The Attitude Lounge by Kodwo Brumpon Letter to My Mind  


“A stick which is far away cannot kill a snake.” – Ugandan proverb

My dearest Mind,

Just as we enter the year’s final weeks, I have to remind you of what is important. But before I spill my counsel, I want to humbly acknowledge that I am all that I am because of the assumptions and expectations you have poured into me all these years. Your attitude has not only affected the way I feel about life but also what I have achieved, and is the determinant factor in whether I have stuck to old habits or if I have been willing to go on to develop new skills. Put simply, you have been the lens through which I have seen and experienced life. For all that and more, I am grateful for how far we have journeyed.

Research however says your set of understanding about life is what’s popularly referenced as a ‘mind-set’ – and it stipulates that it can either be ‘fixed’ or a ‘growth’ one. The elements associated with the former include giving up on tasks before facing them, seeing challenges as roadblocks, believing that intelligence and talents are static, hiding flaws and ignoring feedback, among others.

Thus, if one is not good at something, he or she will never be good at it. With the latter, the elements indicate that intelligence and talent can be improved through effort and learning. And it recognises that setbacks are a necessary part of life and enable people to ‘bounce back’ if they put in the effort and be resilient.

The interesting sound-bite of this research is why I write to you. I have been striving to understand which of the two approaches you are. I say this because I would prefer you to be the latter, but the thoughts you pump into me depict a fixed mindset. And while you have been helpful to me, regarding the ways I have distilled information and managed my expectations, the challenging times we live in have made your ways maladaptive. I can no longer flourish with your fixed mentality. The immensity of life, and the findings of modern psychology, demands that you learn to imagine limitlessness instead of limitedness. Simply put, you have got to change – and change for the better.

Your adaptive ways of yester-year are limiting my belief in myself and life, both consciously and unconsciously. Your desire to be certain, and hold onto what worked in past years, is negatively affecting my character, intelligence and creative abilities. Whatever it was that betrayed your beliefs, the good news is that life has moved on and you also need to do the same. Changing your distorted thoughts can make both of us significantly happier.

It is strange how you taught me “the hardest state for a human being to sustain is that of open-endedness”, yet you are behaving otherwise. You know from my recent contemplations that I have been questioning “the strata of reality and its intercourse with human imagination”. And the more I have delved, the greater has been the understanding that you must become more open-minded; that you must open yourself up to the world. Please understand that my head is not a haven, and you need to step out often to feel the uncertainties which plague this life – for they are also the same ones that empower its flourishing.

Words from the pulpit say Christ taught “If one can believe, all things are possible to them that believe”. This teaching entreats us to do more for ourselves rather than resign ourselves to any situation. I would even say it encourages us to break the mould, like the caterpillar transforming into a butterfly. It is the reason Paul the apostle challenged his listeners, and consequentially all who profess to follow Christ “not conformed to this world: but to be transformed by the renewing of their minds”. My dearest mind, the apostle makes this advocacy because you are the source of my intellect, reasoning and intentions. My behaviour begins in you, with you and for you.

All things being equal, my life begins and ends in you – thus my appeal to you today. Please understand that my counsel has nothing to do with me underestimating your intelligence. Rather, it is the opposite. You have always touted me as an intelligent being, and I want this to reflect in our lives. So, heed my change-plea and not only will our life become better, but all of life will be meaningful and fulfilling for us and for all others.

Yours sincerely,

The Self You Created.


Kodwo Brumpon is a partner at Brumpon & Kobla Ltd., a forward-thinking Pan African management consultancy and social impact firm driven by data analytics with a focus on understanding the extraordinary potential and needs of organisations and businesses, to help them cultivate synergy that catapults them into strategic growth and certify their sustainability.

Comments, suggestions and requests for talks and training should be sent to him at kodwo@brumponand

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