Those who died yesterday had plans for this morning. And those who died this morning had plans for tonight. Don’t take life for granted. In the blink of an eye,everything can change. So forgive often and love as much as u can. You may never know when, you may not have that chance again. Until your good is better,and your better best,never give up
Your best clothes is someone’s rag, your account balance is someone’s church offering, your girlfriend/boyfriend or fiancée’ was someone’s Ex. Every single prostitute you see in a
hotel or on the street at night was at some point in time a virgin. So what is the squabble all about? Life is too small to feel big or better than anybody. We’re all naked to death says Steve Jobs. Nothing can save us from it. There’s nothing you’ve achieved in life that no one else has never gotten. There’s only one thing that is worth bragging which is “LIFE IN GOD ALMIGHTY”. SO BE GOOD TO YOUR FELLOW MAN AND ALWAYS MAKE FRIENDS. Always remember that the people you trample upon on your way up the ladder will be the same you’ll pass on your way down, so cause no problem for others cause if u do, they’ll become your very problem one day. Finally, even banana stems will one day become
It is good to make godly resolutions, and these steps will help to keep on the right road with God through the year.
Reaffirm your relationship with God
He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Michah 6:8
Look back on the past year and ask God to show you areas of sin and weakness that might have hindered your spiritual growth. Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting. Psalm 139:23-24
Confess your sin and ask God to forgive you. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9
Ask God to refresh you and to give you a new vision for the year ahead.
“For I know the plans I have you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11
Ask God to help you see your life from His perspective, and renew your commitment to His vision and purpose for your life. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – His good, pleasing and perfect will. Romans 12:2
Resolve to be faithful to God’s purpose in your life and to glorify Him in the areas that He has revealed to you as you have prayed to Him. I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. Philippians 3:14
Write down the things that God has revealed to you in prayer, and review them frequently, remembering that it is only by His grave that you are able to grow in Him. Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. Hebrews 4:16
According to legend, it took Thomas Edison 1,000 tries to invent the light bulb. In other words, he failed a whopping 999 times before he reached success. (Not surprising, considering that he was working on his invention in the dark!)
Soon after Edison revealed his earth-shattering invention, a French reporter asked, “Mr. Edison, how did it feel to fail 999 times?” As the story goes, Thomas Edison just smiled and replied, “Young man, I have not failed 999 times. I have simply found 999 ways how not to create a light bulb.”
In other words, Thomas Edison learned from his mistakes—and he refused to be discouraged by those 999 botched experiments. Most mortals would have given up much sooner. Yet each failure taught Edison something important
that allowed him to go back and tweak the process or switch out the components until he finally got it right.
I myself have failed many times in my career, but one particularly painful failure always stands out in my mind. It all started when I was hired to develop a brand new product line for two very big name customers.
At the very outset, my boss told me that the company knew this was a high-risk project. However, the project had the potential to lead to all kinds of opportunities—we could build a whole new part of our business around this product.
Because I had experience in this particular area, they really wanted me to lead this development team. So, I decided to come aboard and take on the challenge.
I worked on the project and led the team for about two years. However, at the end of that arduous two-year period, I came to an alarming realization: we were not going to succeed. We just weren’t going to pull it off. Even though we had made some progress and created some headway in this new area, in the end our customers were not supportive of what we had created.
I had to conclude that this two-year project was a failure. And this was something new to me. Up until that point, I had enjoyed one career success after another. So I was thinking, “Gee, maybe I should leave the company. I’ll never be able to do anything else here. I’m a failure.”
You see, when we fail, we tend to personalize it. That’s exactly what I did. In my mind, it wasn’t that the project failed—I failed. I spent about two months feeling really miserable. I was trying to figure out what to do, and I talked to my wife about it every night.
Eventually, I realized that the company did not see me as a failure. As a matter of fact, they followed through on their original promise. They told me from the very beginning that this was a risky project, but they still wanted to give it a shot—and if it didn’t turn out to be successful, it would be okay and we would learn from it. And that’s exactly what happened.
In the end, instead of running away from the failure, I embraced it as an essential step in my learning process. I decided to stay with the company, and I went on to become the VP of Product Development, then the General Manager for the largest business unit and eventually the Executive VP of the entire organization.
It was a great experience. And had I not embraced failure, had I run from it instead of learning from it, I never would have been as successful as I was at the company.
I think there are two lessons here: One is that leaders really need to stick to their promises. For example, when an organization says, “We view this as risky, and if it doesn’t work out it’s going to be okay,” they really need to follow through with that. As a leader in your organization, you need to nurture an environment where an employee can fail without it having negative consequences on her career.
Secondly, any employee or individual who leads a failed project needs to embrace that failure as an essential step in the learning process. Success is not a linear journey—most leaders do not have careers that advance in a straight line.
It may seem counterintuitive, but the people who have been the most successful in life and in business are the people who have failed the most. Therefore, your ability to fail is directly related to your long-term success.
But They Did Not Give Up
As a young man, Abraham Lincoln went to war a captain and returned a private. Afterwards, he was a failure as a businessman. As a lawyer in Springfield, he was too impractical and temperamental to be a success. He turned to politics and was defeated in his first try for the legislature, again defeated in his first attempt to be nominated for congress, defeated in his application to be commissioner of the General Land Office, defeated in the senatorial election of 1854, defeated in his efforts for the vice-presidency in 1856, and defeated in the senatorial election of 1858. At about that time, he wrote in a letter to a friend, “I am now the most miserable man living. If what I feel were equally distributed to the whole human family, there would not be one cheerful face on the earth.”
Winston Churchill repeated a grade during elementary school and, when he entered Harrow, was placed in the lowest division of the lowest class. Later, he twice failed the entrance exam to the Royal Military Academy at Sandhurst. He was defeated in his first effort to serve in Parliament. He became Prime Minister at the age of 62. He later wrote, “Never give in, never give in, never, never, never, never – in nothing, great or small, large or petty – never give in except to convictions of honor and good sense. Never, Never, Never, Never give up.” (his capitals, mind you)
Socrates was called “an immoral corrupter of youth” and continued to corrupt even after a sentence of death was imposed on him. He drank the hemlock and died corrupting.
Sigmund Freud was booed from the podium when he first presented his ideas to the scientific community of Europe. He returned to his office and kept on writing.
Robert Sternberg received a C in his first college introductory-psychology class. His teacher commented that “there was a famous Sternberg in psychology and it was obvious there would not be another.” Three years later Sternberg graduated with honors from Stanford University with exceptional distinction in psychology, summa cum laude, and Phi Beta Kappa. In 2002, he became President of the American Psychological Association.
Charles Darwin gave up a medical career and was told by his father, “You care for nothing but shooting, dogs and rat catching.” In his autobiography, Darwin wrote, “I was considered by all my masters and my father, a very ordinary boy, rather below the common standard of intellect.” Clearly, he evolved.
Thomas Edison‘s teachers said he was “too stupid to learn anything.” He was fired from his first two jobs for being “non-productive.” As an inventor, Edison made 1,000 unsuccessful attempts at inventing the light bulb. When a reporter asked, “How did it feel to fail 1,000 times?” Edison replied, “I didn’t fail 1,000 times. The light bulb was an invention with 1,000 steps.”
Albert Einstein did not speak until he was 4-years-old and did not read until he was 7. His parents thought he was “sub-normal,” and one of his teachers described him as “mentally slow, unsociable, and adrift forever in foolish dreams.” He was expelled from school and was refused admittance to the Zurich Polytechnic School. He did eventually learn to speak and read. Even to do a little math.
Louis Pasteur was only a mediocre pupil in undergraduate studies and ranked 15th out of 22 students in chemistry. In 1872, Pierre Pachet, Professor of Physiology at Toulouse, wrote that “Louis Pasteur’s theory of germs is ridiculous fiction.”
Henry Ford failed and went broke five times before he succeeded.
R. H. Macy failed seven times before his store in New York City caught on.
Fred Smith, the founder of Federal Express, received a “C” on his college paper detailing his idea for a reliable overnight delivery service. His professor at Yale told him, “Well, Fred, the concept is interesting and well formed, but in order to earn better than a “C” grade, your ideas also have to be feasible.
F. W. Woolworth was not allowed to wait on customers when he worked in a dry goods store because, his boss said, “he didn’t have enough sense.”
When Bell telephone was struggling to get started, its owners offered all their rights to Western Union for $100,000. The offer was disdainfully rejected with the pronouncement, “What use could this company make of an electrical toy.”
“So we went to Atari and said, ‘Hey, we’ve got this amazing thing, even built with some of your parts, and what do you think about funding us? Or we’ll give it to you. We just want to do it. Pay our salary, we’ll come work for you.’ And they said, ‘No.’ So then we went to Hewlett-Packard, and they said, ‘Hey, we don’t need you. You haven’t got through college yet.'” ~ Apple Computer founder Steve Jobs on attempts to get Atari and HP interested in his and Steve Wozniak’s personal computer.
John Garcia, who eventually was honored for his fundamental psychological discoveries, was once told by a reviewer of his often-rejected manuscripts that one is no more likely to find the phenomenon he discovered than to find bird droppings in a cuckoo clock. (sort of a cute critique actually)
Rocket scientist Robert Goddard found his ideas bitterly rejected by his scientific peers on the grounds that rocket propulsion would not work in the rarefied atmosphere of outer space.
Daniel Boone was once asked by a reporter if he had ever been lost in the wilderness. Boone thought for a moment and replied, “No, but I was once bewildered for about three days.”
An expert said of Vince Lombardi: “He possesses minimal football knowledge and lacks motivation.” Lombardi would later write, “It’s not whether you get knocked down; it’s whether you get back up.”
Michael Jordan and Bob Cousy were each cut from their high school basketball teams. Jordan once observed, “I’ve failed over and over again in my life. That is why I succeed.”
Babe Ruth is famous for his past home run record, but for decades he also held the record for strikeouts. He hit 714 home runs and struck out 1,330 times in his career (about which he said, “Every strike brings me closer to the next home run.”). And didn’t Mark McGwire break that strikeout record? (John Wooden once explained that winners make the most errors.)
Hank Aaron went 0 for 5 his first time at bat with the Milwakee Braves.
Stan Smith was rejected as a ball boy for a Davis Cup tennis match because he was “too awkward and clumsy.” He went on to clumsily win Wimbledon and the U. S. Open. And eight Davis Cups.
Tom Landry, Chuck Noll, Bill Walsh, and Jimmy Johnson accounted for 11 of the 19 Super Bowl victories from 1974 to 1993. They also share the distinction of having the worst records of first-season head coaches in NFL history – they didn’t win a single game.
Johnny Unitas‘s first pass in the NFL was intercepted and returned for a touchdown. Joe Montana‘s first pass was also intercepted. And while we’re on quarterbacks, during his first season Troy Aikman threw twice as many interceptions (18) as touchdowns (9) . . . oh, and he didn’t win a single game. You think there’s a lesson here?
In his first professional race, cyclist Lance Armstrong finished . . . drumroll . . . last. He made up for this lackluster first effort by being the only man to win the Tour de France six consecutive times. And still counting. Talk about overcompensation.
After Carl Lewis won the gold medal for the long jump in the 1996 Olympic games, he was asked to what he attributed his longevity, having competed for almost 20 years. He said, “Remembering that you have both wins and losses along the way. I don’t take either one too seriously.”
Walt Disney was fired by a newspaper editor because “he lacked imagination and had no good ideas.” He went bankrupt several times before he built Disneyland. In fact, the proposed park was rejected by the city of Anaheim on the grounds that it would only attract riffraff.
Charles Schultz had every cartoon he submitted rejected by his high school yearbook staff. Oh, and Walt Disney wouldn’t hire him.
Who the hell wants to hear actors talk?” ~ H. M. Warner, Warner Brothers Films, 1927
After Fred Astaire‘s first screen test, the memo from the testing director of MGM, dated 1933, read, “Can’t act. Can’t sing. Slightly bald. Can dance a little.” He kept that memo over the fire place in his Beverly Hills home. Astaire once observed that “when you’re experimenting, you have to try so many things before you choose what you want, that you may go days getting nothing but exhaustion.” And here is the reward for perseverance: “The higher up you go, the more mistakes you are allowed. Right at the top, if you make enough of them, it’s considered to be your style.”
When Julie Andrews took her first screen test for MGM studios, the final determination was that “She’s not photogenic enough for film.”
Federico Fellini‘s first films, “Luci del varieta” and “El sceicco bianco” were dismal financial and critical failures. In 1952, one film critic wrote, “We shall never hear from Fellini again.” Two years later, Fellini directed “La Strada,” which went on to garner the Academy Award and New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Foreign Film, as well as the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival. What is it they say about critics … something about knowing the worth of everything and the value of nothing?
After his first audition, Sidney Poitier was told by the casting director, “Why don’t you stop wasting people’s time and go out and become a dishwasher or something?” It was at that moment, recalls Poitier, that he decided to devote his life to acting.
When Lucille Ball began studying to be actress in 1927, she was told by the head instructor of the John Murray Anderson Drama School, “Try any other profession.”
The first time Jerry Seinfeld walked on-stage at a comedy club as a professional comic, he looked out at the audience, froze, and forgot the English language. He stumbled through “a minute-and a half” of material and was jeered offstage. He returned the following night and closed his set to wild applause.
In 1944, Emmeline Snively, director of the Blue Book Modeling Agency, told modeling hopeful Norma Jean Baker, “You’d better learn secretarial work or else get married.” I’m sure you know that Norma Jean was Marilyn Monroe. Now . . . who was Emmeline Snively?
At the age of 21, French acting legend Jeanne Moreau was told by a casting director that her head was too crooked, she wasn’t beautiful enough, and she wasn’t photogenic enough to make it in films. She took a deep breath and said to herself, “Alright, then, I guess I will have to make it my own way.” After making nearly 100 films her own way, in 1997 she received the European Film Academy Lifetime Achievement Award.
After Harrison Ford‘s first performance as a hotel bellhop in the film Dead Heat on a Merry-Go-Round, the studio vice-president called him in to his office. “Sit down kid,” the studio head said, “I want to tell you a story. The first time Tony Curtis was ever in a movie he delivered a bag of groceries. We took one look at him and knew he was a movie star.” Ford replied, “I thought you were spossed to think that he was a grocery delivery boy.” The vice president dismissed Ford with “You ain’t got it kid , you ain’t got it … now get out of here.”
Michael Caine‘s headmaster told him, “You will be a laborer all your life.” Caine labored his way to two Academy Awards.
Charlie Chaplin was initially rejected by Hollywood studio chiefs because his pantomime was considered “nonsense.”
In high school, actor and comic Robin Williams was voted “Least Likely to Succeed.”
Enrico Caruso‘s music teacher said he had no voice at all and could not sing. His parents wanted him to become an engineer.
Decca Records turned down a recording contract with the Beatles with the unprophetic evaluation, “We don’t like their sound. Groups of guitars are on their way out.” After Decca rejected the Beatles, Columbia records followed suit.
In 1954, Jimmy Denny, manager of the Grand Ole Opry, fired Elvis Presley after one performance. He told Presley, “You ain’t goin’ nowhere, son. You ought to go back to drivin’ a truck.”
Beethoven handled the violin awkwardly and preferred playing his own compositions instead of improving his technique. His teacher called him “hopeless as a composer.” And, of course, you know that he wrote five of his greatest symphonies while completely deaf.
The Impressionists had to arrange their own art exhibitions because their works were routinely rejected by the Paris Salon. How many of you have heard of the Paris Salon?
A Paris art dealer refused Picasso shelter when he asked if he could bring in his paintings from out of the rain. One hopes that there is justice in this world and that the art dealer eventually went broke.
Van Gogh sold only one painting during his life. And this to the sister of one of his friends for 400 francs (approximately $50). This didn’t stop him from completing over 800 paintings.
John Constable‘s luminous painting Watermeadows at Salisbury was dismissed in 1830 by a judge at the Royal Academy as “a nasty green thing.” Name of the judge, anyone? Anyone?
Rodin‘s father once said, “I have an idiot for a son.” Described as the worst pupil in the school, he was rejected three times admittance to the Ecole des Beaux-Arts. His uncle called him uneducable. Perhaps this gave him food for thought.
Stravinsky was run out of town by an enraged audience and critics after the first performance of the Rite of Spring. Later in life, he observed that “I have learned throughout my life as a composer chiefly through my mistakes and pursuits of false assumptions, not by my exposure to founts of wisdom and knowledge.”
When Pablo Casals reached 95, a young reporter asked him “Mr. Casals, you are 95 and the greatest cellist that ever lived. Why do you still practice six hours a day?” Mr. Casals answered, “Because I think I’m making progress.”
Leo Tolstoy flunked out of college. He was described as both “unable and unwilling to learn.” No doubt a slow developer.
Louisa May Alcott, author of Little Women, was encouraged to find work as a servant by her family.
Emily Dickinson had only seven poems published in her lifetime.
12 publishers rejected J.K. Rowling‘s book about a boy wizard before a small London house picked up Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone.
15 publishers rejected a manuscript by e. e. cummings. When he finally got it published by his mother, the dedication, printed in uppercase letters, read WITH NO THANKS TO . . . followed by the list of publishers who had rejected his prized offering. Nice going Eddie. Thanks for illustrating that nobody loses all the time.
18 publishers turned down Richard Bach‘s story about a “soaring eagle.” Macmillan finally published Jonathan Livingston Seagull in 1970. By 1975 it had sold more than 7 million copies in the U.S. alone.
21 publishers rejected Richard Hooker‘s humorous war novel, M*A*S*H. He had worked on it for seven years.
22 publishers rejected James Joyce‘s The Dubliners.
27 publishers rejected Dr. Seuss‘s first book, To Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street.
Jack London received six hundred rejection slips before he sold his first story.
English crime novelist John Creasey got 753 rejection slips before he published 564 books.
William Saroyan accumulated more than a thousand rejections before he had his first literary piece published. Way to not take a hint, Bill!
Gertrude Stein submitted poems to editors for nearly 20 years before one was finally accepted. See . . . a rose is a rose.
I bet you didn’t know that John Milton wrote Paradise Lost 16 years after losing his eyesight
One of Professor Pajares’s first research efforts came back with a review that began, “There are so many things I don’t like about this article I just don’t know where to begin.”
There is a professor at MIT who offers a course on failure. He does that, he says, because failure is a far more common experience than success. An interviewer once asked him if anybody ever failed the course on failure. He thought a moment and replied, “No, but there were two Incompletes.”
Let’s end with Woody Allen: “I don’t want to achieve immortality through my work. I want to achieve it through not dying. Eighty percent of success is showing up.”
Like any plant, growth of the Chinese Bamboo Tree requires nurturing – water, fertile soil, sunshine. In its first year, we see no visible signs of activity. In the second year, again, no growth above the soil. The third, the fourth, still nothing. Our patience is tested and we begin to wonder if our efforts (caring, water, etc.) will ever be rewarded.
And finally in the fifth year – behold, a miracle! We experience growth. And what growth it is! The Chinese Bamboo Tree grows 80 feet in just six weeks!
But let’s be serious, does the Chinese Bamboo Tree really grow 80 feet in six weeks? Did the Chinese Bamboo Tree lie dormant for four years only to grow exponentially in the fifth? Or, was the little tree growing underground, developing a root system strong enough to support its potential for outward growth in the fifth year and beyond? The answer is, of course, obvious. Had the tree not developed a strong unseen foundation it could not have sustained its life as it grew. The same principle is true for people. People, who patiently toil towards worthwhile dreams and goals, building strong character while overcoming adversity and challenge, grow the strong internal foundation to handle success, while get-rich- quickers and lottery winners usually are unable to sustain unearned sudden wealth.
Had the Chinese Bamboo Tree farmer dug up his little seed every year to see if it was growing, he would have stunted the Chinese Bamboo tree’s growth as surely as a caterpillar is doomed to a life on the ground if it is freed from its struggle inside a cocoon prematurely. The struggle in the cocoon is what gives the future butterfly the wing power to fly, just as tension against muscles as we exercise strengthen our muscles, while muscles left alone will soon atrophy.
The Story of The Human Potential Tree (aka You)
The Chinese Bamboo Tree is a perfect parable to our own experience with personal growth and change (whether we are working on ourselves or coaching others). It is never easy. It’s slow to show any progress. It’s frustrating and unrewarding at times. But it is sooooo worth it….especially if we can be patient and persistent.
This is the critical variable in attaining new skills – in developing ourselves and others. It is our ability to stay persistent even when we are unable to see any growth on the surface…. just like the Chinese Bamboo Tree.
The Challenge We Learn from the Chinese Bamboo Tree
Can we stay focused and continue to believe in what we are doing even when we don’t see immediate results? In a culture driven by instant gratification – this is our biggest challenge.
We often tell each other (and our children), remember to “Keep trying! and NEVER give up!” The change may be slow – even invisible at times – but suddenly, as in the case of the Chinese Bamboo Tree, we will surprise ourselves.
Keep your faith in this important work.
We live in a quick-fix society. We get frustrated if we have to wait more than 2 minutes for service or a stop light to change. We want instant solutions to every complex problem and every fractured relationship. In short – we want it all now! Maybe its time to reflect on an old, old poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow that is as true today as it was when he wrote it over 100 years ago:
“The heights by great men reached and kept
Were not attained by sudden flight,
But they, while their companions slept,
Toiled ever upward through the night.”
Final Lesson From The Chinese Bamboo Tree
Yet, all of this requires one thing – faith. The growers of the Chinese Bamboo Tree have faith that if they keep watering and fertilizing the ground, the tree will break through. Well, you must have the same kind of faith in your bamboo tree, whether it is to run a successful business, win a Pulitzer Prize, raise well-adjusted children, or what have you. You must have faith that if you keep making the calls, honing your craft, reading to your children, reaching out to your spouse or asking for donations, that you too will see rapid growth in the future.
This is the hard part for most of us. We get so excited about the idea that’s been planted inside of us that we simply can’t wait for it to blossom. Therefore, within days or weeks of the initial planting, we become discouraged and begin to second guess ourselves, or worse, quit.
Sometimes, in our doubt, we dig up our seed and plant it elsewhere, in hopes that it will quickly rise in more fertile ground. We see this very often in people who change jobs every year or so. We also see it in people who change organizations and even spouses in the pursuit of greener pastures. More often than not, these people are greatly disappointed when their Chinese bamboo tree doesn’t grow any faster in the new location.
Other times, people will water the ground for a time but then, quickly become discouraged. They start to wonder if it’s worth all of the effort. This is particularly true when they see their neighbors having success with other trees. They start to think, “What am I doing trying to grow a Chinese bamboo tree? If I had planted a lemon tree, I’d have a few lemons by now.” These are the people who return to their old jobs and their old ways. They walk away from their dream in exchange for a “sure thing.”
Sadly, what they fail to realize is that pursuing your dream is a sure thing if you just don’t give up. So long as you keep watering and fertilizing your dream, it will come to fruition, just like the Chinese Bamboo Tree. It may take weeks. It may take months. It may even take years, but eventually, the roots will take hold and your Chinese bamboo tree will grow. And when it does, it will grow in remarkable ways.
We’ve seen this happen so many times. Henry Ford had to water his Chinese Bamboo Tree through five business failures before he finally succeeded with the Ford Motor Company. Another great bamboo grower was the legendary jockey Eddie Arcaro. Arcaro lost his first 250 races as a jockey before going on to win 17 Triple Crown races and 554 stakes races for total purse earnings of more than $30 million.
Well, you have a Chinese Bamboo Tree inside of you just waiting to break through. So keep watering and believing and you too will be flying high before you know it.