Figment of our imagination


By Patrick Achitabwino:

Whatever we are is but a figment of our own imagination. People that have made it big did imagine becoming that big. Sir Thomas Edison imagined an electric bulb and failed 9999 times to make one until when he succeeded at the 10000th trial. Blaming circumstances for our failure to make it big is nothing but a mere manifestation of our ego-defensive attitude.

The $7 billion fortune David Gehen points out that ‘I have always thought that each person invented himself for whatever reason, through whatever circumstances, through whatever he has gone through. We are each a figment of our imagination.’


We fail in life because we trample on our imaginations, because we lose the belief and confidence to go ahead with our ideas. In the end we do not work very hard towards achieving our dreams and we start seeing obstacles.

The $3.2 billion net worth Howard Schultz has this to say: ‘don’t allow anyone, friend, family, acquaintance, teachers, whoever it is. Don’t allow anyone to tell you that whatever you are dreaming for yourself and your family is not possible. It is possible.’ The world’s renowned motivational and leadership speaker Les Brown adds: ‘Whatever dream that you may have, know that it is possible.’

To become what we imagine to become entails that we cut ties with the pains of the past. Where we come from matters nothing. Our education background and credentials matter nothing. What matters is working hard towards your dream. Consider one of Malawi’s business tycoons Jimmy Koreia Mpatsa. He was born to a single parent in a family of three boys and girls, he says he was never lucky to get any place at the university colleges. He later privately studied Advanced Level Economics, English literature and law but did not sit for exams. His first job was a buying clerk at Import and Export. His services were once terminated at Import and Export and was jobless for around 7 months during which he survived on writing short stories for magazines such as ‘Star’ of Malawi, ‘Parade’ of Zimbabwe and ‘Readers Digest.’


Little can you imagine that over 20 years later Jimmy Koreia Mpatsa is a billionaire with establishments with a net value of over 5 billion Malawi kwachas. It entails therefore that no matter his having no college degree, no matter his parental background, no matter his joining employment at a junior rank, he never ceased imagining to become a millionaire and now billionaire. If he had any vestiges of doubt then we could not have been talking of him as he would have failed.

Hardwork is one catalyst for transforming imagination into reality. $ 5 billion fortune Richard Branson emphasizes, ‘to create a business you have to initially work hard. It is really hard work.’ $325 million net worth Jerry Weintraub adds: ‘I work 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.’ $45 billion net worth Michael Bloomberg weighs in, ‘in the end luck plays a very important part in how successful you are but the harder you work and the longer you work, the lucky you are going to be.’ Howard Schultz brings in a lesson worth noting: ‘people need to understand that we cannot take a break. We have competitors who want to take food off our tables….to build a sustainable successful business you have to eradicate the human behavior of relaxing, the human behaviours of the feeling like you have won.’ And $1 billion net worth Michael Eisner says, ‘mediocrity is what fearful people will always settle for.’

It is now time to write the next chapter of our lives, to become what we imagine. If we imagine becoming failures we will certainly become failures. If we dream big, we will become big. Donald Trump well said, ‘if you are going to do something, do it big.’ The $67 billion net worth Warren Buffet stresses, ‘develop a habit of success.’ The habit of success is as a result of our imagination and hard working spirit.

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