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Self Development

Having What it Takes

Is there a magic formula for achieving success, or is it a question of hard work?

Femi Adebanji




I have frequently received calls and emails right out of the blue from people seeking advice on how to make a success of their lives despite the enormous challenges that face them. Often times, they’ve tried just about everything they believe they can try, yet they keep failing; sometimes life happens, unforeseen challenges just get in the way and undermine their attempts; other times they have found themselves in hardships and situations so disadvantageous that the very thought of achieving great success seems like a fantasy; other times they’ve done very little to create success for themselves and are just seeking a quick step-by-step magic formula on how to achieve success.

Earning success

To the last group that have done little but want to achieve great success, I’m often quite straightforward and indicate that the only magic formula I know for success is the GOYB formula. They ask me what the acronym stands for and I tell them it means Get Off Your Butt – most see the humour in it, few don’t. Irrespective, the fact remains that it’s true.

To be successful you must go out there and earn your right to be successful, taking steps and initiatives and creating your own opportunities instead of waiting for opportunities to materialise. Unless you change something, nothing will change.

As far as the other groups of people are concerned, I tend to empathise a great deal. I can directly relate to the frustration of having a dream that just doesn’t seem to materialise or having to face one challenge after another until all your emotional reserves are drained and everything within you tells you to give up.

I know first-hand what it’s like to start so far from the bottom that your dreams appear impossible to reach or to have people around you question your sanity when you great dreams and ambitions. Before offering any sort of advice, my first statement to this group of people is never to give up on their dreams. As clichéd as the statement sounds, I have found from my experience and the experience of others that it’s true.

Understanding challenges

I also inform them that no great dream, vision or ambition was borne without its share of challenges. In fact similar to the risk and reward relationship in investing, as with our goals, the greater the goal the greater the challenges. Challenges are life’s way of testing our passion and desire to achieve that goal or vision for our lives. If we truly desire to succeed and really mean business about accomplishing great things, then we must fight for it. Its all about choice – we can choose to back down in the face of challenges when things get tough (implying that maybe we were not really, really passionate about the goal in the first place) or we can make a conscious decision to keep our eyes fixated on the ultimate goal we are going after, grab life by the scruff, take the punches, get back up and keep going. That’s the only way I know how and I know it works.

After, encouraging them not to give  up and settle for less, I then examine their belief structure – i.e what they believe about themselves, their abilities, life, opportunities, those around them. Very often, people fail not due to the lack of effort, but they fail because the foundation of all their efforts – their beliefs – are skewed.

Success and failure are symptoms of our belief system. We get what we believe, or what we expect to get. Successful outcomes in life are based on a foundation of empowering and positive beliefs about oneself, one’s abilities and life in general; while failures are often the result of having limiting beliefs about oneself, ones abilities and the ability to succeed. Therefore, the starting point to achieving success is not hard work (though that is a critical, non-negotiable element for success), rather the starting point to achieving success is firstly examining one’s beliefs.

Believe in yourself

If deep down on a subconscious level you truly do not believe that you are going to succeed or have what it takes; then you won’t succeed. If you believe that challenges will arise and the challenges will get the best of you, then they will. If you believe that you are not capable of creating your own opportunities and that for you to succeed you must wait for the right opportunity to be presented at the right time, by the right person – then you will not lift a finger and will wait in frustration as other opportunities pass you by. If on the other hand we believe that we have what it takes to succeed and that we have the emotional resolve to face and overcome challenges, then we will.

Our actions stem from our beliefs and we will always act in line with our beliefs. We cannot act contrary to our beliefs, as our beliefs (irrespective of whether we are consciously aware of them or not) form the basis of who we are and the way we see the world around us. Consequently, while people may be working hard at a conscious level to achieve their goals, they may in actual fact be sabotaging their own efforts at a subconscious level, as a result of their limiting beliefs. As a result, they may find “things not working out” despite their best efforts because their belief system is toxic or inhibiting.

The solution to this is to take a step back and do the following:

  • Identify these limiting beliefs and then examine the adverse effects these beliefs are producing in your life. What is it costing you in terms of opportunities, time, success, financially etc. Have these beliefs kept you far from where you ought to be at the current stage of your life?
  • Identify times in the past when you succeeded at something and use those instances as your positive anchors when you are feeling discouraged. How did it feel when you accomplished the objective? How did see yourself and what did people say about you? Also outline all your positive attributes and strengths, no matter how small. Then use these as the bases of creating new beliefs about yourself and your abilities. Whenever you experience self-limiting beliefs or suddenly think you can’t achieve something, just revert back to your positive anchors and remind yourself of your strengths and positive attributes.

Empowerment begins with you

Over time, constant focus on the new empowering beliefs will gradually change how you see yourself and what you are truly capable of achieving. Making a habit of continuously taking mental notes of the benefits of positive beliefs and the costs of negative beliefs will further serve to reinforce empowering beliefs in your life and diminish the effects of the limiting and toxic beliefs. It takes time and practice, but it’s always worth it in the end.

Believe you have what it takes, work at it and resolve not to settle for less than the best for yourself. You will not only be amazed at how this begins to change you as a person but more importantly, you will be astounded at the potential and power you had kept buried for so long.

Femi Adebanji is the director of the Mind-Advance Institute and a sought-after speaker and motivator. As a performance consultant he works with individuals and companies to design plans of action to realise their potential, achieve their goals, become more effective and maximise performance. He holds a Masters degree in Financial Economics and an Honors degree in Economics. For more information visit the Mind Advance website.

Self Development

The Anatomy Of Peak Performance

Besides paying lip service to “positive thinking” what is the reality behind hard work and the remuneration for it?

Dirk Coetsee




“The quality of your life is dependent upon the quality of the questions that you ask”

– Tony Robbins

Positive thinking clichés

We all have heard repetitive clichés emanating from the mouths of our parents, teachers, friends and family such as:

  • “Just work hard and you shall be rewarded”
  • “What you sow you shall reap”
  • “Think positively and all will be better”
  • “Do not worry tomorrow will be a better day”

Yet most family members and friends will complain that they work hard but that, in their minds, they are overworked and under paid. Besides paying lip service to “positive thinking” what is the reality behind hard work and the remuneration for it?

Related: Business Leadership: Leading A Culturally Diverse Business Team

The purpose of hard work

“Whatsoever your deepest driving desire is, so shall your thoughts be, as your thoughts are, so shall your deeds be, and your deeds shall echo in all eternity” – Upanishads

“As a man thinketh so is he.” – Proverbs

The only real reason for hard work is to build perseverance and “strengthen your spine” because it is very hard to give up on a cause if you have sincerely put in a lot of hard work. However take the time to consider that when you really love what you do and you live your purpose, long hours do not feel so long and hard work can even be energising as opposed to making you tired all the time. When you are driven by purpose and love what you do there is less stress involved within your efforts and better performance will result.

Of the upmost importance is the quality of the work that you put in versus the amount of hours spent doing your work. A razor sharp focus on the activities that serves your business purpose and vision which in turn increases profits is a requirement of smart work.

The Pareto principle applies here:

On average team members spend only 20% of their time on the activities that really serves the business purpose and vision and brings in the desired business results and 80% on activities that does not fully support business results or only to a very small degree. Smart and quality work is therefore ensuring a razor sharp focus and spending 80% of your time on the 20% of the activities that really drives business results.

“The quality of your life is dependant on the quality of the questions that you ask”
– Tony Robbins

How do I identify the twenty percent of the activities that bring in the profits and serves our collective purpose? Now, that is already a better quality question than for example: “Why am I so tired? Why am I so de-motivated? When you ask high quality questions you are already starting to train your brain to come up with better quality answers that will lead up to better quality actions, that is if the reader is brave enough to venture outside of the self-imposed boundaries of his or her own comfort zone.

The following table clearly highlights the difference between high and low quality questions. High quality questions that is answered and acted upon consistently leads to peak performance and lowered stress levels.

Related: Leadership: The Principle Of Authenticity

Low quality questions often leads to excuses that are void of solution driven thinking and increased stress levels:

High quality question. (Peak performers should ask) Low quality question. (That generally leads to poor performance)
What creative solutions can we come up with in order to generate more leads from our marketing campaigns? Why is it so difficult to get leads?
Which accurate metric system can we put in place in order to measure all activities that will reveal which ones drive the most profit? Why am I so overwhelmed by everything that needs to be done?
What type of candidate with which type of characteristics do we need to serve our collective purpose? Why is it so hard to find the right person?
How can we align all our processes and systems and remove waste (waste of time and waste of effort) to deliver better results? I am so tired and demotivated, why is this not working?

The three pillars of peak performance in business and any area of life

1. A laser focus on Purpose

Being purpose driven and doing what you love is a key factor in producing the desired results and delivering a great performance consistently. Then people start acting out of own accord and no longer have to be asked to do their work.

2. People skills

Sincerely care for people. Study and learn until you know how to speak to different personality types and respect different world views in order to get the best out of each individual. Inspire people to want to do what they sincerely love instead of constantly telling them what to do. Ask high quality questions to your team members to help them to train their brains to come up with high quality answers and solutions. Study human behaviour to understand your clients better and improve upon your people skills in order to enhance your customers’ experience of your product and service.

3. Technical skills

A high level of product knowledge, sales skills, and knowledge of all business processes and systems is of course a requirement of sustainable success. Technical skills only however becomes a potent driver of sought after business results when combined with highly developed people skills.

A peak performance equation

Carefully selecting from the key points of this article the following “peak performance” equation is created:

Being Purpose driven x Asking high quality questions x taking immediate action (no procrastination) x developing to a high level of people skills x developing to a high level of technical skill x Removal of waste (Time wasters and a waste of effort)  = Peak performance.

**** Multiplication is used within this equation to portray the fact that all elements within this equation is necessary to create a peak performance environment. Therefore if one element equates to zero the answer is zero, and will not lead to a peak performance environment.

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Self Development

21 Inspiring Quotes About Success, Persistence And What It Means To Be An Entrepreneur

Leaders of companies big and small share the mindset it takes to achieve your dreams in the face of all obstacles.




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True, being an entrepreneur can be exhausting, lonely, frustrating and terrifying. But it’s worth every drop of blood, sweat and tears when you are pursuing your passion, turning your dream into a reality.

In an ongoing series called Real Entrepreneurs, we pick the brains of founders and leaders about what it is like to have every decision big and small rest on their shoulders and have compiled their thoughts on what it takes to succeed on the long, sometimes crazy journey of an entrepreneur.

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Self Development

The Mindset Strategy From The “Rock Star” Coach Can Turn Your Beliefs Into Results

William Badenhorst, a Director of Global Strengths shares his mindset secret to ongoing entrepreneurial success.

Dirk Coetsee




William Badenhorst, a Director of Global Strengths, is a coach to the coaches. His “Rock Star” attitude along with the deep driving desire to help others find their true selves formed the fabric of a highly interesting and entertaining interview.

The rolling thunder of his voice brought forth quote after quote, quip after quip and wisdom after wisdom. As a “peak performance coach” to professional athletes, celebrities,  entrepreneurs and corporate career orientated individuals, William believes that knowing who you truly are as an individual is the catalyst for lasting growth and useful change in business and in life in general.

His intense eyes and energetic hand gestures emphasized one of his core beliefs and that is that we all are nothing but our very own beliefs.

“Everyone is focused on Results”

Everyone is always focusing on the outcome – the results they want. But what creates results? Let’s do some reverse engineering. In order to achieve RESULTS we need to take ACTION. And in order to take ACTION we need to make a DECISION. To make a DECISION, we need to think about it – THOUGHTS.

The interesting thing about humans is that we do not create our thoughts, we can only control them. So what does create your thoughts? Your BELIEFS creates your THOUGHTS. So ultimately your BELIEFS creates your RESULTS.

“You don’t attract what you want, you attract what you are.”


It is our very own limiting beliefs, such as for example that “I am not good enough” and “I am not deserving” and “I’m not worthy ” that creates barriers to our own success in entrepreneurial ventures and in our lives. In order to reach our limitless potential we must find and remove the self-created barriers that hold us back.

Although he loves the interaction and benefits of social media he is quick to point out that it also has created a fantasy of who and what we should be. He advises to not to adopt such fantasy as your desired reality but to instead be who you really are as an individual and goes on to quote the famous Greek philosopher Socrates:

“Know thyself, Be thyself and Love thyself”

You always end up falling back on your beliefs -whether they are empowering or disempowering. The challenge with that is that a large number of your beliefs are unconscious especially when you have not put in the work to find out what your belief system truly is.

Related: Osteostrong: An Exploding Global Movement Of Positive Change

Through his vast experience as a coach he realized that a large number of people veer away from self-awareness as they are afraid of being judged for whom they truly are.

Have Faith

The conversation naturally evolved into the exploration of the true meaning of the concept of faith and William’s mind grasped at a Quote from the apostle Paul:

“Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen”

He went on to explain that faith is evidence of true-self which creates certainty which in turn is equal to confidence. Confidence brings a certain state where everything flows. He calls it “Peak State”. He further advises to search for evidence of who you really are and gain belief in yourself.

Advice to young entrepreneurs

William’s thoughts on self-development for entrepreneurs are to get a Coach. If you are already in business and don’t have a Coach – get one!  Begin with taking extreme ownership and responsibility of everything in your life. And when you do that you win.

Stop blaming everything and everyone around you. Stop complaining about circumstances. You are in control and it is up to you to make it happen.  There are no un-resourceful people, there are only un-resourceful states. Go where you are celebrated not tolerated and love yourself unconditionally. Remove the very unrealistic expectations of what and who you should be and authentically be yourself. Believe in yourself and go all in on YOU!

Related: How To Conquer Your Fear Of Becoming an Entrepreneur By Being Disciplined

Become the best form of yourself because as an entrepreneur you are the business. Play to your strengths and manage your weaknesses. You do not need a title to lead, have massive self-belief and others will follow.

Have an attitude of constant learning:

“If you are the smartest person in the room, you are in the wrong room”

And then yet another quote rolled off his tongue that put me in a self-reflective mood:

“A person that shines from within does not need a spotlight”

William Badenhorst, the father, the coach, the entrepreneur and key note speaker left the author and the reader with a question of mesmerising depth:

“What if you woke up this morning with only the things that you were grateful for last night?”

Gratitude is everything!

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