gifted handsA while back, I decided to pay a visit to a childhood friend of mine who had been of immeasurable support over the years. Amidst all the chatter and chinwags, I noticed a book just underneath the second layer of the glass shelf in the room. ‘Gifted hands’, it read. I had seen the book a few times on the inspiration counter at the bookstore, but all those times, I had never really thought much of it.

This time though, out of convenience, I borrowed the book, if only, to ‘while away’ time. Altogether, I reasoned, I had nothing to lose. I finished the book in a couple of days, and with what I purposed to ‘while away’ time with, I had become inspired and motivated to achieve success. I began to think differently and surmised that if Dr Carson could be a success, then I had no reason to fail.

In itself, it is the quintessential success story- an archetypal grass to grace narrative. What it also demonstrates is anybody; no matter how disadvantaged, indigent, or deprived can be a success. All you must do is believe it, and take conscious steps towards achieving it. There are so many things we can learn from Dr Carson’s book and the story therein. They include:

…anybody; no matter how disadvantaged, indigent, or deprived can be a success

Imbibing a culture of learning and studying

Now, I have probably emphasised on this too many times already on this site. But you’ve got to read. Whether or not you are a student or you have designs on academic accomplishments, you MUST develop yourself.

At a very young age, due to poor academic performance, Dr Carson was compelled by his mother to, every week, read library books and submit reports. So doing, he inadvertently developed his mental erudition; which would prove an enormous asset in years to come. Not only did he go from the bottom of his class to the top of his class, in the interim, he would go on to reap the goals in the later years of his life by developing impeccable surgical prowess which saved the lives of many.


Reducing television

In Dr Carson’s book, he narrated how his mother constrained him and his elder brother to television views to no more than two shows per week. This fortuitously created time for him to invest in more productive things.

Now, watching TV is good and fine, but, are you going to watch the news from sun up to sun down or at some point, decide to make the news? I recently realised that other than a handful of football games, I haven’t given more than a cursory glance to television for months. I watch the odd movie once in a while, but no more. Do I hate television? Absolutely not! But, I have recognised that watching too much TV is an absolute boo-boo if you want to achieve anything reasonable in life. And, the same goes for social media.


Hard work and determination

Through sheer will and effort, Dr Carson achieved his goals. He received a scholarship to study at Yale, regularly studied from 6 AM to 11 PM, took outside jobs, and absolutely applied himself to the pursuit and realisation of his goals.

Today, this Ben Carson, who used to be bottom of the class, has made several pioneering revolutions to the field of neurosurgery. He has received numerous honorary degrees, written over 100 neurosurgical publications, six bestselling books, and was awarded the presidential Medal of Freedom in 2008, the highest civilian honour in the United States. He currently works at the white house.

But, he started off as an indigent and unintelligent kid in the city of Detroit. You probably have a head start in this regard, so bring it to bear. It’s never too late to bring out your best self and be the success you were meant to be.

I reckon If Benjamin Solomon Carson can do it; then so can you!


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