Monday, 12 March 2012

Reculer Pour Mieux Sauter

Pic: Getty Images


Reculer pour mieux sauter: You have to go back to jump forward. 

I came across this French saying over the weekend and me being me, my first instinct was to whip out my Blackberry and sharp sharp, Google its meaning, etymology and so on. Those who know me know, I don't like waiting to ask "what's the meaning?" when I can pronto, find the meaning by myself. 

But yesterday was different. There was an unusual sense of curiosity. I wanted to know for myself without re-coursing to help from anywhere. So, I took a pause and decided to find out for myself, what sense exactly, this saying made.

First, I took the literal route. I stood up and tried to take a big jump forward. I jumped forward, alright. Then I went back to the spot I was standing and took a jump again. Waoh! It was a big leap from the previous. Nothing had changed, only that the second time around, I took a few steps back before jumping. I tell you, the difference in the space I covered was massive! At that moment, it automatically made sense to me, why long jumpers sometimes bend their bodies backwards before the run off to take that long jump. I found out that by moving backwards before jumping, you gather extreme momentum. Reculer pour mieux sauter.

Trust me, once again, this set off a spark that got me thinking. There has got to be some sense to this seeming 'nonsense'. Fine, its literal application kind of tallies up, how does this saying apply in reality?

And so, I looked at it from some angles. In career decisions, reculer pour mieux sauter. For freshers like us, this may mean going back to take some seemingly mundane jobs just for the 'experience'. It may mean going back to the classroom to pursue a Masters degree or an MBA. It may mean rather than spending our hard earned salary for pleasure, we start to spend on building, attending conferences or on gaining that ICAN, CIPD, French language or Comptia  certification. It may mean that rather than browsing the internet for the latest Brangelina stories and hottest fashion trends and gossip, we start to avidly keep a tab on industry trends, on when that multinational company is going to advertise vacancies on Naijahotjobs.com and all. But all in all, reculer pour mieux sauter. To make that huge leap forward towards career advancement, we sure do have to go back to gather momentum.

Pic:Getty Images
I also thought back to relationships, friendships, good times. Moving on after the end. Reculer pour mieux sauter. And from this angle, it could be going back to that place of hurt and seeming loneliness and regrets and the feelings of 'perhaps if I had done this more'... 'maybe if I had been this way more'... All those places we had sworn never to return to, no matter what, no matter who. The places where we had dammed and told ourselves, we won't be bothered, but will keep moving on, come what may. But, reculer pour mieux sauter. Yes, moving on would for many of us, mean going back to these feelings and having to DEAL with them properly before leaping forward into the next amazing beginning which is sure to come our way.

Now, I'm a bit wary of trying to apply this thinking to government because when one says 'let's go back to jump forward', that is when we start to see bogus 'grassroots' programmes that are programmed to constantly offend our sensibilities. Still yet, reculer pour mieux sauter. And that may mean taking a lesson from history to restart our pre-oil means of economic sustenance, it may mean looking back to the Awolowo model of education which many of today's accomplished professionals richly benefited from. It may mean going back and starting from the nursery schools to make an investment into the future, 30 years from now. In the case of Nigeria though, we definitely need to 'give ourselves sense' while going back. Heck, already it seems like we keep going back to jump further backwards. loool.

Moving on, even from the business standpoint, the same holds true. Reculer pour mieux sauter. As I write, I'm casting my mind back to the various businesses I started while in the university. Selling hair extensions and my mini printing press. loooool. The money was good, yes it was. But reculer pour mieux sauter. And that sometimes meant casting off your aloofness to attract customers, making personal sacrifices to meet commitments, pleading with Toyosi to help get supplies from Vanaplus and having to cut back on sleep to attend to that customer who at 1am, just realized she hadn't printed off Mr. Wogu's "Which comes first: The chicken or the egg" assignment. *rolling my damn eyes* Infact, away from little me to the Dangotes and Dantatas of the world, reculer pour mieux sauter. No company is ever built from the top. And so, no matter how madly successful they are, they still have to go back a bit in order to launch forward sporadically. Be it going humbling themselves while going back to cut loan deals with banks, or in relentlessly chasing after the 1st class talent they would need to bring their companies to life, reculer pour mieux sauter.

And the list goes on and on.... Its amazing how this seeming nonsense saying has hugely added perspective to some of the things I see in life. This saying tells me, no matter the hurts and efforts and struggles of today, they are all but the winds beneath my wings which are sure to propel me forward magnificently. For in life, reculer pour mieux sauter.

11th March 2012   9:05pm  Pic: Image Bank

26 comments:

  1. Makes so much sense. Reculer pour mieux sauter: Right now, I'm trying to right some wrong I did to four people in my life by hiding stuffs from them, and for me to move ahead (cos its seriously bothering me) I've got to make it right. So, I'm going 2years backward to get a good jump of 2years forward. I just may jump pass 2years......
    Doyin rock on!!!

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    1. Deep! Afoma, I do hope you make up for all those lost years as you take that step backwards to leap forward greatly. Thanks so much for always sharing, always keeping it real. I'm very glad you can see some sense in this.

      Do watch out dearie, more posts to come! *wink wink* loool

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  2. And dido has done it again..blown my mind..whhosh!m totally impressd!u tell ur story in d simplest form..yet m forced to stop and ponder on d depth of your message every now n then..yes I totally agree..we certainly hav to re-visit our past and conquer our demons to succeed in d future,have to stoop low to soar.indeed d list is endless,,Reculer pour mieux from 2day on! :D

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    1. hehehe! I blush in French. lool

      Thanks for the compliments love. I'm happy you like. Perhaps one of these days, you would consider loaning us a bit of your fashion expertise & knowledge to put together an article on this blog? :-D (I hope, I pray, I wish) Pheew!

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  3. As u know... I am a great fan of ur blog and I am always coming back for more... I must say a job well done to this fantastic piece... U are indeed a good writer... I like the way u brought our different angles and we can see it from different perspective... That been said, I just can't ignore the fact that this is almost talking to me... Although taking a step backwards and moving forward is something I have always done but I am seeing it in a new light and it really brings out a lot of thoughts... It just makes me think about issues that I wud have resolved on time if only I had taken a step back... Thanks a lot Doyin for this masterpiece, its truly a food for thought... NB- pls alert everyone that a new post is out!

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    1. Done! The alert is out! :-D

      Thanks a lot, my Oliver Twist pseudo-editor! loool. I'm happy it got you thinking and I'm thankful for the comments you gave the last time, some of which I have implemented here as you can see!:-)

      Keep coming... more's coming! ;-)

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  4. Doyin this is another outstanding piece of art....this got me thinking. Thank you

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    1. Thank you for visiting, thank you for reading, thank you for commenting, thank you for reflecting. Thank YOU!

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  5. My mentor, this is really good and as Yemi said, the different angles you applied this saying. Now am beginning to understand why its never easy to get over something and just move on as we will like to - it doesn't mean we are weak, it just means that to heal completely, we must replay those scenes in our head. It makes sense why I went back to school for MSc. degree after swearing my hatred for schools and CU will be the last. For me 'reculer pour mieux sauter' means its okay to go back to some things because only then can we gather momentum for a great come back.

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    1. Mentor mi, I know you like business but I didn't know you hated school that much o! *insert shocked face* :-D

      Spot on on your analysis ma, though I will tell Yomi you've forgotten how to spell his name. **running away**

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    2. Choi! Linda!!! U must pay o!!!!

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  6. Am so excited I really love this seeing my name makes me more excited... Truly at some point we need to stoop to conquer

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    1. loool. T.Y Bello, you are just the height! No name, no visit abi?

      Still loff you small sha. Thank you for dropping by. Mwaah!

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    2. This is really interesting i must say... twas brilliantly written...

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    3. Tutu-Verde, I'm grateful. Thanks for your kind comments. :-*

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  7. Reculer pour mieux sauter: You have to go back to jump forward.

    Literally, performing this act affords us a broader perspective, or horizon if you like. It also gives us a chance to take a second look for details missed at first glance.

    Newton couldn't have said it better. 'Action and reaction are equal and opposite.' We push backwards to walk forward, we push downwards to jump up, we pull an elastic (catapault) to release a missle and the list goes on. He further stated, 'If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.' Here again he mentions progress by considering the works of others gone past.

    Not only do we go back internally, we often need to go back externally to jump forward. In Nigeria's case, it takes the collective awareness of the people to really jump forward by going backwards. Indeed, matter for another day... *sigh*

    We must remember though that as much as we go back, our gaze should still be fixed on the 'forward' else momentum built would stay in the past. Imagine the long jumper pulling back and looking back at the same time; or the motorist continuously looking in the rear-view mirror to drive forward...

    And Doyin, I can see that feeding your fish is doing you good *wink wink*. Good work here, I hope you keep scratching at the core of our human identity (whatever that means... lol). Thumbs up! :)

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    1. Pheew! You have done it again! What more have I to say? Infact, I'm going on a break, Femi plix take over... ... ...loool

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    2. Hehehe... Don't take a break ooh, some of us require catalysts to jump-start our minds ;). Keep it up!

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    3. Thank you so very much, Femi. I love the perspectives you always bring to bear. And thanks for feeding my fish too. They are getting fatter...lwkmd!

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  8. "you have to go back to jump forward".. i can't even explain just how much i enjoyed this one.

    Taking it from another angle, this could also mean we need to fix the root cause to successfully advance.

    Nice one Doyin...as always.

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    1. Y'know what Nike, I really didn't understand this your 'root cause' ish @ first. Now, that I'm re-reading it, its kinda getting clearer to me. And yeah! So so true.

      Sometimes it aint even about going back to gain momentum. It could even be going back to totally relearn how to stand, how to move as we might have gotten it totally wrong all along!

      Hmnn... NikkyD!

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  9. I'm a poor little french speaker. This too big gramar for me. Like it

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    1. loool. I'm happy you like, Mbacke. Hope to see you around here more often. Many thanks.

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