starting point of a new level so its normal for it to be painful at the beginning of that stage in your life. Below are some of the African icons in history whose commitment earned them the prizes they deserved.
Desmond Tutu, a renowned activist who dedicated his life to fight to see that South Africa becomes a democratic country and just society without racial division and despite violent attacks committed against the black population, he would adhere to a nonviolent line and encouraged the application of economic pressure by countries dealing with the apartheid authorities. The Anglican clergy who fought against apartheid in his country won the 1984 Nobel Price for Peace.
Wole Soyinka, a Nigerian playwright, poet and essayist was referred to as someone “who in a wide cultural perspective and with poetic overtones fashions the drama of existence.” The Abeokuta born won the 1986 Nobel Prize in Literature, he was the first black African to win a Nobel Prize in literature and also has a long history of fighting for social justice and human rights both in Nigeria and abroad.
Kofi Annan, a Ghanaian diplomat, was the secretary-general of the United Nations from 1997-2006. He was the co-recipient, along with the UN, of the 2001 Nobel Prize for Peace in the centennial year of the Nobel Committee. He was commended for his commitment to struggle to the spreading of the HIV virus in Africa.
John Maxwell Coetzee, a South African author who was the winner of 2003 Nobel Prize in Literature. He was recognized for developing a style that “in guises portrays the surprising involvement of the outsider” The Swedish Academy commended the author as a “scrupulous doubter, ruthless in his criticism of the cruel rationalism and cosmetic morality of western civilization”. Born in Cape Town in 1940, Coetzee won the Booker Prize for 1983’s Life & Times of Michael K before. Over a decade later, he became the first author to win the prestigious British literary award twice with 1994’s Disgrace.
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, The first woman freely elected as a head of state in Africa, Johnson Sirleaf took on the leadership of Liberia in 2006 at a time when it was still seeking to heal deep divisions and rebuild infrastructure following a devastating civil war. Former Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf was awarded the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize for her “non-violent struggle for the safety of women”, along with her compatriot Gbowee and Yemen’s Karman.
Serge Haroche, a Moroccan-born French scientist, was a co-recipient of the 2012 Nobel Prize in Physics, along with US physicist David Wineland. The commitment of the two scientists (who worked separately) paved the way for experiments in the field of quantum physics, after showing how individual quantum particles may be observed without being destroyed. They were recognized by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences for developing “ingenious laboratory methods” that allowed them to manage, measure and control fragile quantum states.
And many more but to mention a few in history, these patriotic men and women who were rewarded for their commitment to what they do best, as a result of their consistent contributions and devotion. They got recognized and we rewarded for it and today, their names have gone into history because of their persevering patriotism and commitment to the society through their works.
Those who are not driven with passions cannot be committed, it’s difficult. Some people can’t just be committed because they found themselves in the wrong environment and field of discipline, this has happen to many and can happen to anyone who fails to quickly relate to what really drives their passion. On the quest to get established with one’s dream job in a beautiful environment with attractive salary, people sacrifice their passion for comfort and satisfaction tailored by pressure from family or/and friends around, with the aim of making them fit in to their immediate society. But the people of old times dared to chase what drove their passion that they never got tired even in old age.
No matter what you choose to do in life as a contribution to better living and a better society driven by passion, people will come to reckon with you sooner or later. Maxwell was known for brutal criticism but because he was driven with passion so that people saw through his sincerity, he was rewarded severally for it. He obviously earned it knowing fully well that it’s a difficult thing to stand alone, to stand out and be indifferent among multitude.
Mandela served jail term form 27years for fighting against apartheid in south Africa, but his suffering was not in vain as he was able lay a Democratic foundation for his people, no wonder his was worshipped.
Things will not always be rosy, you might experience rejection, but as far you enjoy what you do, you understand why you do what you do, then don’t stop because you’ll soon be a model that others will come to follow. Imagine the contribution of people like Serge Haroche, his breakthrough in Quantum Physics opened door to advance technology. That’s a model.
You can be one too as long as you can find that which drives your passion and do it tirelessly, is it a new invention that no one believes in? or a contribution to art, is it science or entrepreneur. Whatever you find yourself doing without getting tired of it, whether or not you’re paid for it, do it with all diligence. Many research work became a success because of committed scholars. Remember success is not just the finish line, it’s your pathway. So don’t stop, move forward, there no limit to what you can achieve.
Thank you for reading!👍🏻
Please don’t forget to leave your thoughts in the comment box, you can make your contributions too. It’ll be an honour💞💞