Your Daily Personal Energy Program

YOU NEED ENERGY for life. Energy is essential for work. Dreams and goals are useless if you lack energy. 

The definition of energy is one of those I don’t and can’t forget. It is the ability or capacity for work. It simply means that energy is correlated with work. No energy, no work. The higher the energy levels, the higher the output of work and vice versa.

The implication is that you need high levels of personal energy on a daily basis to pursue and live your dreams. 

Any day you wake up and realize that you lack personal energy and momentum, the day is almost over for you because there’s little or nothing you can accomplish when energy is lacking.

For you to be able to take advantage of all the possibilities around you, and to have continuous enthusiasm that keeps you motivated and always moving ahead, you need to organize your life in such a way that you feel terrific and highly pumped up for action every passing day.

So what I wish to do now is highlight 4 tips you can imbibe for your daily personal energy program. These tips are helpful in keeping you in the right physical, mental and emotional state for harnessing your day. I’m personally learning to practice these tips myself.

Tip # 1: Proper Rest

We all know that lying, stealing, cheating and the likes are sinful acts. But many of us do not know it is also a sinful act to not give ourselves proper rest.

Rest is a strategy. It is a form of spiritual exercise. It is giving yourself a break to recover the most energy you’ve used up thinking and executing ideas, working and wearing yourself out.

Proper rest means two things: sleeping and relaxing. It means taking out time everyday when you are not doing any work – physical or mental. A period you just relax your mind and body.

Eight hours of good sleep has been recommended as the best medicine for revitalizing oneself both physically and mentally. And I mean night sleep. There’s a reason sleeping at night is the best form of rest. In fact according to one study by WHO, working through the night instead of sleeping was found to increase the risk of cancer.

The study explains that the theory behind this has to do with the body’s melatonin (hormone) levels and the changes the body experiences when forced into staying awake during a time when there is no natural sunlight.

Am I suggesting sleeping away your life every night? Certainly not. For there are times when you can’t but wake up before dawn to set some things in order. However, the advice is to regulate how you do this. Sleep early, wake early. This will increase your energy level, your productivity level, and even your life span.

Tip # 2: Positive Mental Attitude

Some people are prone to waking up from the wrong side of the bed in the morning. It is important to note that the attitude you put up in the early hours of the morning while you rise from the bed holds the key to what the rest of the day would look like for you.

Negative emotions or attitudes like worry, anger, bitterness, ingratitude, complaining, and so on are energy dissipators. For example it is said that one outburst of anger can consume as much energy as 8 hours of regular work. Anger and other negative emotions have been associated with the release of a hormone called Cortisol which when in excess can lead to nervous breakdown. 

Negative attitudes are depressants. They depress your mind and body. They disempower you by destabilizing your immune system, making you susceptible to all kinds of illnesses. 

More so, they undermine your confidence and enthusiasm and lower your ability to perform effectively in the key areas of your life. 

In essence, to keep your energy at the high level demands that you consciously cultivate positive attitudes on a daily basis. Be grateful. Instead of worrying about the things you don’t and can’t have, celebrate the things you already have. Choose to see abundance even in the midst of the worst conditions. By all means, stay positive.

Tip # 3: Proper Diet

This means three things: eating the right foods in the right proportion at the right time.

The energy we need for both mental and physical work is trapped in food stuffs. Nonetheless, the kinds of foods, the proportion and the timing must be balanced in order to provide you with useful energy.

The first recommendation here is water. Your body needs enough water for high performance. When your body is dehydrated, the cells, tissues and organs are in great danger. 

Water is a detoxifier. Lots of water in the body will continually help to flush out toxins, salts, and other wastes and residues that can build up in your system and slow you down.

Generally, 8 glasses of water per day is recommended for combating the normal water loss that occurs as a result of work. However, this may vary with the weight and size of individuals.

The best form of diets for your daily energy program include fruits, vegetables, whole grain foods like pasta and rice,  lean source proteins like fish and egg, vitamins and mineral supplements.

Other kinds of diet especially fats should be taken moderately to avoid overweight which leads to energy loss and health problems.

Avoid the 3 white poisons: flour, sugar and salt. These are mostly contained in processed (junk) foods and canned products like snacks, alcohol and most drinks.

Eat at proper times and don’t overeat. Don’t form a habit of eating late at night because the metabolism rate is slower during such periods and this can lead to metabolic dysfunctions resulting in other kinds of health problems.

Tip # 4: Proper Exercise

If you are like me whose heart tend to jump off the cliff anytime the idea of exercising surfaces, I want you to know that there’s no need for that.

No-one is asking you to start going to the gym everyday, except of course, you are under a fitness program to reduce weight or something.

Exercise as a way of keeping fit physically is basically about consciously doing something everyday to flex your muscles and increase your heart rate.

Proper exercise is firstly about bringing your heart rate up into what is called the training zone at least 3 times per week. The normal heart rate is 70 beats per minute. The training zone is keeping your heart rate at about 120 to 160 beats per minute for at least the next 20 minutes.

You can do this by walking 2-3 miles, three days a week. “I don’t think I have time for that,” you say. Well, have you thought about trekking to work or school. Instead of always picking a taxi or climbing from one bike to the other you can decide to wake up early enough every 3 days in the week and trek from your house to your workplace or school.
Early morning push-ups, jogging and cycling can also be incorporated into the scheme to help flex and keep your muscle tone at a high level.

***

Enough said, now take a look at the 4 tips again, what and what can you start doing in response to your daily personal energy program. Remember, without high levels of mental and physical energy, you are going nowhere with your dreams and visions.

Thank you.  

The Force of REJECTION

AS AN ENTREPRENEUR seeking to build a formidable and profitable career around your deepest passion, rejection is inevitable. At times it will linger to a point where you are almost frustrated and tempted to drop your game by the road side.
The rejection sometimes will stop you dead in your tracks as you keep wondering why the world seems to be up against you.

I had just arrived in one school to market my book FINDING YOUR CAREER PATH. After I postured the content of the work and how useful it would be to the students, the lady in charge did nothing but maintained a sneer. And by the time I said something about the cost of the book, she lashed at me as though I had grabbed her by the tail.

She made some obnoxious remarks about the book and writing as a whole. She treated the one copy I had put in her hand like trash.

In my mind I felt like knocking her on the head for bastardising the efforts and resources I’d invested as a writer in creating a product.

But then, of what use would that be? I am only being introduced to a reality which I must face on the path I’d chosen. And I had the option to deal with it or let it ride on my back.

Rejection is real. Especially when you decide to be yourself. It happens all the time. And it can come in different sizes and shapes. And in different settings. In your relatioships. In your career. In your workplace. The list continues.

You wanted that one job, and they say no, “you ain’t capable.” You’ve been dumped a couple of times by friends and family. They called you “stupid” in school. You tried selling your product / service only to get it thrown back to your face. Totally disdained and rebuffed. 

What do you do? Drop your art and let the emotions suck the life out of you? Or plunge your feet into deeper waters to test the full depth of the ocean?

How can you take full advantage of rejection and use it to push forward?

1. Acknowledge the Process

Rejection is a NORMAL phenomenon. Period. In fact, what’s ABNORMAL is not being rejected. Rejection is usually a proof that you are getting on with something unconventional. For the entrepreneur, or the one who has decided to create and sell his / her art, rejection is pretty much part of the process that brings the success. 

So the first cure is to accept it as a reality. You will be rejected by friends, family, businesses, jobs, publishers, auditors, and all the gate keepers you are likely to meet as you journey your path.

Once I establish in my mind that rejection is normal, I worry less if I am rejected or not, In fact, I even prepare to be rejected. This way, I keep creating without letting the fear of rejection interfere with the process.

2. Don’t Personalize it

At the point where you don’t see rejection as the process, you are inclined to take it personal.

There’s no reason you should. You should realize that everyone – both the rejected and the rejecters – are all trying to get by. Some of the rejections you face doesn’t mean you are not liked. It’s just that everyone is seeking for how to secure his / her stake.

For instance, that my book is rejected by an internationally acclaimed publishing company may not imply my book is trash. Or that I am not liked by the publisher. 

The rejection is probably a way of securing their own stake. So they say come up with stuffs like; “Your book is not marketable” Your style of writing is archaic.” “It does not measure up with international standards.” And so on.

Don’t take it personal. It’s normal.

3. Choose Yourself

Perhaps, rejection is the most powerful force when it comes to being a creative. Most of us will never accept who we are and may never realize our full potential but for rejection.

The near death of traditional publishing is as a result of many rounds of rejection from renowned publishers. Authors have now chosen themselves by choosing to go the way of self-publishing and growing their own platform.

That’s the upside of rejection. It forces us to get into the whole creative process. To sack off, so to say, those gate keepers that keep interfering with our advancement.

With the advances in technology and the internet, the line keeps widening. The opportunities have become endless. You now have the right to say yes, to choose yourself and move forward with or without the yes of the gatekeepers.

4. Improve your Approach

One key way to reap positively from rejection is to constantly take it as a feedback. When you suffer rejections, instead of saying to yourself; “I suck, no-one likes me. I’m sc***ed.” Ask yourself; “what can I do differently?”

Statistically, 30% of the people will not like you. Another 30% will care less about you. 10% will shuttle between not liking and not caring. You only have 30% who will like you. It is from among this group that you get those who can accept your offerings.

Utilise rejection, (especially from the last 30%) to seek for alternatives.

Your product is down on sales. Try creating a different product with similar or entirely different features. Try freebies. Create something and offer it for free and let them smell the great value in it that could wet their appetite for more.

The point is, when you are rejected, don’t give up. Instead, change up! Try a different approach. Do something differently again and again. Keep tweaking until you eventually hit the gold mine. 

It takes great AUDACITY to keep creating despite the REJECTIONS.

Be Audacious!!!

Another Reason We Get Stuck: Putting the “How” ahead of the “Why”

THE COMMON EXCUSE we provide for not following a particular course of action, or for not pursuing a set goal / desire is “I don’t know how”.

This, of course, is well founded. For it is technically not possible to move from point A to B when you don’t know “how”. Nonetheless, there’s a primary reason this becomes our “experience” and on the long haul, our “excuse.”

Last we I wrote something about why we get stuck. I titled it The Foundation. Today I want to highlight something else which I believe is another, perhaps, one more reason we often get stuck.

I think “Jurrasic World” is a great science-fiction movie. Actually I’d watched it a couple of times. The movie combined advances in gene science with what happens in everyday life.

Beyond the horror of watching the dinosaurs and raptors rip people and things to shreds, I enjoy the feeling I get about how we tend to respond when facing a desperate situation.

This is clearly spelt out in the scene that had to do with Aunt Claire’s two little nephews as they tried to escape the clutch of one of the raptors. Out of desperation, the two boys put to use a highly sophisticated weapon they’ve never before seen in their lives to smoke the raptor to death.

They didn’t know “how” but it kind of emerged. How come?

Although one could say the “how” emerged by chance in their situation, the major lesson it holds is the fact that there’s always something more important than the “how” which is the “why/what.” And that if we are able to focus diligently on the “what/why” the “how” will emerge sooner than later. As a matter of fact, the “how” matters less without the “what/why”

But the problem is that we are always putting the “how” ahead of the “why”.

Just dropped my ears a couple of hours ago to a podcast containing an interview with the legendary author and speaker, Tony Robbins. He’s one man whose words can practically set your bones on fire.

He said, “the “Why” is not as important as the “How”. Always put the “why” ahead of the “how” and you will be all good.”

One problem with putting the “how” ahead of the “why” is that it breeds thoughts of limitations. 

While the “how” deals with mind issues, the “why” deals with heart issues. And the heart, not the mind, is where the motivation, the energy and the drive needed to navigate your course lies.

Putting the “how” ahead of the “why” is the reason we often fail to reach the “what” Such inclination is what handicaps us from stepping into the flow to reach out for the “what”. For that is when we begin to consider ideas such as; “I don’t have enough funds to get it done.” “I lack the necessary skills.” “I am not very competent.” “No-one likes me.” “I don’t have enough connections.” “What if I fail?” “What if no-one likes it?” And on and on it goes.

On the contrary, the “why” brings with it a sense of purpose that ignites every fibre of your being to find ways to get things done that needs to be done. It brings with it that “desperation” that enables you to stumble, so to say, into that realm of unknown where you perfunctorily unlock a code you never had or thought you could crack.

The point is, if we are able to figure out clearly “what” to do and “why” we need to do it, if we could establish that “why” firmly in our core, the “how” is left with no other option. The universe will somehow simply begin to conspire together to get us what we desire.

Always, and I mean, always, put the “why” ahead of the “how”. And like Tony said, “…you will be all good.”

The Foundation

ONE OF THE realities of our time is the fact that majority of us are stuck in life. We are trapped. And we feel that all the options have been taken away from us.

James Altucher wrote; “The most dreadful thing in life is not dying. It is being born. Once you are born, you are screwed. For then you must fight to survive.” 

Actually I’ve been digesting the ideas in his book “Choose Yourself” for the past two days. One remarkable ideas that keep hitting me as I roll the pages of the book is one that affects humanity tremendously.

In fact, it’s something I’ve written about sometime ago. The work is surely one of the many works lying around in my lappy.

It is what Stephen Covey of “The 7 habits…” would refer to as “sharpening the saw.” It was Abraham Lincoln who once said; “If I have 6 hours to chop down a tree, I will spend the first 4 hours sharpening  my axe.

While the task is to chop down the tree, the condition of the tool for executing the task is more important. If I don’t get my saw sharpened, I will spend ages cutting at the base of the tree without much success.

How does this apply in our roles as humans living life?

We are overly more concerned about the business of living – achieving that and this – that we forget [sometimes, ignore] the need to sharpen the saw of our inner faculties.

I call it “The Foundation”. The base from which the best things of life proceed and is birthed forth in its purest form. 

The basic error is attaching ourselves to external realities at the expense of what lie on the inside. We forget that what we see on the outside is only but the ripples of the ocean trapped within.

The fire that lights up your world and presents you as a beacon to humanity lie at the base of your inner core. 

When you are stuck or feel trapped, it is “the foundation” – the base from where the business of living occurs – that should be revisited. 

There are 4 dimensions to this base. And how we attend to these dimensions on a daily basis is what affects everything else in our lives.

You cannot live a full life from a position of ill-health. “The foundation” is about health and balance. It’s about creating an atmosphere within that propels you forward to live the life that you truly desire.

In sharing this idea, it is my desire to summarize the simple practices to maintain with regards to these 4 dimensions which naturally provokes results on the outside, and gets one unstuck.

1. The Spiritual Dimension

The key to spiritual health is to learn to practice two basic principles. The principle of GRATITUDE and SURRENDER. 

For gratitude, each morning when you wake up, ask yourself, “What/who am I grateful for? Who are those I can call today to express gratitude to? The answer you get should motivate your action. 

For surrender, it’s about reestablishing in your mind the fact that there are events in your life that you are not in control of, and perhaps, would never really be in control of. Your job then is to focus on the things you have immediate control over.

2. The Mental Dimension

Your mind always wants to boss you around. To keep you busy with unproductive tasks that translates into worry and despair much sooner than later. 

The common prescription for mental health is to engage your mind early in the morning ever before it tries to get into the game of bossing you around. Provide it with large chunks of meaningful task to accomplish for the day that it would rarely have the time to wander off into unpleasant terrains.

3. The Emotional/Social Dimension

The key here is to do just two things – spend time doing only what you love, and spend time only with the people you love. Period. Anything else outside this two is the reason for the emotional baggages that laden us with stress and pain.

4. The Physical Dimension

Take care of your body it is the only mansion that houses your true content. 

Three practices are important here.

Diet. Try to avoid junk foods. Eat enough fruits and vegetables. They contain phytochemicals and antioxidants that ward off free toxic oxides that bring about age-related macular degeneration.

Exercise. This doesn’t necessarily have to be anything traditional. It can be as simple as making a habit of taking a brisk long walk daily. Personally, I do push-ups once I jump out of bed in the morning and walk round the compound to allow natural air to rush through my nostrils and provide the blood system with the purest form of oxygen to do a good job of detoxification. 

Rest. You need enough sleep, at least 8 hours per day. Sleep is not only good for your body but for your mind as well. A good sleep makes you wake up in the morning feeling like one who has just been born again. And if you’d asked me, I think that could pretty much be the idea behind the Creator’s invention of sleep.

So what? 

Take care of the foundation. Wake up every morning with a basic understanding of what is required to keep you spiritually, mentally, emotionally and physically healthy. With such daily disposition and practice, your best life has no option but to emerge to limelight.

Wealth Creation Chest

WHEN YOU THINK of success in your career, what comes to mind? Fame? Riches? Awards of recognition? Popularity? What have you?

While all these are  great stuffs worthy to be desired, the definition of a successful career can never be more correct than the idea of serving humanity in the most significant ways with what you are most passionate about while creating lasting wealth in the process.

Wealth is different from riches. Riches refers to having an abundance of valuables (money and possessions) that could last you for a time. Whereas wealth refers to having an abundance of value (products and services) to last you for a whole lifetime.

It is amazing what happens when in the practice of your career you focus on becoming a wealth creator. With such capacity comes riches, fame, honor, respect, dignity and anything else you are yet to imagine.

In this sense, rather than try to gain riches, fame and so on, as a way to define success in your career, you alternatively and imperatively need to find yourself a wealth creation chest. 

What is a wealth creation chest?

Simply, it is a series of tools you engage with throughout the practice of your career that keeps your value rising in geometric progression.

A few tips before I introduce you into this terrain. These tips are the qualifications for utilising the tools contained in the wealth creation chest for your career success.

1. Your life’s work must be self-chosen

2. It must be connected to your passion

3. It must be beneficial to humanity

4. It must trigger your creative intelligence naturally

5. It must provide you with ample opportunity for unlimited personal and professional growth

6. It’s value must be measured beyond the time/money relationship

7. It must not jeopardize your relationship with your Creator and the closest people in your life.

With the above tips in mind and fully satisfied, you are qualified to utilise the following  9 tools found in the wealth creation chest.

Tool # 1 – CLARITY OF PURPOSE

This tool enhances your sense of vision and direction. It helps you to constantly keep things in perspective. It serves to guide your day-to-day decision-making. It also guides you in the selection of goals and priorities. It practically keeps you on track. In the practice of your career, this one tool will do more than help you answer many key questions. You must therefore work to understand at all times what exactly you are doing and why.

Tool # 2 – PASSION FOCUS

The ability to create wealth over and over again is trapped in the realm of your deepest passion. This tool helps you to build focus around your deepest passion. Being passionately engaged in what you love doing is a principal gateway for sustainable wealth creation. Nothing compares with this tool in your hand. The possibilities are endless. And the opportunities are boundless.

Tool # 3 – SUPERIOR SALES SKILL

The sellability of the value you possess is highly dependent on how you utilise this very tool. Being capable of influencing, persuading and motivating others to buy and keep buying into your thoughts and ideas (products/services) holds a lot in hand with regards to the enormity of the wealth you can create in your career/field. No matter the level where you are in your career, this tool continues to be relevant. Otherwise, you won’t get to sell anymore, or as much as you should.

Tool # 4 – ABILITY TO EXECUTE IDEAS

Ideas are as fickle as seeds until they are implemented. Wealth creation within the terrain of your career requires relentless executionary measures. If you are bold enough to dream it, then you must be bold enough to go for it. The result you eventually get is more or less a byproduct of how readily you execute the ideas that visit your inner consciousness each passing moment.

Tool # 5 – DEDICATION TO LEARNING

There is a strong correlation between learning and wealth. Every successful person you know in any field is nothing more than a person who has chosen to keep learning more and more by the day. They learn new skills. They acquire new and relevant knowledge which they can apply in their field to get bigger and better results. A lifelong learning culture is the top rule of creating wealth in any field of endeavor. As they say, “the more you learn, the more you earn.”

Tool # 6 – PERSISTENCE

The path to creating wealth through the practice of your career is filled with all kinds of challenges, difficulties and setbacks. You must realize that just because you’ve decided to engage in something you love doing doesn’t mean the road will be cleared for you. On the contrary, you are bound to meet with roadblocks to cross and hurdles to jump. You will suffer untold moments of defeat, disapproval and discouragement that will make you want to give up. Your ability to persist will therefore mean more to you than anything else at such points.

Tool # 7 – SERVICE 

True wealth is measured by how much you able to serve humanity with the ideas, gifts and expertise you have. If wealth creation is about value, then service is an indispensable tool for this purpose. It is on the platform of service that value is delivered and dispensed. Truth is, we exist to do nothing more than serve humanity. It is by serving others that we get to explore the realm of unlimited wealth and success. So throughout the practice of your career, you must remain service-oriented. Have the mindset of a problem solver – constantly see yourself as the one who must offer humanity the answer that it desperately seeks.

Tool # 8 – SAVINGS CULTURE

This tool is primarily about resource management. The one key to life all wealth creators have come to underscore is the capacity to manage resources effectively. Resources here includes time, talent, people, possessions and money. A greater percentage of the failures most people suffer in life and in their careers can be traced to lack of management skills. To attain that height where you become a wealth creator, you must avoid wastage of any known resource available to you. You must keep this gold mantra in mind: “managing what I have is more important than what I can make.”   

Tool # 9 – SPIRITUALITY

A deep sense of the supernatural workings of faith and total dependence on your Creator is one more tool you can’t afford not to have in your wealth creation chest. The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness therefore. The world and all that dwell therein. He’s the one that gives you the power to create wealth. Living in harmony with spiritual laws is non negotiable for this very purpose. Wealth creators of all times are known to be people who nurture their thoughts and belief through daily prayer and positive affirmations.
Will you choose today to become a wealth creator in your field? The wealth creation chest is yours for the taking.

Cheers to your greatness!

Spark Up Your Creativity


HAVE YOU EVER imagined the possibilities of thinking in different ways? The possibilities of creating something new in your work and in your life.

Creativity is an inborn ability, and thankfully it can’t be lost, neither does it depreciate with time like naira or dollar.

Creativity only goes into hiding and a state of dormancy from lack of use. It can be tapped and revitalized upon demand. You don’t need to worry about whether you can be creative or not. You need only accept the idea that you still possess what was given you at birth – the inherent wisdom, intelligence, and creativity that constitute your particular brand of genius.

You are a creative genius. 

You have the capacity to forge new perspectives and rearrange the old in a novel and exciting way. Your creative storehouse is enriched with the wisdom of the ages, the understanding of the present, and the vision of the future.

It is not lack of creativity that you suffer; it is lack of the skills and tenacity necessary to constantly tap into your creative genius.

Creativity thrives with your thinking skills. And there are just about 7 bold ways I’d suggest you start thinking if you desperately want to start harnessing your creative juices beyond what you’d ever imagined.

1. Think Association

One of the phenomenal things about the mind is its ability to build connections between dissimilar ideas. Your mind cannot deliberately hold two separate ideas without eventually forming a connection between them.

Through association we can remember places, persons, and things.

The highly creative genius is forever associating ideas and concepts and seeking always to build connections.

Once you become aware of this as a reality you will automatically begin to see the connections between the multiple ideas in your mind, leading to greater creativity.

2. Think Substitution 

Most innovations in the world today are byproducts of substitutional thinking. For example, at one time, the transistor replaced the vacuum tube, and now the computer chip replaces them both.

When you think substitution, ask yourself how you might replace a different material or process with what is currently in use. What can you remove and what can you add that would probably produce an alternative effect, or perhaps the same effect but more easily and faster?

This is how Bill Gates of Microsoft and Steve Jobs of Apply Inc. took the field of computer technology to the next level.

The key is to never assume that anything is indispensable – feel free to substitute. Feel free to put Z in place of A. Take a look at everyday products and services. Perhaps there is a substitute that will work better or last longer, or cost less or be more durable, and so on.

3. Think Rearrangement

Do not be stumped with logical thinking pattern. Organized thinking has its great proceeds. But to pump up your creative flow would demand being a little more irrational in your thinking.

That is, shift things around. Turn products or ideas upside down, inside out, reverse the order – rearrange things. Put C before A and Q after Z.

Salespeople are known to use this creative technique to discover new applications for products and new ways of emphasizing customer benefits. You too can leverage on this method to initiate new use of a particular product or service in your organization or career.

4. Think Big

Think bold. Think no limits. Think big stuffs. 

Picture a skyscraper, jumbo jets, giant soft drinks, large economy-size products – what is it they all have in common? They are of greater benefit because they were made larger.

At the time when android phones and iPhones were introduced in the market, Steve Jobs started thinking of the possibilities of making something bigger, something in-between the smartphone and laptops.

Most people doubted the sellability of such an idea on the basis that it doesn’t stand a chance in the midst of the ongoing competition with smartphones.

However, Jobs went ahead and executed the idea. That is how the iPad was born. And today it has sold more and generated greater revenue than the former.

The implication is that by increasing size, or thinking big, you can add more value as well as greater possibilities in the use of a particular product or service.

5. Think Small

While there are dividends in thinking big, there also are great benefits in thinking small.

A quick way to illustrate the power of thinking small is by considering the transition from the macrocomputers to the PCs. 

IBM was the ruling company when it came to computers. A time came when a young man called Bill who worked in the organization came up to them with his idea of a personal computer which will be built using a smaller kind of software.

IBM rebuffed the young man’s idea by saying that it is not possible. The young man resigned from the company and that was how Microsoft was born – an idea which revolutionized the computer industry completely and holistically.

Think of ways by which making a particular product of service smaller, you can improve on its features and functionality.

6. Think Combination

Almost everything in nature including you, is a product of combination of different elements. Oxygen and hydrogen as separate elements have a use, but by combining the two elements, water, a new product which serves different unique purposes is produced.

Music and comedy are two separate kinds of entertainment. But someone decided to combine them together, and as a result the musical comedy was born.

Sometimes the power of combination is seen by uniting or integrating the mundane or common into a new product or service. Everything you see, hear, smell, taste or touch offers great opportunity to consider new combinations.

7. Think Adaptation

Adaptation is about thinking of adapting old things to new uses, or old methods to new applications. 

The phonograph record and motion camera originally developed for entertainment have been adapted today for learning and education.

The truth is that throughout the remainder of the decade and beyond, we will see the result of individuals thinking adaptation and coming up with concepts and ideas worth millions.

Will you be among this group?

The only limit to what you can achieve by adapting the old to the new, is the limit to your own creativity.

Since there’s no limit to your own creativity, the possibilities are therefore endless.

Would you like to learn about the 3 levels of creativity and how to unleash your own creative genius? I have this special gift for you. It’s a report that will show you the step-by-step procedure you can utilise daily to harness your creative potentials to the fullest.

Get the gift here >>> https://www.dropbox.com/s/uo23nxqx4ozpeg9/Awaken%20Your%20Creative%20Juices.pdf?dl=0

Time to Chase Your Passion

SOMETIME LAST YEAR, I had to stay in this unending long queue at one banking hall just to make a cash deposit. Reason being that there was just one cashier at the counter attending to the whole customers. 
The two others that were supposed to be doing the job had just being laid off and their positions were left vacant. 

The career landscape has shifted tremendously in the 21st century.

It’s not as though we do not know but it’s just that we somehow find it hard to digest the situation or accept it as one of the realities of our time.

Irrespective of this tethered approach, the impact of the reality of this shift in the career landscape continues to ravage virtually all major sectors that seem to be generating streams of income or revenue for the economy.

This is evident in the ongoing economic downturn, the massive number of unemployed graduates, the downsizing trend common in all business sectors leading to a forceful laying off of employed staff, and so on.

Unfortunately most of us, as stated early on, are still struggling to accept this as a fact.

We are still waiting until we become victims before we appreciate this reality and begin to make the necessary course corrections that would reposition us to adapt effectively. 

It is obvious that much awareness in the area of career decision and transition strategies is needed in our time. 

The time when people go to school hoping that by studying one “professional” course or the other, will land themselves automatic self or paid employment, has come and gone.

As harsh as this may sound, it is obviously the truth. I know it’s hard for most people to accept. It’s same here. But there is nothing anyone of us can do against the evidence.

I am always of the opinion that instead of resisting change, one should save and redirect that energy towards adapting to change.

One thing I personally believe this spontaneous shift in the career landscape is doing is calling forth the hidden and dormant potentials within us. It surely is a clarion call to shun mediocrity and start chasing our passions. 

The key perhaps, is taking that road less traveled – that path of least resistance – which we have always had the constant nudge to follow.

Yes, I am talking about chasing your passion. I am talking about exercising the courage to start creating a solid business structure around your deepest passions.

It’s high time we left the dead paths of trying to live a normal life. (That life isn’t even possible anymore) It’s time we ventured into the real business of living. I mean, living our true calling in life and making the most out of the opportunities that this difficult days present.

To be admitted is the fact that going through the rigors of following and building a formidable venture around your passion is not a day’s job nor a child’s play.

But then, reading the message on the photo will perhaps help you appreciate that its worth the pain.

I am not necessarily trying to propagate the idea of leaving paid employment. Not at all. I am only stating the facts the way they are as a way of creating awareness of an existing reality.

You obviously will need a shift in your way of thinking to adapt to this new reality.

Shaping Your World

THERE’S THIS PRODUCT I wanted for a particular purpose but due to my commitments I’ve not really been able to enquire about it particularly as regards the cost. 
I had asked someone who told me it will not be anything below #20 grand. 

On hearing this I became bemused because I never estimated it would come that much. I perfunctorily started dismissing the thought to go for the product while switching to another alternative in my mind.

However, later, the same person who gave me the information called in to tell me that he just went to market and decided to price the product. Lo and behold, the price was far less than he had presumed. 

Without delay, I had to switch back to my original plan discarding completely the other alternative.

As I thought about this experience it gave me quite a lot to crunch up in my hungry mind.

Igbo people use to say (and they are correct), “adighi anodu n’ulo amara ihe ahia nyere”. That means, you don’t stick your butt at home and expect to know what’s up in the market.

It may sound too exaggerated but many of the decisions we make in life are based chiefly on assumptive measures. We assume a lot and that is why we don’t get our expectations met.

It is not wrong to make assumptions but it is quite expensive to base your decisions on them. And as we know decisions decide the future. As such, if you make choices utilizing a datum that has not been subjected to any practical or empirical research, you do so at the detriment of your own destiny.

Recently I watched a videoclip on Steve Job’s secrets of success and the very first tip on that clip is a validation to this observation.

Steve is of the opinion that most of the ideologies we hold to be true today about life is chiefly based on what others told us and what the society says. In his own opinion, this is the biggest barrier to exploring life.

You cannot make any positive change in life thriving on assumptions. To make such change you must stop viewing life as something that’s just there, something you can’t tweak to come to your taste.

For centuries gone by the whole world had to live their whole lives based on Lactantius’s assumption that the world is a flat surface. Everyone believed it to be so not until it was later challenged by Christopher Columbus. Now everyone believes the world to be round.

I am pretty much sure that if anyone rises up tomorrow to convincingly prove the world to be a rectangular surface, we will all desert Columbus’s the “world is round” ideology and aimlessly begin to build around this newest ideology of the “world is rectangular.”

As for me, the world can pretty much be of any shape you can think of. 

My point really is this: Lactantius’s world is flat. Columbus’s world is round. What about your own world?

What does your own world look like?

Do you have any idea? Or are you choosing to stay stumped with what they told you.

To find the answer, you have to go out there and make your own research. Find things out for yourself. It’s up to you to shape your own world. That’s the only way you get a chance to make your own little discovery which could change the world in very significant ways.

That’s how great inventions are born.

What are You – A Conformist or An Explorer?

IMAGINE YOU’VE volunteered for a study. You arrive and sit at the end of a row that has four other participants.

The presenter gives you two cards: one has one line, and the the other has three lines.

You are asked to compare the length of the one line with that of the other three to determine which one is the same length as the original line.

The other participants give their answers one by one. They unanimously give an answer that’s different from what you have, and which also is clearly wrong.

The question is this:

When it’s your turn, will you change your answer to match theirs, or will you stick with your own answer?

I can hear you saying; “I will definitely stick to my answer.”

Well, you may have to think again because the results of the above exercise shows there is a great probability that you would change your answer.  

Studies upon studies reveal that humans tend to believe what the people around them believe, and they tend to accept as truth the ideas handed over to them from their social environment.

If you find yourself among a group who are singing and dancing to a beat, the chances are very high that you would soon join in. Perhaps not immediately, but sooner than later, especially when you watch other persons who come in after you join in the same behavior.

This is called social conformity – a type of social influence that results in a change of behavior or belief to fit into a group. And it’s the reason for the biased approach to life that we are often entrapped in. As a matter of fact, most of our decisions are greatly influenced by what is or is not socially acceptable.

This could be logical but the problem is that many atimes what is socially acceptable isn’t always the right or the best thing to do in certain cases.

When you hear the gold mantra, “be yourself,” you wonder why it’s usually a hard feat to undertake. Shouldn’t it be the easiest thing to do – being yourself?

Perhaps that’s what it ought to be. But on the contrary, it’s not. 

Social conformity is the reason it can be so tiresome to be yourself. We live in a world that’s constantly pressing us hard to fit into a particular predefined mold irrespective of whether that mold fits our personality or not.

Being yourself in a world that’s constantly pushing you to conform to a known standard, a particular pattern of behavior, is the biggest war you will ever wage in life after the battle of the mind.

This concept is so critical that even the Scripture had to warn us sternly against conforming. It says; “Do not be conformed but be transformed…”

The scenario described at the beginning is actually part of a famous experiment conducted by a renowned Psychologist in the early 1950’s to determine how often people conform and why.

In the experiment, the person at the end of the row (you) is actually the only participant. The other four are actually actors, who purposefully gave the incorrect answer.

It was observed from the experiment that a total of 75% of individuals subjected to this exercise conformed. That is, they joined in with the other four to give the incorrect answer even when it was clear to them it is incorrect.

The implication of this result is that 8 out of 10 persons today are social conformists – acting based on what seems socially acceptable or readily permissible.

Why is this so?

Social conformity is driven majorly by two forces: the desire to be “liked or accepted” and the desire to be “correct”. Psychologists repectively call them “normative” and “informative” types of conformity.

These two forces are the reason most of us tend to conform to an existing reality or pattern of behavior without asking questions.

It is the reason we will follow the majority to engage in stupidity even when the signs are obvious to us.

In my soon coming book – The Lies They Told Us In School, I devoted a particular session to explain how this phenomenon plays out and how it has stunted the evolutionary pace of the educational system, as well as its debilitating effect on the average student.

The aforementioned two forces can manifest in different forms:

__The desire to feel right

__the desire to feel part of a group

__the desire to gain social approval and acceptance from members of a group 

__the desire to avoid being criticized

__the desire to avoid being ignored

__the desire to behave in a manner that is perceived to be right or correct

__the desire to avoid feeling inferior to others.

For fear of appearing like a social misfit, most of us hardly attempt to shake things up a bit around us. This is why we are not evolving as we should. This is what stunts our growth.

Life is meant to be explored (howbeit within the perimeters of reason and morality). But this cannot be done from a conformist standpoint.

Where does inventions come from? 

How did mind-blowing ideas that has brought uncommon social advancement and human development come about? 

The answer is simple.

Some folks dared to think and act in socially “unacceptable” ways. This group refused to give in to the pressure to conform to an existing norm. They preferred being tagged “socially-incompetent” over staying stumped in a particular mold.

The desire to explore the depths of life was far more intense than the desire to be accepted or the desire to be “correct”.

There’s no doubt that social conformity is one of the biggest obstacle to personal evolution.

The key however, is to know what is socially acceptable, but to still go ahead and explore other boundaries.

Be an explorer not a conformist.

Give yourself the permission to venture into unchartered territories against all odds.

They say you must finish the food before eating the meat. Try otherwise.

They say you must write with your right hand. Try the left one.

They say you must do it this way or that way. Try the other way.

This may appear to many as being rebellious. “Who are you to challenge an existing protocol or norm?” could be the question. 

As much as possible turn deaf ears to such mundane talks. As long as you have the conviction, and as long as what you are doing is within the realms of reason and morality, it can be anything but rebellion.

You may be tagged a social misfit. You may be rejected by friends and even family. But one thing is certain, you will soon discover something beyond what already exists. And when that happens, the world which once rejected you will be left with no other option than to consult your expert knowledge.

Sooner than later the same world that wanted you to conform will be compelled to pay you to be yourself.

So will you continue to conform? Or will you learn to give yourself the permission to explore the many-sided dimensions of life.

The former will keep you at a spot, at the same level with everyone else. But the latter will move you to a higher orbit in the shortest possible time.

There’s no future in being a conformist. Life is to be explored. So be the explorer. That’s where the future lies.

3 Common Errors in Business Judgment

​SUCCESS IN BUSINESS or any worthwhile endeavor depends largely on the quality of decisions made per time.

In this  brief report, I wish to present vividly 3 common orientations that are inimical to effective business judgment. These are very subtle subjects so I encourage us to try as much as possible to read in between the lines. 

1. The Action-first Orientation.

We seem to have a workplace norm that constantly drums into our ears “Don’t think – Just Act! This way individuals who pause to question actions are often considered as “hesitant to take charge”.

The action-first orientation is dictated in part by our need to draw instant conclusions about the world around us and how it works. An attitude that’s deeply rooted in the erroneous idea that everything in our world follows a predefined sequence which is applicable in all situations.

We call it being logical. 

One of my most profound discoveries i recent times is the fact that while it is true that the rules of logic does exist, they rarely apply in every circumstance.

For instance, seemingly, a ship constructed out of steel, or carved out of a rock, should not be able to float. An aircraft weighing 200 hundred tons should not be able to fly. An ant should not be able to lift 5 times its body weight. Clear water should not look blue. 

These are consistent with the rules of logic, yet all of them occur, proving that everything does not depend on the rules of logic.

Our world, particularly the world of business is basically full of seeming inconsistencies, contradictions, unknowns and/or significant gaps in knowledge.

The rules of logic does not tolerate these realities. And this forms the basis for the action-first orientation which renders critical and strategic thinking of no repute. 

Even then, it is not action itself that brings the expected result. It is “thoughtful action”. Thoughtful action is action that hits your business objectives, thus provoking the best results.

And so beyond the need to take action, we must encourage the essentiality of constantly asking the appropriate questions needed to provoke thoughtful action.

2. The Speed Orientation

Speed of implentation has been underscored as one of the prevailing attitudes of successful people.

While this is true, it appears that the general notion it gives is that speed of action is all that truly counts, that success in everything is decided by how quickly you act in any given situation.

This orientation paints a picture in the mind that typically says, “fast is good, and slow is bad.” It creates a falsified scenario where a fast but plausible interpretation is often regarded over a slow but certain one.

It is important to note carefully that fast and slow are only but neutral descriptions until they are considered within the context of a specific situation.

It is not exactly the speed of action per se that makes successful people reach their goal, it is the balance between the rate of action and inaction. It is the ability to determine the rate or speed of action required for a given situation.

Blanket rules such as “do it now,” may sound appealing to the senses, but it does not preclude the fact that speed without direction ends in frustration. 

Speed on its own is not a business virtue. It is not even a prerequisite for effective decision-making. It is choosing the appropriate speed for a given situation that is one of the most essential components for business/career success.

Most business leaders in the bid to act fast have incurred upon themselves and their organizations irreparable damages.

Making a quick decision when the situation calls for it is essential. However, taking more time to collect useful data and asking the right question is even more than necessary.

Thus, it is not the speed of action that counts in the long run but the ability to determine the speed of action required for a particular situation. Yes, speed is always a factor, but how quickly you act should always depend on the circumstances. 

3. The Connectionism Orientation

The problem with the human mind is that more often than not it thrives on imperfect data. 

Our minds can instantly access information from previous knowledge or experience that seems relevant to the problem at hand. It has the tendency to fill in missing parts from its large reservoir of worldly or familiar knowledge, make plausible assumptions, and be satisfied with fast and approximate solutions.

This forms the basis for our habit of generalizing things. 

The connectionism orientation typically explains how our instant application of knowledge tricks us into believing that we have an immediate answer for a particular problem, that if one answer worked in a previous situation, it should definitely work in a current one.  

This way, we rarely have the time to consider alternative answers, even when we should. Previous knowledge or experience becomes our substitute for critical thinking, as our minds recognize already-made answers to problems rather than deduce them from obvious facts.

In predictable environments or situations, like reading for an exam or coupling machine parts, the connectionism orientation may work superbly. But in unpredictable environments, such as today’s increasingly complex global economy, it can cause us to make serious mistakes during decision-making that will have negative long term effects on our business. 

The inevitable weakness of this orientation is that it trains us to constantly manufacture patterns, fill in the gaps, and make assumptions that are highly inaccurate or completely untrue.

There are 3 primary dispositions that keep us trapped with this orientation:

One is, OVERCONFIDENCE, the common tendency to subconsciously overestimate how much we know about a particular subject matter, which apparently blinds us to the great possibility of our lack of the crucial information required to proffer a skilled solution.  

We can be so focused on asserting what we know about a subject matter that we fail to consider what we don’t know about it.

The implication is that we tend to make decisions without considering the limitations of the facts that form the basis for our conclusions.

In this sense, more than what you know about a particular problem, it is always very important to constantly ask the question; “What else do I need to know in order to reach a sound conclusion with respect to the problem at hand?”

Two is, AVAILABILITY BIAS, the proposition that the most available information is the most relevant, even when such conclusions are totally illogical.

There’s the tendency to assume that a majority opinion is more accurate than the minority opinion which is why we can confidently adopt the “majority carries the vote” method in making decisions.

The most readily available data, because it is common, vivid and probably, generally acceptable, tricks us into thinking that it is central to the issue at hand. Such automatic assumptions can be very misleading, because more often than not, the most pertinent data is neither the most obvious nor the most useful.

The last one is, FRAMES, the mental state that allow us to control what information we attend to, and the ones we filter off.

Frames are the reasons our minds, when faced with a particular problem, tilt toward one particular interpretation of reality and away from other possibilities.    

This is no fault of ours. It’s all in the mind. It is however our responsibility to consciously push our minds to consider other possibilities outside our particular frame of reference.

It begins with the realization that the key to generating creative solutions to a problem lies with using multiple perspectives or defining a problem in different ways.

***

If we must begin to enjoy greater output in our careers and business, then we must seek daily to balance each maxim in every decision-making process.