Channel: Maryam Lemu
We have all been blessed with our own unique gifts and talents. We often compare yourselves to others. We wish and dream about having other people’s gifts. Allah doesn’t make mistakes. You have what it takes. You have to believe that.
Go ahead and make a name for yourself. Develop your skills, develop your talent. Invest in yourself. Take courses online. There are so many resources out there that hardly cost much. Try Udemy courses, Coursera courses. Go to YouTube and watch videos on topics of interest. Watch TED TALKS. Learn skills, read books. I promise you by doing this, you will make yourself an asset and find more meaning to your life and more fulfillment. May Allah grant you the will power and the discipline to be and to do and may He put his blessings in all your efforts. Amin
Billahi min ash shaytani r rajim Bismillahi Rahmani Raheem Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh.
I know it's getting a bit scanty in the hall. Since it's time for lunch and time for press. I was initially told to speak for over 30 minutes, but I'm going to squeeze an elephant into a bottle and rush through my presentation.
I stand on existing protocols. I'd like you to think about all those who you admire, people who stand out, who are using the gifts that Allah has blessed them with. And they are talent, people who inspire you, what makes them special, what makes them different, what makes them stand out, they stand out because they are not like everybody else. They are not ordinary, even if what they are doing is very small. As long as you admire them for what they do, then that's enough to make them special. So ask yourself, what are people admiring in you? What do you have to offer? That is different, because academic excellence can only take you so far. Some of us feel once we get a class
or second class upper, we have made it. But a class will only get you so far the world we live in today requires us to give more than what we studied in school. So what makes you different from others, all those who you admire have something special extra to offer. And that is what helps them go far. And that's what makes us admire them. So what makes you special? What do you have to offer, however small? What is holding you back? Now those you admire didn't become that way by accident. It took deliberate choices. And they chose to act. Sometimes we look at other people's styles, other people's gifts, what people are doing their talent. And we wish we had the same. How many of you
look at others. And you're like, boy, I wish I had that. Just raise your hands. If there are people you admire, and you wish you had their gifts and talents. Now I grew up in a home where I was surrounded by role models, folks who are super talented, were being unique and useful and standing out was the norm. But then there was me Marian lemo. I felt very ordinary. Let me use my brother as an example. I call him Superman. Because my brother when it came to academics, he was taught. By the time he sat for his wacky exam, he turns out to be the fifth best in the country. Then he's into Islam knowledge about Islam, and he's become a very powerful, knowledgeable scholar. He's great at
teaching and lecturing. Like my mother, he would read about five books, four books at the same time. He's good at Fine Arts, creativity, good at fishing and the outdoors and survival skills. He learned to be a tailor when he was still a very young teenager, he learned sign language. And then he got a black belt in karate and eventually reached that one and represented a bu in the new guy games. He's into archery and shooting. In other words, I consider him to be somebody who knows a little about everything, and I call him a walking encyclopedia. Now I felt very ordinary. I didn't know what my gifts were, I didn't have any strong ambitions of wanting to be or do anything, until I listened to
a lecture and I'll tell you which one that was.
Now many of us don't know that we've been blessed with multiple gifts, and our gifts are different. They are unique, and we all have talents. Our job is to Stop daydreaming, comparing, fantasizing and unwrap every single gift that Allah has blessed us with, and use it for something greater than us. Use it for ourself, and to benefit others. We can sit around and read biographies of success stories, we can fantasize and dream about our wishes. But what they are going to be is just wishes dreams, and they don't eventually come to life. The thing you longed for the things you wish you could do are not going to happen on their own. You must take charge and make things happen. You
can't expect things to happen for you without working for it, for your dreams to come to life without acknowledging that those dreams start from you from within you from our thoughts and our actions. You have to focus on building yourself from the inside out.
If what you want in life
is to be productive to live a meaningful life to be useful, then you need to learn to invest in yourself. Many of us are ready to spend money on clothes, phones, and things that we will use to show off that we have made it. But when it comes to investing in our education, skills acquisition, we would prefer something free or something cheap. But develop yourself develop your gifts and develop your talent and maximize your fullest potential. your owner's manual said you can perfectly the way you were meant to be the way Allah created you, the family you came from is exactly the way it was meant to be. Allah doesn't make any mistakes. So your economic background if you're rich or
poor, your skin color, the family background, your gender, no excuses. We have seen people who are missing limbs who don't have legs, yet are able to still make a success out of their lives. And it doesn't matter what your ethnic background is, either. So regardless of what part of the country you come from, you have choices to make. Don't give anybody permission to dim your life. Don't give anybody permission to stick labels on you that you are just about key. Excellence is a universal language. So be excellent. Wherever you go, when you give beyond expectation 110% and you don't settle for 100% 100%, you stand out. And it's a universal language wherever you go. Quality is a
universal language. everybody appreciates good quality. So give good quality. professionalism is a universal language. So be professional.
And that includes sticking to time appreciating people's time how priceless it is. And it's not cool to be late. values and principles are universal. Good is good and bad is bad. So do good. And be good, be different and be unique. Don't look for shortcuts in life, get admission into schools, get jobs and get into political positions based on merit, not based on connections, cheating, or buying people's votes. Create a signature and create a style that is different that is unique look around you and see what needs need to be fulfilled and do something different from ordinary why because we have enough ordinary people out there. So don't settle for business as usual. Now many of us do
things out of greed for money, greed for people in and power, greed for influence, but you be different. Do things because you are passionate about it. inshallah, the money will come rolling in. Let your call to fame not be the titles before and after your name. You are doctor this professor that said King Kazakh aza let your call to fame not be writing on your family's name. I'm the son of so and so are the grandchild of so and so. Or the cousin brother of so and so. Let your call to fame not be riding on your husband's name. I am Mrs. so and so. Let it not be based on the posts that you put on Instagram of yourself of what you eat of where you have been.
Made sure what you do is adding value. make a name for yourself. You are good enough as you are. Like I said, Allah doesn't make mistakes. So go ahead and start and like he said start today. So what's stopping you what's slowing you down? down? Sometimes we are our own problem. Our negative thoughts we overthink. We doubt ourselves we doubt that we have what it takes to make it.
Write down the things that you are passionate about. Think about them deeply and do your homework, then pray hard and go for it. Today is a good day to start. When you have an image in your mind of what you want to do it gives you a target. Don't forget you are representing more than just you the actions of a few have affected as all over the world. You are representing an area where you are representing me. You are representing the brothers and sisters that are sitting next to you.
You can be the inspiration. If you ask all those who have come up on this stage and have spoken those who we admire and look up to all of them.
I will tell you that what helped them succeed is that they overcame their fears and stop making excuses, that they had the courage to just go for it, that they worked hard. They had a love for others, they were focused and they had a passion. And they brought their passions to life, that they desire to give people more than what is expected 110%. And then they have faith and trust in Allah, patience. And then they develop some key critical skills that they need to succeed. There's a story which I share a lot of an elephant and a row, a man went to the zoo, and he saw several elephants caged. Then he saw the biggest of all the elephants was standing there openly with just a small
string holding him. So he asked the zookeeper, I don't understand the small ones are caged, and the big one is there with a tiny rope holding him. He said that when that elephant was a baby, he was brought to the zoo, and they tied that rope on his legs. And he pushed, he pulled, he got injured, his feet were even bleeding. And as he kept growing up, he kept testing until he reached the stage where he believed that that rope cannot be broken, it only causes pain.
Now, what tied the elephant to the rope was not the rope. It was his belief that he couldn't break that rope. What is holding many of us back that is keeping us on the ground, is because we have these ropes that are holding us back inside of us. You were born for a reason, not just to exist and be a waste of space. You have a purpose. And Allah has said our lives to be here today to hear inspirational stories of people just like you and me who have made it with small, small actions. This is our time, this is your time. So who are you? Many have come and gone. Some we remember and some, as far as we are concerned, never even existed. So what will your story be? All the success
stories that we celebrate, and the people we've seen today have exactly the same 24 hours in a day as you and me What separates ordinary from extra ordinary is what you do within the 24 hours. accomplishments don't come by accident. So be hungry to learn, be hungry to grow. If you're anything like I was, and you didn't know what your strengths were, you didn't know what your gifts were. There is something deep inside of you that's waiting to be discovered that's waiting to be unwrapped. Under achievers can be turned into superstars if they have a passion and a purpose. One day I attended a program just like this, where I heard somebody inspire me and tell me that I have
it already. And I shouldn't wait for someone to give me permission to be and to do. It inspired me I started to jot down all the things I wished I could do. I locked in on my target and decided to make myself an asset. I decided to develop skills beyond reading and writing. I started to learn public speaking, sales and marketing, leadership and team building coaching and mentoring interior decor because I've always loved it, architecture and construction. I've been married for almost 28 years and I decided to do more research on marriages, what makes it work and what makes it fail. And then I love catering. So I took a course where I learned over 200 French and Italian dishes. My education
came from a background.
My education came from a background of online courses, Open Universities, correspondence courses, the best school in the world, YouTube where I saw others who were doing the things I was passionate about. I listened to TED Talks, I've turned my phone into a classroom with audiobooks where somebody just reads motivational books to inspire me. I go on Google and I research any topic I love, and I learn from it. But guess what? I know go school. The highest education I have is my high school certificate. I did not go to university.
But I am humbled today to find myself on the same panel as former presidents and world leaders. PhD holders are my students today. I tell you my story not because I want to brag, but I tell you because I believe if I can do it will lie every
single person can do it in this room.
Now, don't get me wrong, I'm not saying make you know, go school, please go go very far because our stories can never be the same. Some of you have gone to school, but you're not doing what you love. Some of you have gone to school, but what you are doing is not what you studied. The most important thing is to do build your capacity. The thing is going to school is so important because if that's the profession you want to lead, it's really important. Nobody here wants a surgeon to do brain surgery on them. If they've not gone find their education. Nobody wants a pilot who didn't finish pilot school to fly a plane with them in it. So please go far. But make sure that what you do is
something that brings you fulfillment that you're passionate about. So give yourself permission to do that. The best advice I can leave you with today is make yourself an asset. learn a bit about everything because that way you will stumble across the thing that you love that you are good at. Invest in yourself. No money is too small. Be the driver of your life. Don't be mu Follow, follow.
And remember, that you being an ra, ra ra is no accident. Allah doesn't make mistakes. Each day you have an opportunity to write your story. Fill in the pages of the beautiful story of you. Let those who come after you be inspired by what you stood for the standard you set and the life that you lead. So awaken the spirit inside of you look good, look smart, be intelligent, smell good on yourself and work it
were our heroes.
It was what the question that was asked at the beginning where our heroes today? Where are the Queen arminas the bellows and the shareholders MapInfo do Where are our heroes. While I have met so many of them today? I shall keep by organizing this unbelievable event that will inspire so many I pray Allah that they serve as a witness for her hajia Satya, Dottie who is into interior decor she can stand on any international platform with what she does. Creativity and inspiring people with beautiful things I met Amina Amina Abdur Rahman, who started the initiative to inspire women to see success stories of women that have come out of the North, a worldly man with a freak by Avaya, who's
producing a bias but with an African flavor, modest dressing, as well. garba my daughter who came on stage and gave us a female rapper, I love that so much with social issues that are affecting you and me as her message, not vulgarity, not anything denigrating women, but things that are relevant to our lives. Marianne Booker Oh, may I be like you when I grow up? I love your poetry. You're such a beautiful person. sabich as she is a precious precious gem inshallah we will be meeting her later, she sends me her spoken word poetry, absolutely beautiful and inspirational. And if you see her on stage, she's so tiny, but very gifted. She's using her gifts. That's a young man who sings on social
issues. He stands up against domestic violence and women's rights. Use the gift that Allah has blessed you with because Allah doesn't make mistakes. What will history say about you? What are you doing right now today to make sure that you are a light and a beacon of hope for those children that you plan to have or that you are raising? Think big, but start small, think global, but start local. Let the input everything that has been shared with you produce the right output. I asked you whose permission are you waiting for? Assalamu alaikum