BOOK REVIEW: ‘Living a life of purpose in a crazy world’ Abimbola Olumuyiwa’s interrogative piece
As books are written to make impacts in our lives, so are many books written for various purposes. While some come with educative, informative and entertaining contents, others come to question our intuitive beliefs over our existential purposes. “Built for More,” as one of those, in this category is a book that interprets such purposes.
The book with over 100 pages of instructive and mind boggling contents, written by a prolific and emerging motivational personae, Abimbola Olumuyiwa, is a semi-coffee table and inspirational book project, aimed to reenact that soul searching questions about oneself, juxtaposing it with impactful solutions to redefine self in a world full of confusion and baleful dispositions.
Published by Harmony Publishing in 2021, the book is not a book of rules. It’s a reminder that no matter how long we live, we have little time on our hands on this earth and we will give account of how we lived.
“Dear reader, I am dedicating this book to you; because there is so much more on the inside of you and the world desperately needs what you have to offer. You are worth every letter of every word of every sentence of every page in this book. You are worth all the effort that went into writing this book. Don’t you ever minimize your worth,” quoted Muyiwa in her dedication of the book.
This implies the essence of captioning the project with this tag; “Living a life of purpose in a crazy world.” Yes, the world is indeed crazy with nose-nudging issues, but the way one interprets his or hers determines the definition of the world around self.
Divided into segmented contents such as “My Why, So, Why Not, Discovering Your Assignment, Strength for The Work Ahead, Getting out of your comfort zone, Living a Life of Rhythm, Your Finances and You, Laying Aside Every Weight, How You Know you’re Fulfilling Purpose, The cost of not Living Purposefully and lastly, Let’s Wrap this Up, Shall We,” the author created a kaleidoscope of cosmic research into man’s existence and purpose on the earth.
Muyiwa stated in the first chapter that having faced scripted notes filled with a ton of questions and convictions, something about finding her life’s purpose struck her. And that is how the book was birthed with curious inquisitions such as ‘Why was I on earth? What was I created to do? What was my mission in this world? and “How would I actively live my life in a way that would make a difference; a way that would make my heavenly father proud of me when I finally see Him face to face?” giving room to a simple solution based assertion that “my life could NOT be about me,” quoted Muyiwa.
Drawing a point with this assertion, “Purpose is about our lives bearing good fruits and doing what we’re supposed to do on this earth,” the author tries to create a scenario with an automobile of high regards ‘Hennessey Venom F5 that drives as fast as 301 miles per hour and a grandmother who was gifted an Ipad electronic gadget. With its high speed functionalities, the vehicle never lived its purpose as it was stowed away in a garage for its entire life. So also, is the Ipad gadget given to a granny who could not fathom its worth, rather she used it as a substitute of a chopping board in her kitchen, thinking it was built for that purpose. This analogy reminds us that there are things we were created for and there are also things we were not created for on earth.
She stated, “Before today, some of us have been like the Hennessey Venom that never left the garage – fulfilling zero purpose.”
Fulfilling purpose, according to her, may sound complicated, adding that “If we have never taken time out to discover what our purpose is, we will never be able to live it. Purpose is combinations of who you are, the gifts you have and what you do with yourself.”
The book is an inexhaustible live inspiring nuggets compounded in chapters. In her moment of defining purpose, the author said “God does not need us to come back to Him with the gifts and talents He gave us, there’s plenty where those came from. We are to use it here on earth to fulfill His purpose,” meaning that fulfilling purpose is a choice and it has to be done intentionally; and that purpose never changes but assignments can change, depending on one’s season of life.
Also, there is an important thing to note about fulfilling purpose in life as she simply put it, ‘Start where you are.’ According to her, “Jim Elliott, the great missionary who became a martyr at age twenty-eight, said: ‘Wherever you are, be all there.” This implies that there is nothing as fulfilling as knowing what you were created for and living it daily, even if it comes with more work and at any given place. There will never ever be a perfect time.
Moving down the detailed contents in the book, she was able to describe some solution base applications that would help navigate one out of uncertainties. These are Lack of time, Uncertainty, Lack of motivating company, Lack of funds, Random distractions and Ill health among others.
“They say you make time for what you love. I think this is true (refer to that scripture that says where your heart is, there your treasure lies). Like me, you probably need thirty hours in a day. But I feel like even if we had thirty hours in a day, there’ll still be many things competing for our attention as there are now. The real question hence is: what are the things we’re willing to make time for?
“In his book ‘Eat that Frog,’ Brian Tracy writes that the purpose of time-management skills is to enable us to spend more time doing the things that give us the greatest amount of joy in life and with the people we care about. He says that if you eat that frog (metaphor for the toughest or most unpleasant task) early in the morning, nothing worse will happen to you the rest of the day. I probably won’t have thought of a task as a frog but I think Brian makes a good point. Do what you need to do as early as possible,” stated Muyiwa.
According to her, there is no shortcut to these things, you have to make out the time and put in the work. We don’t wake up one day and like magic; realize we have lived a fulfilling life without even trying. Time is the minimum requirement to achieve every good thing in life.
Having taken time to expatiate on vital areas one should apply to have a fulfilling life, the author did not relent in wrapping up the analysis with possible solutions. In the eleventh chapter of the book with subtitles, “Let’s Wrap this Up, Shall We?” she concluded with general principles that would aid to actualise those desired results in life. She noted that they were some of the guiding principles that helped her in the cause of her journey of life. These include ‘Prepare your mind for the unexpected; Not everything you like is your purpose; Give yourself room to make new friends and valuable relationships; Your purpose journey does not have to replicate someone else’s; Celebrate your small wins; and Make use of your opportunities and relationships.’
Others are ‘Not all opportunities are meant to be taken; Take a break when you need it; Point out what caused you Do not stay idle.
Obviously, the highlighted points may seem ambiguous but the truth is that they are achievable if one is conscious of them. Living a fulfilled life is easy and hard at the same time. The author made us understand that life is not hard to live, but the challenge is in understanding the basic principles that guide the cause. In her descriptive analysis, efforts should be placed on grasping the basics without which one is bound to make mistakes or wallow in regrets over what should have been simply applied.
The author’s style is very lucid with simple language. There was no use of ambiguous words or confusing figurative. Her explanations of facts were very mild and easy to grasp by all cadres of readers and class. The book is a made-simple read for everyone because the purpose is for all to probably, without exerted efforts, come in quick terms with realities of life and get self-taught solutions on how to navigate out of assumed life challenges.
According to her, “If you are aware of some-thing, it is easier for you to put it under check. Watch out for idle time and how it creeps on you.” With this closing remark, Muyiwa made it clear that life is all about asking yourself about what you want in life, questions about how to go about it and getting solutions to achieve it without being biased.
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Abimbola Olumuyiwa is a writer who has a passion to see people live in the fullness of their potential and purpose. She has partnered with several organizations to mentor and curate relatable content for young people on leadership and personal development principles.
Abimbola is also a chartered accountant and finance manager who currently works at a Fortune 20 company. Prior to this role, she worked in consulting before returning to graduate school to obtain her MBA. Abimbola has lived in three countries including the United States where she currently resides.
She is happily married to Kayode and together they are raising their beautiful family. Find out more about Abimbola at www.abimbolaolumuyiwa.com