Success Tool Kits Series by Chidi & Victor Akunna
TIP 1: Success Tool Kits: Drafting A Vision!
Vision is one of those words that have become a cliche as it is often used to describe different ideas. For the sake of our discussion, we would define it as the images in your heart about tomorrow, as regards your marriage, career, finance, children, etc. These positive/negative images determine the direction of your life, your choices and eventually, destiny. They may appear fickle, but they are powerful, acting as the steering wheel of your life. According to a research conducted by Dr. Edward Banfield of Harvard university, “the most successful people in any society are those who take the longest time period into consideration when making their day-to-day decisions.” Thus, those who have a clear vision of how their career and family would look like in five years time will be better off than those whose minds can only capture a few months.
“And the LORD answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, so he may run that reads it.” Habakkuk 2:2. To take it even a step higher, we must write the vision. Many times, we are so busy trying to cope with our present life, meeting many deadlines, trying to make ends meet or doing only urgent things that we forget the most IMPORTANT THINGS. Writing it down many times and displaying it conspicuously commits it to heart, the seat of life. Before you begin, take time to capture the vision you have for your family and your Sphere of Influence, are they positive, negative, big, small, compelling, exciting? Don’t leave it to chance if you desire a better future.
THINK & ACT: Take out time to ask God for a vision. He knows where you should be in 20 years time.
TIP 2: Success Tools: Building Your Tribe!
One key thing about positioning yourself, your tribe or your family is about getting them to buy into the vision. Achieving this will enable you tap into great power of synergy, which unleashes the power and resources of every stakeholder towards reaching this vision. It’s like raising global support for a single cause. In synergy, 2+2>4 (2+2 is greater than 4). Hence, to get your family signing up for your 2016 vision, to the point where they share and own it, you must be able to get them to buy-in. Take time to sell the vision to them.
“And the LORD said, behold, the people are one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do” Genesis 11:6. When there is a shared vision in the family, everyone lines up, the couple will have less misunderstanding, the children will behave right. People replicate what they see within. Hence, when you see people doing their own thing in a family, company or nation, it’s sometimes because there is no compelling shared vision. Hence, as a leader, father, mother, guardian, spend plenty of time to communicate your compelling vision, help people see why their lives will be better off by signing up and committing to it. However, you need to be the kind of person (good character, charisma & competence) they can buy into.
THINK & ACT: This begins with you, if you are not convinced, sold out to or enthusiastic about the vision, it would not move anyone to action.
TIP 3: Success Tools: Planning is Winning
According to Dictionary.com, planning is “a scheme or method of acting, doing, proceeding, making, etc, developed in advance”. Planning demystifies complex objectives, without it, big dreams remain big and intimidating. A wise man once said, your ability to think through on paper is a pivotal factor to your future success. You know your marital romance is important, you know your relationships are strategic to your future, but do you plan for them or leave them to chance? One of the benefits of planning is that you are able to see opportunities and possible obstacles ahead, giving you ample time to eliminate them, thereby, saving valuable resources. Planning is winning.
“For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it?” Luke 14:28. The word, tower, represents any worthwhile goal you have, e.g. a romantic marriage, a business, a career, etc. Whatever it is, we must sit down to plan. Most times, people push this aside, they keep waiting on God, but He is waiting on them. Prayerfully plan & give Him something to bless. Thus, for the vision He has given you for your family, get down to business to work it out. This may be hard at the start, like any new habit, but when you see how your life and family benefit from it, it would become second nature. Planning strengthens your foresight.
THINK & ACT: Start by asking how can I get to point B from where I am standing? What can I do differently? Who do I need to meet? When do I need to act? Learn from experts and set your life on an upward movement.
TIP 4: Success Tools: Just do it NOW!
Taking action is where majority of us fail. Sometimes, people are overwhelmed by fear, too many options, possibility of loss, busy routines, such that they don’t take deliberate steps towards their vision at all, thereby, not growing or challenging their boundaries. According to Isaac Newton, “an object either remains at rest or continues to move at a constant velocity, unless acted upon by an external force.” This implies that nothing moves unless we move. You may be busy with your career or business, but if you don’t give time to your marriage and family, it will remain static. Nothing can replace focused, deliberate and correct action, not even the best of intentions. Waiting for your situation or spouse to change before taking action is a fruitless effort as long as great romance is concerned.
“Ye have compassed this mountain long enough: turn you northward.” Deuteronomy 2:3. Mountain here can be a major obstacle you have refused to confront. Here, God is saying you have been around here for too long, it is time to turn northward; your true north and desired destination. Do something different this year, go beyond the usual new year resolutions take action, initiate change. Don’t leave things to take care of themselves, that’s like waiting for other people to take responsibility for your life. Take the driver seat of your marriage, career and business because at the end of your life, only you will give account of how it was invested. Take right actions, begin now. Call your spouse to apologise, go back to school, visit your child, break that extra marital relationship, do it NOW!
THINK & ACT: You are the chief responsibility officer of your life. Take action today. May your steps be ordered aright!
TIP 5: Success Tools: Check Your Sail!
It is not enough to take action, we must consider if they are yielding the right results. Every step towards achieving the marriage of your dreams, career or business goals this year must be measured against the anticipated outcome. This is one of the key ways to stay on track, manage time and resources. If an aeroplane does not keep ensuring that its movement is in sync (by being in touch with the control tower, relying on the navigation tools, the experience of the pilot, etc) with the ultimate destination, it may land in a completely different location. Doing otherwise, has led to many ‘missing plane’ situations.
“There is a way which seems right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.” Proverbs 14:12. We must take time to evaluate our actions by interviewing people who have achieved what we plan to do, examining various researches, reading biographies, thinking through our actions and clarifying the reasons behind our actions. Doing these will help us build stronger momentum and be more purposeful in our daily routine.
THINK & ACT: Are you heading in the right direction? One of the most painful experiences is to get to the end of your journey, when you are supposed to be reaping your reward, and discover that you were sincerely wrong. Join us next week for another explosive series. Have a blissful weekend!
Publishers of Connected Hearts Daily Devotional