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What Steve Jobs Missed

In 2005, tech mogul Steve Jobs gave a remarkable commencement speech at Stanford University and mentioned to graduates that in life you can only “connect the dots looking back, not forward.” (see here) Although this may be true, there is an important step that he forgot to mention before an individual connects any experiences (better known as the dots). The procedure Mr. Jobs omitted is the importance of having an affirmation. An affirmation is the action or process of affirming something or being affirmed. It is a declaration of the truth of something.

As individuals we all need to create a personal affirmation because it is a statement designed to strengthen our desired outcome. A great example of a personal affirmation is Muhammad Ali’s famous line, “I’m the greatest.” (see here) According to Mr. Ali, he was saying, “I’m the greatest” long before he believed it. To put it another way, creating a personal affirmation is a means to breathe life into your personal qualities. In fact, it is of the utmost importance that you repeat your affirmation as much as possible during your daily endeavors to remind yourself of who you are and what you want to become. Moreover, repeating your affirmation is important because you need something to counter your inner critic which is the internal voice that judge you as inadequate. After you repeat your affirmation, it is time to execute the affirmation through actions because your deeds provide your drive toward achieving your goals regardless of obstacles that you may encounter.

Once this process is complete, then you can connect the dots as Mr. Jobs mentioned to understand how creating and committing to a personal affirmation yields you to achieve success. In other words, creating an affirmation is the starting point to your life experiences and you cannot appreciate how well you are succeeding in life until you look back on how well you have committed to your personal statement.

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