Monday , 10 December 2018
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7 Life Lessons I picked from Prison Break

Hmmm… Now I need to make this perfectly understandable for people who haven’t watched season 1 of prison break -this 24 episodes attention grabber. Not being a series person myself, I got the entire season one from a friend. It’s one of those films one needs to get one’s personal copy of. I can bet that the person who wrote the script of this film didn’t have a clue where it would end when he started. It’s by every standard a masterpiece. And every chapter closes leaving questions on your mind.

I have spent close to an aggregate of 12hrs on this season one already and I’m very close to the end. It’s been very good for adrenalin, but more importantly, I have picked up some interesting life lessons, reinforced some personal beliefs, and I think I have something to share with you from this master piece.

The prison break film is a story of how a successful civil engineer- Michael, deliberately sets himself up to go to jail in order to set his innocent brother who is on death roll free. It is a film that unveils intense preparation, planning, the calculated risk taking, relationship management, sacrifice, negotiating e.t.c. In this film Michael tattoos himself with a cleverly concealed plan of the prison and contingency plans in the case of possible foul ups.

1. Fear is monster made up of invisible molecules. It’s strong and alive for as long as it remains unconfronted!

“There was a scene in which the nurse asks the lead actor Michael if he had no fears about his being in prison. This was after two of his toes had been chopped off by one of the other inmates. He responds by sharing the story of what happened in his childhood, how he found it difficult to sleep at night because he thought that there was a monster in the cupboard. Back then, his brother told him that fear is made up of invisible molecules, that when you ventured to open the cupboard, the monster will disappear. From then he had learnt to confront his monsters – even when behind each door were 1000 other doors”

Fear unconfronted grows. There is nothing to fear. What are you fears? Another human being? No matter how big, rich or fierce the human being is, he/she is still human. When he/she wants to take a shower, he/she must take off his/her clothes. There is nothing to fear in any mortal? Are you afraid of tomorrow? Open the closet, there is nothing there. I remember a day I wanted to hire a taxi at a taxi park. The clowns there were charging exceptionally high, I told them it was much cheaper off the streets but the guy in charge started a story about the safety of picking up their taxi and the risk involved in just a taxi off the street. I looked him in the eye and told him to scrap that line, I asked him to look at me carefully and be sure that it doesn’t matter where I picked the taxi from, it’s risky to carry me, I am the one to fear, any driver should be more concerned about his own safety than mine… he laughed heartily and agreed to carry me at my price πŸ™‚ Why should you be the one that is afraid rather than the one that is feared? Fear is the greatest inhibitor of the human race. What are you waiting for?

2. Things are not always as they seem.

“This was a phrase used when Michael scorned his elder brother just before he was convicted, that what had he done with is life. According to him, their mother had left them some money from her life insurance, he had used his to go to school and better his life, while his brother-Lincoln had spent his recklessly and had neither an education nor a life. Lincoln responded by saying “things are not always as they seem”. It turned out, that their mother had left no life insurance. What had actually happened was that Lincoln had borrowed $90,000 for his brother to go through the best of schools, he knew that if he had told him, he would not have accepted it, so he had framed it as their mum’s life insurance.”

The human mind has a habit of jumping into conclusions and making assumptions. Don’t make assumptions about peoples guilt until it is proven, things are not always as they appear. Never judge a book by it’s cover, don’t only look, observe and behold. Be slow to jump into conclusions and quick to forgive. A closer look will reveal more, things are not always as they seem.

3. Impossible is nothing!

“When Lincoln and his bother saw for the first time in the prison, Michael told him, “I’m gonna get you out of here, the brother responded and said, “That’s impossible”! Michael went on to tell him that it was not impossible if you were responsible for designing the prison. He had not only seen the master plan, he had it tattooed on his body and had spent quality time understanding both that map and everyone in the prison that was going to be critical to the prison break. Things are only impossible for as long as we do not allow our minds to stretch to accommodate possibilities.”

To a person whose mind is set on the end, who confidently moves in the direction of his/her dreams. Nothing is impossible! Where there is a will, there is always a way. The world was not created with a road network, men built roads. There was and is still no master plan for the development of roads, man simply made a way to wherever he wanted to go. There is no such thing as there is no way, there is just no way yet. Create one!

4. Sooner or later, everybody has a need!

“It was interesting to see how the team that will carry out the prison break was formed. These were people who would not work together by any means. But each forged together by their individual and selfish needs became an exceptional team. One wanted to see his girlfriend desperately, another’s children were about to be killed, one’s daughter had cancer, another’s family didn’t even know he was in jail, one stumbled on the opportunity e.t.c.”

You can get anybody enrolled on your team if you understand their needs, and make the goal relevant to them. Sooner or later everybody has a need. People are not sympathetic to corporate visions that have nothing in it for them. Like our popular phrase where I once worked – “What binds us together is our mutual quest for success.”

5. The leader is the one who has thought about it longest.

“You’ll wonder how Michael would be the leader of this prison break team. He looks most fragile, he’s not the strongest,not the wildest, not the hardest, but he is incontestably the leader of the pack. He calls the shots and everyone else asks him for the next step. He put the team together, and more often than not, his say his final. If he says let’s jump, the group has more confident in it than the ravings of any of the team members. Why? Because he had demonstrated clearly that he had been thinking about this exercise and has it all figured out.”

The role of a leader is clear, and every one of the 5 E’s that characterize a leader where clearly displayed. He Envisioned the future, spent quality time meditating on it. He Energized his team, he connected with a selfish need in every one. He Enabled his team, he gave them access to all the tools they needed to achieve the vision. He Engaged the team, he formed relationships with each one of them at a level that ensured that the work would be done. He modeled executional excellence, he didn’t give orders, he did what had to be done.

6. Every experience is useful!

“Michael had a bad accident and wound, in which a critical part of the map on his back was erased. He tried hard to remember the content of that portion but was unsuccessful. He quickly remembered a lunatic that had been transfered to his cell for a few weeks, who had been able to draw the entire map in an attempt to decipher if it was a partway to hell. Back then he tried desperately to get the guy out of his room, but all of a sudden, he became valuable. His ability to remember the missing piece became critical to the prison break”

Have you ever had an experience that you desperately tried to get out of? Has it ever come back to be useful to you? Every experience is valuable, everything counts, all things work together for good. Not for everybody, but for everyone whose eyes are set on a purpose, for those who have a higher meaning to their existence. For those who live for a course, who are on a mission. Every experience is useful.

7. When you come to the end of your plan, keep running πŸ™‚

“I Finished the film eventually, but I’ll leave out the juicy details for those who want to watch it. When all the plans finished, the next action was run! Just make a run for it!”

I remember an article I posted about 6 months ago titled “Aiduro Nijo” – The dance is in not stopping! As soon as you keep moving then you are dancing, dancing stops when movement stops. The reason why you don’t know the people you don’t know is because they stopped doing whatever it was that was going to get them to their goals. I hear that a fanatic is someone who doubles speed when direction is lost, haven’t you also heard that only the paranoid survive?

Life is funny, I once read an analysis that back in the days of the early men, there were two types of people, the impulsive and the analytical. The impulsive man hears a rumble in the forest and runs, the analytical man hears the rumble and tries to find out if it is a squirrel or a lion. The analytical man gets eaten if it is a lion, and gradually the analytical man dies, while the earth is filled with impulsive men. Now the impulsive man needs to analyze deliberately, but run impulsively. Whatever you have set your hands on, run with it! Many people quit their dreams because of temporary set backs and go back to their vomit, they stopped to analyze and went back to status quo. When you reach the end of the plan, keep running, it gives you the opportunity of featuring in season 2!

Hope I haven’t bored you πŸ™‚

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  1. Very interesting insight I must say. Didn’t know you were a fan of Prison break too. Have you watched it up to Season 2 episode 15? I cant wait for the 16 this Tuesday.

    Glad you could apply somethings from it to life itself, impressive.

  2. Waoh! That’s very deep stuff, couldn’t take my eyes off the screen (now they hurt!). I think I like Lesson 4 the best; Sooner or later, eveyone has a need. In my short life, I have come to discover that I can get anyone on my side once I can discover their need and meet it. It’s a key to developing life long mutually beneficial relationships.

  3. Now you’ve spoilt the film for me.

  4. @ Kayode – wow, you are clearly ahead of me. I hear the Season 2 DVD is also available, i’m going hunting for sure πŸ™‚

    @ikenna – sorry to spoil the film for you mate, I tried hard to leave out a lot of the juicy details. Try not to read it to the end πŸ™‚

    @Gbubemi – I wonder what will happen to your eyes if you try to watch the entire season. It’s so awesome to see people think.

  5. deolu.
    can i have your number and an appointment to meet with you???

  6. oro leyin o!!!
    deolu we need to talk…
    pls give me an appointment to meet with u.

    pls reachme on my email add;
    tx,i have actually watched the total 1st season and now a rev from it……

    thank u.hoping to hear from you soon

  7. You have shown again the depth of your being. I am sure majority of people just watch these films and never relate the events to real life.

    Unfortunately, nobody is coming home soon, I would have been glad to get you the new season. I hope no be for express you dey get your own o?!!!

    Ride on pally.

  8. brilliant piece!!!
    oree, how can i get the firms seasons 1 & 2 if possible.

  9. i have recently seen the film too and had recomended it to friends.
    i agree with most of what you have said here.
    i will be back

  10. Hmm…

    I am very impressed infact I am just sitting down on my seat mopping.

    You have blown this film downside-up with analysis that raised my sight to apply the right energy.

    You are really good; I bow o.

    After I watched this film to decipher principles, I couldn’t come out with half the stuff you highlighted.

    Part 2 is equally good but the season is not over. MNET shows old editions so you just have to wait for the complete Season 2 DVD.

    I am truly impressed. Keep it up SIR….

  11. @ Tepede, why you dey psyche me like that? Thanks oh πŸ˜‰ Meanwhile, I’ll need a spanking article from you for recharge this month oh… and feel free to put your web link on it.

    @Babatunji, I no get am from express oh, na one of my friends carry this one give me oh, na original china :), abi… should I mention the name of the person that gave me?

    Meanwhile do you have a complete version of season 2? You might need to DHL it to me oh… seriously.

    @Kunle, I’ll find a way of sending it to your through Angela, I have a friend that says he downloads it from the internet, you might want to try that option, I know the link in ireland should be good. Let me know how it goes, I can also link you with the guy.

  12. Deolu,
    Thanks for taking some time to look at that film it has caused alot of wahala at my place the whole was up till 5:35am watching the two season (thanks to PHCN) But the bottom line is that i watched it all and some of the points you made note of just went by me.Thanks!
    Season Two is a must see for you that 4 sure.
    I’ll go thru the 2 season this weekend again.

  13. @ Deolu,

    I no dey psyche you o; you are da bomb!

    As per the write-up, it’s a great honour!

    I no dey promise o, but I would definitely put it in mind.

    Thank you SIR!

  14. wow,these lessons are real the in thing.Pls how do i get the complete pack of the film,i have only seen some parts of episode 1.
    thank you for tsharing these lessons

  15. Deolu,

    I have to say that your breakdown of the lessons learnt from Prison Break is fantastic. I’m a Prison Break addict myself and, like you, have bought China original seasons 1 and 2 (haha!). I would have never articulated all those lessons as good as you have and I will be sharing them with other addicts like myself (i.e. my entire family!) who will have a clue what I’m talking about.

    Principle No. 7 particularly resonates with me – Every experience IS useful – I’m in a job I don’t enjoy (and I AM looking for a new one)…but pending a new job materialising, I will try and be as positive about things as I can and consciously work towards gaining the best I can from my current situation.

    Thanks again!

  16. u’re an analytical man, but thank God u have an impulsive spirit in u somewhere :-).

    The impulsive thing u did is to watch the series. Got the whole season 1 and 2 on my computer…anyone needs it can hala@me ;-).

    Good2know pple out there don’t just watch films but watch btw the lines.

    U should c 24 and desperate housewives

  17. Brilliant i must say, i am very immpressed.Funny how every day events speaks to us and yet we hardly give out time to analyse them indept just like this movie.
    To make an impact in life one must walk in a path i call the lonely lane of destiny.
    Thank you again my son, u are growin up to be a wise man like ur father

  18. You are like Mohammed Ali in his prime… u know what that means???

  19. Great lessons ….from a great man!
    ‘The leader is the one who has thought about it longest’ – that speaks of diligence, excellence and patience.

    Let us all inculcate all these virtues, and we shall rise!

    See you at the top!

  20. deolu, i’ve seen the prison break 2 but didn’t get to analyse it d way u linked it up with life secenario.
    Honestly u r a genius in all aspect of life.
    keep it up & continue to put us in line.
    u r d man deolu.

  21. ronke gbadegesin

    Good lessons:i even learn one more thing that no matter what we should always forgive people that wrong us because you never can tell, your worst enemy on earth can turn out to be your life saver.
    i have watch prison break up to episode 22 you cant beleive that Agent paul can come out to confess therw hiden sins in court to save Dr sara from spending the rest of her 12years in prison and free Micheal and Lincon.anyway i give respect to the writer of this film and you the analyist you are too much.but i wonder where this writer is going to end prison break cos Micheal his in another person noooooooooow

  22. Great Insights Deolu, met you at LBS when u came to present for Virgin…u’ve got great ideas….been following ur posts…keep up the good job.

  23. Quite insightful chairman,

    Prison break happens to be the only series i have watched and i never regreted watching it. In a long time i have not seen any film like this. Like you said, i don’t think the person who wrote this film knows the end when he started it.

    You have drawn out some very powerful life lessons from this film, thanks for shearing your deep thoughts.

    Please o! i want to know if where i stopped is where every other person stopped coz i have been seen diffrent versions of the film but nothing new. I stopped where Scofield and his brother got to panama, and Scofield disappeared leaving his brother. Am I on track?

    See you guys at the TOP!!!

  24. deolu,
    WAO! i really would like to meet you. that was truly inspiring and deep.its interesting to know that one can just watch a film and bring out life-transforming events from it.
    keep up the good work.

  25. I think you are just on your way to greatness; your greatness has just begun, with this reasoning capability, the whole world will soon learn about the treasure in you. keep the flag flying.

  26. Thank you.

  27. I am really inspired by this article.
    Forgive me for saying this thou….Am one of the few people who has not watched the film Prison Break.
    But from what I have read so far, I intend to look for a ‘keeps’ copy and watch it.
    Maybe I’ll be able to learn more lessons frm it.
    Thx Deolu.
    NB: am glad my friend recommended this site to me.

  28. This was quite interesting to read…. I never liked prison break all this while even though my sister had been trying endlessly to make me interested and eat into my head about it. But now, havnt read this, its the next DVD im goin to get both season 1&2. I hav to watch this for myself….thanks 4 inspiring me

  29. Insightful!!! Really insightful.

    I’ve heard of the film but I’ve not been able to watch it. You wrote this as if you’re pouring out the whole film, making me feel I’m watching it already. Now that you have given us insight to the film, I must lay my hands on it; not only that, I must watch both series.

    Thanks Deolu.

  30. A thought provoking piece. I now understood why I found Prison Break such compulsive viewing. Your analysis is very deep

  31. Umm….Deolu you’ve done it again, so insightful!
    I’d watched this film(both 1&2) picking up just about four of the lessons you listed….. Now I know I need to watch both seasons over again. One other lesson you didn’t mention, probably ‘cos u want to limit the lessons to seven is that in life, we shouldn’t keep enemies. Those you are desperate to kill today may end up being the ones to save your life tomorrow, as seen in the case of agent Paul kellerman going to court to vindicate Sarah Tancredi and Agent Alex mahon wanting to team up with Scofield in prison in Panama(Preview of first 17minutes of season 3). looking forward to the lessons of season 3.

  32. Hi Deolu,
    Just reading your wonderful piece on prison break. what great insights!! could you please do some kind of expose s on prison beak season 2 and possibly 24 all seasons. i.e if you could spare the time? i belive beyond anything, many people would benefit.
    wale. VNA

  33. I certainly need to watch this film all over again tthis time with a view to marking the numerous additional life lessons in it.

    Thanx, Deolu for your characteristic ESP of issues and situations.You,ve done it again…..this is good work!

    Meanwhile,is Prison Break season 3 really out yet? i wonder.

  34. Yes, it certainly a must watch

  35. i leant from that lesson, it a movie to watch.

    meanwhile, i just vist ur site today and am impressed, i hope to further discuss with you.



  36. True word bro, once again i have refueled and ready to conquer my fears. Uncle Tai always said may your road be rough, but its not meant to stop you but encourage you to apply wisdom. Its a great priviledge reading this.

  37. u did a very good job, ur analysis is superb. Keep it up

  38. not at all sir. this film like you said is a master piece. the reason why i respcet michael so much is his ability to think not just himself but the people around him out of problem. during immense problem, he doesnt panic but he thinks and always comes out with a good solution. the guy is really gifted. the film is a must watch.

  39. Prison Break is definitely one of the best action suspense TV series. I love the story line, i like T-bag too.*,*

  40. what i like about prison break is the story about Michael Scofield*;’

  41. We all need to be reminded who we are sometimes & what seed
    Is deposited to us by the perfect maker.
    To me is another wake up call, though I often read ur blog without
    Leaving notes, but i can’t just do thesame today. My prayer for you
    Is for God to daily motivate you Himself & grant you more grace to
    go on.

  42. i would miss Michael Scofield of Prison Break, i wish there was another sequel to this series.”*

  43. Just done watching it the last episode last night. And I can’t stop thinking about It.
    Googling for “prison break lessons” and your greate article is the first thing that came up.
    Thank you…

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