BPI-014 Its all in your Thought

Came across this wonderful poem by ….Walter D. Wintle

If you think you are beaten, you are;
If you think you dare not, you don’t.
If you’d like to win, but you think you can’t,
It is almost a certain – you won’t.

If you think you’ll lose, you’ve lost;
For out in this world we find
Success begins with a fellow’s will
It’s all in the state of mind.

If you think you’re outclassed, you are;
You’ve got to think high to rise.
You’ve got to be sure of yourself before
You can ever win the prize.

Life’s battles don’t always go
To the stronger or faster man;
But sooner or later the man who wins
Is the one who thinks he can!

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BPI-25 Fundamental Provocation-“The story of The 99 club”

This is an amazing story of the 99 club.

There was a king, since he had lots of responsibilities he was always stressed. He used to see a farmer who was very happy. He was very happy with his farming and family, he had no stress, he used to work hard but enjoy his work and was contented with his life.

King always wondered how can this farmer be so contented, even after he doesn’t have luxurious life. The king asked this his minister to find out the reason behind the farmer’s containment.

The minister observed that the farmer was happy because he didn’t had anything to worry about. He used to work hard, to earn his bread and butter and because he worked hard he got better sleep. He was happy with his family and farming.

The minister then kept a small bag with 99 gold coins outside his house. Next day when the farmer saw the bag he was ecstatic. He began to count them. After several counts, he was at last convinced that there were 99 coins. ‘What could’ve happened to that last gold coin? Surely, no one would leave 99 coins!’ he wondered. He looked everywhere he could, but that final coin was elusive. Finally, exhausted, he decided that he would have to work harder than ever to earn that gold coin and complete his collection.

From that day he started to work really hard and hard, and could not give enough attention to his family. He was completely focused on earning that one more coin. He stopped enjoying his work. The king observed this and asked his minister what happened to him, why is he no more contented? The minister replied that he has joined our club of 99.

The 99 club is a name given to those people who have enough to be happy but are never contented because they’re always striving for that extra one. They always tell themselves, “Let me get that final one and then I’ll be happy for life”.

We can be happy even with very little in our life, but the minute we’re given something bigger and better, we want more!!! We lose our sleep, our happiness, we hurt the people around us. We lose all this at a price of our growing greed and desire.

Welcome to the 99 club

BPI=24 The Bamboo Principle – Lessons for life.

What distinguishes great companies and high achievers from those who merely possess talent?

Its the Bamboo Principle.

“After being planted, timber bamboo plants are hardly noticeable above the ground for nearly four years. But once their roots are fully formed around the four-year mark, they can grow a remarkable 80 feet in just six weeks. The key to their amazing growth is their extremely solid foundation.

The Lessons from the Bamboo.

  • Remember: Size is not the most important element

What may look weak may actually be strong. The body of even the largest type of bamboo—which is actually a type of grass—is not large compared to the other much larger trees in the forest. But the plants endure cold winters and extremely hot summers and are often the only trees left standing in the aftermath of a huge storm. We must be careful not to underestimate others or ourselves based only on old notions of what is weak and what is strong. You do not have to be big and imposing to be strong. But like the bamboo, stand tall, believe in your own strengths, and know that you are—or you can be—as strong as you need to be. Remember too that there is strength in the light, in openness and transparency. There is strength in kindness, compassion, and cooperation.

  • Bend but don’t break

One of the most impressive things about bamboo is how it sways with the breeze. This gentle swaying movement is a symbol of humility. The foundation of the bamboo is solid, yet it moves and sways harmoniously with the wind, never fighting against it. In time, even the strongest wind tires itself out, but the bamboo remains standing tall and still. A bend-but-don’t-break or go-with-the-natural-flow attitude is one of the secrets for success.

  • Be firmly rooted yet flexible

Bamboo is remarkable for its incredible flexibility. This flexibility is made possible in part due to the bamboo’s complex root structure which is said to make the ground around a bamboo forest very stable. Roots are important, yet in an increasingly mobile world many individuals and families do not take the time or effort to establish roots in their own communities. The challenge, then, for many of us is to remain the mobile, flexible, international travelers and busy professionals that we are while at the same time making the effort and taking the time to become involved and firmly rooted in the local community right outside our door.

  • Be always ready

As the Aikido master Kensho Furuya said in Kodo: Ancient Ways, “The warrior, like bamboo, is ever ready for action.” In presentation or other professional activities, too, through training and practice we can develop in our own way a state of being ever ready. Through study and practice we can at least do our best to be ready for any situation. No matter how good we think we are today, the training and the spirit to improve remains with us always. Remember the strength of the Bamboo is in its roots.

  • Find wisdom in emptiness

It is said that in order to learn, the first step is to empty ourselves of our preconceived notions. One can not fill a cup which is already full. The hollow insides of the bamboo reminds us that we are often too full of ourselves and our own conclusions; we have no space for anything else. In order to receive knowledge and wisdom from both nature and people, we have to be open to that which is new and different. When you empty your mind of your prejudices and pride and fear, you become open to the possibilities.

  • Commit yourself to growth & renewal

Bamboo are among the fastest-growing plants in the world. It does not matter who you are — or where you are — today, you have remarkable potential for growth. We usually speak of Kaizen or continuous improvement that is more steady and incremental, where big leaps and bounds are not necessary. Yet even with a commitment to continuous learning and improvement, our growth — like the growth of the bamboo — can be quite remarkable when we look back at what or where we used to be. You may at times become discouraged and feel that you are not improving at all. Do not be discouraged by what you perceive as your lack of growth or improvement. If you have not given up, then you are growing, you just may not see it until much later. How fast or how slow is not our main concern, only that we’re moving forward.

  • Express usefulness through simplicity

“The bamboo in its simplicity expresses its usefulness. Man should do the same.” Indeed, we spend a lot of our time trying to show how smart we are, perhaps to convince others — and ourselves — that we are worthy of their attention and praise. Often we complicate the simple to impress and we fail to simplify the complex out of fear that others may know what we know. Life and work are complicated enough without our interjecting the superfluous. If we could lose our fear, perhaps we could be more creative and find simpler solutions to even complex problems.

  • Unleash your power to spring back

Bamboo is a symbol of good luck and one of the symbols of the New Year celebrations in Japan. The important image of snow-covered bamboo represents the ability to spring back after experiencing adversity. In winter the heavy snow bends the bamboo back and back until one day the snow becomes too heavy, begins to fall, and the bamboo snaps back up tall again, brushing aside all the snow. The bamboo endured the heavy burden of the snow, but in the end it had to power to spring back as if to say “I will not be defeated.”

These are just few lessons from the bamboo; one could easily come up more. These are not things that we do not all ready know. Yet like many a good sensei, the bamboo simply reminds us of what we already know but may have forgotten. It is up to us to put these lessons (or reminders) of resilience into daily use through persistence and practice.

You do not need to be perfect. You need only to be resilient. This is the greatest lesson from the bamboo.


BPI-23 Listen that’s what people need

*LISTENING IS OFTEN THE ONLY THING NEEDED TO HELP SOMEONE…*

Viktor Frankl, one of the great psychiatrists of the twentieth century, survived the death camps of Nazi Germany.

His little book, Man’s Search for Meaning, is one of those life-changing books.

Frankl once told the story of a woman who called him in the middle of the night to calmly inform him she was about to commit suicide.

Frankl kept her on the phone and talked her through her depression, giving her reason after reason to carry on living.

Finally she promised she would not take her life, and she kept her word.

When they later met, Frankl asked which reason had persuaded her to live?
“None of them”, she told him.
What then influenced her to go on living, he pressed?

Her answer was simple, it was Frankl’s willingness to listen to her in the middle of the night.

A world in which there was someone ready to listen to another’s pain seemed to her a world in which it was worthwhile to live.

Often, it is not the brilliant argument that makes the difference. Sometimes the small act of listening is the greatest gift we can give.

*Sometimes we need someone to just listen. Not to try and fix anything or offer alternatives, but to just be there… to listen. An ear that listens can be medicine for a heart that hurts.*

*We think we listen, but very rarely do we listen with real understanding, true empathy.*
*Yet listening, of this very special kind, is one of the most potent forces.*

*Deep listening is miraculous for both listener and speaker.*
*When someone receives us with open-hearted, non-judging, intensely interested listening, our spirit expands.*

*Listening is the way. Listening is the beginning of all progress.*

*The quieter you become, the more you can hear.*

*Learn to speak by listening…*

BPI-022 HAPPINESS IS A STATE OF MIND

Beautiful message explaining how Happiness is a State of Mind. All of us should try to develop such attitude

A man of 92 years, short, very well-presented, who takes great care in his appearance, is moving into an old people’s home today.

After waiting several hours in the retirement home lobby, he gently smiles as he is told that his room is ready.

His wife of 80 has recently died, and he is obliged to leave his home.

As he slowly walks to the elevator, using his cane, I describe his small room to him, including the sheet hung at the window which serves as a curtain.

“I like it very much”, he says, with the enthusiasm of an 8 year old boy who has just been given a new puppy.

” You haven’t even seen the room yet, hang on a moment, we are almost there. ”

” That has nothing to do with it “, he replies.

” It is already decided in my mind that I like my room. It is a decision I take every morning when I wake up. ”

” Happiness is something I choose in advance. Whether or not I like the room does not depend on the furniture, or the decor rather it depends on how I decide to see it. ”

“I can choose. I can spend my day in bed enumerating all the difficulties that I have with the parts of my body that no longer work very well, or I can get up and give thanks to heaven for those parts that are still in working order. ”

“Every day is a gift, and as long as I can open my eyes, I will focus on the new day, and all the happy memories that I have built up during my life. ”

“Old age is like a bank account. You withdraw in later life what you have deposited along the way. ”

So, my advice to you is to deposit all the happiness you can in your bank account of memories.

Thank you for your part in filling my account with happy memories, which I am still continuing to fill.

Remember these simple guidelines for happiness.

1. Free your heart from hatred.
2. Free your mind from worry.
3. Live simple.
4. Give more.
5. Expect less.

If you have been blessed by this message, send it to your loved ones and your friends. It is the way we touch each other with simple truths that spread goodness in the world. Who knows, a miracle may happen as a result.

Have a Blessed time. Every day is a Bonus.

BPI-021 The Reflection of Your Actions

A man and his son were going through the forest hills. Suddenly, the boy fell down on the trail and screamed with a pain, “Aah!” Surprisingly, he heard the same voice from the mountain, “Aah!” Curiously, the boy shouted, “Who is this?” But the voice replied the same, “Who is this?” He got angry, and shouted again, “You are stupid!” And again the voice replied the same, “You are stupid!”

Annoyed By this, the boy asked his father, “Father, What is going on? Who is this?” The Father replied, “Son, Pay attention”. The father shouted, “You are very nice”. And the voice responded the same, “You are very nice!” The father again shouted, “Thank you”. And the voice again responded the same, “Thank you!” The son was very surprised but he still could not understand what was happening.

The father explained, “Son, people call it resonance, but this is the truth of the life. The life is a reflection of your actions. What you will give to others, you will receive the same in return.”

Moral: What we give to others, life gives us the same in return. Your life is not an accident or a coincidence, but it is the shadow of your actions.

BPI-020 What goes around comes around!!

His name was Fleming, and he was a poor Scottish farmer. One day, while trying to make a living for his family, he heard a cry for help coming from a nearby boy. He dropped his tools and ran to the boy.

There, mired to his waist in black muck, was a terrified boy, screaming and struggling to free himself. Farmer Fleming saved the lad from what could have been a slow and terrifying death

The next day, a fancy carriage pulled up to the Scotsman’s sparse surroundings. An elegantly dressed nobleman stepped out and introduced himself as the father of the boy Farmer Fleming had saved.
‘I want to repay you,’ said the nobleman. ‘You saved my son’s life.’
‘No, I can’t accept payment for what I did,’ the Scottish farmer replied waving off the offer. At that moment, the farmer’s own son came to the door of the family hovel.

‘Is that your son?’ the nobleman asked.

‘Yes,’ the farmer replied proudly.
‘I’ll make you a deal. Let me provide him with the level of education my own son will enjoy. If the lad is anything like his father, he’ll no doubt grow to be a man we both will be proud of.’ And that he did.

Farmer Fleming’s son attended the very best schools and in time, graduated from St. Mary’s Hospital Medical School in London, and went on to become known throughout the world as the noted Sir Alexander Fleming, the discoverer of Penicillin.
Years afterward, the same nobleman’s son who was saved from the bog was stricken with pneumonia.

What saved his life this time? Penicillin.

The name of the nobleman? Lord Randolph Churchill .. His son’s name?
Sir Winston Churchill.

Someone once said: What goes around comes around.
Work like you don’t need the money.
Love like you’ve never been hurt.
Dance like nobody’s watching.
Sing like nobody’s listening.
Live like it’s Heaven on Earth.

BPI-019 A Very Special Bank Account

Imagine you had a bank account that deposited rupees 86,400 each morning. The account carries over no balance from day to day, allows you to keep no cash balance, and every evening cancels whatever part of the amount you had failed to use during the day. What would you do? Draw out every dollar each day!

We all have such a bank. Its name is Time. Every morning, it credits you with 86,400 seconds. Every night it writes off, as lost, whatever time you have failed to use wisely. It carries over no balance from day to day. It allows no overdraft so you can’t borrow against yourself or use more time than you have. Each day, the account starts fresh. Each night, it destroys an unused time. If you fail to use the day’s deposits, it’s your loss and you can’t appeal to get it back.

There is never any borrowing time. You can’t take a loan out on your time or against someone else’s. The time you have is the time you have and that is that. Time management is yours to decide how you spend the time, just as with money you decide how you spend the money. It is never the case of us not having enough time to do things, but the case of whether we want to do them and where they fall in our priorities.

BPI-018 The Obstacles in Our Path

Sometimes an inspiring story helps us find out the strength within us. An inspiring story helps you inspire yourself and motivate yourself. It also helps find out what you can do and what you cannot.

A king had a boulder placed on a roadway. Then he hid himself and watched to see if anyone would remove the huge rock. Some of the king’s wealthiest merchants and courtiers came by and simply walked around it.
Many loudly blamed the king for not keeping the roads clear, but none did anything about getting the big stone out of the way. Then a peasant came along carrying a load of vegetables. On approaching the boulder, the peasant laid down his burden and tried to move the stone to the side of the road. After much pushing and straining, he finally succeeded. As the peasant picked up his load of vegetables, he noticed a purse lying in the road where the boulder had been. The purse contained many gold coins and a note from the king indicating that the gold was for the person who removed the boulder from the roadway. The peasant learned what many others never understand.
Every obstacle presents an opportunity to improve one’s condition.

BPI-017 How would You Like to be Remembered?

Came across this wonderful story of a man. Thought of sharing it with you.
About a hundred years ago, a man looked at the morning newspaper and to his surprise and horror, read his name in the obituary column. The newspapers had reported the death of the wrong person by mistake. His first response was shock. Am I here or there? When he regained his composure, his second thought was to find out what people had said about him. The obituary read, “Dynamite King Dies.” And also “He was the merchant of death.” This man was the inventor of dynamite and when he read the words “merchant of death,” he asked himself a question, “Is this how I am going to be remembered?” He got in touch with his feelings and decided that this was not the way he wanted to be remembered. From that day on, he started working toward peace. His name was Alfred Nobel and he is remembered today by the great Nobel Prize.
Just as Alfred Nobel got in touch with his feelings and redefined his values,
We should step back and do the same.
What is your legacy?
How would you like to be remembered?
Will you be spoken well of?
Will you be remembered with love and respect?
Will you be missed?About a hundred years ago, a man looked at the morning newspaper and to his surprise and horror, read his name in the obituary column. The newspapers had reported the death of the wrong person by mistake. His first response was shock. Am I here or there? When he regained his composure, his second thought was to find out what people had said about him. The obituary read, “Dynamite King Dies.” And also “He was the merchant of death.” This man was the inventor of dynamite and when he read the words “merchant of death,” he asked himself a question, “Is this how I am going to be remembered?” He got in touch with his feelings and decided that this was not the way he wanted to be remembered. From that day on, he started working toward peace. His name was Alfred Nobel and he is remembered today by the great Nobel Prize.
Just as Alfred Nobel got in touch with his feelings and redefined his values,
We should step back and do the same.
What is your legacy?
How would you like to be remembered?
Will you be spoken well of?
Will you be remembered with love and respect?
Will you be missed?

BPI-016 Money Lessons…

Came across some important lessons on money. I found that the article contained these common errors that atleast I made. Helped me realise what I should do. Sharing them with you…

*Money Mistake 1*
Never borrow money that accrues interest to start a business . That is to say, never borrow money to start a business expecting that the business will generate income to pay back the borrowed money plus the interest.

*Money Mistake 2*
Never spend money you haven’t received. Don’t even promise someone money based on a promise you have from someone else. If someone tells you: “Hey, come to my office tomorrow at 9am and pick Money#30K”don’t go out to buy items on credit based on this promise, with the hope that you will pay off your creditor when the promised money comes; it may not come as promised and this will leave you in problems with your creditors.

*Money Mistakes 3*
If you want to save, whenever you receive money, don’t start spending hoping that you’ll save what remains. Normally what remains is zero because as long as money to spend is available, the numerous things you can spend it on are also available. And things to spend on even incite their ‘relatives’ so that you spend even more than you had planned. When money to spend is not available, we naturally find a way of doing without it. That’s why I’ve learnt to save with an INVESTMENT CLUB. Once I send money there I assume I no longer have it. Before you spend any money, put your savings aside then spend what is left after saving.

*Money Mistake 4*
When you get an opportunity to meet a very wealthy person, never ask for money. Ask for ideas on how to make money. They may even choose to give you money on their own after seeing that your ideas are great, but let getting money from them never be your objective.

*Money Mistake 5*
Keeping your seed instead of planting it. Many people stop at saving. It’s very, very difficult to save and have all you need to maintain your lifestyle especially after retirement. When you save, your savings are seed; plant it. When you just keep the seed (saving money) some seeds begin to die (eaten by inflation and the like). That’s why I recommend that you read about the different types of investment vehicles you can use to grow your savings. I am not necessarily talking about putting the money in a business, because you can easily lose money in business. I am talking about putting it in an investment.

*Money Mistake 6*
Never lend someone money you are not willing to lose. By the time you lend someone money, be contented in your heart that should the person fail to pay, you will not die. You should not even lose that person’s friendship if they fail to repay the money you lent them. If you feel the person might fail to pay you and this will not affect your relationship with them, then lend them money. If their failure to pay would make you hate this person’s entire clan, please advise the person to go to the bank.

*Money Mistake 7*
Never append your signature to guarantee someone on a financial matter if you are not willing or able to pay the money on their behalf. Do I have to explain that one? No, it’s self-explanatory.

*Money Mistake 8*
Avoid keeping money you don’t intend to use in the short-term within easy reach. For instance, don’t walk with #100K in your pocket when all you plan to do in a day costs #20K. Like I mentioned in Money Mistake 3, there are always expenses available to gobble any money that is within reach, so if you don’t want to lose it, put it away in a safe place.

*Money Mistake 9*
Avoid keeping money in inappropriate places e.g. in socks, under the pillow, in a pit, in the sitting room, in the bra, in a travel bag that you will place somewhere in a bus … impulse buying is a devil that will keep you busy!

*Money Mistake 10*
Spending money on an item that you can do without (at least for the time being). These days when I pick money from my pocket or wallet, before paying for something I ask myself: What would happen if I didn’t buy this? If I find I can live with the consequences of not having that thing, I smile and walk away.

*Money Mistake 11*
Paying an amount for something that’s not the minimum you can get that same value for. In other words, if you are along east Legon road and you pay #5K for a shoe that you can get at #3K at Makola market, that’s a money mistake except for those who have achieved financial freedom.

*Money Mistake 12:*
Consistently spending all you earn or more than you earn. It’s like having a drum where you have an inlet that’s smaller than the outlet. It will never get full. And should the inlet ever reduce significantly the drum will run dry. If you do it the other way round and the inlet is bigger, it will get full and even overflow. Hence, we have to always ensure we are widening the inlet while narrowing the outlet – all the time. Your side hustle comes in handy!

*Money Mistake 13:*
Thinking about short-term only and forgetting about long-term or thinking about the long-term and forgetting about the short-term. For instance, Lydia was told that there’s money in land. She saved money over a long period of time and bought 30 acres of land. Now she has the land but she is always broke. She is always complaining. She’s disgruntled and she doesn’t seem to see herself earning from the land in the near future. Now, let’s ask ourselves: Having 30 acres of land and no money to feed your family or take a child to hospital, is that wealth or poverty? I think Lydia only looked at long-term needs and forgot that she has short-term needs that require money. What of those who find they are one paycheck away from salary? Are they thinking about the long-term needs?

Let’s take stock of our finances. How many mistakes are you guilty of? Do you now feel better-equipped to do better with these tips? Good luck, savers! Share this knowledge with your friends because it will not benefit you if you are selfish with it.

God bless you as you work on your financial prudence.

Good day.