DOWN BUT NOT OUT

By Ahmed Yahaya Joe

1. “Abraham Lincoln. Honest Abe Lincoln. Possibly the most successful politician in American history – abolished slavery, united the country after the Civil War to preserve the union, modernised the economy and put America on a path to greatness. But Lincoln was not always a raging success.
In 1831 at the age of 23, he owned a general store in New Salem, Illinois. The town was booming. However, his choice of business partners wasn’t great, and the business was run into the ground. Abe then ran for the Illinois General Assembly. He lost. Lincoln then bought a half a share in another General store. This store also went bust, his business partner died, and Abe – who borrowed money to invest – was broke. He spent several years paying off the debt.

Lincoln ran for US Senate in 1854, but was defeated. In 1858, he ran for the Senate again and won the popular vote. But through a quirk of the electoral process at that time, the Illinois State Legislature chose Lincoln’s rival anyway. This guy could not catch a break. However, he managed to come back from all this and was elected President in 1860. He is generally considered to be the greatest American president in history. He was perhaps, too good a president. His achievements inspired a wing-nut – who hated Lincoln for abolishing slavery – to shoot him in the back of the head while at the theatre. A tragic for America.”

2. “In a boxing match, you can lose the first 14 rounds. All you have to do is nail your opponent in the last 10 seconds of the 15th round and you’re the world’s heavyweight champion” – Ross Perot.

3. “At the start of the Munich Games in August 1972, Lasse Viren, a 23-year-old Finnish policeman from the small village of Myrskyla, was not widely known. Indeed, the heats of the 10,000 metres were his Olympic debut. But when he stumbled and fell just before the halfway mark in the final his chance of victory seemed to have gone.

The Tunisian Mohamed Gammoudi (who had won the 5,000 metres at the 1968 Olympics) tripped over Viren and gave up two laps later. But the Finnish runner calmly got to his feet and chased his way back into contention, overtaking Britain’s David Bedford, the long-time leader, to not only win the gold medal, but set a world record of 27min 38.4sec. Ten days later, he also won the 5,000m (in an Olympic record time) – a double that he repeated in Montreal in 1976”

Making Coffee or Tea

I love this analogy!

You are holding a cup of coffee when someone comes along and bumps into you or shakes your arm, making you spill your coffee everywhere.

Why did you spill the coffee?

“Because someone bumped into me!!!”

Wrong answer.

You spilled the coffee because there was coffee in your cup.

Had there been tea in the cup, you would have spilled tea.

Whatever is inside the cup is what will spill out.

Therefore, when life comes along and shakes you (which WILL happen), whatever is inside you will come out. It’s easy to fake it, until you get rattled.

So we have to ask ourselves… “what’s in my cup?”

When life gets tough, what spills over?

Joy, gratefulness, peace and humility?

Anger, bitterness, harsh words and reactions?

Life provides the cup, YOU choose how to fill it.

Today let’s work towards filling our cups with gratitude, forgiveness, joy, words of affirmation; and kindness, gentleness and love for others.

Just begin

*Copied
A very inspiring tale to encourage you.

Just after I received my fee structure from Moi University for my PhD, totalling N850,000 in 2012, I met my dad, Alhaji Abubakar at Cooperative bank in Kaduna.

I explained to him that I had the admission letter and he smiled.

I told him however, “Baba, there is a problem. They need N850,000.”

He held my hands, then slowly but reassuringly, said, “Just begin, my son.”

To ensure his point went home, he got into his account and gave me N14,000 in an account that had N20,000.

I was touched.

I added N16000 and paid N30,000 into the account, and my journey to PhD began.

Today, having reached the dream, I remember the words of my father.

In everything you do, always remember, JUST BEGIN.

Just begin, no matter how difficult it seems to be.

It appeared to be difficult, but as time lapsed, I realised dad was right.

At some point after my defence, I gave up.

I still had a solid N300,000 to pay and they wouldn’t give me a chance for my final defence.

Then came a very unlikely help.

I had supported a gentleman to undertake a project evaluation two times in the year.

I received his call cautiously asking me to meet him.

He was carrying a brown envelop in his hand.

He began, “Aliyu, you will forgive me if you find my action inappropriate. For two consecutive times you have given me a job without asking for a Cent. This is very unusual with many people. I did not know how to approach you, but I am deep with gratitude. Please accept my small gift.”

I quickly peered into the envelope and saw they were two bundles, likely in hundreds.

He confirmed that it was N200,000.

I told him, “I have helped so many people, many known to me, some were my school mates who never returned a Cent. God bless you. Please don’t give it to me. Pay it straight into the university account.”

I couldn’t believe it.

The words of my father, “My son, just begin” came to mind.

Don’t worry how it will end.

Just begin.

If you are building a house, just begin.

If you are planning to buy land, just begin.

If you want to continue with your education, just begin.

If you want to pay dowry, just begin.

Nothing is more powerful than that advice.

We just need to begin.

And I have revised this philosophy.

Whenever someone is doing something, I always encourage them to just keep trying.

When things get thick, I always say, keep walking.

When things are intimidating, ignore.

Let’s keep trying.

Don’t give up on life just because your challenges appear to be insurmountable.

Do not be defeated before you begin.

Whatever looks like a mountain will soon become an anthill…but only if you begin.

Not long ago, someone asked me, “Aliyu, are we going to manage to build the office we want?”

My answer, “Let’s just begin.”

I believe in the power of starting.

No one loses a race until they respond to the sound of the gun and begin.

The secret lies in beginning.

Overtime, God has seen me through a number of projects because of this philosophy.

I have parcels of land that I acquired by simply paying N50,000…and, overtime, these have multiplied.

I persuade you this day never to allow yourself to be threatened by the size of your problem.

Begin in a small way to do something about it.

If it is lack of money do something small to get something for yourself.

If it is a marital issue, look for a way to solve it.

In whatever you face, just begin.

Even those with big debts can do something about it.

Just begin and it will shrink each day.

I was not a millionaire, but sometime ago, I wanted to have a feeling of being one.

I drew a plan of how to hold a million in my account, at least for a few days.

After some months of beginning, I discovered it was possible.

Three years and half of savings later, I got my first ever million.

Even though I used it later on investments and expenses, it felt so good.

Let’s all begin.

Let’s ignore naysayers and prophets of doom that believe we can’t do it.

JUST BEGIN!

LESSONS OF THE HEN

ELEVEN POWERFUL LESSONS TO LEARN FROM THE HEN

  1. She first lays enough eggs before sitting on them.
    GOOD PLANNING.
  2. When she starts sitting on her eggs, she minimizes movements. DISCIPLINE.
  3. She physically loses weight while sitting on her eggs due to decreased feeding. SACRIFICE AND SELF DENIAL.
  4. She can sit on eggs for another hen. INDISCRIMINATION AND GENEROSITY.
  5. She sits on her eggs for twenty one (21) days, patiently waiting, even if they do not hatch, she will lay eggs again. FAITH, HOPE AND NOT DISCOURAGED.
  6. She detects unfertilized eggs and rolls them out.
    SENSITIVE AND DISCERNING.
  7. She abandons the rotten eggs and starts caring for the hatched chicks even if it is only one. WISDOM, CONSCIOUSNESS, AND REALISTIC.
  8. No one touches her chicks. PROTECTIVE AND LOVE.
  9. She gathers all her chicks together. UNITY OF PURPOSE.
  10. She cannot abandon her chicks before they mature.
    MENTORSHIP.
  11. She always be at the front of her chicks.
    LEADERSHIP

“Acquire the principles of the hen, and your success is sure”

Be blessed

*copied


Why Chickens Walk

The lessons of President Xi Jing Peng of China

I stumbled on this very enlightening titbit & thought lots could from it…. Enjoy!!

President Xi Jing Peng of China said:

“As a small child , I was very selfish, always grabbing the best for myself.

“Slowly, everyone left me and I had no friends. I didn’t think it was my fault and I criticized others. But my father gave me 3 sentences to help me in life.

“One day, my father cooked 2 bowls of noodles and put them on the table. One had an egg on top while the other bowl had none on top. Then he asked me to choose a bowl of noodles.

“Because eggs were hard to come by those days, I chose the bowl with egg! I was congratulating myself on my wise choice/decision and decided to wallop the egg. To my surprise, I saw that my father’s bowl of noodles had two eggs at the bottom beneath the noodles! With much regret, I scolded myself for being too hasty in my decision.

“My father smiled and taught me to remember that what your eyes see may not be true. He added that, If you make a habit of taking advantage of people, you will end up losing.

“The next day, my father again cooked 2 bowls of noodles: one bowl with an egg on top and the other bowl with no egg on top. Again, he asked to choose the bowl I wanted. This time, I felt smarter so I chose the bowl without any egg on top.

“Hmmmmmm to my surprise, there was not even a single egg at the bottom of the bowl! Again, my father smiled and said to me, My child, you must not always rely on experiences because sometimes, life can cheat you or play tricks on you. Never be too annoyed or sad, with situations, just treat experience as learning a lesson that cannot be gotten from any textbooks.

“The third day, my father again cooked 2 bowls of noodles, one bowl with an egg on top and the other with no egg on top. He asked me to choose the bowl I wanted. But this time, I told my father, Dad, you choose first. You are the head of the family and you contribute the most to the family.

“My father was very happy and he chose for me. He chose the bowl with one egg on top. But as I ate my bowl of noodles, to my surprise, there were two eggs at the bottom of the bowl. My father smiled at me with love in his eyes. He said,my child, you must remember that when you think for the good of others, good things will always naturally happen to you.

“I always remember these 3 sentences of my father.”

Xi Jing Peng

Sculptor of God

By an Anonymous Writer

Enjoy & meditate on it….

“A German once visited a temple under
construction where he saw a sculptor making an idol of God.

Suddenly he noticed a similar idol lying nearby. Surprised, he asked the sculptor, “Do you need two statues of the same idol?”
“No,” said the sculptor
without looking up, “We need only one, but the first one got damaged at the last stage.”

The gentleman
examined the idol and found no apparent damage.
“Where is the damage?” he asked.
“There is a scratch on the nose of the idol,” said the sculptor, still
busy with his work.

“Where are you going to install the idol?”
The sculptor replied that it would be
installed on a
pillar twenty feet high.

“If the idol is that far who is going to know that there is a scratch on the nose?” The gentleman asked.

The sculptor stopped work, looked up at the gentleman, smiled and said, “I will know it.”

The desire to excel is exclusive of the fact whether someone else appreciates it or not.

“Excellence” is a
drive from inside, not outside. Excellence is not for someone else to notice but for your own satisfaction and efficiency.

Don’t Climb a Mountain with an Intention that the World Should See You,
Climb the Mountain with the Intention to See the World.

MOUNTAIN

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My mood goes up and down a mountain,
Too inspired by the challenge to refrain.
Wary of the danger that’s being embraced,
So cautious of the consequence, if disgraced.

Confused at the reason why anyone must,
Scared of the height beckoning my lust.
Struggling up the first ledge as I edge up,
Proud to have made it up my own little top.

Further up more battles, the way is yet more.
Betrayed by falling rocks I yearn for before;
Holding on to dear life, yet another average.
Dejected by unfriendly weather and also age.

Angry to slip off the steep, rubbed in bruises.
Disappointed to lose the gained just pushes;
Gasping up yet another route should matter,
In time it comes to never prove any better.

Surprised by the like company all about,
Reason enough for such to pine on without
The appreciation my efforts and gains deserve.
Tired yet gladden by that view, a pleasure.

Knowing I cannot stay forever there on top.
When and not if I return grounded from up;
Normal should I be again, only different
With experience and lessons time can’t dent.

If I return pushed from its highest cliff’s edge
Or in honour received at finished time’s verge,
I’ll wrestle my older age’s embers of last mood;
Helplessly watch it win all my trophies and food.

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