H is for Humility: Let go of the ego

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I just finished reading an amazing book by Ryan Holiday called Ego is the Enemy, in the book, he talks about the perils of ego in our life.

Everyone has an ego, the test is containing our ego so that it doesn’t get the better of us.

A lot of people, especially people from privileged backgrounds, often struggle to keep their egos contained.

They believe the world revolve around them.

These are the: “do you know who I am?”

It’s about the pride they have.

This ego, pride prevents them from receiving critical feedback about themselves.

And as a result they don’t grow as human beings.

We can’t take or receive feedback if we are incapable of or uninterested in hearing from outside sources. We can’t recognise opportunities, or create them if instead of seeing what is in front of us, we live inside our own fantasy that we are better than the next person.

When we remove ego, we are left with what is real.

What replaces ego is humility, yes, rock-hard humility and confidence.

Whereas ego is artificial, humility holds weight.

Ego is stolen. Confidence is earned.

Ego is self-anointed, its swagger is artificial.

Ego is concerned about me all the time.

Humility is concerned about serving others all time.

Ego says “look at me, I’m the most ______ [smartest, beautiful, sexiest, talented, fastest etc] of all.”

Humility says: “it is not about me, it is about the work that needs to be done, let’s get to work.”

It takes a special kind of humility to grasp that you know less, even as you know and grasp more and more.

It is remembering Socrates’ wisdom lay in the fact that he knew that he knew next to nothing.

As Ryan Holiday puts it his book:

“Those who have subdued their ego understand that it doesn’t degrade you when others treat you poorly; it degrades them.”

The death of ego will be the birth of your life.

Let go of the ego.

H is for Humility: Say little, do much…

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Today we can brag about our goals online to our fans and followers, these are things only rock stars, celebrities and cult leaders used to have and do.

We can chat with our idols on Twitter, we can name ourselves CEO of our exists-only-on-Company Registration databases or LinkedIn company.

The empty text box sits there. “What’s on your mind?” Facebook asks. “Connect,” Twitter beckons, “Compose a new tweet.” Linkedin, our inbox, our mobile phones, the comments section on the bottom of this article.

Blank spaces, begging to be filled in.

Blank spaces, begging to be filled in with thoughts, with photos, with stories.

Blank spaces, begging to be filled in with what we are going to do, on everything that is happened, with what things should or could be like.

We can announce big plans on social media and let the congratulations and well-wishes roll in.

We can talk, talk, talk.

We tell ourselves that this is productive, that it is a form of accountability, that it is building our personal branding or adding to our follower count, but deep down, we know this is a lie.

Talk depletes us.

Talking and doing fight for the same resources.

Talk is easy, the difficult task is doing the work.

The difficult task is sitting there, staring, mad at yourself, mad at the material because it does not seem good enough and you don’t seem good enough. But talking, talking is always easy.

Anyone can talk about himself or herself.

Most people are decent at hype and sales.

So what is scarce and rare? What is scarce is: Silence.

The ability to deliberately keep yourself out of the conversation and subsist without its validation.

Most successful people are people you have never heard of. They want it that way. It keeps them sober. It helps them do their jobs.

Say little, do much…

You are what you do, not what you say you will do.

 

 

If it’s to be, it’s up to you

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The thing about picking yourself is that you are the one responsible.

It is a good thing because your destiny is in your own hands,

It is a bad thing to many people because, now you can’t blame anyone for your own destiny. You can’t pass the buck.

Since no one is coming to save you, you take the responsibility to save yourself.

If you want to be responsible for making music, make music.

If you want to be responsible for writing, write.

If you want to be responsible for speaking, speak.

If you want to be responsible for making change happen, go do that.

Waiting to get picked is a form of hiding, not realism.

No, it is not always possible for everyone to succeed by being the most popular, the most clicked on, the most liked. In fact, it will never happen.

No one is promising that, I hope.

What pick yourself means is that it is never been easier to decide to be responsible for your own work, for your own agenda, for the change you make in the world.

To have a chance to matter. Not to be finished right now, but starting now.

Stranded in a sea full of boats, you can’t be waiting for a rescue boat. 

Today, you have tools at your disposal, your phone, your local library, municipality, online, all you have to do is pick yourself and do the work.

Pick yourself means we should stop waiting, complaining and stalling.

The first step towards getting somewhere is to decide that you are not going to stay where you are.

The outcome of what will happen when you pick yourself is still in doubt, but it is clear cut that waiting just does not pay.

If it’s to be, it’s up to you.

No one is coming to rescue you…

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There is no Prince Charming in this story.

There is no rescue boat coming.

No one is going to come and say: “I pick you.”

No one is coming.

Stop waiting to be picked.

Today’s popular show is not calling you.

CNN, Multi-choice or SABC is not going to scoop you up.

Stop waiting to get picked, waiting to be rescued.

Don’t play the victim.

Stop feeling sorry for yourself.

No one is coming to save you, you need to save yourself.

You are a survivor.

You have all the tools you need to survive.

You have all the permissions you need to push forward. [not that you needed permission to start with]

Continue to push forward.

Take a deep breath, pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and start all over again.

Don’t give up.

Reject the expectation to being picked, pick yourself.

 

 

Turning passion on its head

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Instead of, “do what you love,” perhaps the more effective mantra for the entrepreneur, the pioneer and maker of change might be, “love what you do.”

If we can fall in love with serving people, creating value, solving problems, building valuable connections and doing work that matters, it makes it far more likely we are going to do important work.

As Steve Jobs says:

“The only way to do great work is to love what you do.”

LORA Entrepreneurship Series: Dr. Brian Naidoo – Saturday, 13 October 2018

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LORA Centre for Innovation and Entrepreneurship strives to bring thought leaders, men and women who are pathfinders, entrepreneurs and change agents, men and women who have affected the very fibre of our thought processes, who influence our set of beliefs, and engage our mindsets in elements of value.

LORA has invite experienced entrepreneurs and innovators to share their stories with us.

One of the biggest challenges facing our country’s leaders both political and business is ethics, integrity and morals.

We are witnessing an increase in business fraud and political corruption. Dr. Naidoo will be sharing his views on issues facing leadership in the country.

On Saturday, 13 October 2018, we are hosting entrepreneur Dr. Brian Naidoo.

Dr. Brian Naidoo is an internationally respected leader, motivational speaker, community Leader, author, editor, wordsmith, poet, Ghost writer, Marriage Counsellor, Emerging leadership Guru and mind trainer.

He is also a life and business coach. He has served previously as a Christian Minister and community counsellor for 27 years and is committed to developing people to attain excellence and integrity, by providing the finest resources and reading materials in the form of manuals and books, some that He has personally written, compiled and published.

Come join us and interact with Dr. Brian Naidoo on his views about morals, integrity and ethics on the country leadership.

Date: Saturday, 13 October 2018

Time: 13:00 – 14:30

Charge: R100  

Space is very limited.

To RSVP and pay: roche.mamabolo@gmail.com

[LORA Centre students and alumni get 100% discount]

Venue: Midrand [3 Tybalt Place, Waterfall Office Park, Bekker Road, Vorna Valley, Midrand. [there is secured parking]

Poverty in the face opulence

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Today, as I about to enter Sandton City for a meeting, from the Gautrain side, I passed a homeless man.

I have seen home people before but this one was in real pain.

He was trembling, more like when you are shaking from hunger.

He was lying down on his back facing the sky, shaking, as if having a seizure, too hungry, and too tired to beg.

That caught my attention. He caught my attention.

I passed him.

I felt so sad, hurt.

But what saddened me the most is that people passed him to and from Sandton City and walk-on.

This reminded me why I dislike Sandton City, it’s a place where you get to see extreme opulence in the face of extreme poverty and everyone seems to be okay with it.

People pass a homeless man, lying down, on the verge of dying from hunger, on the street surrounded by expensive looking skyscrapers, and everyone walks on by, as if nothing is happening.

When we pass a person suffering, visible in front of us and we feel nothing, and we dart our eyes and look the other direction, surely we cannot say we are human, we cannot call ourselves humanity.

As my mentor recently said:

“Humanity still has not learned how to be human.”

I didn’t want to believe him then, but after today, I’m convinced he is right.

Before you linch me for also passing him like everyone else, yes I passed him, went into the “fancy” mall, bought some food and gave him. The reason why I’m posting this is that, we can’t continue to be indifferent in the face of suffering.

We can’t look the other way and just walk on by in the face of suffering.

Will I do this again when I see him next time I’m in Sandton, I don’t know, probably not, but I know that a part of me will die every time I see situations of suffering and people pretending as if they don’t see.

I hope this will ignite in me [and in you] to do our little part, after-work, on weekends, as side-projects, that will go towards helping.

If you are doctor, take your stethoscope and just spend an hour [every second week], checking on homeless people’s health.

If you are hairdresser, spend a couple of hours giving a couple of homeless people a haircut on the streets, once a week, use your battery operated hair-clippers.

If you make clothes, I’m sure you can make something from your off-cuts for a couple of homeless people.

If you are a lawyer, maybe look at what bylaws can be made to provide shelter for homeless people.

I’m sure we can find things in our “busy” schedules that we can do towards alleviating the challenges of poverty and homelessness.

I’m not expert in this, but I know it’s inhumane to look the other way and walk on by.

In our busy schedules of taking selfies, checking in a fancy restaurants and attending fancy events with “VIP” people, blogging fancy articles, I’m sure we can still do our part in helping those less fortunate than us.

I’m aware that we need long-term sustainable solutions to poverty and homelessness, and but in the meantime, people are suffering now, people are hungry now.

In the wake of the banking financial scandal in South Africa, a friend I respect so much, Mme Rose Francis, wrote the following:

“Living in South Africa now is like understanding your relationship was never ideal yet you stayed for’ the sake of the children.’

Each day you get to understand what a lie you have lived. How much your home has been corroded. How much people you took to power, sold or stole everything around you.

It hurts Mzala! It hurts really bad. To see those grannies sleeping in single file waiting for the crumbs of what was to be OUR BANK!”

Indelendlela!