I can’t believe the number of times in the last year I’ve said, ‘I can’t believe ……’
- I couldn’t believe that the UK left Brexit
- I couldn’t believe that Donald Trump became President of the USA
- I couldn’t believe that Russian planes bombed the last remaining hospital in Aleppo
- I still can’t believe that people with a grudge (religious or otherwise) cause mayhem to innocent people with automatic weapons; car bombs; trucks driven into crowds or whatever other weapon of destruction they feel justifies their actions.
In this world of confusion, conflict and personal agendas, how do we keep going? How do we motivate ourselves to get up each day and head to work? How do we explain what’s happening around us to our children and our grandchildren?
Even my little 6 year old grandson is worried and fearful.
He asked me if Mr Trump was going to start World War III? How sad is it that? And of course, the children in Aleppo and many other places around the world have known nothing else but war. That surely isn’t the world we want to live in.
But what can we as mere mortals do? Surely these challenges are bigger than us?
As parents; grandparents; friends and co-workers we must all do our bit to lighten the load for those around us who are tapping into fear.
I’ve had occasions in my own life, where it would have been easy to pull the blankets over my head and have a ‘pity’ party – but I’ve always been blessed by something that lifted me, or someone who led me out of my fog:
- My Gran had a saying ‘What doesn’t kill you will only make you stronger’. And she was absolutely right. My Grandmother survived two World Wars; the Great Depression and cancer. She was my hero.
- The Japanese have a proverb ‘Fall 7 times, get up 8’. And they too are spot on. Laying down feeling sorry for ourselves is not an option.
- Antony Robbins discovered that his business manager had stolen all his money. After recovering from the initial shock his reaction was to ask ‘What’s good about this?’
So can we be ‘strong’ in times of adversity? Can we keep getting up to face another day no matter what? Can we also ask ‘what is good about this?’
But more than any of that, can we do our bit to make a difference?
In numerology terms 2017 is a ‘1’ year. If you add 2 + 0 + 1 + 7 they equal 10, which breaks down into a 1. So 2016 was the end of a 9 year cycle, and 2017 is the beginning of a new one.
These are challenging times for sure, but we have an opportunity globally, to start a new way of being if enough people want this world to be a happier and healthier place. If enough people are willing to stand up and say ‘enough’. If enough people are willing to say to our leaders – this is not what we expect of you. We voted you in but we can just as easily vote you out.
If you are reading this, then I believe you are here at this exact moment in time for a reason. You may already know your reason; others reading this may ‘suspect’ they have a reason, and some people reading this may not even understand the statement. And that’s OK; Buddhists believe that when the student is ready the teacher will appear.
One of my absolute heroes – Richard Bach – says this:
‘There is the test to find whether your mission on earth is finished.
If you are alive, it isn’t.’
So if you are alive and you are still with me – what will you do in 2017 to ‘lift’ yourself? What will you do to lift your family? What will you do to lift your friends and co-workers? What will you do to lift your community? What will you do to lift the world?
Does that seem too big a task? After all, most of us think ‘Who am I?’ ‘What can I do?’
You can do anything you choose to do. Simple, though not necessarily easy I know.
I know that most of us do want a better world, and yet feel powerless to make a difference. So I just have to leave my final thoughts to Helen Keller. Helen was born deaf, dumb and blind and went on to become one of the most inspirational people of our times.
Her belief was this:
“I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do something that I can do.”
What will you do to make a difference?
Ann Andrews CSP, Life Member NSANZ
Ann Andrews CSP is a seriously inspirational entrepreneur who teaches organisations and individuals how to learn, unlearn and relearn so they can face any change and any challenge likely to hit their lives or their business.
A past National President of the National Speakers’ Association of New Zealand, she was the recipient of The Spirit of Excellence Award in 2000 and again in 2009, the highest award in the NZ speaking profession.
Ann has authored four business books; co-authored a further 5 and has recently accepted an offer she couldn’t refuse for her successful online training company The Corporate Toolbox. Never one to sit idle, Ann recently set up The Big Thinking Business Forum so that owners of medium sized businesses could tackle their next stage of growth with the guidance of great mentors.