On Saturday, 26th of May, I was offered a brilliant opportunity to be able to go and speak at the African Day Youth Conference held in Shaka Zulu, Camden. Having an opportunity to engage with tomorrow’s leaders is something very important to me so I jumped at the chance.
I spoke about my experiences in London and 7 success steps that I wish I knew when I started out. I felt it important to be able to put the message into context for the audience so I asked if it would be okay to tell them a little bit of my background to set the scene. The response that I received to “my story”, truly overwhelmed me and I have now been asked to document this for the South African Newspaper.
In all honestly, the last 3 years have been a roller coaster and I don’t often go back to “how it once was” as it’s not always happy memories but I guess that looking back, you DO start believing that “everything happens for a reason….”
Please note, I don’t write this to beat on my chest. I just do it to hopefully help other people out there who have huge goals and are facing HUGE challenges right now. As a matter of fact, the vast majority of people that I have met over the last 10 years or so, I have not told this story to, for a number of reasons…So here goes….
My current situation is that I have a number of different business interests including trading a private portfolio on the US stock market, a company that teaches people to trade the stock market, a business that offer consultancy services to SME type firms right down to private individuals. I also founded and own a company called MOBIvation.com which is a service that provides long lasting personal success via the medium of text messages for which I won Business Innovator of the Year in 2011. I have recently invested in a Health and Wellness products company and also launching a venture known as the MOBIvation Intrapreneurial Nexus, designed to help university students build their own businesses and be successful.
I am nowhere near where I want to be but I am happy that I am moving forward and making an impact towards my goals.
But it wasn’t always like this….
Firstly, I have no university qualifications (which is deeply ironic as I present to a lot of uni students!) I only just passed high school with results that I could spell “FEEFEE” with – 6 subject that I wrote exams in and got the results of F,E,E,F,E and E. To put it likely, I am NOT academic. 😉
Even with all of this “proof” that I was not going to amount to much in the business world, I still had that feeling that I WANTED to be something MUCH more than what I was living at that time. I was also not really in a very good place emotionally or mentally in South Africa. Looking back on it, I think that I knew that I needed to make some changes in myself before I could make some positive impacts on people around me – or give back. In order to make myself strong first, I needed to change my environment. I needed to go somewhere where nobody knew me and where I could build myself into someone who I could be proud of. I have always had the sense that I wanted to help people but feeling that I was pretty f*%ked up at the time, I was no good to anyone and if I am brutally honest, was probably on a self-destruct mission if I hadn’t change my environment……