Growing up, there was nothing we wanted to do more than imitate those around us who are older than us. Nothing taught us more than imitation. Language, which is one major thing that separates us from animals is acquired at the youngest age by attempting to reproduce the sounds which we hear our parents and other elders make.

No matter how much we’ve grown and how much more complex our learning skills have become, we still retain the primary source of learning which is learning by imitation. Till date, we still look up to others for inspiration, for guidance and for directions. That is why we continually read books for instructions, why we still watch YouTube instructional videos and why we are still involved in master and apprentice as well as mentor and mentee relationships.

Before ever you had a strong sense of self that made you want to distinguish between yourself and others, all you ever wanted to do was be like one older person or the other for one reason or the other. In essence, all you ever wanted to do was become an adult. Why? Because as a child, adults were seen to be independent — they could do whatever in the world they wanted, without asking anyone for permission and without anyone chastising them for it. It was that simple: all you had to be in life was grow up and be an adult so you could be free.

Growing up reveals that this vision of freedom you had was clearly overestimated. You began to realise that adults have so many people to whom they have to answer and so many who have to answer to them. These relationships make accountability inevitable. Other than that, you finally realise that the freedom which you so sought after is a freedom which can only be bought with a lot of responsibilities. That means that as an adult, you not only have to take care of yourself, you also have to take care of those around you in a process called “adulting.”

You finally grow up and realise that adulthood is mostly like a machine with a slick attractive body that you really want to acquire until it needs servicing and you have to open it and reveal the intricacies. Other than growing up, a lot of people today still look through Instagram and other social media, at already-made and glossy pictures of success and think that life is truly a bed of roses for some people. people still think that Instagram is real life, that because they go online and they only see the edited version of the pictures that people take, that those people have it all in life.

Drake, a world famous musician, once said that he knows some people who went to Rome, took a lot of pictures at a lot of different places with a lot of different poses just so they could still have pictures to post long after they had left the place. J. Cole, another world famous musician, said that there are only two ways that people we see become successful. One, it is either those people have spent a lot of years preparing and one day they make it big but you only see the success and not the process. Or two, the success has no foundation and it will soon fade away.

Many people have considered success to be like an iceberg which has much more under the water than what is seen on the surface. So also, successful people and businesses have done a great deal of homework before they got to where they are now. Therefore, before you consider anyone your role model, make sure that as you research their successes, you remember to also research the stories of how they got to where they are today so that you don’t put undue pressure on yourself.

until next time, this is Cruise Control and I am Oloye Emeka saying life na cruise, catch am.

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