“Your father” Favor shouted at Benjamin before she knew it. She felt sad as she had promised herself not to abuse anyone no matter what happened, they were on the playground and Benjamin just snatched her biscuit from her.
Favor had anger issues; she got angry at any slight provocation and everyone in school knew this so they nicknamed her “angry bird.” She had already broken her promise not to abuse anyone in school today, Benjamin just made it the fifth time she just broke that promise and it was only break time.
She feared that by closing time it would have gone up to ten or twelve. She had tried to control herself not to insult people once they made her angry, but its hard she tells herself. The thought of it made her sad, Favor starts to cry. “why are you crying?” said Mary coming to join her on the play swing.
The play swing was big enough to contain both of them, before sitting down beside her, Mary wiped the tears coming from Favor’s eyes, the both started swinging together. “Now tell me why you are crying” asked Mary. Favor narrated the issue with Benjamin, the ones before that, and how she had not been able to control herself from insulting people. “People must think I am a bad person” concluded Favor. “No, you are not” said Mary. She continued speaking “You know what?” asked Mary “What?” answered Favor “Let’s go and meet the counselor Mrs Kai maybe she will tell us how to go about it.” “That sounds like a good idea” said Favor. While they were talking the bell for break over rang 10 minutes ago, because of their conversation, they didn’t hear the bell.
Suddenly they heard “what are you girls still doing on that swing?” the girls turned around and they saw Mrs Kai, the school’s counselor with uncle Emmanuel who was holding his famous long cane and both were on duty walking towards the girls. “Aren’t you students supposed to be in class?” asked uncle Emmanuel raising his cane clearly for the girls to see what he was holding.
Already afraid Mary narrated Favor’s story to them, and their decision to come and see her after their home economics class on what to do. The counselor then told them to return to their class but not after telling them that she will address the issue tomorrow which was Friday on the assembly ground after the prayer. She advised them to come early so as not to miss the lesson that will be taught.
Back in their classroom the girls told their classmates that Mrs Kai would be addressing an important issue on the assembly ground the next day, everyone was happy because Mrs Kai was the most liked teacher in the school, all the students liked the way she talked and dressed and she doesn’t address the school that much so everyone was looking forward to hearing her “oyibo” English mixed with wisdom.
The next day all the students came to school early, their uniforms were neat because Mrs Kai loved cleanliness. The assembly ground was full. After the opening prayer she began in that wise tone voice of hers “self-control simply means being in charge of your feelings, in charge of what you think about and in charge of what you do.” She paused to tell a student to tuck in his shirt properly. She continued “it also means denying yourself some pleasures that are not in your best interest, this means that for example reducing or stop taking excess sugar as they are dangerous to your health.
If you are someone that likes taking sugar denying yourself the pleasure of taking excess sugar is self-control.” “self -control is stopping yourself from taking extra meat from the cooking pot even when you have the urge to do so. It is also stopping yourself from taking one or two spoons from your sibling’s food when you have the urge to do so” she asked the students “do you understand” “yes!” the students answered.
The principal Mummy Aisha added “you understand because you all have the urge to take meat from the pot when nobody is looking” The students all laughed out hard at that statement. Mrs Kai continued “I will give you 5 ways that will help you to develop self-control because of time so you can go and prepare for your exams.”
“First remove temptations. if you know whenever you bring a magazine to school you will be tempted to read it when the teacher is in class. What should you do?” she asked the students “Aunty me. Me. Me.” Chorused the eager students who wanted to answer the question. She instead pointed to Favor who answered “the person shouldn’t bring it to school” “Now give her a power clap” said Mrs. Kai “Roll clap, you are fantastic and amazing” shouted the students whilst pointing their fingers at Favor.
“The second thing is to remember the consequences.” “Does any student know what this means?” she asked again. “Aunty me. Me. Me.” Chorused the students though not many hands were up this time. “yes, Blessing tell us” she happily answered “this means that you bear in mind the result of that action you are about to do. For example if you like playing ball or playing during break and exam time is approaching you know you need to read your book, if you do not read you won’t pass and you might repeat the class, so during break you go to the library to read to avoid repeating the class. ”
“Now give her a power clap” said Mrs. Kai once again “Roll clap, you are fantastic and amazing” shouted the students whilst pointing their fingers at Blessing.
“The third thing is to know your weaknesses; this means knowing what you are vulnerable to. For example, if you know you intend to save your money and you like buying ice cream on your way home, since you know you will buy the ice cream when you see it. It’s simple don’t follow that road use another way going home”
“Fourthly, create new habits that will help distract you from temptations whenever the urge comes. A good example is if you have the urge to go and take meat from the pot, go outside and play or you read a book. This will help move your mind from thinking about the pot”
“Lastly motivate yourself, meaning reminding yourself constantly the reasons why you want to control the behavior you are working on. You could also keep a small list in your bag, pocket, at home or a reminder in your phone.” “I believe with these few points you can control any behavior you want.” “Yes ma” the students.
Uncle Emmanuel stood up and said “Let’s all give Mrs Kai double power claps” raising their voice the students thundered” “Roll clap, you are fantastic and amazing” shouted the students once again whilst pointing their fingers at her.
Mummy Aisha gave some announcements and the students marched to their classes. During break Mary came to meet Favor by the swing. “Now I know how to control my habit of insulting people at any slight provocation” said Favor immediately she saw Mary. Smiling, Mary replied “glad to hear it” “how do you plan on doing so” asked Mary “well I have already made a list on the reasons why I want to stop that habit and I’m already working on some ways of disciplining myself in case I break my promise of not abusing people” said Favor “that’s good to hear, let us go back to class before uncle Emmanuel and Mrs. Kai catch us here again.”