For the love of the big picture, I’m doing more with less. I give myself the official permission to evolve.
I allow myself to become the raw material and the finished product at the same time.
“My name is Chidindu Mmadu-Okoli. I am passionate about connecting people to their target audiences through persuasive, purposeful and powerful written narratives.”
This was how I introduced myself at any gathering…until July 2018.
Although I am a trained medical laboratory scientist, I have discovered my passion in writing, speaking and other forms of storytelling.
My writing journey is not an accident, it came from keeping personal diaries to about twelve years of volunteerism in various teams as secretary, editorial team lead, writer/contributor, public relations officer and content strategist.
In the past two years I have done several freelance writing projects. My content writing journey has evolved by working with people in various niches.
However, I realized over time that the only way to get better is carve out and own my territory.
As I grew in my writing, I figured out that having a defined niche that solves a problem would not just set me apart, but will also help me do more with less.
In July 2018, I had to take a decision, after I had launched my book, Be Utterly Shameless. I got a lot of feedback that changed my mindset.
That was my first published book in hard copy. I poured my heart and mind into creating that copy. I was not worried about giving too much. I was only worried that the much I gave may not be enough.
One thing was sure about the value I wanted my book to bring! It is summed up in the words of Deji Sobanjo
“Do not hide your brilliance behind the buy button.”
These feedback kept pouring in. Someone encouraged me to gift copies of my book to inmates of the Nigerian Prisons Nnewi. I was glad to do that in June 2018. The prison officer on duty that day said to me:
“This book is good for the inmates, it’s also good for minds who are not behind physical bars.”
But I got right home until I noticed that something wasn’t just right!
I was that freelance content writer who was passionate about making money. I would work with people in various niches just to get paid and to prove that good writing paid.
Then I thought? What if I could do more than just earn? If my book can help people own their lives, then my freelance writing could. I needed to be transformational and not transactional.
Therefore, I took a break for several months. I’m quite sure I haven’t returned from this break. Lol.
I stopped writing. I refused to take on any other writing job. I didn’t worry about going broke. I turned down job offers too. It was not because I didn’t want my ego to be tampered with.
I wanted to think — about my personal life, career, business and relationship goals.
In addition to my current state, my mind was cluttered with lots of issues seeking my attention — emotional recovery, following up on customers who were owing, catching up with postgraduate academic work and seeking to maintain that connection with God and family.
Sometimes, the only way to see clearly, is to close your eyes to the things flashing around you and to keep them open and still, on the other side, to the things within you.
As someone who constantly re-evaluates, I have not been bold enough to get to this point of self-reflection.
In my retreat I discovered that 90% of the writings I had done well, were for clients in the health/lifestyle niches.
I took another look through my past and found again, that the things that demanded my attention for transformation were the things I had always dreamt of doing as a Nigerian healthcare provider.
I harked back to my journey since I graduated from the University of Nigeria Nsukka, to know the things I needed to stop or continue for the big picture.
The major things I wanted to commit to were the things I did unconsciously and happily — paying no mind to the monetary benefits. They were in my activities in the past one year that I’d done here and there:
- I also discovered that my strengths in writing and speaking influenced my interactions with patients. This is the major reason my lifestyle/health stories commanded great attention and readership.
- I went on a road trip from Nnewi, Anambra State, to Borno and Yobe to give free healthcare services to the rural communities of Biu and Potiskum respectively. I love to travel. But I love to volunteer for healthcare causes — especially for the underprivileged or those financially incapable to take charge. I have been volunteering as a healthcare giver since 2016.
- I have taught storytelling with reference to my profession as a healthcare giver to over 500 individuals and 300 healthcare professionals.
- As an advocate for patient-centered storytelling poplulary referred to as narrative medicine, I have seized the opportunity by the TEDx platform to teach patients and professionals about their roles in the healthcare delivery process.
Memories of what to do with my life kept coming to me at the moment, hours, days and weeks after.
I know a meeting point for my passion (natural talents) and my expertise as a medical laboratory scientist. It is in the marriage of writing/storytelling and healthcare.
My life and dreams are bigger than me. But one thing that keeps me going is a rare type of grace —my courage to rise when I fail.
I don’t even consider myself perfect for that which is ahead of me. But I know overtime I will pull through.
I open myself to learn from people and to build with people who are bigger than myself.
My life is however full of discoveries. This is a journey for me, and not a destination. I cannot figure out the end from the beginning, but I know that my clarity of how to win this game should will come from my consistency and intentionality.
I have evolved from writing as a church leader, through writing for money, to writing for transformation.
This solves a problem for myself, my professional colleagues and the patients that we serve.
This path will enable me help providers, speak action-driven languages that patients/customers can understand; so that they take informed decisions prompted by memorable anecdotes.
You too should give yourself the permission to evolve.
Can I re-introduce myself?
“My name is Chidindu Mmadu-Okoli. I am a writer, healthcare content strategist and a medical laboratory scientist. I am passionate about Healthcare, Entrepreneurship, Leadership, Personal Development, and Storytelling (HELPS).
I help professionals and brands in the healthcare industry connect with patients through persuasive, purposeful and powerful narratives.”
If you are passionate about storytelling, then get my ebook, The Beginner’s Guide to Storytelling.
If you are a healthcare provider seeking to learn how to connect with patients through patient-centered stories, please sign up here to receive updates.