All of us want to succeed in life, nay in everything that we lay our hands on! We may also go daydreaming about our succeeding in everything we touch. But the plain truth is that this is simply not possible just because we are humans, and have our limitations, in spite of the fact that our Creator has equipped each one of us with potential and many more talents we are yet to discover. While our journey to self-discovery must go on, practical wisdom tells that if we want to be really successful in life, we must learn to prioritise and commit ourselves to those priorities before all else.
Here’s an anecdote from the life of Bing Thom, internationally well-known architect of the last century, that I read some thirty years ago, and is yet very fresh in my memory. Bing Thom’s parents were Chinese. Bing lost his father when he was very young, and his mother found it difficult to make both ends to meet, and so decided to migrate to Canada.
Though hardly 11, in Canada, Bing had to take up a part time job as a newspaper boy. Once, the city was hit by a huge snow storm for a week, and all the schools in the city were closed. But, Bing could not sleep longer, like all his friends, nor could he play in the snow with them, though he wanted very much to do both.
His mother told him: “Bing, you are a businessman and your business responsibilities are your first priority.” Bing recalls how he soon picked up the bicycle, took delivery of his newspaper quota, went around distributing them like on any other day. Though he became one of the most well-known architects in Canada, Bing Thong never forgot his mother’s words: “Bing, you are a businessman, and your business priorities come first.”
We have just begun a New Year, and entered a new decade and it is really important that we keep Bing Thom and the words of his mother close to our hearts as move ahead in the new year. While entertainments, keeping in touch with friends via social media, other past times, etc. add colour to our life, commitment to our goals, and the responsibilities attached to our specific state of life are our first priority, and only this will lead us to true success and greatness in life, as in the case of Bing Thom. Let’s never forget: First things come first, and all the rest later!
Alfonso Elengikal, SSP, has the unique distinction of being the longest-serving editor of The Teenager Today, an office he held for over 17 years. He is the bestselling author of You Can Make A Difference, You Are Destined For The Skies, Let The Real You Stand Up! and Discover The Hero Within You published by Better Yourself Books.