A good saying goes all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. A wise man reversed the saying as all play and no work makes Jack a sick boy. Juxtapose both and I really don’t know which I prefer being dull or ill. But as a sure Ibadan lawyer, I know how to catch my fun and of course work hard.

I really don’t know whether it is because I don’t want to be a devil’s workshop or just because work is the antidote for poverty (ise ni ogun ise). All I know is that I like staying busy, writing, talking, thinking, drafting, lawyering and churching. Catch me outside of these, and I am recreating at the cinema or bowling. Clubbing and pub-ing are not really my favourites: those places facilitate procreation and not recreation, I think.

Whilst I am not an anti-social person, I am not particularly given to vain discussions and same would include football scores and sights, political affairs and state of the nation as well as women gossip. Bros I am sorry to burst your bubble.

Social events for me would be having some friend around, or not more than three to just catch up on happenings, old friends, new things happening in the entertainment industry, get some argument on some work process and most likely whine about toys and current youthful hustle. We can play Beat FM on the background as we yab each other. Yes the Beat FM are the nicest in Ibadan. No forming accent, cool modern soft music, great presentations shout out to Wale and Jossie, and Kayode OKIKIOLU.

Out of this social life I believe I possess is the constant hustle of being a corps member and learning big time the art of lawyering from one of the coolest bosses – he promised to buy me a shoe to match my belt (so much for my fashionable show-offs). This means ensuring that I keep up to date with client files, enjoy the study of jurimetrics (go and read the recent edition of Lloyd’s Jurisprudence to know what that is), running errands, making appearances and not to leave out Community development service and volunteering. I am sure you have had a feel of each of these busy-ness at one post or the other but I probably haven’t given you a feel of the fringe benefits that come from these activities, which I intend to just give a sneak peep at with this post.

The first is as already mentioned: work is the antidote for poverty. This is an age long Yoruba saying and I remember my Yoruba teacher (Mummy Jumoke) flogging that poem into my head in my primary 6 because she wanted me to recite it on our graduation/prize giving ceremony.

This means that the best way to get over work is to work some more, and this makes me love to work even more. Secondly is the replete knowledge that you get from working. In this day when they say deliberate smart work is the way to work, there is no how you don’t improve on the learning curve as you move ahead. In the end you learn, spend less time work and become a better person. Of course my vocabulary has improved richly with drafting and persistent writing; I have better vocal confidence, and my walk style just got buff!

One thing you can be sure of is that work never ends and so the habit of scheduling and categorization which is a life principle can be derived from love for work. You find that somehow what seems to be a disappointment can be refined to become a competitive advantage. Respect, confidence and rigidity are other sub-skills you exude as you continue constantly in work.

My Holy book says that a good name is more desirable than riches. Good work helps you get this type of name because a lot of times, you never know who telling who about you and giving you a referral somewhere. The interesting thing about good work however, is that it never yields quickly. That is why one of the most important lessons you learn while working is patience, tolerance and contentment. Priceless virtues you can never pay Harvard Law School to teach you, but they would expect to see on your Personal Statement because of the competitive nature of applications.

I saved the jollof part for the last. The pecuniary benefits from work can’t be overemphasized. While some expect just these financial drills, some others like me believe in the full package of benefits of working: the money just helps ensure that the goose that produces the golden egg is properly and continually in productivity. It’s only a while and the hustle would pay. Never compare yourself with your next door neighbour, but it’s not bad to compete with a worker in the same kind of city you are somewhere in India. The world is going global and it takes vision to move on quick and happily.

#ILoveMyJob #ILoveLawyering #GreatWorkers


Okezi Uwede-Meshack is a First-Class Law Graduate of Babcock University and was called to the Nigerian Bar in 2015. He presently works and writes in from Ibadan.

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