Years ago when we were kids, my mother was diagnosed with what was described as a terminal illness. The doctor called my dad and gave him the sad news that his wife had a short time to live and therefore he should spend more time with her before she passed on. Dad didn’t know what to do after hearing the doctor’s prognosis and suggestion. Mum was finally told what the doctor said and that was when she declared that she would not die but would live to see her children grow, have their own children, and see her grandchildren as well. As kids we used to see our mum not feeling well but did not know the details of what she was suffering from, nor know the news that we only had a few months left with our mother. Talk about the power of belief! First mum heard the prognosis and knew the implications, but was not ready to leave her kids at a tender age without their mum. Mum got into a fighting mode for her life. According to mum, when she told us the story, she was ready to do whatever was humanly possible to stay alive for her children. She also had this strong belief that she would live and not die prematurely. She explored all medication that would make her well, prayed a lot for divine intervention, believing that there is a God who wants her well and wants the best for her life. She meditated and visualized herself well, saw her children all grown up with their own families. My mother made it to age 82, full of vitality all the years until she passed on. We grew up, got married, had children, and visited Mum with our children for years before she passed on. There is power in what you believe and say to yourself. It was William James who said “Believe that life is worth living and your belief will help create the fact.”
I visited a lady I knew a while back at the hospital who was diagnosed with cancer. On one of my visits I asked her whether she was ready to pass on, to which she said no and that she had unfinished business. You may be wondering why on earth I asked her such a question. I did it to understand whether she was ready to fight till the bitter end, as well as to know the best way and approach to use to encourage her. The more she kept her mind and belief on what she wanted to complete in her life, the more she had the strength to keep living. For as long as she kept her mind on what she wanted to complete, she always remained positive and upbeat. On this particular day, I went for a visit and saw that she was not as vibrant as she had always been. When I enquired what she was thinking about, her response was that I have completed the unfinished business and now it’s time to go. I was on a trip out of town when I got the sad news from her family that she had passed on. I spoke at her funeral and used the opportunity to speak about the power of belief. For as long as she maintained the belief that she had more to do, she kept going till she finally changed her position that it was time to go. Belief is a powerful force.
My last but not least story on belief is regarding a government utility corporation I did some consulting work for. This government corporation was losing money and had a lot of debt. The government was under excessive pressure to privatize the corporation and sell it to potential investors who would turn the corporation around. One man, the new Managing Director, believed that with a great leadership team, he would be able to turn things around and make this large government utility company perform and be profitable. He convinced the powers that be not to sell the company and he was able to turn the corporation around. With the belief that he could turn things around, he assembled a new leadership team made up of old and new managers. He worked with the team to clean up the mess, inspired the new team to focus on results, negotiated performance contracts with regional operational units, sought for help to design an exceptional customer service program to guide all operational areas, and further helped align the leadership team around performance benchmarks. Within a few short years, the corporation starting making money, was out of the red, and became a resounding success story of belief backed by sound business strategies and management practices and with support from a highly inspired and result-focused leadership team. As a result of this resounding success, this government utility corporation started a consulting company to help other struggling government utility companies turn things around. If you believe, all things are possible! What is the composition of your belief? Is your belief well anchored? The right beliefs should take you through the tough times. See you at the pinnacle of success!