How to amass wealth and still talk like a five-year-old

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On the day US president-elect Donald Trump spoke to newsmen for the first time since his win of the presidential election, what was meant to be a press conference ended up being a press confrontation as Trump refused to take a question from CNN. The news network had reported that US intelligence officials had briefed Trump about unverified claims about his relationship with Russia, a report he described as false. To express his displeasure, he refused to take a question from CNN reporter Jim Acosta. He yelled “You are fake news” instead. Many see the tycoon’s actions as childish but that won’t be a first.

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A colleague at the office who hardly follows politics watched Trump act like a child and wondered how he became rich. “How does somebody who acts like that amass such wealth?” he asked me.

My colleague said he had always wanted to be a businessman; working for wages is not his thing. But he has had to work for people all his life because he does not know how to achieve his business dreams.

“You are just too scared,” I told him. “That’s why you’ve not been able to actualize your business dreams.” HJ knows what he wants and he seems to have a strong conviction that his business will be successful but he has been too scared to start.

“You know what, bro, reacting to issues like a 5-year-old does not stop you from being rich; being scared to start does.”

Nigerians are entrepreneurial in nature and we would all have already had small businesses capable of dragging the country out of recession in 2017, if not because we’ve been too scared to start. Sometimes, we wait for a huge capital that will enable us start big. This never works: even if you get the huge capital you desire, it does not guarantee the success of your business. The development phase the business is supposed to pass through is avoided with huge capital and this comes back to haunt, and in some cases end the business. In a blog by Joel Gascoigne, he noted that one of the habits of successful people is that they start small. “Make it smaller: you’re more likely to succeed,” he wrote.

So, I told my colleague, forget Trump’s childishness; think about his business acumen. Trump may not be an all-round smart guy, but he has proven that he is a shrewd businessman. He understands the basic principles of business and he has used them to his advantage. “Those are the things you need to learn, my friend,” I told HJ.

I sounded like a guy that knows a lot about starting businesses. I shared my little experience with HJ and told him why the businesses I started failed. He listened with rapt attention and the words that came out of his mouth when I finished speaking showed I had influenced him. But then I asked myself; “what have you learnt from your business failures?” The answer hurt me badly. I had been more of a talker than a doer. I had been low on self-motivation. Poor me!

But it all ends today.

 

Bye 2016; Hello 2017

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I haven’t blogged in a while but that ended in 2016. In 2017, I will publish at least one blog every week. I left a lot of projects uncompleted in 2016 but none will be left half-done in 2017. I am not making new year resolutions, but I see the New Year as an opportunity to start all over, step on the gas, go for broke and achieve all set goals. Despite the incompleteness that characterized 2016 for me, I managed to see some key journeys to their final destinations. One such is putting a ring on the fourth finger of the girl I dated for years.

I took other big leaps.

I left a job I truly love for the ‘greater good’. I still do the work pro bono and would have loved to return when I was invited recently, but there is so much at stake and I do not yet have the guts that makes one take big risks. I know this is one of the several other things that needs to change about me in 2017; I need to take more risks.

I have a sport blog that I was unserious about in 2016. This year, I will publish at least a post per day.

I am also going to read more books this year. I used to read a lot of books until I got so distracted by life and my reading reduced to just a few books and a lot of articles every year. In 2017, I am going to read a lot of both.

2017 will be a year of giving. I will give everything I do not need to those who need them. From clothes to shoes and bags; even money … everything. You can join me on this.

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2017 is going to be an interesting journey. I can’t wait!