You are here: HomeNews2016 03 03Article 421229

Opinions of Thursday, 3 March 2016

Columnist: Tetteh, Nathan Qarboo

Picking yourself up

Dreams, aspirations, tasks, assignments, responsibilities are often a core integral part of most people, especially for the young. At times you find a passion burning so fiercely inside of you that it begins to consume you like some wild bush fire. This could either be a job interview, a project, a business idea, a trip abroad, the birth of your new baby, buying your dream car or even making contact with your dream woman (I know that draws someone’s mind to someone special…lol). However, the reason some people have not been able to achieve much and live fulfilling lives is not because they never made an attempt, but rather because they failed a couple of times and did not have the courage to get up and try one more time. The reality of the matter is that, on your way to attaining your God-given calling in life, you are probably going to fail more than you will be successful. But interestingly, every single success you chalk would most likely value more than ten of your failures put together. The purpose of this article though, is to empower you and let you in on a few wisdom nuggets that should help you pick, dust yourself up and to try again after a fall. Lets look at why you must overlook your previous failures;
• It’s very much okay to fail
Whoever told you that failing at some point in your life or in the pursuit of your career is a signal of doom is obviously more ignorant than you are and that is surely not somebody who qualifies to be your advisor. The thing about continued success is that if it continues to happen for so long and everything seems to be working in your favour, then there comes in the tendency for you begin to feel like you are better than everyone else. What’s the danger? Pride begins to set in and that is so not healthy for you. As humans, we are supposed to make mistakes so as to remind us that we are not perfect, lest you begin to view yourself as some demigod. Failure also encourages you to put in more effort and to do more in order to get back to your winning ways. At times its not even about effort at all, but rather about methods. When you feel the unpleasant taste of failure, then you begin to appreciate why you must succeed in order that your life would be more fulfilling.
• The world still needs you
I know that your plans are laudable. I know you are angry about a lot of things that happen in society these days which you feel you could do something about. I know also that you are poised with a desire to cause change around you and to make the world a better place for us all to dwell. What baffles me however, is why you would want to give up so easily when the world still needs your kind of skills, expertise and attitude to make it a better place for generations to come. My point is that you have to keep pushing on because there are more negative forces thriving in our world today, than there are positive ones. Only love can drive out hate and only light can drive out darkness. Forces of nature will try a few times to put out your tiny flame even before it begins to shine. That is not your business. Your duty is to ensure that you keep lighting it up whenever your flame is put out, and you will be amazed someday, at the depth of impact you would make.
• Things just happen. You aren’t supposed to understand it all.
You probably put in so much work into your preparations towards that project and now that you didn’t succeed the only question boggling your mind is ‘ how did I not succeed at that?’. Everybody knew that promotion was more like your birthright and you are wondering why it was given to another person. You had all documentations intact and you are also wondering why you lost out on that bid for the contract right? My answer to you is that life in itself is mysterious and that’s how it’s supposed to be. We are not supposed to have everything figured out before we make a move. Over the years, humans have busied ourselves so much with probing into everything that happens around us. God is the only one who sees, knows and understands everything and perhaps, that is what makes Him God and we, his creation. Perhaps you should stop wasting your time on getting non-existent answers and rather get back to work. Do not be discouraged by your failure to succeed even though there was so much evidence pointing to the fact that you were going to be successful at it. Muster the courage to accept the things you cannot change and keep on working hard until you eventually hit your targets. God is still working. Just take it one day at a time.
• You know why you started
Why did you begin at all, in the first place? Did you begin so that you could waste your time on a half-done job? Or you began in order to give credence to people’s beliefs that you are incapable of achieving anything for yourself? Oh no, perhaps you begun because you wanted to prove to us what kind of a weakling you are in a world full of competition I guess? Hell No. I bet if you were giving me a comprehensive list of why you set out on this mission, none of these would be captured in your write up. So now to the substantive issue…..if you have a fair idea of what reason pushed you to begin whatever it is you started, then with all the thoughts about giving up that have clouded your mind at the moment, you are definitely deviating from your course and the earlier you begin to retrace your steps, the better for you and your calling. Go back to your drawing board, take another look at why you even begun and convince yourself as to why it was worthwhile. This process would rejuvenate you with a fresh breath of energy to start all over again. This time, to win and nothing less. In short, always remember why you started.
• You are doing your best.
Relax. Take a deep breath and start all over again. I know you are so down-spirited that you are beginning to bring yourself under a false notion that you have not done enough. But you know so well, that is not true. You know you put in more effort than everybody else and yet, all of that could not yield any meaningful benefits. But I assure you today that YOU ARE DOING YOUR BEST. You have to understand that hardwork is one key that unlocks greatness and achievement, but it is not in any way, a sure guarantee that you are going to succeed by all means. You may put in all your resources and energy into a particular project and still not succeed. Do not stress yourself so much, that by the time you are ready to start enjoying the fruits of your labour, ill-health would begin to set in. one mark of achievers is that they know how to maintain a balance between the interwoven responsibilities that we are burdened with. Life rolls out success in turns and when your time is due, nothing would stand in your way. Trust me, you are doing your best.
Having understood why you should get back to work, lets now look at how you practically begin the reconstruction process.

• Engage in positive self-talk
In your bid to get back on your feet and pursue your calling, this psychological process is going to help you a lot. Once a while, we do find ourselves thinking out loud and at times talking to ourselves about a myriad of issues concerning us. Positive self-talk however is a process where you sit yourself down as though you were with a counsellor or a therapist, to focus on your positive traits as a person, while ignoring your weaknesses. In doing positive self-talk, you encourage yourself and make a comprehensive analysis of your life. Point out your positive e characteristics and roll your life around them, while you work on your negatives. The science of psychology tells us that people who are self-motivated (internal motivation) are likely to achieve more than those who derive their motivation from external factors.
• Surround yourself with positive company.
Your friends and acquaintances. Do they engage stuff that are in sharp contrast with your interests or make comments and remarks that seem to suggest theya have bit of doubt on your personal capabilities? Well its time to distance yourself a little. You are still working on yourself and that in essence, means that you probably do not have much yet, in terms of finances, branding, popularity etc. Therefore, if you are still working on these keys things (which means you don’t have them yet), then you cant afford to have negative people around you as well. I am not in any way, suggesting that you cut ties completely but at least, keep most of the challenges you have been up to from these people in order not to receive discouragements and pull-him-down attitudes. Discouraging words are so powerful that they have the ability to render plans you have been making for months or years, virtually meaningless. Sometimes, all somebody needs to shatter your dreams for life is a simple ‘SHUT UP’. Therefore identify the people who trust in your ability to achieve and talk to these people more often. They are the ones who would fill your self-esteem so that you can be motivated to achieve beyond measure.
• Feel the fear and do it anyway
Believe you me, that fear you feel as a result of your previous inability to succeed? I have it too. Many other successful people also have it. But what distinguishes the mindset of a winner from that of a man destined for failure is that in spite of the fear, we do it anyway. Every businessman has that subliminal fear of ‘so what if my goods are not patronized? Oh that doctor? yes he also wonders occasionally whether that medication he is prescribing for you is even going to work at all. Forget the voluptuous grammar that lawyers speak when arguing out their cases, somewhere at the back of his mind, he is like ‘would I really win this case?’. Now narrowing this down to you, I know that scenes of your previous failure keep playing back involuntarily. Logic begins to explain to you in plain language why you are likely to fail again. But I tell you what, DO IT! I bet David wasn’t too sure of himself when he faced Goliath, as we usually make it appear. But he confronted his fear head-on and you know so well how that story ended. Those competing against you who you are afraid of also feel just as insecure as you do. Trust me, I’ve once lived with the regret of not trying, and trust me, it’s not a place you want to find yourself at all.
• Develop an insatiable thirst for knowledge
Knowledge! It’s a fundamental requirement in your pursuit. You need to know all the nooks and crannies of the business or venture in which you are involved. You should be abreast with latest trends, who matters, changing dynamics, as well as information about other things that are not directly related though but which, kind of share a distant link. You want to become a business magnate? Well how many business magazines and journals have you read in the last five years? You the young lady who wants to become a model….can you give me the list of the top five modelling agencies in Africa? I doubt how many aspiring models can answer that question in the affirmative. Knowledge informs proper decision-making and helps you to make proper comparisons and analysis of choices that you face in your course. The thing about knowledge is that, it sets you above your peers, because you know what exactly to do at any point in time, which reduces your margin of error.
• Believe in GOD.
‘trust in the lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding’. Irrespective of what religion you practice, I am telling you today that you need to believe in the supernatural power in which your faith lies (not necessarily my God in heaven if you don’t believe in him). God is the maker of the entire creation and he dishes out blessings when he knows it will be beneficial to you. In getting up from your fall, you have to trust God with your life, because after all, he gave you the life. The other side is that, belief in a supernatural being has been shown scientifically to improve moods and motivate good behavior. Psychologically, The mere fact that you believe in a power working in your favour elevates your mood and helps you to take on bigger challenges. Keep working and JUST BELIEVE. #iMagined
Nathan Qarboo Tetteh (Motivational Speaker/ Life Coach- iMagined) +233244903748