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CHIKA IKE

Dad rejected me from birth – Chika Ike, actress

Star actress, Chika Ike, has added another brief to her résumé. Aside being a role interpreter and producer, she is also now an author.

Christian Agadibe

Star actress, Chika Ike, has added another brief to her résumé. Aside being a role interpreter and producer, she is also now an author.

READ ALSO: Ogbuefi, 22-year-old Nigerian author, wins award in America

Penultimate week in Lagos, Ms Ike unveiled her steaming hot biography, Boss Up, which in all ramifications, is bound to stir up a hornets’ net of fear and controversy.

At the launch, the thespian indeed held many journalists spellbound as she narrated her life story amid challenges and discouragements from many people including her father. In this chat, Ike opened up on what the book is all about. Enjoy it.

What does the society need to know about your new book, Boss Up?

Boss Up is a 41-chapter book that covers some of the challenges we go through in life. As human beings, we tend to run away or shield the highlights of ourselves from people. With Boss Up, I revealed a lot about myself. I gave a guide to conquer your fear and live your best life. People say I always live my best life. I try to, because life is short. Life is full of ups and downs. Life is a journey and you’re probably not going to live as long as you want, so you have to embrace every moment.

READ ALSO: Ronke Onadeko presents book for the ambitious
What really inspired the title, Boss Up?

Boss Up wasn’t the first title of the book; it was I Choose To Be. But I wasn’t really excited about the title; I wanted something that could call people to action. Then one morning, I prayed before going on Instagram, then I saw a quote: ‘Boss up or get bossed around’ and immediately the title, Boss Up, stuck.

Could you give an insight into the book?

The book has five sections. In it I talked about Chikadibia. That’s my full name. It means ‘God is greater than any Babalawo (soothsayer/herbalist)’. The name emanated from an event that occurred during my birth. My father rejected me from birth because he didn’t want a girl, and I addressed it in the book. I revealed so much about my father and in a scared and uncomfortable (manner), but I hate my comfort zone. I push myself constantly. In this section, I talked about myself growing up, the challenges I faced and the rejection I faced from my family. I talked about the pressure, fear, self-esteem issues that I faced. I also talked about business. People say I like money. Well, I grew up with nothing and I don’t want to be a failure, that’s why I keep on pushing myself and be the person everyone doubted I would be.

Did your going to Harvard make you to come up with this book?

I went to Harvard Business School and it was a lot for me, because I was in the same room with professionals and intellectuals, and it meant a whole lot to me. In the book, I also talked about the society because it plays a huge role. I equally talked about family and relationship. In Boss Up, I exposed so much about my family. My father was a very good husband and father to us, but I didn’t have a good relationship with him while growing up. That was when I realised that in this world, you have to consciously fight for yourself, because at the end of the day, it is you and you alone.

Does the book also contain the violence you had to endure from your ex-husband?

Yes. I won’t talk about my life without talking about my ex-husband. It’s my journey and my truth.

Don’t you think you’re giving the people too much of yourself to talk about? Are you not scared the book will change people’s perspective of you?

God makes you go through a lot of things in your life, for you to share. People always have a perspective about people. But I’ve gone through that phase of being scared. You can’t control people’s thoughts.

You applied for admission into Harvard Business School five times before you were finally admitted. What was it that was driving you to keep trying?

I didn’t understand the selection process in Harvard until I got there and realised that even children of professors and lecturers don’t get automatic selection into the school. I wanted to go to a business school. Not just any business school. I wanted to go to Harvard because I thought Harvard was part of my reach. I didn’t grow up wanting to go to Harvard, but at a certain point in my life, I thought if

I wanted to go to a business school then I should go to the best business school because I deserve it. So, that’s why I kept trying.

Who are the target audience for your book?

Initially, when I started writing, because I said a whole lot in the book, I wanted to look at ages 18 and above. The book also focused on both sexes. Anybody can read Boss Up as long as you’re up to 18.

When the media begins to prey on your vulnerability, what would be your reaction?

At this point in my life, I’ve realised that life is a two-way treat – the good and the bad. You embrace the good and do away with the bad, and I’m stronger right now. For me to have written this book, it shows I’m ready.

Were the characters in your book identified by pseudonyms or their real names?

I used some real names. I can’t use (some) people’s names without seeking permission, but when they read the book, they’ll know I’m talking about them. There were some places I had to withdraw (real) names because of legal reasons.

When did you start to act?

In 2005 actually and it’s been a journey, a roller coaster ride of successes and emotions.

READ ALSO: Lessons I learnt from my heartbreak experience- Gloria Okafor, actress
There is this popular notion that before you can be successful in the movie industry, especially as a lady, you must have engaged in sexual acts with several people. What’s your honest advice to the up and coming actors; do you think it is worth it?

To be very honest with you, this kind of situation happens in every movie industry around the world. Where a male and female co-exist, there is bound to be sexual advances on the opposite sex, either from the male or the female. But sex will never get you anywhere, it can’t get you as far as you want because you have to know your drive and follow it passionately. You need to focus and pursue your dreams.

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Tokunbo David
Tokunbo David

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