Don’t give up on your dreams  

By Herbert MtowoHerbert Mtowo78_1145832279_nUp the mountain

I had a phone call a few minutes ago as I set down to put together this article. My partner on some radio shows we do every Tuesday and Thursday says, “Herbert am getting ready for my show but man am so incensed by this kind of talk, I just don’t know how I am going to get things right.”, “Calm down man what’s up!?”, I asked him firmly.

“The manager seems not so pleased with the contents of the shows. The radio manager feels myself and Otto should be dictating the direction and not allow people to just talk about relationships. , “Otto went on to explain to me.  I understood his frustrations and outbursts, since am directly involved in the field of helping people. Personal development is what we do and it’s very difficult to ignore relational issues, when people bring them up since they affect the personal development of individuals. Our country many people are hurting by and large as a result of LOVE relationships.

All we are passionate about is helping people and failing to be there for people hurts more to one who is committed to the cause of seeing people`s lives empowered and developed.I take this statement by Confucius who once said, “Our greatest glory is not in never failing, but in rising up every time we fail.”

Believe you me good people, to stretch yourself doesn’t mean there is no failing. Far from it, in fact, when you stretch yourself it includes failing – many of those times a lot of it. The most important thing is never give up, never quit. This is vital for everyone to understand. I believe the radio shows are a point of contact to helping people and inspiring many for greatness, so one has to stay on and fight and see the dream become a reality. Platforms are created not for personal gain but to help people and develop them in every area of their lives.

I don’t know about you, but one thing I know is that am all eyes set for my life`s assignments and ready to push them all the way. If I may ask you as you read this article, “Are you the giving up easily type?”

Tell me,”Do you let life`s  setback and frustrations deter you from your goals?”Or do you learn from your mistakes and press on towards your dreams. Along the journey of life, I have fumbled and stumbled many a times, and I look back and am greatly encouraged by the persistence and resilience to still push on today and scale great heights.

My mentor Larry Lewis, has been a huge influence in my life when it comes to not giving up and pressing through in the midst of storms and life`s pressures. I would always run to him and say Larry, my journey has been tiring. In life I have learnt that, when you stretch yourself,  it demands for one to have a never-quit attitude. I have seen many give up, some I never thought can give up, give up when they had their lives against the wall and all seems lost and gone. It is easy to give up when we experience failure, but if a goal is worth setting and achieving, it likely will take a never-quit attitude to accomplish it. Anything that is truly worthwhile isn’t easy. That is what makes achieving goals so much more rewarding. This is a stretch principal that you can put into every aspect of your life. Things are not given, they are earned, and it is up to you to take what life is giving you and learn and never give up.

I am aware of the fact and reality that a lot people from different backgrounds of life, mistake success for perfection. They see the end result of someone’s success and feel that it was too easy, or that they can do the same. Then, when faced with failure in their endeavours, they give up and don’t want to continue, for fear of failing again.

How many times have you heard someone describe a successful person as “lucky”. They don’t see the years of hard work, training, education and unending persistence that was necessary for that person to achieve their “luck”.

“Eish others are so lucky” statement  comes to us only when we have spent years of persistence and preparation getting ready for the day she enters our life. Without that preparation and persistence we rarely see her when she walks past us. To be successful, you will need to develop the skill of persistence…..not just wishing for your lucky break.

What they didn’t see was that person’s struggle, the blood, sweat, and tears of trying to make something that will not only change them, but others around them. They didn’t see the countless hours, the failures, and that never give up attitude that finally rewarded them with success. A lot of people come to me and say man you are a great writer and gifted speaker, little do they know that it has been a bumpy and rocky path to where I am today. At times I look back and ask and smile, “Dude how did you make it this far”. The more life has been like walking a tight rope the merrier it has been to face the future.”

I know and understand that failures force you to face some things about yourself, things that you need to improve on or that you’re lacking in order for you to be successful. And if you let that initial failure defeat you, you will never accomplish your goal.

I want you and me not to shy away from having life stretch us. When you get stretched it means learning from your failures and not giving up when difficult times arise. Because when you achieve your goals and you look back over everything you had to overcome to reach that point, you are not only happy, but you’re a better person because of it.

I am sure like me; you may have come to a place, where you are between a rock and a hard place. I have been there, believe you me. What kept me through was this resilience, were in me the passion and desire was my drive. I’m willing to make adjustments but I am too stubborn to give up… are you?

Hear me, and hear me well. “If you give up – you won’t change the way your mind works and deals with failure, everything stays the same. In fact you create some negative reinforcements in your subconscious that will deter you from taking a risk.” This is your life – make the most of it – begin working with the power of your mind by never giving up, being consistent and finish strong. You’ll be glad you did.

The ability to dream big dreams is common. Almost all of us have them. But it is only the person who is willing to take action, and persistently walk step by step toward their dream no matter how long or difficult the journey, that will successfully bring their dreams into reality.

There are no short cuts to success. If success wasn’t hard work, if it didn’t require persistence and a tenacious desire to achieve our dreams, everyone would be successfully living their dreams……..instead of just dreaming “about” them.

I am yet to meet a successful person who hasn’t told me that at the beginning of the journey they had to undertake to reach their dream, the path seemed daunting and impossible. But all of them said they were amazed at how quickly the time flew-by once they put their head down and began walking step by step toward their goal.

If you have a dream, don’t let anyone tell you it can’t become real.

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 Commitment gives marriage fulfillment. 

Decide to commitLove is about commitment

 

By Herbert Mtowo

One of the things, life has taught me over the years in talking to married couples and growing up seeing my dad and mum in marriage, is that,” Being married is one of the strongest bonds a couple can enter into. It commits each person to staying with the other person even when the going gets rough.” A married couple has a better chance of getting through tough times because they are legally committed to each other. Commitment is the part of the relationship that provides safety and security, so couples can express their thoughts, feelings, and desires openly.

Being in a loving relationship is often all you need, or is it? Is marriage and being together what love is all about? You see bumper stickers saying, “Happiness Is Being Single”. Could that really be true?

Being single and in a relationship means that either one can bail out at the first signs of problems. You don’t have to solve a problem and move forward into a stronger relationship. You can just move on to another and then another association with another “lover”. Maybe some consider that happiness.

Of all the things that couples can do to make sure they stay together, commitment is one of the strongest binding factors. What could be more binding than the legal contract we call, “marriage”? It is easy to dissolve a marriage, but it is a lot easier to quit a relationship that has no legal strings attached to it. Commitment is the part of the relationship that provides safety and security, so couples can express their thoughts, feelings, and desires openly. When they’re committed, they have the confidence that they’ll make it through the day-to-day challenges and life’s stressors that can tear a marriage apart. Commitment offers couples a sense of being part of a team, a desire for a future together and a desire to sacrifice for each other. An individual’s commitment to the marriage makes it a priority. It is vital that the couples you serve understand how their decisions about commitment play a role in their future success and that you provide them with the tools to continue to choose a shared and secure future with their spouse. Not being committed carries great consequences, the greatest of which is relationship failure and the possible dissolution of a family.

Marriage is the means by which a couple in love can announce to the world that they believe in each other above all others. Once married a couple has a reason to try harder to keep things going and to stay together for the long haul. The first rough waters may rock the boat, but a committed couple can weather any storm in their relationship.

With marriage comes a lot of responsibility. Learning to live with another person is one thing. Being married to them means a stronger commitment and better chance of a long and happy marriage. The commitment is what strengthens and matures a couple. With the rise in numbers of couples who live together rather than marry, compounded with the prevalence of divorce, it may seem as though people don’t care about commitment anymore. Yet people acknowledge that lack of commitment is a problem. Recent research found that approximately 85% of divorced couples indicated a lack of commitment to the marriage and to each other as their reason for divorce. So is it really realistic for the couples you serve to believe they can live in marriage “until death do us part?”

It is a fact that being married doesn’t guarantee a long lasting partnership with the one you love. It does give you better odds of staying together for a long time and living a happily married life once there is commitment. As time goes by we settle into routines. Some are conducive to a loving relationship and others are detrimental. Marriage gives you time to find the systems and that make our life with our partner more than just living together, but having a life together.

I have often heard of people celebrating their 50th or 60th wedding anniversary. I am yet to hear of anyone celebrating their 50th living together anniversary. Maybe it happens, but think of what is the longest relationship you know of between two people living together who are not married. Do you know anyone who has lived together 15 years and have a strong “togetherness”? Talk about how you met and the many reasons you fell in love and decided to marry. Reflecting on reasons for committing to one another in the first place can renew desire to capture and preserve the relationship. Why postpone with commitment if you have found the love of your life, many other hurdles we grow and learn along the way but commitment seals the marriage and allows it to flourish and blossom.

Take time to make intimacy a positive time for connection. This ultimate expression of commitment should be a special time that both spouses can look forward to. Commitment is the dedicated choice to give up other competing choices. According to expert Scott Stanley, couples reporting higher levels of commitment report that they:

  1. Look at other attractive people less;
  2. Feel great relationships satisfaction; and
  3. Do not experience feeling trapped in the relationship.

Make commitment a choice to embrace and not a terror to flee from. Learn to create a commitment statement, similar to a business’ mission statement. A commitment statement outlines the purpose and goals for their marriage. It may also include rules and boundaries that strengthen the marriage and keep it safe.

  1. Greet each other personally and physically each day. Not only does hugging and kissing feel good, it is a special gesture to reinforce the commitment of spouses.
  1. Talk and stay connected about hopes, dreams, stresses, etc. These topics are future-oriented; talking about the future can strengthen the current commitment.
  1. Spend both quality and quantity time together. Making time for each other, just to check in or to have a date can strengthen the bond and reinforce spouses’ dedication to the marriage.
  1. Be best friends with your spouse. Friendship is a commitment.
  1. Recognize that memories and traditions expand commitment. Doing special things together builds and honors traditions that are important to building meaning and significance in the marriage.
  1. Share spiritual or religious activities together to help promote individual and relationship connection. Outlets like this can help a couple grow closer and strengthen each spouse’s commitment.

Commitment keeps couples together and is a cornerstone of marriage. Best of all, commitment is a choice, and therefore can be redeemed at any time in a marriage.

What matters to you? 

By Larry Lewis

Larry Lewis is my mentor and has hugely influenced my life,sitting atLife  i choose to live by choice his feet as he teaches has been the best experience ever in my life,am highly honoured to be one from Africa to drink from his rich pot of wisdom and inspiring words. Read this believe you me you will get to taste what am talking about..Herbert Mtowo.

I’d like you to ponder the question, what matters to you? This question is simple but often finding your answer is extremely challenging. Yet taking the time to answer this question will provide invaluable insight about your life purpose, values, and true authentic self. These three things will energise your life when you connect to them.

“It’s not enough to be busy; so are the ants. The question is: what are we busy about?” Henry David Thoreau

You’re considering what it is that is most important to you in life, what you are pursuing or frequently what it is you’d love to pursue, what it is you want to strive for in your lifetime. Are you seeking power, money, influence, spirituality, contribution, music, soul, truth, influence, awareness, charity, wisdom, charisma? Do you wish to educate, contribute, inspire, love,  dance, sing, create or influence? What areas truly matter to you? Career, Relationships, Family, Spirituality, Health, Self Development or some other area of importance to you.

We often talk about our priorities in life. But how many of us have ever stopped to really think about which things are most important to us, let alone how much time we spend on our priorities compared to less important things?

Since the loss of most of the vision in my right eye I have been taking inventory on what really matters in my world. What I’ve come to realise is that during times of transition, it’s so important to take a deep breathe, then take inventory before taking your next step. It lays the foundation to make sure you get things right. So you need to contemplate the question  “What Matters to Me.”

Sometimes we get so caught up in the need for “more and better” seeking money and power above anything else, that we forget all the things that could make our lives great – which doesn’t necessarily mean a larger bank balance but will create a far more fulfilled life.

Your true calling in life requires deep introspection. What one thing matter more than any other?

To me the first thing that will always come to mind is my family, in particular my 2 daughters and 2 grandchildren. They are my world and bring my joy. But I need to go deeper than this because they may be my creation, but I not only want them to see me as a great dad or granddad but also someone that contributed something to be proud of in his life time.

So I know I want to leave a positive impact on the world, in a way that makes the most of the talents and opportunities I’ve been given. To leave the people with whom I’ve interacted to be better off for having known me, helping them in whatever way that I reasonably can. I want to add value to society.

Research tells us that 97 percent of people are living their life by default and not by design. They don’t know where their life is headed, and don’t have a plan for what they want to accomplish in life. With the events that have shaped my life I just knew I could help people find the answer. Hence I have focused much of my time developing products based on my life story that can help others change their lives so much for the better.

I use my purpose and life plan to make decisions about the projects and tasks that I say yes to.  If a project or task is not aligned with my purpose, a good fit with my life plan, I say no it. My priorities are certain to me. The only way that you are going to find the time for the things that really matter is to say “no” to the things that don’t.

It’s about spending your time on the things that matter most to you before it is too late. Think about what you want most out of life. What were you created for? What is your mission in life? What is your passion? You were put on this earth for a reason, and knowing that reason will help you determine your priorities and how you will have a positive impact on the world.

To find the answer to what matters to you, think in terms of who you are, the lessons and insights that have shaped your perspectives, and the events that have swayed you. How would you want to use these things in a way that will really matter to you.

To create a life focused on what really matters to you, you just have to dig deep into your subconscious and keep asking yourself the question “What matters most to you?” I know there are hundreds of articles showing you elaborate steps of how to find the answer, lots of different questions you can ask, but i believe whole hardly that you just have to ask yourself this one question.

Answers will begin coming to you. Keep thinking, pondering and reflecting. You may create a list of things to do. That’s fine because then all you need to do is prioritise them. Just make sure you take the time to reflect on the question “what matters to you?”

That’s enough rambling from me today. If you’re a regular reader you will know my passion and life’s mission is to help other people lead a healthy and happy life. If this article has helped you in some way give us a like by clicking on the like button below.

Staying up in the midst of life`s storms

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By Herbert Mtowo

Life, we all know, really doesn’t care about your good intentions. Even iron resolve and endless hard work can’t protect us from the unanticipated bumps and twists that derail our plans and unceremoniously leave us sitting on our butts, staring failure in the face. Life is filled with setbacks and unexpected twists and turns. However, in the words of Aldous Huxley, “Experience is not what happens to you. It is what you do with what happens to you.” By mastering some simple coping techniques, you can turn your luck around and get back on your feet, whatever life throws your way. It is your responsibility to either stay down and be a victim or rise up and dust yourself up and journey on.

The most difficult experiences and pain to endure in life was the loss of my mum, dad and siblings. It was very harsh on me, and it took me many years to recover from the loss. I either had to play the victim forever or embrace pain and loss and move on with life. I then realized late though, that pain is the best school master one needs in life. After these setbacks there were more disappointments in my life, these were much heavier on me, I have lost loads of all I had laboured for, betrayed in love and felt like my world crumbling like a deck of cards.

One response I have learnt over the years in life, is either to stick your head in the sand and hum merrily that, nope, nope, for you things will always go according to plan. The alternative is to accept (and expect) the unexpected it being “anti-fragile.”

“Basically, anti-fragile things are things that benefit from disorder, obstacles, unexpected events, change, etc.,” he writes. If you’re anti-fragile you go beyond simple resilience to actually feed off failure, letting it make you stronger. You follow the lead of the mythical hydra and the immortal advice of Star Wars’ Obi-Wan Kenobi: “If you strike me down, I shall become more powerful than you can possibly imagine.” I became resilient and soldiered on despite pain and loss.

In life, no matter how bad a situation may seem, it is always possible to find at least one positive thing about the situation if you really try. Maybe you have gained inner strength and resilience from dealing with a difficult situation, grown closer to a friend through sharing your heartbreak or learned something important about yourself. Try your best to focus on what you have learned and gained from your experience rather than on what you have lost.

It is obviously difficult to view disappointments and setbacks in life without feeling some sort of emotion. However, being emotionally involved in a situation can mean that we often build things up into something far worse than they actually are. Rather than getting carried away with your own interpretation of how disastrous things are, try to look at the situation a little more objectively. Ask a friend for their point of view or write down exactly what has happened, simply stating the facts. You may find that the situation is not as bleak as it seems when emotions are taken out of the equation, and remember those emotions will fade with time.

We often see ourselves in the worst light, particularly when life isn’t going how we want it to. However, it is important not to be hard on yourself and blame yourself just because something in your life hasn’t worked out. Instead, think about what you would you say to a friend in your situation and show yourself the same love and respect.  Remember that a plan or relationship failing doesn’t make you a failure, and even the world’s most beautiful and successful people have faced failure and rejection at some point in their lives.

You may think that dealing with your problems all by yourself is the “grown up” thing to do. However, all of us need support at times, and asking those you love for help is not a sign of weakness. It can help to talk things through and to have someone on your side to make you feel good when life feels too hard, so don’t try to cope with your problems alone. If you don’t have any friends you can, or want to, confide in, it may be worth considering counselling to help you get things off your chest and get you through this difficult time.

It is easy to get caught up in the “what ifs” and “why mes” when things go wrong in life. However, dwelling on your disappointment will not help the situation. As my mum used to say, “When one door closes another door opens; but we so often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door, that we do not see the ones which open for us.” The situation may not feel great and it may not seem fair, but what has happened has happened, whether you like it or not. Rather than dwelling on what could have been, start planning now where you can go from here.

Unfortunately in life our plan A doesn’t always work out. Sometimes we have to wait a little longer than we would like for what we want, and sometimes those things just aren’t meant to be at all. However, remember there are many routes to happiness and just because one thing hasn’t worked out that doesn’t mean there’s nothing to take its place. Rather than focusing fixatedly on one life plan, safeguard yourself against disappointment by formulating several backup plans in case plan A fails. By being flexible, prepared to adapt your plans and continually striving towards more than one goal, you will be better equipped to deal with setbacks and to get back on your feet in record time.

While writing this article, I did it in memory of a precious  mum who was my pillar of strength, dad who was forever soldiering on and pushing on to get there, my dedicated and resilient brothers and  a sister, I saw dying and wasting but couldn’t do nothing to help.  These I truly loved and love immensely but terribly miss them lots. My heart yearns and longs for them, I have walked a long, tiring and lonely journey, but my strength is in admitting the gift life God has given me, and the ability to write and speak encouraging many people all over the world.

Whenever I write or speak, I remember them and it has become a source of strength and inspiration to me. Many a times you and me, often think that happiness should be something that comes to us naturally, without any effort on our part. However, very often happiness is a choice, not something that just falls upon us of its own accord.

Make a choice to be happy by becoming a positive thinker, surrounding yourself with supportive friends, doing the things that you enjoy and looking after yourself. Even if you don’t feel like smiling or being happy right now, by acting how you want to feel, the feelings will often naturally follow.

WORDS FROM A FATHER TO A SON ABOUT MARRIAGE

Father and son

Father and son

1. My son, if you keep spending on a woman and she never asked you if you’re saving or investing, and she keeps enjoying the attention, don’t marry her.

2. My son, a woman could be a good wife to you, some could be a good mother to your children but if you’ve found a woman like a mother to you, your children and your family, please don’t let her go.

3. My son, don’t confine the position of your wife to the kitchen, where did you get that from? Even in our days, we had farm-lands where they worked every morning . . . that was our office.

4. My son, if I tell you that you’re the head of the house, don’t look at your pocket; look if you will see a smile on your wife’s face.

5. My son, if you want to have a long life, let your wife be in-charge of your salary, it will be difficult for her to spend it when she’s aware of the home needs and bills to pay but if it’s in your care, she will keep you asking even when all has been spent.

6. My son, don’t ever beat your woman, the pain in her body is nothing to be compared to the wound on her heart and that means you may be in trouble living with a wounded woman.

7. My son, now that you’re married, if you live a bachelor kind of life with your wife, you will soon be single again.

8. My son, in our days, we had many wives and many children because of our large farm-lands and many harvests, there are hardly any land for farming anymore, so embrace your woman closely.

9. My son, under the cocoa tree that I did meet your mother could be your eateries and restaurants of nowadays, but remember, the closet thing we did there was to embrace each other.

10. My son, don’t be carried away when you start making more money, instead of spending on those tiny legs that never knew how hard you worked to get it, spend it on that woman that stood by you all along.

11. My son, when I threw little stones or whistled at the window of your mother father’s house, to call her out, it was not for sex, it was because I missed her so much.

12. My son, remember, when you say your wife has changed, there could be something you’ve stopped doing too.

13. My son, your mother, Asake rode the bicycle with me before I bought that tortoise car outside there, any woman that won’t endure with you in your little beginning should not enjoy your riches.

14. My son, don’t compare your wife to any woman, there are ways she’s enduring you too and has she ever compared you to any man?

15. My son, there is this thing you people call feminism, well, if a woman claim to have equal right with you in the house, divide all the bills into two equal parts, take one part and ask her to start paying the other part.

16. My son, I met your mother a virgin and I took more yams to her father, if you don’t meet your wife a virgin, don’t blame her, what I didn’t tell you is that our women had prestige.

17. My son, I didn’t send your sisters to school because I was foolish like many to think a female child won’t extend my family name, please don’t make that mistake, the kind of female achievers I see nowadays has made the male-gender an ordinary tag.

18. My son, your mother have once locked up the cloth I was wearing and almost tore it because she was angry, I did not raise my hand to beat her because of a day like this, so that I can be proud to tell you that I never for once beat your mother.

19. My son, in our days, our women had more of natural beauty, though I wouldn’t lie to you, some had minor painting of their appellation mostly on their arms, the ones you people now call tattoo, but don’t forget that they didn’t expose any part of their body like your women of nowadays.

20. My son, your mother and I are not interested in what happens in your marriage, try to handle issues without always coming to us.

21. My son, remember I bought your mother’s first sewing machine for her, help your wife achieve her dreams just as you’re pursuing yours.

22. My son, don’t stop taking care of me and your mother, it’s a secret of growing old and having children to take care of you too.

23. My son, pray with your family, there is a tomorrow you don’t know, talk to God that knows everything, everyday.