“A man who has nothing to die for is not fit to live”—Martin Luther King Jr.

Have you ever sat down in that secret corner of your room and felt the bubbles of excitement in your heart because an idea that will change the course of your life is replaying itself every three seconds in your mind? Were you so full of life when you took a pen and notepad and wrote down your idea? Did you set a target, a deadline for yourself? Did you go out with made plans and a determination to succeed?

After so many attempts, you simply realized that things are not what they really are. You realized that just like there are two sides to a coin, success has its other side called challenges. Simply because life had tossed challenges, which you call failure, your way, did you choose to join the crowd who concluded that every set plan is nothing but some alphabets and figures written on blank pages? More to say, did you accept the wrong notion that all doors leading to your success are shut and that the world won’t see your idea come alive?  Did you decide to quit, abandoning your quest?  Did you actually concede to the word “defeat?” Did you say to your despairing heart “I am a failure.”

Of course you are right to have felt that way but before you tumble into a world of nightmares, before you cease to breathe life into your idea, before you start seeing your-burnt-out-self, let’s go over a couple of ifs.

If Abraham Lincoln gave up too soon, he would not have been elected president of United States. If Arnold Schwarzenegger despaired after his first workout in the gym, he would not be the master of body builders, A-list Hollywood actor and would not have been anywhere close to being the Governor of California State in 2003 and 2006. If Tim Berners-Lee, the man who developed the World Wide Web, ended his career too soon because of disappointments, you would not now be surfing on the Internet, you would not be reading this either. Probably, electronic messaging would still remain in the horizon of the future. If all great men, since the dawn of time, had given up so soon, where do you think civilization would be, back in the thirties or forties? Do you think you would have some weird country music, R and B and rap on your ipod? No! Everything would be back to the very beginning, millions of years, before the birth of Ishmael and Isaac. One thing I know for sure, we would all be living comfortably –or uncomfortably, a negative word I rarely say—in caves. Our designer suits and fur coats would be replaced by some smelly animal. You know what I’m talking about, don’t you? If you dare life that way, you can click your mouse and this page will vanish from your screen never to be seen again. But if you don’t, then read on.

If you have chosen to read on, this is what I have to say.  Hold on to your dreams! Refuse to quit. Quitters never win and winners never quit. Take your time. Take a long walk. If you live in the city, take your long walk through city blocks. If you are in the countryside, you have a better advantage; take the long walk through that vast field, befriending nature on the way. Don’t just walk tucking your hands in your jacket pocket like inspector gadget. No! Go over those plans of yours again and again as you walk. Rewrite if need be, there is power in writing down. Don’t tell me you have a retentive memory; write them down. You already have so much in your head, so write your dreams and plans down, and paste it where you can see it every day. Paste it over the washing sink, beside that mirror, your restroom door. Then set out to bring it to past, ignoring those mountains, for mountains (which are your challenges) most times are made out of molehills and storms in teacups.

Tell yourself, “I won’t quit until I get what I want. There is a YES behind every no and a solution to every pressing problem confronting me. I will find it.” Close your eyes, take a deep breath and say to yourself, “I have crossed the Rubicon and there’s no going back. I will either hit the bull’s eye or hang on longer than necessary.” Say to yourself, “I have gone too far from where I started from and I’m not giving up. Never!” And as you seek your dream with hands and feet unwearied by labors, remember that the dawn is not far in coming.

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Alfred Ade-Ijimakinwa is Africa’s #1 Small Business Expert. He has interviewed dozens of CEOs for his magazine, BusinessIQ and has mentored over a thousand entrepreneurs who have gone on to begin their own successful businesses. This he can do for you as well. Email: alfred@businessiqonline.com