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A friend called me the other day to wish me a Happy New Year. With gusto and self-confidence, he recounted the significance and symbolism of the number seven (7). He then invited me to exercise my imagination by trying to perceive what kind of year 2014 could be like. Fourteen is double the number seven, so I got the cue.

As the New Year unfolds, we all hope to move towards a better future, to put our regrets behind and embrace new beginnings. Chances are that you have already made resolutions, or set goals for the year. You have thing(s) that you want to achieve by the time the curtains fall on 2014. It is a noble thing to dream, however, we only achieve when we take appropriate action to turn these dreams into concrete reality. One of the actions we can take to realize our dreams is to develop deep, meaningful relationships.

We all meet hundreds, perhaps even thousands, of people in the course of our lives. But only a handful of these encounters result in relationships that remain significant over an extended time. We should be intentional about developing purposeful friendships with people who can fuel our dreams and push us forward. It is likely that for you to develop such meaningful relationships, you would need to learn some new skills.

Most world champions owe their effectiveness to mentors who held their hands along the way. We all need mentors in our lives. The mentoring relationship is one of mutual trust and respect. Mentors facilitate in finding direction and in cultivating the disciplines that will produce an effective individual.

In my book, Champion, I share the following thoughts on mentorship:

“It is one thing to say you will be a champion; it is quite another to attempt to do so without a guide. My advice: don’t try it. If you do, you will end up as dinner to some wild animal, if you don’t take a plunge down a ravine first…

In life, you can only go so far alone. If your sense of future vision is strong and compelling enough, and if your goals are so audacious they stretch you, then you need those trusted relationships that will provide guidance and thought provoking dialogue to help you achieve…” Champion, p.98 (by David Waweru).

As I reflect on my friend’s New Year wishes, I realize that the ‘double portion’ he talked about won’t happen by chance just because it is 2014. I have to be intentional about making decisions that will count in the long term; like cultivating the kind of relationships that have the potential to shape me into a more effective individual.

David Waweru

Author David Waweru

Writer, entrepreneur, trainer and consultant. Founder of Booktalk Africa and Will to Win Global. Member of the UNESCO Expert Facility on the 2005 Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions. Director at the Sports, Arts and Culture Sector Board, Kenya Private Sector Alliance.

More posts by David Waweru

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