It’s been a long journey from your days as music artiste, then an actor and then an author, take us can give a brief insight into your trajectory these years?
It has been an eventful one, and one that I am deeply grateful for. I consider it a high privilege to have experienced life being many different things. Being a music director was probably my first consistent duty ever since I discovered my musical gift. Sharing it with so many people over two decades every weekend was enriching, although it didnt pay as much.
However it provoked, the desire in me to find wider and deeper expressions for the gift. This led to recording albums and sharing them. I think when you constantly make more of yourself people are drawn to you. This is the only way I could explain how acting came into the mix. I was invited by my church group to play leas in their faith based productions. The confidence people say I project onscreen however was learned as a performing musician.
One demand led to another and doors began to open for TV series like Tinsel and then ultimately to my first starring role in a blockbuster cinematic film like THE MEETING. Soon after, validation started to come and I began to win national, continental and neo-global nominations and awards.
Leading small groups over those two decades also meant I had to work with people a lot, especially young people such as myself. I had to be involved in their lives, teach and motivate them to make more of their lives and employ the principles we were learning in church. I believe that this was the beginning of my leadership development career. I did it so long and found out I was enjoying it. I wanted to learn it better. This was how I went to ger my life coaching certification.
I guess writing is an offshoot of this sort of learning and practice. Since 2008 I began to consistently share my ideas of success, wisdom and spirituality on social media. This has won me a lot of audience who probably don’t find it too strange that I wrote a book.
I have also started a self improvement brand and platform called SPIRITUALITY, CREATIVITY AND CLARITY SEMINARS and we have held it in Lagos and Abuja. We are adding Port Harcourt to the list this year. The three cities will happen in three weekends in July this year.
What would you say have been your guiding principle all these years?
It started as wanting to survive against all odds, to seeking the purpose behind my existence and then to trying to find a way to teach others to find direction, connection and comfort.
I also know that we either evolve or we start dying. I get bored quite easily, so evolving is an essential part of my life. I discuss personal evolution in fairly wider scope in the book.
So what is happening with your music career?
I am working on a set of contents and events for next year that will fuse these elements together harmoniously – music, film and motivation.
So let’s talk about your book Rise, what is the whole idea
I have read a lot of foreign books on success and personal development. While these books are brilliant and immeasurably helpful, I find that they’re low in relatability because their illustrations and worldview do not capture the unique socioeconomic and sociocultural realities of a typical African reader. I felt we needed a more grounded perspective on how to execute personal success stories and make more of ourselves as citizens of this great continent. This is why I wrote this book.
I really do hope it achieves the connection I had in mind. I hope it shows clearly how to navigate our unique social context and achieve a life of greatness, meaning and success. That would fulfil me greatly.
How is the book being received?
We are only sending the first copies out the week after the gubernatorial elections, so I guess we are going to have to wait and see. But the few people who have reviewed it have said it was impossible to put it down. I am praying that this is true for most, if not all the readers of the book.
What is on the horizon for Femi Jacobs
Events, movie production, more books, international conferences, musical collaborations, and the likes.