Ability in disability
Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/45777493@N06/8274588282/sizes/m/in/pool-49918967@N00/

Making success is never an easy task. Irrespective of physical ability or disability, succeeding always go with sacrifices to be paid and problems to be solved. However, succeeding with a physical disability might sometimes be more challenging because of the social and emotional effects attached to physical disability.

A careful study of the lives of different persons who had succeeded in spite of a physical disability has prompted me to write this piece.

No person was born to become a parasite on another. We all have one or more abilities that, if well tapped, could lead us to success we so desire. The way to achieve this feat is explained in the next lines of this article.

  1. Work On Your Self Perception: Many interviews with physically disabled that have achieved remarkable success in life reveal that the first thing they had to work on to achieve success was their self perception and esteem. Physical disabilities have the tendencies to make us feel like second class citizens or dependent personalities. Once a physical disability infects your mental ability, you might really find it difficult to succeed. It is therefore, important to empower your mind. You need to begin to perceive yourself to be more than what you’ve thought previously. Even if there are things you might need others to help you with, you are not an invalid. You need to shift your negative beliefs about yourself into positive empowering beliefs. Who do you see yourself as? Where do you see yourself going in life? What do you see yourself achieving out of life? and so on are some of the questions you need to ask yourself. You see, most time in life we sabotage ourselves and at other times we erroneously think others are seeing us as weak or not sufficient. These negative self perceptions determine our actions and reactions to event and they eventually lead us to an undesirable end. You need to do a lot of work on yourself to improve what you think about yourself and how great you think you can become. One Great Book I read asserts that "As a man thinks in his heart, so is he". I have always maintained the fact that success is 20% external and 80% internal. The bulk of the work is on the inside. If you can empower your mind enough, you might come to the awesome discovery that successes are created more in the mind than with hands, legs or any physical part. So having said that, how can you improve on what you think about yourself? You need to read good books. Practice affirmations. Use the wealth of information available on the internet. Leverage on the various materials you could get by Google searching phrases like "How to improve my self esteem", "How to develop a positive self perception", "How to build a positive self image" etc.
  2. Observe TOS: TOS is an acronym for Time Of Solitude. This is a time you separate for yourself with yourself alone. Sometimes we get too busy with good things while we neglect better things. It is in your solitude, you decide some key things about your life. This is the time you ask yourself some tough question about your life and answer them honestly. Ask yourself questions like "Do I really have what I want to achieve?", "I’ve I really been serious about my goal in life before now?", "How passionate I'm I about being great in life?", "What are my chances with this present condition?", "Do I think God has been good to me and can He change from being good?", "Do I keep friends that will enhance my success?", "Do I really understand what success means?", "What is it that I think I need to know or learn now to progress toward my success?", "Who are the people I think will be helpful to me in achieving success?". These and many more you must ask yourself and answer truthfully to establish some bitter truths. You must write down your questions, answers, resolutions and so on. The truth is that, sometimes, people are not motivated enough to achieve anything reasonable and when they face challenges, or develop physical disabilities, they make that challenge an excuse for failure. At other times, there are people who never had any strong drive in life until challenges come. So determine where you stand and how you want to take the challenge.
  3. Have a Support group and Mentor: When I say group, it does not necessarily have to be a large number of persons. In fact, the fewer, the better. There will be times when you get discouraged and feel like giving up. There will be times when trials and difficulties make you feel like throwing it all off. In such times you need people who could support you and reassure you of the fact that tough times don’t last but tough people do. They need to be people you trust and who believe in you. Your family members and very close friends might be good candidate for such a role. You need to intimate them on your goals and aspirations and ask for their support or how you want them to help you. For mentor-ship, you need a mentor who will guide you, correct you, advise you, rebuke you (if need be), reward you and appraise you appropriately. There are things your support group members may not want to tell you when you are wrong because they don't want to break your heart. These are the things that a good mentor will not fail to do, though they will try to make it constructive. It is important to note however, that most successful people will not commit themselves to you as your mentor until you show some degree of commitment to achieving your goals.
  4. Possess The "Bulldog" Mentality: What is the bulldog mentality? It is a never say die attitude to life. It is a mentality of never giving up until you achieve success, even if it means dying! The bulldog mentality is that unquenchable determination and doggedness. You must understand that life is never a bed of roses. Whether you have 10 limbs or no limbs, it is never easy to succeed genuinely in life. Don't be naïve to think that your physical disability will make everyone good to you. You will still meet people who are too logical than reasonable. You will still face rejections. You will still face some hard times. It is in these hard times you must never give up. You must agree with Robert Schuller that "Tough times don't last but tough people do". You must be tough and resilient. You must build your internal resistance to giving up. You must possess the bulldog mentality.

I hope that you will find these four tips very helpful. The top is sure if you hold on long enough.

Best regards