You cannot dispute the fact that life abroad (especially in Europe and America) offers plethora of opportunities to grow, develop, succeed, be recognized and, even to create wealth, compared to Nigeria. There are endless testimonies of people that have made lots of money abroad, especially, within a not too long period of time.
As a matter of fact, the expectation of average Nigerian on anyone staying abroad is to come back with lots of money. They don’t seem to care what the person has to do. Sometimes, I wonder whether there is a money growing tree abroad, where people go and pluck money. They have to plucked enough, to impress their friends and families in Nigeria, before they can now return home. On the contrary, there is none of such trees as they work so hard to make money.
The sad truth is that if average Nigerians can work as hard as those abroad, they would earn more than they earn abroad. Ask me how?
People abroad work harder than those at home
I have lots of family and friends living abroad, and I can say with confidence that most of them work harder than we do here in Nigeria. Abroad, many of them work in multiple places in order to be able to pay their bills and at the same time, send some money to their family, save and invest at home and abroad.
Some of them barely even sleep because they are preoccupied by work. When they complete a shift in a given place of work, they move over to the next, and to another. They are always busy, working from shift to shift. There are those abroad that barely have the time to eat decent foods, instead, depends on the readily available junk foods.
Work is work, regardless of the description
Here in Nigeria, we are selective of the kind of jobs to engage. This is so peculiar among the graduates, who prefer to do white collar jobs. Nobody wants to do the dirty jobs.
Abroad, the case is different, with the so called big boys and girls, whom we celebrate when they return, engaging in different kinds of menial jobs. They do all kind of works including dish washing, security, barbing, driving, babysitting, and even taking care of the elderly. Funny enough, when they return to the country, we celebrate them, because of the money they throw around. We are intimidated by their money that we can’t muster the courage of asking them what they do for a living overseas.
They work so hard in jobs that we don’t even imagine ourselves doing here, and make so much money to live lifestyles that we can only imagine ourselves living. While we envy them, wanting to travel abroad, most of them wish they could return home.
Like I often tell people, it doesn’t matter what you do as a means of livelihood. Whatever business you find yourself into, all you need is dedication and hard work, and you shall make it big.
Cost of living is cheaper in Naija
One peculiar advantage we have over those abroad, is our cheap cost of living. To make it easier for you to understand, it would be nice if the comparison is done here in Nigeria. Many people will agree with me that its cheaper to live in Enugu or any other city in Nigeria, than FCT, Abuja. I usually tell people that someone that earns a monthly salary of Fifty Thousand Naira (N50,000) in other cities in Nigeria is richer than a counterpart making One Hundred Thousand Naira (N100,000) in Abuja.
The reason is quite simple. The cost of housing, transportation and feeding is almost double in Abuja than most cities in Nigeria.
The same thing applies to those living abroad. The cost of housing, transportation, and feeding is massively higher than obtainable here. Apart from these basic needs, they also spend massively, sometimes compulsively on bills like utilities (water, electricity, gas, etc).
The crux of their expenditure is tax as very high percentage of their income is tax-deducted, even before it drops into their bank accounts. For those in business, tax is inevitable.
However, in Nigeria, most of us only read about tax in books or papers. A lot of business men/women have never paid tax ever since they started business. In fact, as far as Nigeria is concerned, the only people that pay taxes (compulsorily) are public servants, especially those on government payroll. Even some big corporations here evade taxes or downsize their revenues in order to reduces their taxes.
The freedom we experience in this country is incomparable with any other country in the world. In fact, we even have the freedom to break the laws. If you exercise certain freedom we have here in some parts of the world, you would be in jail.
This is a country where you can wake up one morning, and decide to set up a business on public roads without anybody questioning you. This is a country where contracts can be awarded on papers, without any work to show for it. Nigiera is a country where people get rich without any legitimate source of income, yet, the move the street freely, even escorted by the police or military personnel.
I am not trying to encourage ill-gotten wealth, rather to emphasize some seemly impossible things that happens only in Nigeria.
So many people have become frustrated because of the difficulties they have experienced, one way or the other, in this country. Some have given up, believing that their only chance of making money is if only they travel abroad.
Indeed, this country can make life so difficult for people. Some people have wonderful ideas that can positively affect our society, but corruption in the country would not let those ideas see the light of the day.
My word to these kind of people is never to give up. Don’t be discouraged by the numerous dead ends you meet along in your life. Study your environment very well. Study the lives of those rich ones around you, especially the good ones. Emulate their way of life, their lifestyle, social circle and so on. Work hard into fitting your life into theirs. Not too long, you shall be successful as they are.
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