Conversation with the African Youth in Denver

On June 14th, 2014, I had the privilege and the honor to be the guest speaker at an African Youth Event in Denver. The topic of conversation, with the youth, was “Life is about choices, not chances”. I first shared the videos on Facebook and people seemed to enjoy them. Now I am sharing with you, the readers of this blog. There are two videos, part one is the presentation and part two, the Q&A session. Thanks for watching!

Part I

Part II

Why you need to stay motivated

Life is not easy, that’s an understatement. In fact we were never promised that it was, but sometimes we do lose sight of that. Therefore we complain and whine when things do not go our way. When the going gets tough, only the tough get going. That is the reason why you need to have a strong motivation, a strong why, why you do what you do, why you want what you want. Life will knock you down, it is just a matter of time. When it does and your motivation is weak, you will fall on your face and getting up may not be easy. 

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Zig Ziglar once said that people often complain that motivation doesn’t last. To which he replied: “neither does taking a bath – that’s why we recommend it is daily”
What is the driving force behind what you do daily! Why are you getting out of bed every morning to go do what you do? Is it to earn a living? Is it to care for your family? Or is it to achieve your goals and live the life of your dreams? Whatever your reason is, just know that it is up to you. What you want is yours for the taking. However, do not lose sight of what motivates you, keep your eyes on the prize if you will. There is no use waiting for something big to happen, start where you are and what you’ve got and that will lead you to something greater.

Forget about new year’s resolutions!

A new year, a new you, right? Will it become reality this time around? Every January 1st, so many people commit to paper new resolutions, only to forget about them by February 2nd. How many times have you decided to do something and did not follow through? How many of your new year’s resolutions did you accomplish last year, or the year before? You don’t need to answer those questions, but you know in your heart what the reality is.  Many people  abandon their goals or break the promises they make to themselves every new year because they become uncomfortable. Comfort is a word cherished by the masses, but what they fail to realize is that success does not live in the comfort zone.

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This year instead of making a list of resolutions you won’t follow, try investing in yourself. The most important investment you will ever make, is the one you make in yourself. However until you know and value who you are you will never take that leap. Given the fact that you are the most important person living, why would you take yourself lightly? Your Maker didn’t! He made you unique and in His own image. He gave you all the power you need you to be, do, have your heart’s desires. But you are stopping you, by not investing in yourself, no one else is. You are like a very fertile soil, whatever you sow in that soil, you will reap in great abundance.

When you think of investment in the financial arena, the higher the ROI, (return on investment) the higher the risks. The good news is when you invest in yourself, there are no risks, only rewards. So what are you waiting for and how do you invest in you? You might be waiting for the right time, which is just an illusion. The time is never right, there will always be something that will prevent you from doing something else. You just have to prioritize and start now. You can invest in yourself by reading good personal development books (or listening to them in audio format), learning new skills, attending seminars in your field. The list can go on and on, it all depends on what you want to do with your life.

Whatever the case know this: there are no plateaus in life, you are either climbing or sliding. The only way you can maintain your balance on a bike is by moving, if you stand still you are going to fall, life is no different. Wherever you work, if you refuse to keep up with new skills or new technologies coming out every year, your job is on the line. For instance being a computer literate is no longer a fancy skill it is now a basic necessity in the workplace.

Investing in and developing yourself is the way to the top. Two friends, John and Paul are savvy engineers with Phds, they now have the job of their dreams at a big firm. John is the best employee in terms of attendance and getting the job done. However Paul gets promotion after promotion, leaving his friend at the bottom of the ladder where they started. What is Paul’s secret? He spends his evenings and weekend reading on personal development but also taking leadership and management classes. It is clear that his investment in himself is paying great dividends.

Investing in yourself will set you apart from the masses, but you must be willing to take the road less travelled. It will not be easy, but you have to be willing to do what’s uncomfortable today so that you can enjoy comfort tomorrow. You already have the gift of life, all you need now is to give yourself the gift of development, developing and unleashing the great powers in you, so that you can savor the best that life has to offer.

Question: What advice do you have on new year’s resolutions? You can leave a comment by clicking here.

Motivation Wednesday #19: Happy New Year

Wow 2014 is here, it seems like yesterday when we were celebrating new’s year eve for 2013. Thank God for allowing us to be part of another year. I would like to wish all of you, a very happy New Year, may 2014 be a year of Health and Prosperity, Bliss and Abundance. May it also be a year of success in all your undertakings.

Together, let us look toward 2014 with faith. Faith in God, not just hoping that He may make things happen for us, but knowing that He will. Faith in ourselves, because there is limitless power within us, our Maker created us in his own image, therefore we can not be weak. A new year is an opportunity to start fresh with a clean slate. What we do with it is up to us. There will be many resolutions flying around. Should there be one for you let it be to read “The Slight Edge” by Jeff Olson, read it again if you already did. You will get acquainted with the art of “turning small disciplines into massive success”.

Question: What is your advice on how to start off the new year ? You can leave a comment by clicking here.

The Courage to Have & Live Our Vision

Today’s is a guest post from a very good friend of mine, Babayel Diallo. Baba is an entrepreneur whose ideas on personal development are very powerful and worth sharing. He is currently pursuing a Master’s Degree in psychology. He is a reader and a contributor of this blog. You can follow him on Facebook here.

Both our past and contemporary world is full of leaders that one could emulate for positive model of vision, courage, and perseverance.  The order of these highest human’s virtues were not chosen carelessly, because we truly believe that one must  have a vision for life first, then armed themselves with the courage to follow such vision, and finally persevere at all costs for its attainment.  Such vision and passion for life were laid before us by great leaders such as Martin Luther King who once said: “if a person is not ready to die for something, they are not fit to live”.  Such statement is echoed through the lives of many other great leaders and the one that inevitably comes to mind is Nelson Mandela.

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This article is written in honor of the vision, courage, and perseverance of one of the greatest visionary of our times, the late Madiba.  Both during his life and after his death, the question that came to everyone’s mind remains the same: how can someone sacrifice over a quarter century of his life for an ideal?  As humans, the answer to such question could be an existential one for us and resides in the core of human nature to find meaning for our life.

Motivation Wednesday #18

It is ok to ask for help!

For lot of people asking for help makes them a burden, or so they think. It makes them weak, inadequate or incapable, or so they believe. The truth of the matter is asking for help just makes you human, it does not make you a failure, or a parasite. It just means that you are a normal human being, therefore not perfect.  No mater how much knowledge you have, there will always be something you do not know. No matter how much you possess , there is always something that does not belong to you.

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Think about it! When you ask for help, you are not the first and you will not be the last. So what is the big deal? The next time you are having a problem asking for help, think of it as you are doing somebody a favor. Yes, a favor! When you ask someone to help you, you are giving them an opportunity to do something good and feel good, a good deed is never lost. You are allowing them to be of service, and we all know by now thru our own experiences that the secret of success is indeed in service.

Wednesday Motivation # 16: Nelson Mandela

“En Afrique, quand un vieillard meurt, c’est toute une bibliothéque qui brûle”.

That was said by Hamadou Hampathe Ba, who was a Malian writer and ethnologist, translated into English it simply means “In Africa when an old man dies, it’s a whole library that burns down”. That statement was certainly true at the time of its writing, in 1960, a time in Africa when people “graduated from the great university of the Spoken Word taught in the shade of baobab trees” However today things have changed! We just lost one the greatest elders that Africa has ever produced, but thanks to the Written Word, no “library has burnt down”. Madiba, as he was affectionately called, left us with great sayings and life stories that will serve us and generations to come.

Today I will share just a few quotations from him, please feel to share the ones you know by Mandela.

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1. Difficulties break some men but make other. No axe is sharp enough to cut the soul of a sinner who keeps on trying, one armed with the hope that he will rise even in the end.”

2.We must use time wisely and forever realize that the time is always ripe to do right.”

3. “We can change the world and make it a better place. It is in your hands to make a difference.”

4.A winner is a dreamer who never gives up.”

5. “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.

6.“Death is something inevitable. When a man has done what he considers to be his duty to his people and his country, he can rest in peace. I believe I have made that effort and that is, therefore, why I will sleep for eternity.”

Question: Do you believe that the world needs more people like Madela? Why or why not? You can leave a comment by clicking here.

Motivation Wednesday #15: Work all the time your work

Whatever is worth doing is worth doing well! Nothing great has ever been achieved with divided attention, so the time to work is not the time to play. When you are at work, work all the time and focus at one thing at a time. This how you can give your best. Today’s Motivation Wednesday comes from an unknown author:

Work is the foundation of all business, the source of all prosperity and the parent of genius. Work can do more to advance youth than his own parents, be they ever so wealthy. It is represented in the humblest savings and has laid the foundation of every fortune. It is the salt that gives life its flavor, but it must be loved before it can bestow its greatest blessings and achieve its greatest ends. When loved, work makes life, sweet, purposeful and fruitful”

 

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Question: What is your idea of job well done? You can leave a comment by clicking here.

18 Quotes on gratitude to stimulate your thinking

Developing an attitude of gratitude will help us a long way towards getting our lives’ desires. Since being grateful brings about positive vibrations and the law of attraction states that “likes attracts likes” or “birds of feather flock together”, it is very clear then than gratitude is surest path to a life of positivity, peace and bliss. I have compiled here 18 quotes that will stimulate your thinking on this area. I hope you you will find them useful.

Denali National Park in autumn, Alaska, USA, North America

  1.  “God gave you a gift of 86 400 seconds today. Have you used one to say thank you ” ― William Arthur Ward
  2.  “Let us be grateful to the people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.” ― Marcel Proust
  3. “Let gratitude be the pillow upon which you kneel to say your nightly prayer. And let faith be the bridge you build to overcome evil and welcome good.” ― Maya Angelou
  4. “When we give cheerfully and accept gratefully, everyone is blessed.” ― Maya Angelou
  5. “To be grateful is to recognize the Love of God in everything He has given us – and He has given us everything. Every breath we draw is a gift of His love, every moment of existence is a grace, for it brings with it immense graces from Him.
  6. Gratitude therefore takes nothing for granted, is never unresponsive, is constantly awakening to new wonder and to praise of the goodness of God. For the grateful person knows that God is good, not by hearsay but by experience. And that is what makes

Is giving thanks useful?

From the bottom of my heart THANK YOU! Thanksgiving Day is just around the corner in the US and I would like to avail myself of this great opportunity to thank all those who open their mailboxes every Sunday and Wednesday mornings to read a piece from my writings. Without you there would have been no blog, so thank you!

If at any moment, I inspired or motivated you to take action towards unleashing your full potential, if I ever shared a thought that challenged the way you look at things and stimulated a new approach for the better; I would like to thank you one more time for giving me the opportunity to serve.

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Photo courtesy of FSR

There are many blessings in giving thanks, so we are indebted to whoever gives us the opportunity to do so. It is said that being grateful makes us happier and healthier, it also enable us to see more blessings. We always have something to be grateful for even though sometimes it may not seem like it for some folks. There are lot of things we take for granted. Imagine being able to breath on your own, to walk without assistance or to wake up in the morning and have a floor to put your feet on. How about having a roof over your head on cold winter night? What about being