Teachers Open Doors…But You Must Enter Yourself

How do you live your life? At cause or at effect? It is important to be aware of this distinction. It is the rare individual who always lives his or her life at cause, however far too many of us live a large portion of our lives at effect – responding to the whims, desires or emotional states of others.
Being at cause means that you are decisive in creating what you want in life and take responsibility for what you have achieved or will achieve. You see the world as a place of opportunity and you move towards achieving what you desire. If things are not unfolding as you would like, you take action and explore other possibilities. Above all, you know you have choice in what you do and how you react to people and events.
If you are the person that always wait for things before you react, you would continue to see reasons to blame others or circumstances for your bad moods or for what you have not achieved or for your life in general. You may feel powerless or depend on others in order for you to feel good about yourself or about life. If only my spouse – my boss, my coworkers, my parents, my children – understood me and helped me achieve my dreams or did what I wanted or what is best for me, then life would be great.
If you continually wait and hope for things to be different or for others to provide, then you are at effect or a victim of circumstances. And really, how much fun is that? And how much fun do you think it is for others to be around you? Believing that someone else is responsible or making them responsible for your happiness or your different moods is very limiting and gives this person some mystical power over you, which can cause you a great deal of anguish.
Are you just starting out in business or already in business? Are things not turning out the way you planned? This is the time to seek a mentor – someone who can show you the way, someone to teach and advise you and enable you to become a wise and effective human being. Stepping on the shoulder of a mentor helps you to avoid some mistakes and achieve success earlier than you expect.
These set of people are everywhere around you. You only need to identify what you are looking for in a mentor.
I or anyone else for that matter can only do so much for you. We can give you advice and tell you what to do if you want to be successful, but you yourself have to be willing to put in the time and effort.
If you don’t have the drive to be successful, you aren’t going to succeed. So here are some things that may help light a fire under your ass:
Hang around with successful people – being around successful people will make you want to be successful as well.
Get back to reality – watching a ton of TV, movies and even playing games is a great way to escape from reality. Although it’s fun, that will pull you away from your goals. Concentrate on your long-term goals and don’t get caught up in things that take you away from reality.
Stop thinking and start acting – to some extent, thinking too much isn’t good for you. Thinking will only get you so far; you have to start acting on things.
Read success stories – there are a lot of case studies on the web of entrepreneurs who went from rags to riches. Following these entrepreneurs should help in motivating yourself.
1. Make the commitment to reach your goal: “One person with a commitment is worth a hundred who only have an interest.” Mary Crowley. Your goal is worth nothing without your commitment to follow through on it. Lack of commitment is one of the reasons why many people do not [achieve their goals. Many have great goals and even wonderful plans to achieve the goals. But without a personal commitment, nothing will be achieved. You need to constantly remind yourself that nobody can achieve your goal for you. Your employees or your boss is only working at achieving his goals. So, how committed are you to your goals?
2. Be accountable: Commit yourself to detailed accountability. Look for someone that you respect and share your goals with the person. If possible, get a mentor that you know would be interested in you. Remember that mentors are not there to help you achieve your goals. They are to ensure that you remain on the right track. But I bet you this is worth much more than you can quantify. Also, develop the habbit of recording your progress toward your goals every night, and list the six most important things you need to do the next day. This daily discipline is not only key to reaching your goals but also gives you motivation to keep going.
3. Build your life on a sold foundation of honesty: A life and / or business built on strong character, integrity, trust, love, and loyalty is definitely going to succeed. The progress may not be visible but it will pay off. This foundation will give you an honest shot at reaching any goal you have set properly.
4. Break your intermediate and long-range goals into small bits: Imagine that your goal is to have a certain amount of turnover in your business within the next one year. While this is may be a great goal, the implication is that you will have to wait till the end of the year before you know if you achieve your goal or not. But if you break it down into monthly turnover, this is easy to measure. Moreover, you will be able to know on time if you are close to your goal or not.
5. Be prepared for change: Something are definitely not within your control. The foreign exchange flunctuation, radical changes in oil prices, weather, inflation, interest rates, government policies etc. are things that you can not control.  So, you have to consider this when setting your goals. Stick with your decision to move toward a goal – but be willing to change your direction to get there as conditions and circumstances demand.
6. Share your “give-up” goals: I can not over-emphasise the importance of sharing your goals with people. While this will help you stay on your toes, it will also do you much good. Assume that your goal is to give up drinking, being rude, or even procrastinating, you will surely see people that will encourage you. They can even help you track your action towards achieving your goals. So, don’t keep your goals to yourself only. Share it and get the help that you need.
7. Become a team player: Nobody is created an island. If God could create Eve and bring her to Adam, then you definitely need people. I have not seen any person who became successful alone. Just take a look around you. The people they are working with may not be visible but I bet you there is little they can achieve without the support they get from their team. One thing you need to consider when in working in team is what you are going to add to others. Focus on how you can help others achieve their dreams. The people you may be working with may even be your employees. Just have it in mind that they have their goals that they are trying to achieve. And if they can’t get to achieve their personal goals working with you, they will leave you and you might have to start over again. Always remember: “You can have everything in life you want if you will just help enough other people get what they want. Zig Ziglar”
8. See yourself reaching your goal: The main reason why you set your goals is because you want to achieve them. It is, therefore, important that believe in yourself. Constantly put the goal before you.  In your imagination, see yourself achieving whatsoever goal you have set for yourself. Can you see yourself receiving that diploma, getting that job or promotion, making that speech, moving into the home of your dreams, achieving that weight-loss goal, hitting that turnover target? This is necessary if you will achieve your goals.
9. Document your achievement: One reason why you have to do this is the effect it has on you. Every time that you reach a goal, your confidence will grow. See your achievement motivates you to work towards achieving bigger and better things. After accomplishing any goal, make it a habit of recording it in your Journal, Weekly Planner or Palm Pilot.
10. Give yourself no other option: Challenges will come on the way. They are there to refine you. But whether you will achieve your goals depends on how you respond to tough circumstances. Most people give up when all that they need is just to try one more time. They give up when they would have hit their target in the next attempt. Join the league of the few that succeed because they did not give in. Give yourself no other option.
Above all, remember, what you get by reaching your destination is not nearly as important as what you become by reaching your goals – what you will become is the winner you were born to be! The first step is to know where you are going. If you do not know where you are going, you will undoubtedly end up somewhere else. You can do better, you can achieve more, you can be the best God has created you to be. So, start now to make your dreams happen!

teacher_Slide14

What is it that you are trying to achieve? Start a business, go  back to school, get that job or even get that promotion at work? It is within your reach. The world presents us with so many opportunities every day to achieve our dreams. Do we take advantage of these opportunities or we just allow them to pass us by? I believe you know the answer in your heart. Your answer is the exact reason why you are where you are today. If things are not unfolding as you would like, it means you have to take action and explore other possibilities.

Exploring possibilities is a personal task. No one can do it for you. While your parents (family, spouses, mentors etc) may be able to provide you with the platform you need, the main responsibility is on you. No one can help you to achieve your dreams. You know what you want and must be ready to pay the price to achieve it. People around you (mentors, boss, parents, friends etc) can only show you the way.They may be able to teach and advise you and enable you to become a wise and effective human being. But taking the actual steps is your responsibility.

I do hope I have a mentor, but you still have to go through many things by yourself. The only person who can help you is yourself.” - Fann Wong

If you continually wait and hope for things to be different or for others to provide, then you will remain a victim of circumstances. And really, how much fun is that? And how much fun do you think it is for to be at the mercies of others? Believing that someone else is responsible, or making them responsible, for your happiness limits how far you will go. People can only do so much for you. Always remember that irrespective of what people tell you about being successful, you have to be willing to put in the time and effort. If you don’t have the drive to be successful, you are not going to succeed. So, here are some things that may help you move in the direction of your dreams:

  1. Make the commitment to reach your goal: “One person with a commitment is worth a hundred who only have an interest” – Mary Crowley. Your goal is worth nothing without your commitment to follow through on it. You need to constantly remind yourself that nobody can achieve your goal for you. How committed are you to your goals?
  2. Be prepared for change: Something are definitely not within your control. The foreign exchange flunctuation, radical changes in oil prices, inflation, interest rates, government policies etc. are things that you can not control.  Stick with your decision to move toward a goal – but be willing to change your direction to get there as conditions and circumstances demand.
  3. Be accountable: Commit yourself to detailed accountability. Get a mentor that you know would be interested in you. Remember that the mentors are not there to help you achieve your goals. They are to ensure that you remain on the right track.
  4. Give yourself no other option: Whether you will achieve your goals depends on how you respond to tough circumstances. Most people give up when all that they need is just to try one more time. Join the league of the few that succeed because they did not give in. Give yourself no other option.
  5. Hang around with successful people: Being around successful people will make you want to be successful as well. Look for people that you know are going somewhere and engage them. You might need to go extra miles to build relationship with this set of people but it is worth the effort. Just remember that “iron sharpens iron”
  6. Get back to reality: Spending hours in front of TV, watching movies and even playing games is a great way to escape from reality. This may be fun but it will pull you away from your goals. While you may have immediate satisfaction, you may be sacrificing your future at the same time. Concentrate on your long-term goals and don’t get caught up in things that take you away from reality.
  7. Stop thinking and start acting: There is a limit to how far thinking can take you. The best laid plans, the most comprehensive preparation, can still lead to nothing unless you endeavour to take the necessary action. No matter how strong and promising your thought, plans and preparation are, once you fail to act, you would still be heading no where. The action step does not have to be perfect but ensure you start acting on things.
  8. Read success stories: There are a lot of biographies of successful people and case studies successful entrepreneurs (business start-ups) who went from rags to riches. Lay your hand on these materials and learn from their mistakes and secrets. Following these people would help in motivating yourself.

Above all, remember, the first step is to know where you are going. If you do not know where you are going, you will undoubtedly end up somewhere else. You can do better, you can achieve more, you can be the best God has created you to be. Start now to make your dreams happen! It is never late to achive your dreams… Go for it!

Husband / Father / God's lover / Kingdom Addict / Heaven's Ambassador on earth | Co-founder, MoMo Nigeria & Partner Manager, Nokia | lover of technology & startups / business | Interested in BoP solutions / services | VCiT & working on MDA | Feel free to contact me for help / advice via emmanuel[@]oluwatos[dot]in |

Posted in Entrepreneurs, Personal Productivity, Success Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,
5 comments on “Teachers Open Doors…But You Must Enter Yourself
  1. Obafemi says:

    No 7 strikes me a lot, you can actually get lost thinking without acting.

  2. yes it’s true Teachers can give you inspiration and knowledge but the main way and destination you have to get on your own.He can teach you about the work how it’s to be done but it’s depend on you.

  3. pace says:

    @ Obafemi & Sophia,
    Thanks for the visit. As we approach 2010, I believe it is time for us to re-appraise our the lessons of 2009 and make a commitment to take charge of our life in 2010.

  4. When I was an undergraduate, I constantly asked myself whether each potential way of spending my time would help me to achieve my goals, not contribute or actually prevent me front achieving my goals? I decided to refrain from ALL activities that would not help me to graduate at the top of my undergraduate class and, in fact, I graduated in the top five percent.

    When I started law school, I forgot about the above commitment and began focusing all of my attention on finding the right woman for me. My mentor told me, essentially, that I had my priorities out of order and was putting the cart before the horse. I ignored my mentor and the difficulty I had in law school and with the Bar Exam were direct results of having changed my priorities and my goal-oriented behavior.

    I had great mentors. If only I had listened to their advice, I would have been much better off.

    You said above,

    “Remember that the mentors are not there to help you achieve your goals. They are to ensure that you remain on the right track.”

    This isn’t quite true, in my experience. The ONLY purpose of mentors if for them to help you to achieve your goals, and for you to give back to your mentors and your community in return.

    Unless you are a good listener, a mentor cannot “ensure that you remain on track”. What a mentor can do is point out the right track and encourage you to follow it, based on their own experience in the industry (and even workplace) where you want to be successful.

    A key quality in a mentor is that s/he knows where the human, financial and employment resources are and can give you direction, suggestions, and a leg up in accessing those resources, if only by telling you that they exist. But as you said above, a mentor can guide a student to water, or point them toward it, but a mentor can’t make the student drink.

    A mentor should be someone who has achieved what you want to achieve or is three or four steps ahead of you; someone who perceives YOUR commitment and YOUR intellect and therefore sees the value in spending their precious and scarce time helping you to get ahead.

    You should think about what you can give back to your mentor before you approach them asking for their help. If the mentor is a teacher, maybe you can help on a research project and get face time where you get the guidance you need.

    If your mentor has graduated from college, from graduate school and is working in a high-visibility post in the profession, maybe you can help them to organize their next professional conference (and thereby meet the sharpest other professionals in the field where you want to excel).

    Realize your mentor’s time and energy are scarce and get ready to give something back in exchange for the crucial career-making guidance you’re about to receive.

    And, for the love of God, don’t ask anyone for anything if you’re not willing to immediately e-mail them and thank them effusively for helping you along your path. Thanking people is the minimum you can do to you show them you appreciate the help (or attempt at help) that you have received. Thanking them keeps the conversation alive.

  5. Jovie Onyema says:

    Yes, i agree with this post. opportunities do come but you have to take hold of them.

Leave a Reply

Archives