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Lifestyle: Managing stress factors in the lives of Nigerians

A Stressed Office Personnel

*If one is constantly under stress, one can have physical symptoms, such as headaches, upset stomach, high blood pressure, chest pain, and problems with sex and sleep, as well as other forms of anxiety and worry

Ismail Abdulaziz

Mr. Salaudeen Mohammed, a teacher in Niger State, said what worries him the most daily is the way people behave inside commercial transport, especially when talking about the problems  of the country.

‘’You hear someone expressing an opinion about national issues with such jaundiced points that one have to intercept him as an educated person. “But what do you get; the anger is transferred to you as if you caused the issue. “Thank God if the speaker does not have a stereotype about one tribe or the other. That will be another wahala,’’ he said.

For Mrs. Evelyn Adejo, a trader in Wuse market (in Abuja) it is the challenges she faces coming to the market that gives her concerns and headaches.

‘’I live in Mararaba, Nasarawa State, and come to Wuse, FCT, market every day except Sunday to sell my wares. “The heavy traffic and manner of driving on the road gives me goose pimples and stress.

“So see driving of all kinds; wrong overtaking, speed, change of lane and sometimes government officials harassment.”

A retired civil servant, Mr. Audu Stephen, said he had taken all the challenges in his stride because there is always a solution to every problem in life.

‘’Due to my experience as a civil servant, I have realised that I need to do my own quota to get the change that I want to happen.

“In my community now I have taken it on myself to take care of challenges that we have with the electricity distribution company.

“Another retiree, has taken it on himself to take care of any problem of the community relating to local government in terms of tax and levies,’’ he said.

Every day coming from home, reaching places of engagement as well as when returning home, a Nigerian is faced with one stress/depression or the other, mostly due to lack of action or inaction of a fellow human being.

Simply put the stress factors include commuters on commercial vehicles not behaving orderly, drivers’ recklessness and not wanting passengers to caution them, holdups along the road due to careless parking in unauthorised areas to pick passengers. The list is endless.

Unruly behaviours of medical personnel in health facilities, bank officials, unapologetic and lack of courteous attitudes of tricycle and motorcycle operators, vehicle inspection officers, FRSC, states road marshals can also be added to the list of stress faced Nigerians.

According to UNICEF, depression can happen as a reaction to something like abuse, violence and the death of someone close or family problems like domestic violence or family breakdown.

Someone might get depressed after being stressed for a long time.

It can also run in the family.

Sometimes we may not know why it happens.

If you’re constantly under stress, you can have physical symptoms like headaches, an upset stomach, high blood pressure, chest pain, and problems with sex and sleep.

Stress can also lead to emotional problems, depression, panic attacks, or other forms of anxiety and worry.

What can be done to rectify these challenges in order to bring sanity to Nigeria and its patriotic citizens? Yes, patriotic.

All hands must be on deck to have an individual commitment to seriously consider ‘’doing unto others what you will want done unto you’’ and also making the rule of law work.

If you are among those that read or watch films, you will see deliberate efforts by citizens of developed countries to make their society liveable in all aspects.

They give information to the relevant authorities’ to handle any infractions observed and actually follow up to see that the right thing is done.

There is no society without laws and regulations well defined. It has not been enough for Nigerians to complain about things not working or acting correctly in those societies where there is order.

Take for example, in some parts of the country particular habits are not permitted and everybody that wants to live there abides by it.

So, in effect we should as citizens take it upon ourselves to see that well defined rules and regulations for our safety and wellbeing are discharged by those paid and charged with the responsibilities.

Politicians have shown the right attitude over time by taking their disagreement over election results to the law courts as demanded by the constitution and the electoral Act.

This is the way to go. The journey to greatness starts with a move in the right direction.

Nigerians must move towards the right direction and one day, our dream of a better Nigeria would be realised.

Nigerians must not be deterred by one incident and hastily conclude that nothing will work in the country.

Getting what we want requires much sacrifice so as to allow the future to be much brighter.

It requires knowing the law, following it and when needed changing it to suit current situations.

Experts say the functions of law in society are infinite.

Law ensures survival of the society, sustains accepted standards of public morality, provides the substratum for social-economic emancipation, a desire to live, and necessity for living in society.

The law  teaches how to organise our affairs in a manner that discourages conflicts by guiding human actions.

What are the citizen roles in the community? A citizen must have a role in the community that others recognise as important.

Being a teacher, a parent, a student, an artist, a neighbour, a committee member, and/or a person in recovery are all roles that are recognized as important and valuable for society and the individual.

For example, local residents need to engage in voluntary work, organise litter-clearing campaigns, set up collectives to purchase solar panels or form local care cooperatives.

They may also be involved in the decision-making about the municipal budget.

Researches show that rule of law correlates to higher economic growth, greater peace, less inequality, improved health outcomes and more education.

The rule of law is a critical factor for the advancement of democracy, rooted in equal rights and accountability.

By strengthening the rule of law, we protect the rights of all people, advance inclusiveness, and limit the arbitrary exercise of power, which are the cornerstones of modern democracy.

According to the father of rule of law, A.V. Dicey, personal liberty is “the right not to be subject to imprisonment, arrest and any other physical coercion in any manner that does not admit of legal justification.”

Nigerians’ fate does not only rest in the hands of a few, the majority have a lot to do in the attainment of the right atmosphere and environment for a better society that promote stability, mental health and socio-economic development of all.(NAN)

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