“This is my life…my story…my book. I’ll no longer let anyone else write it; nor will I apologize for the edits I make.” – Steve Maraboli
You can’t start a next chapter of your life if you keep re-reading the last one. You have to learn the lessons from the previous chapters to better your approach for the next coming chapters. Don’t let the previous chapter of your story hold you back.
I lost my dad when I was only seven years old- he was brutally stabbed and butchered beyond recognition; my mom died when I was sixteen years old – she was knocked down by a car whose driver had been shot dead in a botched hijacking, her body was dragged down the street and her body parts were all over the place. My eldest brother was also killed in a mysterious way. I’m not sharing my story for you to feel sorry for me nor to seek pity, but to show that there’s power in your story and it’s up to you on how you use that power.
Whenever things didn’t work out well for me, I used my story as the reason and justification for my failure. This, however, changed when I met the one and only Les Brown in 2013 –yes, the world renowned motivational speaker, who became my coach and mentor. When we sat down, he shared his story of not knowing neither of his biological parents and indicated how fortunate I was to have known my parents. That, changed my perspective on how I viewed my story.
Whatever happened to you, happened, it can never be changed. The only power you have is to change the interpretation of it to empower you instead of limiting you. As human beings, we’re hardwired to act in alignment with how we interpret our story. This means you’ll never rise higher than your interpretation of your story which inevitably determine your future. Reading more stories of men and women who achieved greatness further made me realize that my story wasn’t a winner. There’re many people whose stories are worse than mine, but still, they went on in life to achieve greatness. Dr Viktor Frankl is surely one of them. So, the lesson I learned which I’m certain you’ll derive value from it as well is that, you’ve no control over what happens to you, the control you have however, is how you interpret that which has happened to you. Your interpretation will either let your story empower you or hinder you from unleashing your greatness.
Your daily behaviour is always a function of your deep beliefs. Your private story – mental narrative about your potential is the key performance indicator (KPI) on whether you exploit your potential or not. The positive psychologists call this phenomenon “The Self Fulfilling Prophesy”- the way we embrace a story about who we are and what we can achieve and then behave in a way that makes that fantasy actually come through. The world is a mirror and we get from life not what we want, but that which we are. Changing the interpretation of your story will increase your energy and how you show up in the world and this will undoubtedly help you unleash your power!
Veli Ndaba is a Professional and Motivational Speaker, Life-Coach and Neuro Linguistic Programming Practitioner, Author of three books (You Are Born to Win, Your Dream is Calling You and SWITCH ON!), Newspaper Columnist and Entrepreneur. To book him to speak at your next event or to help you and your team unleash your greatness, contact him on firstname.lastname@example.org , www.velindaba.com or +27 83 304 9773