HAPPY NEW YEAR MESSAGE – SET THE CLOCK PROPERLY
As I write this message the date on my computer shows 12/31/2017 when in reality it is already 2018. Sometimes we underestimate ourselves because of some clocks that we have not set properly when in reality we are truly blessed. When you prevent the most alarming diseases, put people back to work and daily life, prevent suicides and have unlimited resources as tools to do your job, all you need to do is to thank God and set the clock properly. My message will therefore be based on four factors that may help set the clock properly: positive thought lead to productive life, passion is your fastest vehicle but control it, you contribute towards establishing godfathers and politics is the way to go. It is said that ‘a good thought lead to good deeds’. Many of the things that we use negatively were given to us as blessings. Two friends with a similar way of life left home to study in a place with a completely different culture. One of them returned home immediately while the other decided to stay. While they all grew up with the same way of life, they later realized different cultures where appealing to them and the opportunity to look around and settle where they will be happy was great. When you work with people that have different backgrounds and assert that they have peculiar potentials, you will more likely maximize outputs. As Physiotherapists we need to have positive thoughts about each other and our profession. You can develop a strong passion when you identify your niche, what is unique about you. When I first read about Neurodynamics, how physiotherapists use mechanical interface to mobilize nerves to reduce turgidity of axoplasm, increase microcirculuation, lymphatic drainage and mechanosensitivity, I was amazed at the uniqueness of mobilization. The knowledge of Neuroplasticity opened the door to realization of vast tools for Physiotherapists such as mirror therapy, task oriented training, transcranial direct current stimulation, robotic therapy, virtual reality, etc. I once attended launching of a drug that helps with neuroplasticity and I asked if taking the drug could bring neuroplasticity but was told it creates an environment where if task oriented training is given neuroplasticity occurs faster. The uniqueness in all specialties of Physiotherapy is obvious and could drive passion but there is need for restraint because you can’t achieve the best for a patient alone. We often complain of few individuals controlling a group and being ‘godfathers’, but I ask who make them godfathers? When all members of a group are called upon to contribute to achieve something great for the group and a few partake in developing and implementing working plans, they are more likely to understand the terrain and how it works. The best way to build an institution is for everyone to contribute in different ways at every stage of development. Finally, it is time to stop blaming government for our woes because we are the government. Those in authority did not wake up and find themselves in office. They worked towards it by getting involved in politics from grassroots. We need to start working rather than talking. If the laws do not allow you to join partisan politics then ensure you participate in deciding who takes responsibility of the affairs of your locality, that way your voice may be heard more. If the laws allow you to join partisan politics then immediately register with a political party and if possible run for office. How many political office holders do you know that are physiotherapists? Why then do we keep complaining? I pray that 2018 will be a turning point for physiotherapists in Nigeria. We really need to set the clock properly to take our rightful place. The reality favors us but our disposition does not. HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL PHYSIOTHERAPISTS. Rufai Ikechukwu Gbolahan Ahmad.