THERE is one thing that I have said a million times in this article of mine – Zambians have a poor reading culture. There is so much joy to be gained from reading. Much of the joy stems from the fact that there is so much knowledge to be obtained from reading. As an old saying goes – the way of the wise is that the more they know, the more they seek to know.

When you read a little in a country like Zambia, you reach a point where your acquired knowledge makes you appreciated among the few people that you are normally found around. Before long, the number of people that feel your opinion is akin to gospel truth grows and there you become some kind of “trusted authority.” You then become more respected than you were when everybody thought you were as allergic to literature as the average Zambian. How much joy there is to be derived from reading. By the way, just so we’re clear, literature means any written material.

Reading anything and everything is fine. In fact it gives you a diverse array of subject matter in society and the world at large. However, that’s not what my article today is about.

Today, I wish to concentrate on the subject of motivational material. Don’t get me wrong, reading on a wide array of material is more valuable than simply reading on motivational material. The foregoing notwithstanding,

I want you all dear readers out there to know that reading motivational material can wind up being the greatest thing that ever happened to you. Everybody loves a good old story of making something out of nothing or closer to home – rising from the ashes to claim a glorious and enviable victory.

Read motivational material and change your life. For those of you that have followed my column, you may recall that the book entitled Rich Dad, Poor Dad authored by one acclaimed Robert T Kiyosaki has been a big part of my reference material. Indeed it was when I read this book at the age of 19 on the strong recommendation of my uncle and aunt – Dr and Mrs Lumbwe – perhaps having noticed certain traits in me that I began to view the world differently. It was one of those books that really opened my mind and changed me forever. Perhaps it was destiny for me to come across that literature but one thing is for sure, it changed my view of so many things.

Have you ever read material where you just wish so many people out there with a poor reading culture would take the time to read it? I know for many readers out there, you will understand what I mean. I have said before in this column that my beloved grandpa – Mr Eric Nawa – always finds time to share any literature that he values with a man he calls his reading buddy – Mr Chisha – from Centurion Pharmacy in Chilenje. Sometimes, when you know something, you just wish certain people around you knew it too. Not in a gossip way, but in a way that respects and appreciates that what you have read is of such rich value, you almost wish everyone around that you know could read it too.

Motivational writers and speakers, life coaches, revered achievers that share their stories all exist for a reason. That reason is to make people believe that the impossible is possible. They exist to remind us all that great things have been achieved and greater things are yet to be achieved; it is we who read these stories that must self-introspect and decide whether we have a role to play in shaping the future world or not as indeed others have done in the material we’ve read.

The idea behind motivational material is to stoke something in the reader. To make the reader realise that perhaps there is something in them that can make them become just as special as the subject of the material that they read.

A column like this one is ever reminding the youth of our country that all things are possible, that the usual problems that afflict them such as unemployment and all its offshoots can be overcome despite the overwhelming odds against one succeeding. Always take the time to look at a motivational peace, especially during your most trying moments.

There is no difficulty that you are going through that others in history have not gone through. If anything, there is always either someone worse off during your trying moments or indeed in the past there has been such a person and they managed to eventually overcome their adversity. It is those that have put these stories to paper that will make you want to fight on once you read that others succeeded where you are having trouble. We all need a psychological boost sometimes in this journey through life. And there is often nothing quite so boosting as reading a very good motivational story – it will literally change your life.

So ladies and gentlemen, whether it is Impetus to achieve that you read or perhaps you want to walk into a book store at one of our many shopping malls and buy a Chibamba Kanyama, Eve Banda, or Napoleon Hill book, just know that reading that story will change your life if you want to pursue certain things.

The idea behind reading such material is to give your ambitions a boost, to give you a reminder that although you have chosen to walk a highly ambitious yet difficult path through this life, you can make it because the person you are reading about made it in the past.

So as you read motivational material, don’t read it purely for entertainment purposes; you must read it so that a few decades down the line when you are reflecting on your journey to revered success, you can be able to say – in my moments of deep doubt, I picked up that Forbes Africa magazine (or whatever other literature) and read the Worst day of my life column. What made me keep going was the fact that everybody has had a really bad day but they got over it and eventually emerged victorious and highly successful. Read motivational material and change your life!

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