Generations to generations, one of the earliest scriptural teachings is the ten commandments. Well, maybe the listing of the ten commandments is peculiar to a particular sect, every religion teaches commandments and tenets. I still remember vividly how many times we were made to recite them so we could memorize (let’s just say understand) them. We were taught that obedience to these commandments yields immeasurable rewards. As we grow older, rebelliousness kicks in, the desire to ‘be you and do you.’ The world teaches us to see things differently, but our faith ‘beseechs you dear brethren’ to conform with the commandments. For some, easy, but we all know that’s not the common testimony. Yes, we are in the 21st century, our own time! Our generation is blessed with advancements in different sectors that do not necessarily expect us to conform with commandments before we explore. We are boundless. Amazing right?!
So why do we still drive off the cliff when we have an automated sonorous voice suggesting directions? Why do we still struggle so much even in the presence of opportunities? Don’t you think we need our own commandments to help us gain rewards? I think we do!
- Thou shall set SMART goals: define who you are, what you can do, where you are headed and who is needed on the journey.
- Thou shall avoid procrastination: a lot of great opportunities and ideas are lost just because someone chose to “do it some other time”. Procrastination is a potentially dangerous force that keeps a person from achieving goals. Procrastinators are usually not lazy people; in fact, some are perfectionists who want every detail to be right before they embark on anything. Overcome this through self-regulation – focus on not avoiding a task, minimize distractions and do not self-sabotage.
- Thou shall prepare your mind to challenge assumed constraints: constraints are inevitable in life. It is pertinent that every individual ready to take on the world should be well prepared to tackle challenges that may arise in chosen paths.
- Thou shall be willing to learn and be teachable: always remember that everyone you will ever meet knows something you don’t know. Strive to learn; be hungry for knowledge.
- Thou shall be proactive: it is important that you take responsibility for your life. Always keep in mind that you are not a product of the circumstances around you but a product of your decisions. A proactive person focuses their efforts on their circle of influence and not concern. It is important to start thinking and acting ahead of anticipated events.
- Thou shall be creative and persistent: the best tools for innovation is creativity and persistence. It is important to be passionate about individual goals which will encourage physical and mental persistence. Explore curiosities. Explore preferences. Explore interests.
- Thou shall embrace politeness and courteousness: although largely undermined in our present society, putting good manners in practice is important in making progress in life. So little effort is required to be courteous than to be brusque. Small courtesies will take a person further in life than expected.
- Thou shall practice self-evaluation: it is important to systematically observe, analyze and value your own action and its results in order to stabilize or improve it.
- Thou shall practice self-control: to build good networks towards achieving goals, it is important for an individual to be in regulation of his/her emotions, thoughts and behavior even in the face of rash situations.
- Thou shall be intentional about your circle of friends: friends can make or mar; choose wisely. Grow with people whose purpose align with yours.
And of course, the eleventh one … hold on to the commandments of your faith!