February 28, 2024
Time there was when women were stampeded into remaining anonymous in plain sight. Somehow, the women chewed the inside of their lower lips, remained quiet, suppressed their emotions, and pretended not to exist.

Ikoro’s new book: Women unbound

Time there was when women were stampeded into remaining anonymous in plain sight. Somehow, the women chewed the inside of their lower lips, remained quiet, suppressed their emotions, and pretended not to exist.

Everyone, including the chauvinistic cadre that concocted that faux-pas became the worse for it. Acceptance of that incongruity engendered unnecessary misunderstandings that resulted not only in the stifling of serious potentials, but also in the bringing about of nightmarish endings and unfulfilled promises for the significant other.Up front, society lost the most capable, competent, and reliable co-worker; and everyone suffered, Udunma Ikoro seems to say in, “a woman is a natural influencer born with the capacity to lead and impact anyone and everything.”

The Intentional Woman published by Communique Resource Hub and authored by Ikoro—who brings to her subject a writer’s tenacity and a teacher’s propensity for moulding a classroom full of wide-eyed children into shape—is a generous, unsettling, and somewhat visionary work that resembles that of Dale Carnegie: a series of mini-lessons on the virtues encapsulated in the iconic “‘I can’ is the parent of ‘I did.’”

Ikoro, not only makes the book resound with instructional savoir-faire, but she also has assembled a large corpus of real-life anecdotes to back up her assertions. And, serving as a de-facto manifesto for

women in general, (and men, if you want to know the truth), the word “book” does not sound right to describe it. The insight she has to offer in this excellent motivational book takes full advantage of the opportunities that Ikoro presents to the reader when she resorts to the use of the been-there-done-that class of people—some of them unnerving and disconcerting—who have had it rough but are able to forcefully, positively bounce back, in many respects.

Motivational authorities have talked themselves hoarse drumming it into us that we should overcome limiting factors against our upward mobility; to fight to bring our potentials to the fore. Sadly, that truismseems to be simply meant for the men, excluding the women in our society. The rest of us, inadvertently inveigled by generational gaffes, have buoyed the anomaly because it was so reassuringly convenient; and life goes on. Not anymore, says Udunma Ikoro, who has swung into guru territory, too. Becoming the latest in the ranks of motivational pundits like Oprah Winfrey, Tony Robbins and the good old Dale Carnegie, she has argued that the woman should not only think outside the box, but must also climb out of the box, in order to be able to do what she is created to do: be the best partner she is meant to be.

Pleasant, poised, empathetic, but this intricate book which resembles a medicinal concoction for what ails the woman of today, works on many other levels. She seems to observe her atmospheres’ world in a series of distinct, almost palpable imageries. It is suffused with a medley of literary language—from the past, from the bible, from glib anecdotes, through motivational patter, brief biographies, and on to first-person reflections.

In The Intentional Woman, Ikoro tells us, rather compellingly, that we may have measured accomplishments using different considerations and criteria, but that such success can only happen if certain of ourwomen, some of whom are brilliance personified, bring to bear a willingness to discover those core latent talents simmering inside them. The book, which is dedicated to “every girl child, lady, woman who has desire to be more” maintains that we set aside our fears and take a leap of faith even if we have to defy certain “taboos” that tend to stultify our ability to go forth and conquer.

Ikoro argues that “In the journey of life, you must attain self-discovery; ascertain values in order to have a clearer view of your purpose in life.”  She offers a truck-load of riff on the things to do that she believes stand ready to nudge anyone who dares, along. She is at her most persuasive on the narrower motivational spiels like “In building your mind-set, stop the fear in you,” and has dwelt, untiringly on definite themes, for example, “to be intentional is about being deliberate, working towards a purpose, being thoughtful in your choices or being proactive.”

Using real life (her life) scenarios, the book takes us through the necessary steps needed for women (and the rest of us) to unbridle

our latent talents. She says we should unveil ourselves by discovering who we are; find our gifts to reveal our talents; forget whatever anyone says to the contrary of who we are; throw in some education that is at par with our self-development; and go out there to kick behinds as we claw ourselves up to a cloud nine position; which we deserve.

This book is packed. The writer Udunma Ikoro, currently the lead creative director, Communique Resource Hub, and Professional Communication Educational and Book Project Consultant, proposes we assume intentionality and not think of it as a “cliché,” but as

being purposeful in life, actions and words.” She tells appealing episodic stories, which serve to lucidly clarify multifaceted biblical allusions and anecdotes as they relate to the topic and presents surprising perceptions into the nature of extraordinary performance: noting, for example, that profound successes are often driven by a spell of let-down and the encountering of hurdles along the way.

In eleven segments—instead of chapters—of elaborate prose, Ikoro takes an entirely different tactic to make her point. She insists that “…nobody owes me anything, nobody owes me my joy, my space, fulfilment, and anything.” Then backs that up, when she adds, “I owe myself my greatness.” In the process, she manages to write the book

in such a way that it is difficult to be turned into a bouillon cube made of many ingredients. This is a tricky trapeze walk, but she is able to pull it off by weaving a motivational narrative that points to one thing: Women; go out there and get it—full stop.

Geared towards counselling, teaching, and straight up cautioning, this is a profoundly thought-provoking and significant book because Ikoro—the youngest motivational authority of our time—has performed a mystical showmanship on paper such that you could almost scratch-n-sniff the motivational frankness that is its strength. One leaves this book impressed with the way in which the authormanages to haul examples and facts at the reader insisting they take the one step that would change their current ruts. The book is bound to entertain, even as it touches those hitherto untouchable topics that women are so pre-programmed to shy away from. Every girl child (nay, everybody) should read this book.





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