Wow! 2019, what a year! A year that taught me many lessons and shaped my character in ways unimaginable. I am not here to tell you “to inspire and aspire your desire even when you perspire …” Wait a minute, what’s that? Stop those rhymes in 2019 and let’s be serious in 2020. It’s a new year.
5 Lessons from 2019
1. No one owes you anything
Yes, you heard that right, no one owes you anything. You can effortlessly find yourself in the web of entitlement where you tie your needs and progress to people. A place where you think A and Y owe you X and Z.
Whatever you are doing for people, do it as unto the Lord and not with the intention of reciprocity.
If you are the type that helps people and broadcast it everywhere, it’s a terrible way to live life. If you help others and think they owe you an obligation to reciprocate the favour, you may eventually find yourself in frustration. Human beings will always be human beings, but if you look up to God for help, you can be sure that your expectation will not be cut short.
2. Learning to quit so that you can win
Over the years, we have learnt that success requires persistence, hard work, resilience, dedication and commitment, but there is more. Not all ventures or causes deserve your devotion, commitment and dedication; you have to quit some projects or causes so that you can win in others. Sometimes, we embark on journeys that are nothing but dead ends, but we lack the honesty to tell ourselves it is time to quit and reroute.
In 2019, I learnt how to quit so that I can win. It could be very hard, especially when you are emotionally invested in a project or you are worried about what people are going to say. But this is a new angle to living a successful life – you will make tough decisions that require intuition, discernment and tactfulness.
Kindness is a language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see.” – Mark Twain
3. Appreciate what you have
If you have a talent, a friend, a skill or an opportunity that you don’t appreciate, you are on the verge of losing it. Whatever you appreciate enjoys a free flow of affection and attention from you; hence it grows. If it is a seed, it germinates and sprouts. If it is a flower, it blossoms and sparkles in the hues of nature. If it is a tree, it buds and bears fruits.
In contrast, if you neglect what you have and don’t pay attention to it, it will wither and die. One of the primary causes of belittling what you have is envy. It stems from focusing on what others have and forgetting to appreciate and nurture what you have.
In 2019, I learnt that what I have is enough if I am willing to commit my resources to its growth and expansion. Keep showing up every day with more water and nutrients and these tiny seeds will become mighty trees.
4. Don’t settle until you get what you are looking for
If the goal is to see the mouth of a river, don’t row your boat to the middle of the river and give up. No, that’s not the way to win! Don’t settle along the road until you reach the destination.
You are the only one with a perfect vision of what you are looking for, don’t let the sermons of lazy people make you settle for what contradicts what’s on your vision board. Keep moving until you find the coordinates of where you are destined to be. Keep shooting until you hit the target.
5. Strip yourself of vulnerability, and you’ll become a robot
This past decade has seen lots of super-hero movies that we always deceive ourselves that we are superhumans. See, you are not a superman; neither are you a superwoman. You are living your life to show that you are flawless, and void of weaknesses is nothing but lies. You are human; you make mistakes, you make errors, some moments will break you, and some moments make you cry. Don’t be ashamed to present yourself as a broken vessel, even broken vessels birth beautiful flowers.
As a leader, I learnt that being vulnerable is one sure way of connecting with empathy and leading better. This idea of an infallible man that never cries and a leader that knows all things is incredulous. Be human; that’s the way to live life to the fullest.