by Samuel Osho | Apr 5, 2020 | Beta Life
What’s Your Definition of Success?
“We fail the minute we let someone else define success for us.” – Brene Brown
It’s a bad omen when all your drives are externally motivated. You squeeze yourself into boxes made for you by others. You wear over-sized garments so you can fit into a particular clique. The summary of your life is living to prove a point to others – parents, friends, rude bosses and petty neighbours. That’s no life at all. It’s a disservice to your being.
Without your definition of success, success will appear elusive. In split seconds, the accomplishments of others will pull you in a million directions. That’s how distractions morph into confusion. A confused person lacks clarity to achieve goals. In fact, you switch your goals and aspirations every other day. Today, you are heading to Honolulu because Heidi is hitting it big there. Tomorrow, you are running to Rabat because Rasaq secured a job with a Moroccan firm. You have to be frank: what’s your definition of success?
Your definition of success must come from within. It must reflect who you are, what you want, what gives you peace, and what brings you joy. Your interpretation of success is derived from a merger of your beliefs, principles, and values. No one can define it for you. It’s your responsibility — an escape ticket from the chaotic cycle of exhaustion and resentment. No need for it to be glamorous or aesthetic. It’s for you, and it’s your true north. Your life revolves around it. What an excellent opportunity to celebrate your uniqueness and authenticity.
To remain unperturbed in a noisy world, your inner energy must outweigh external forces. That’s how to insulate yourself from drifting. Let everyone rant all they want, staying on track with your success goals is all that matters the most to you.
Congrats! You just read the shortest brief on how to live a life of legacy.
by Samuel Osho | Jan 28, 2020 | Beta Life
When was the last time you took a step, and you felt like the hinges holding your world were about to snap?
Former heavyweight boxing champion, Muhammad Ali, insisted, “He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life.”
What could be more exciting than taking a risk?
What’s more fulfilling than a leap of faith that was handsomely rewarded?
I imagine it’s like cranking the ignition of the first automobile engine, and it roared to life.
It’s like sailing across the Atlantic for the first time from Europe and finding a new land called America.
It’s like pressing the shutter of the first Polaroid camera, and an image was captured.
What’s more exhilarating than rocking in a new orbit after a quantum leap that took your breath away?
Risk takers are the ones who deserve a place on the extraordinary lane.
Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg, sums it up well when he said, “The biggest risk is not taking any risk… In a world that [is] changing really quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks.”
You won that contract because someone was willing to take a risk on your competence.
When was the last time you took a risk? Your capacity will always remain the same if you refuse to increase your appetite for risk. Your dreams may not morph to reality until you are willing to take bold risks.
Unfortunately, we find ourselves in a system and culture that vehemently hates taking risks. So, a normal life often mimics the trails of an animal in a circus show.
But it’s not the fault of the system; you have a responsibility to break out of the normalcy. Not many people dare to do this, so the few that break out are often the rebels scaling into new heights of excellence.
Well, the most important thing is to get into the act – make a move and take a risk.
And for young people, there is no better time to take risks than now. Now is the time to take risks, make mistakes and learn.
You may win some and lose some, but one thing is for sure, you will never be the same again.
by Samuel Osho | Dec 11, 2019 | Beta Life
Becoming an Effective Listener
Stop whatever you are doing, turn your head slowly, and survey your surroundings. Count how many people are talking at the moment.
“One, Two, Three, Four, …” You lost count, right?
It’s not just about them, you also love to talk. It’s an innate human desire to express your thoughts and above all, be seen and accepted.
When two parties are involved in conversations, have you observed the pace of responses? One party is barely done speaking before the other party jumps in. Such conversations mirror debates with a series of rebuttals. You are ready to fire back before the speaking party is done. No wonder, several conversations are unproductive.
Is it possible that while you are consumed with the drive to respond, you lose opportunities to learn, you miss chances to understand and consequently show a lack of ability to build trust?
To be a superb communicator, you must sharpen your listening skills. Listen patiently to understand and not with an intent to criticize or reply.
Listening distinguishes itself from hearing because it requires concentration. So, it’s impossible to listen if you are distracted by your phone. Give full eye contact, follow with nods, watch the body language, repeat some of the speaker’s statements when seeking clarifications.
To be an effective listener, you have to follow along with rapt attention, unravel the story behind the message, and absorb everything you can from the conversation before responding.
In a world where everyone is in a hurry to talk, excellent listeners are rare. However, you can spot them in the way they show empathy, build trust, make wise decisions, and lead united communities.
To succeed as a leader, it is usually not about your inspiring speeches but how much intentional listening you can do. In listening with empathy, you connect with the heart, and that’s all that makes the difference.
by Samuel Osho | Oct 24, 2019 | Beta Life
“Why do we have to wait for the picture,” she inquired impatiently.
Inventor Edwin Land had just snapped a picture, and his three-year-old daughter’s question sparked a series of thoughts. This innocent question inspired Dr. Land to birth the Polaroid instant camera.
Kids are naturally curious and hence causing chaos while testing their hypothesis. Sadly, as you age, you unconsciously learn to be less curious. You keep your mouth shut as you take everything handed to you as sacred, real, finite, and ultimate.
That’s a big problem!
Highly intelligent individuals unveiled timeless theories and principles after hours of research to answer some “why …?” and “what if …?” statements.
Why does Isaac Newton have to bother about gravitational force?
Florence Nightingale could have lived like every other normal English lady and ignore revolutionizing the world of nursing with her meticulous recommendations.
The Wright brothers might have lived longer if they stayed clear of passion for having mechanical bodies with wings in the air.
What would have happened if these individuals did nothing significant in contributing to the bodies of knowledge discussed above?
Well, I am glad they did not stay idle but worked hard to test their assumptions and satiate their curiosity.
Curiosity is key to life-long learning and discovering new things.
No wonder Einstein once admonished a young student to “never lose a holy curiosity.”
The essence of education at the barest minimum is to spark curiosity in students. Unfortunately, instead of lighting a flame, a host of educational systems douse the little sparks that students bring to the classroom.
Before you conclude that curiosity and innovation are locked to the field of sciences. It is important to note that curiosity is merely asking the right questions that stimulate boundless explorations.
To be outstanding and extraordinary in your pursuit of success, you need to imbibe an all-important skill: curiosity. Your leaps will be boundless. Interestingly, it’s a skill that can be learnt and practiced.
Start by asking the right open-ended questions and relentlessly find answers to them. Be warned. These are not normal and quick quizzes you took in college.
Getting some answers may take two hours, while some may take two years. Keep searching until you surpass stumbling on new and strange things but becoming the creator, the innovator, and the producer of what your world needs.
by Samuel Osho | Sep 3, 2019 | Beta Life
What Are You Investing in?
When American statesman Benjamin Franklin died in 1790, he left a sum of $4400 USD as a gift to each of two cities, Boston and Philadelphia. The money had to be loaned out to young married couples at five percent interest. Unfortunately, the cities couldn’t have full access until 1990.
Two hundred years later, Franklin’s $8800 donation had grown to more than $6.5 million between two cities!
Now, that’s a true story!
Well, this is not about investments in brokerage accounts.
It’s about a deliberate investment in yourself – mind, brain, skills, and relationships.
It’s been a tradition for so many to struggle with reading three or five books a year. What if you can stay consistent with finishing ten or twenty pages per day, you will be amazed at how many books you would have completed by the end of the year.
Set a goal for yourself and go for it.
If you decide to read at least 20 pages of a book per day, you would have finished 12 books (200-page each) in four months.
If you could write 250 words every day towards the completion of your book, you would have compiled a 120-page (30,000-word) first draft in about four months.
If you devote one hour to learning a new skill every day, imagine how much competence you would have amassed in three months.
There is tremendous power in the act of consistently investing in yourself.
If you are currently experiencing a burnout or knowledge drought, don’t you think this is the best time for you to create a plan that will see you plunge into books, online courses and much more.
You are your most valuable asset – your life, your mind, your brain, your body, your spirit, and your skills. If you can focus on making intentional investments in yourself, you will discover that there are no limits to what you can become.
by Samuel Osho | Aug 11, 2019 | Beta Life
No Substitutes for Preparation
Award-winning American novelist, Sidney Sheldon was once asked, “What did you do before you wrote your first novel?”
And there he goes, with an epic answer: “I was busy writing other things. I wrote 28 motion pictures, 250 television scripts and 8 Broadway plays.”
Perhaps this explains why his books smashed a plethora of literary records. Maybe this underpins citations that list Sheldon as one of the top ten best selling fiction writers of all time. He remains the only writer to have won an Academy Award, Tony Award, and America Edgar Award.
Great things don’t just happen. Many things happen by luck or perhaps by mistake but true and lasting success is not one of them.
Spectacular products don’t fall from the heavens.
Every good thing requires process and preparation.
Abraham Lincoln once said, “If I am given eight hours to cut down a tree, I will use six hours to sharpen the axe head and use the remaining two hours to cut down the tree.”
Robust preparation improves your ability to spot opportunities and takes your execution game to a completely new level.
It took Bill Gates decades of coding and hard work before earning his billions.
It took Usain Bolt six years of running before he got his first Olympic Gold Medal.
Barack Obama roamed the streets of Illinois for 12 years before he was handed the ticket to represent Chicago in the Senate.
As technology comes with bigger promises of getting things done easier and faster, we must stay true to the timeless principles of preparation and diligence.