Clear a path by walking it boldly

Making your mark on the world is hard. If it were easy, everybody would do it. But it's not. It takes patience, it takes commitment, and it comes with plenty of failure along the way. The real test is not whether you avoid this failure, because you won't. it's whether you let it harden or shame you into inaction, or whether you learn from it; whether you choose to persevere. - Barack Obama

Earlier this year I was invited to Singapore to discuss innovative young entrepreneur programmes. I started a programme called NiNa in Trinidad and Tobago with the aim of developing an entrepreneurial culture in young women between the ages of 16 and 19. What the programme does is mix life skills with entrepreneurship skills. Life skills like persistence, learning from mistakes,developing a never say die mindset I believe, even if one never opens a business, can be used in all walks of life. So far, the programme is in it's second year and have had over 95 participants. I must admit, I have learnt so much from those young ladies and some of the best times I have had is spending time with the group from East Port of Spain last August. 
With this backdrop, I embraced the opportunity  again to visit Singapore having been there in 2008.

Singapore blows my mind! Why? A country with no natural resources, except its people, have risen literally from the ashes to be a world powerhouse. From the time you set foot at the airport you just see and feel excellence!

I had so many questions for my gracious host and what I remember clearly is she said to me is that in order to get here it was nothing but mindset, belief and hardwork. We made hard decisions looking at the big picture and believed that we can be the best at anything that we put our mind to, we changed the way we speak and now we are the best! Simple!

I kept asking, what do you mean changed the way you speak? She said, listen a simple word such as failure means something else to us, it means that it did not work, try again, we don't say you failed, we say what you did needs work or it needs to be changed. We use it from primary school. We don't say it's hard to be the best in the world because we have no resources, we say its a challenge. Something as simple as that can change the mind set of an entire generation. Watch the words you speak they manifest itself in reality. Wow!! Penny dropped again! Simple!
We walk the talk too! We work hard, we beleive. There is no magic formula. Complaining is not an option, that's adding to the problem. We had nothing and we made something we are paving the path! It's what we have to do, we have a responsibility to the man who started it. Hmmmmm!

So what did I learn?
Paving the path! I’ve learnt it’s creating the way for you. It means elbows up, back down, working hard, rolling up your sleeves. It’s taking the bruises but knowing you are creating a road way to your dreams, your vision, and your purpose. Have you seen how a road is made? I’ve learnt that transformation is not something you can Google or download. It takes work, it takes faith, it takes time it’s not an overnight quick fix. It might mean that some people get off the bus or are put off the bus. I think about those who paved the road before me, what they did, the sacrifices they have made, my road is so much easier and I give thanks to the ancestors and those who paved a path before!And I’ve learnt that I have a responsibility to create an easier road for those that follow me! I’m paving a path.



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