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When I am idle, I feel sick, with pains on most parts of my anatomy. When I am productively active, the expectation of achieving something worthwhile or making an impact releases healing hormones in my system, and I become unconsciously well and healthy. When I therefore meet those who love to sit in front of the television for hours each day, watching what hard working people produced, I get stunned with their ability to do so. I am not against watching TV, but I am completely against indolent people who make it their daily occupation. Television is useful for winding off after some serious hard work, but if you do nothing and plan doing nothing; sitting in front of that screen will become your slow killer.

Although, one of the definitions of laziness is idleness or inactiveness, I believe that the laziest people aren’t idle or inactive; they are simply active doing things that are purposeless, and wasting useful time on things that aren’t useful to themselves or anyone else.

Laziness is an abuse of time, energy or opportunities. Those who think they’ll always have the time, energy or opportunities, gamble with privileges until they wake up one morning to find out that it has become too late. On realization, they become frustrated. Their frustrations either make them hypertensive or depressive. Either way, they become burdens to families, friends, state, or to themselves.

If you don’t wake up when you should, when you decide to, all the shops may have been closed. The only opportunity available to those who wake up late is window shopping. The amount of money in your pocket is immaterial, if you haven’t got anyone to attend to you in the marketplace. If you break the shop windows to pick up an item, you’ll be charged for burglary.

The sleep of lazy people isn’t rest; it is lack of consciousness. Their physical eyes are bright but their inner minds are blind. With blind minds, they see nothing but failure. With blind inner eyes, they can’t perceive opportunities within the four corners of their rooms.

Denzel Washington said, “I’d be more frightened by not using whatever abilities I’d been given. I’d be more frightened by procrastination and laziness.” Lazy people never use their abilities; most don’t even see it. When you see it on their behalf, and let them know, they don’t believe it, because like sloths, they’ve slept on a spot for too long. One footstep in a hundred years is what they’ve taken, and spent ninety-nine years to recuperate. When lifted up to make additional moves, they wobble onto the floor because for ages, their inner skeletons have decayed; they are therefore, boneless.

How do you identify lazy people?

Lazy people run away from where there is work to be done: Some people who are in the habit of complaining that there is no job, don’t really want to work; they are lazy. Some, who say immigrants have taken all their jobs, are not really interested in working, because, there are jobs to be done, but they wouldn’t do it. Instead, they prefer to hang around, waiting for dough from the government. Such people skim with many devices in order not to work, but collect free money contributed by hard working taxpayers.

It isn’t only the unemployed that are lazy; some hired people are. They dodge and hide when there is work to be done. They spend over thirty minutes in the toilet so as to avoid working or to minimise the amount of work they should do. During busy schedules, they take days off work sick, even when they aren’t sick. The same people want to be promoted first when it is time for elevation. These lazy workers never take responsibilities.

A friend told me the story of an employee that had spent over twenty years in a specific position. She was there when all the CEOs that had managed the company were hired. She knew when they moved from one building to another. She also knew all the staff that were hired and those that had left the organisation. She has the history of the company in her head, but she is the laziest person in that department. Because of her long stay, most superiors can’t call her to order. She has become an indispensable burden to her team. She only does what she wants to do, and refuses what she doesn’t want. Just like every lazy minded person, she’s become a bad influence. But the worst recipient of her negativity is her, because most of the people they started together have left her far behind. Her laziness stopped her from developing herself. While her mates were busy running one course or the other in order to upgrade, she remained static and motionless. Her ability to manoeuvre by avoiding work is ricocheting, and on the long run, she is the big loser. Believe it or not, laziness is the big loser.

Lazy people never want to start small: The tallest buildings on earth began by designs on sheets of paper. Burj Khalifa building in Dubai is 828m tall. In spite of its massive height, it started on paper. The Shanghai Tower in Shanghai is 632m tall, but it started on paper. I have never seen a building that didn’t begin from its foundation. Most lazy people never want to start from the beginning, because every good beginning is small. They instead, want to begin from the top, and then, the result is a crash.

Most people who didn’t go through a process, but ended on top, also dash to pieces on hard floors when they fall. A small start from the foundation takes you through a learning curve; it also builds your character.

Lazy people are full of excuses and blame games: There is always a reason why a lazy person is lazy; too many reasons and too many excuses. However, no reason is justifiable for laziness. It isn’t even convincing but annoying.

Right from childhood, in spite of being abandoned by my father, and in spite of the many rejections I had, I made a decision never to blame anyone for my destiny. In my made-up mind, I was determined to accept that wherever I end up is my own making.

Make something out of your life even if those leadership was entrusted on disappoint you. Stop blaming everyone for your woes. Take a look at the inputs you have made into your life and ask yourself if you’ve actually done enough to make life worthwhile. If you haven’t, wake up from your slumber, ignite your engine and drive on towards where you want to be. No excuse will reposition you; it is self-determination that will.

Lazy people say to failure, ‘You stopped me’: Anyone can fail. In short, one way or the other, one time or the other, everyone has failed. The success-minded fails, gets up, and continues moving, but the lazy-minded doesn’t even need to fail before blaming it on failure. I have heard some people say, “I am dumb and stupid. I can’t do anything useful with my life. I am so brainless; I know nothing.” They think that by condemning themselves, life will have pity on them and then, grant them access to success without hard work. Sorry, it doesn’t happen that way!

You can beat failure if you have a determined heart. You can win again, if you don’t let your wasted past come between you and your future. The odds of failure are always too much for a lazy person to beat, but those who come with made-up minds never to be stopped by the toughest circumstances emerge victoriously.

Lazy people see opportunities as challenges: A winner-minded person sees challenges as opportunities, but a lazy person sees opportunities as challenges. When you come from Africa to Europe for instance, in spite of the numerous challenges, you see massive opportunities that were never in your home country, and with a little wisdom and your whole heart, you jump at every inch of privilege you have. To your surprise, you’ll observe that those born into the opportunities never noticed. And to much more of your dismay, all you hear from such people is plethora of complaints against the government and system. I used to wonder why those born into opportunities never ever realize it. For example, the educational system in Western Europe is sound because of proper funding and availability of facilities, but as someone who schooled in Africa, I never saw with my eyes most scientific materials I read about. Despite this opportunity, according to statistics, less than 40% of secondary school leavers in Britain go into higher education. The sad thing is that most of these young people are more interested in entertainment; they want to become Michael Jackson even if they don’t have the talent. If everyone goes into entertainment, who will make the guitars, pianos, and drums they’ll use in making the music? Tell me; who will design sound mixers and microphones? Because, it takes those who studied Applied Physics and some bits of Electronic Engineering to design such instruments.

Laziness isn’t only physical; it is also mental and spiritual. You need mental strength to achieve whatever you want to achieve, and you also need spiritual strength to understand what your calling is, and follow it. With mental and spiritual strengths, you will see challenges as opportunities, and opportunities as opportunities. Besides mental and spiritual strengths, you need clearer inner vision. It is vision that makes you see; it is clearer vision that makes you see clearer. Lazy minds are blind; active minds fly high!

Lazy people put money before ideas and plans: Rather than come up first with ideas and plans, lazy people think money is their main problem. They keep saying, “If I had had the money, I would have done this.” But, it isn’t money that takes the number one priority in whatever you want to become; it is your ideas and plans. Money only come in when you have had the ideas and made the plans. If you go to the bank for a business loan, no banker will lend you money just for the sake of wanting to do business. They will need your ideas and business plan in black and white. Intention isn’t enough to get you out of where you are; you must show that you have the will, character, determination and knowledge to achieve your intent.

Lazy people cite disability as inability: I have seen some very disabled people who are far more active, intensive and intelligent than some so called able people. I have also seen lazy able people who feign disability in order to avoid work. They prefer to sit down in pubs and bars, drinking away useful time, or sit in front of the TV watching different programs, while their lives slip away. They hate work but love to earn. They reap where they never sowed. They also build castles in the air.

There are also those who are disabled but have the ability to do some things. They never use their abilities or potentials because besides their disabilities, they are lazy-minded. They only use their disabilities to promote their habitual laziness. Lazy people truly cite disability as inability.

Lazy people hide behind gender: Some women who don’t want to pull their weights blame it on their gender. In this age, I have never seen a job, career or profession that a man is involved in, that a woman cannot excel. Women are astronauts, pilots, aeronautic engineers, space scientists, etc. Why some people make excuses with their gender only boils down to mental laziness. As a woman, you can become whatever you want to become if you resolve in your heart to pursue it with purposeful determination. Stop blaming your gender, get up and get going!


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Ken is a leadership Motivation, Strategy and Personal Development Writer, Blogger and Speaker. He writes for a number of magazines and blogs. He is also a mentor and published author of several books.

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