Too many people face a life of helplessness and a life with little hope. Often they feel like prisoners in their own caged world and...

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Too many people face a life of helplessness and a life with little hope. Often they feel like prisoners in their own caged world and yet ironically, many can release their shackles with just a change in mindset, attitude, discipline, perseverance and self reliance.

Once you wake up to the reality that only YOU can change your life for the better, then this is your first step towards freedom; for you are no longer waiting for your fairy Godmother to appear. You are the one driving this car and are no longer a passenger of your destiny. There are no one size fits all quick fix answers however, below are a few tips and guidance based on my own experiences – other people will have their own.

HAVE FAITH IN THE CREATOR – By this I mean, your faith is in the Creator and not in people. Whether you attend a Mosque, Church, Synagogue, or Temple, The Creator is mightier than people. The Creator is mighy When you are scared it is because you have placed more faith in people than the Creator, because you see or think that nothing is happening and resort to feeling alone and putting all your trust in another person. You are never alone and the Creator will never abandon you. However, faith alone will not release you; you also need to do some heavy lifting. Resorting to artificial stimulants such as alcohol, drugs or other vices may fool you into thinking they give you strength but this is not so. Short term strength is one thing but power is far superior and faith in the Creator gives you the Power to overcome challenges thrown your way. 

CHANGE YOUR ATTITUDE – Nothing in life worth achieving will be handed to you on a plate and the sooner you accept this, the better.  Stop expecting to be handed presents called Opportunities.  Such unrealistic expectations see many people succumbing to temptation(s) and greed as they seek short term fixes or gratification(s).  Avoid this and instead, focus on putting yourself in positions or situations where you are more likely to find opportunities i.e. education, business, networking, careers fairs, seminars etc

CHANGE THE WAY YOU THINK – Think in a structured & logical manner. When speaking or writing as you look for opportunities, never beg or plead for a job or money. Instead, outline to the other person the case for hiring you, meeting you or funding your project. Remember, a customer will not buy from you because you beg; they buy because your product is adding value to their lives. No one will hire you because you plead; they hire you because they believe you can add value to their business. No one will fund your project because you beg; they will fund you because they believe you are a good investment. Emotion often has no place in business and no one owes you a job or money. Think like a good lawyer and put forward your case backed by evidence not emotion.

CHANGE HOW YOU DEAL/VIEW FAILURE – Failure should not be viewed as the end of the world  but rather, as a lesson on how to avoid doing something the next time. Failure should be viewed as necessary on your way to the top. Accept failure and move on.

AVOID FRIENDS WHO ARE A BAD INFLUENCE – They say misery loves company and this is definitely one company of people you need to avoid. Friends who are lazy, those who want to cheat their way to success or those who spend most of their life moaning, should be avoided.

DON’T BE EMOTIONAL; ACCEPT CRITICISM – Many of us have friends, bosses or parents who are always on our case to do better. We submit work and they tell us to re-do it or, tell us we can do better. Some of us then react in an emotional, childish way and either walk away or stamp our feet in protest because we explain that we are trying our best and yet this is not appreciated. NEWS FLASH – the world of business has no time/place for emotion. Reality in business is this: Either you deliver or the customer will simply move to your competitor.

GET OVER YOUR SENSE OF ENTITLEMENT – NO ONE OWES YOU ANYTHING – Too many of our youth expect parents, friends, banks, government, university etc to help them find a job, fund their projects or, offer then an opportunity. It is as if they think society or people owe them this. They sit and wait and then look for quick, fix solutions. Some will even pay people to write their essays for them or sit tests for them and so never learn to do anything for themselves instead, they wait and wait. Even applying for a job seems a task to far for many. The same person who tells you he/she is desperate for a job, will bail out of completing a job application form in full. When asked to complete application forms, over 30% of candidates will drop out or not complete the full application. What a pity. For some, it could be because their parents have always done everything for them while for others, it is because they simply cannot be bothered.  Guess what? Our parents love us unconditionally but this does not mean society or our boss will do so too. So, as cold blooded as this may sound, you need to wake up to the reality that no one owes you anything.

CHANGE THE WAY YOU DRESS – You cannot expect anyone to take you seriously if you, yourself do not take yourself seriously. When you dress like you have just rolled out of bed, this is how the world views you and why on earth should anyone hire you or fund your business if you do not even value your own brand? After all, how will you then value their brand or value the money they use to invest in you or your business? And before you mention Mark Zuckerberg and his hoodies, please, become a billionaire first and then wear what you want.

CHANGE THE WAY YOU THINK AND SPEAK – THINK in a structured/logical way and SPEAK in a logical/structured manner. Those who use slang or informal language in their everyday conversations, should not be surprised if/when this casual language finds itself in their formal conversations including interviews or meetings with bank managers. Do NOT write formal emails using SMS or informal language. Many HR managers have told us that too many people use informal language in application emails or even interviews.  Avoid addressing people you don’t know using informal language such as: Hi, Hey, Hello instead use ‘Dear Mr/Mrs/Ms xxx’ .

THINK BIG AND THINK GLOBAL – When you know that there exists a big wide world out there (and not just your neighbourhood), this broadens your horizons, outlook and mindset. You no longer have a small town mentality full of “isms” i.e. tribalism, racism, sexism, ageism, religious bias etc all of which have no place in the 21st century. Anyone who thinks big, will not allow prejudice to limit them. Discrimination of any kind is not only morally wrong, but makes no business sense. Instead, you know that there are many opportunities out there; far and wide. This in itself makes life exciting and should give you the push to release your mental shackles!   Wishing you all, the very best as you pursue the many opportunities that life has to offer so start today! To read more posts by Miriam, click HERE 

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