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Janine Do Cabo  Sustainability & Leadership Development  |  JHB, SA

March 2020

Apart from being 3 of the most legendary and awe-inspiring modern-day motivational speakers, what do Eric Thomas, Tony Robinson, and Les Brown have in common? 

Each orators style different in their delivery but yet all equal in confidence in the content that they deliver to the millions around the world that would not only stop and pay attention but pay tens of thousands for a one-on-one consult with them. Their influence could be the second guess that ties them together, but as true as that is, their commonality was there well before the fame, fortune and influence.  You see, in the details of each man’s story, behind their deep and commanding voices they possess, is a true-life fight for what they have now.  Some who had the dream that one day they would be able to pull and keep the attention of millions while others who had to discover where their talents lie; all, however, are a result of intentionally changing their beliefs and attitudes when the odds were stacked against them in order to have a different outcome.  Each testimony so to speak, though unique to their frame of reference and environments, can testify to having one common train of thought.  They, despite the odds of whatever they were facing, made a decision to be IN10TIONAL about their lives and have made a career helping others being IN10TIONAL about theirs.

The word IN10TIONAL for those who haven’t caught its wit is derived from the word, intentional which according to the Webster dictionary means, done by intention or design.  The Oxford explains it as something done on purpose. 

IN10TIONALITY is the message every successful motivational speaker speaks about at EVERY SINGLE event. What most UN-IN10TIONAL listeners fail to identify is that the underlying message is the same each time, just cleverly marketed with different bows and wrapping.  What they are selling you is the mind-set that you can have whatever you want – the house, the career, car or life, by simply being IN10TIONAL about your everyday life.  That means doing life on purpose and not allowing life to be done to you.

Tony Robinson, who is known most as being a celebrity motivational speaker and life coach with 40 years of experience mobilizing and transforming not only celebrities but ordinary people, academic scholars, and corporates said, that our lives are controlled by our decisions.  Not our environment or circumstances, but something well within our lotus of control, our minds.

Eric Thomas who after discovering that the man who raised him was not his biological father chose to run away from home.  Homeless and destitute, he decided to be deliberate about his choices going further and managed to put himself through college where he learned of his gift as a speaker and has gone on to make millions off of it.

Les Brown was labelled as mentally retarded, but it was only after a high school teacher dared him to not accept the label others gave him, did he start to become Les Brown.  Today, with magnetic charisma, he captivates his audiences and is sold out wherever he goes.

In the book the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Steven Covey, the author begins his entire book with Habit 1- a command to BE PROACTIVE.  In summary, he discusses the difference between proactive and reactive people and how making a dimension shift mentally from a reactive outlook (environment or external factors focused), to a proactive outlook (being response-able about what you can change eg. Your attitude) could not only bring about a more positive mind-set but also eventually attract what you need for your environment to change.

Contrary to popular belief, unhappiness is not as a result of what one possesses or does not possess but rather, from failure to control people, circumstances and events.  The desire to dictate how any of the aforementioned would change because you want it too is a reactive way to life because no one has or would ever have control over any of them. The result, therefore, would entail submitting to a sub-standard life devoid of happiness.  Being IN10TIONAL means using the God-given right we have to choose differently and in so doing, you are creating wealth, and sculpting a better life.

It is the art of  IN10TIONAL which led the poet William Ernest Henley in 1875, to write the renowned and profound poem entitled Invictus where he describes a night so dark it covered him. As well as circumstances that would make an average man cower in fear and even retreat; yet in the midst of that gloomy picture he concluded that:








“It matters not how strait the gate,

How charged with punishments the scroll,

I am the master of my fate,

I am the captain of my soul.”

The poet made a discovery many of us today need to grasp and hold onto which is that IN10TIONAL is the bridge that connects your dream life and current reality.

If you were to allow yourself to be the Master of your fate and the Captain of your soul, what would you list to be areas in your life you could start being IN10TIONAL about?

Personal growth may be to master a skill perhaps, developing social skills you may not currently have or choosing different responses to what is beyond your control.  It could be having an additional stream of income, changing careers or better still, becoming your own boss.  The choices are yours; choices you would need to make over and over again until they become habits, keeping in mind that IN10TIONAL is far greater than motivation that tickles the ears.  Where motivation provides the match that lights the fire, IN10TIONAL is the fuel that keeps the fire going well after the emotions have fleeted.

Every single one of us can take our lives from a zero to a plus in the same way Eric Thompson, Tony Robinson, and Les Brown have, by simply being willing to pay the price being in10tional will demand.  But, rest assured, as seen by the fruit of their own personal successes the rewards far outweigh the cost.  Now be IN10TIONAL and SAY YES. Yes to yourself and your future success.

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