Lesson nine left us with the value of enthusiasm; we learned how to generate enthusiasm and the process of transmitting the influence to others, which could be achieved through the principle of suggestion.
Now, we come to the study of SELF-CONTROL which is what we needed to direct the enthusiasm to constructive ends. I want you to have this in mind, without SELF-CONTROL, enthusiasm will definitely resemble an unharnessed lightening of an electrical storm, which may strike anywhere, and definitely may destroy lives and properties.
Enthusiasm stands as a vital force that arouses you to action, while SELF-CONTROL is the balance wheel that directs your action to enable it build-up instead of tearing down.
Your enthusiasm and SELF-CONTROL must be equalized in order to be a person who is well balanced. A recent study of young men and women who found themselves in various prisons indicated that they languish in prison basically because they lack adequate SELF-CONTROL to direct their energies constructively.
Note that, a survey about those whom the world called great indicates that every one of them possesses this quality called “self-control” so; neglecting to exercise SELF-CONTROL will not only injure others but you also.
We will illustrate how to apply SELF-CONTROL and how it will benefit whoever is a master of such. A certain man who happens to be a victim of not controlling himself properly approached a near-by city store and saw some women lined up with frowned faces and these women were throwing abuses and whole lots of fowl words to the store attendance who happened also to be a woman.
And the most astonishing thing is that this store keeper wore a steady smile on her face not even minding the abuses and was directing the aggressive women to where their problems will be solved with such a polite and friendly manner.
Funny enough, the smiling woman at the desk who was hearing the complaints was a DEAF PERSON. Her assistance supplies her with all the necessary facts through some slips of paper.
The man who once lacked self-control was impressed with the plan that he sought for the manager of the store and decided to interview him. The manager disclosed that the reason for selecting a deaf person for the position is that, he had not been able to find any other person with sufficient “self-control” to fill the position.
As the man who lacked “self-control” stood and watches the line of angry women, he observed the pleasant effect the smile on the young deaf lady at the desk had upon the lined-up angry women. The angry women came before the deaf lady growling like dogs and went away as meek and quiet as sheep.
In fact, some of the lined-up angry women had sheepish looks on their faces as they left, because, the young deaf woman had SLEF-CONTROL that made them became ashamed of themselves. So, any time you felt yourself becoming irritated at remarks which you did not like, think about the poise and SELF-CONTROL of this deaf woman mentioned above.
I think everybody should have a kind of “mental ear muffs” which they could slip over their ears at times. I personally have developed the habit of closing my ears against much of the idle chatter such as I used to make it my business before. This is because, life is too short and there is too much constructive work to be done to justify us rather than striking back at everyone who happens to say that which we do not wish to hear.
Take note of this: all people who refuse or neglect to exercise SELF-CONTROL are unknowingly turning opportunity after opportunity away without knowing it. To be able to attract the right opportunity to that your career job or talent, you have to be a person gladdened with great SELF-CONTROL.
One day in my little country town of Enugu (Coal city state) I approached a small store that sells articles and a young lady and her mother was attending to friends. I demanded for recharge card to get my phone recharged. As I stood there requesting for the card, both the lady and her mother showed no interest in my demand. The mother was busy discussing with a friend or so, while the young lady stood there pretending not to hear me.
I stood there for almost five minutes before the mother finally asked me: what do you want to buy? I told her I want to buy recharge card. She kept quiet again for almost three minutes before replying to me with the same manner as before. Hear her as she talked; “I do not have it” I left with unhappy mood immediately.
And this could tell the reason why for years this store finds it difficult to expand. They could have made a friend of every person whom they served in that store, and these friends could have made them one of the most valuable people in the store, because, they would have come back to trade with them.
NOTE THIS: a snappy answer to inquiring customers does not bring them back.
Now, it is time to examine the scope of meaning of the term SELF-CONTROL as it is used in connection with this article, this we should do by describing the general conduct of a person who possesses it. An individual with well-developed SELF-CONTROL should not indulge in the following: ==
(i) Do not indulge in HATRED
(ii) Don not indulge in ENVY
(iii) Do not indulge in JEALOUSY
(iv) Do not indulge in FEAR
(v) Do not indulge in REVENGE or any similar destructive emotions or negative behavioral attitude.
Unlike what is obtainable in our local communities, a well-developed SELF-CONTROL person does not go into ecstasies or become ungovernably enthusiastic over anything or anybody in any format negative or positive towards existence.
In its most dangerous forms are greed and selfishness and self-approval which go beyond the point of accurate self-analysis and appreciation of actual merits of individuals. Though SELF-CONTROL is one of the important factors of success, yet when this faculty is developed beyond the point of reason it becomes more dangerous than we think.
Individuals who exercise “self-sacrifice” which is a commendable quality is said to have tried, but when it is carried to extremes, it eventually becomes one of the dangerous form of lack of this SELF-CONTROL. Everybody owes it to him/herself not to easily permit your emotions help in placing your happiness in the hands or keeping of another person.
Though we all know that love is essential for happiness, but remember that the person who loves deeply had his happiness entirely placed in the hands of another, and resembles the little lamb who crept into the den of gentle nice lion and begged to be permitted to have a sleep.
So, a person with SELF-CONTROL will never hate those who do not agree with him; rather, he will try to understand the reason for their disagreement, and finally try to profit by it. This will take us to LESSON 11 still on SELF-CONTROL but to form of SELF-CONTROL that cause grief.
See you next time!
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DICTIONARY MEANING OF SOME WORDS AND PHRASES USED:
--- languish: >> (to exist in an unwanted or unpleasant situation, often for a long time)
--- Constructive: >> (if actions, criticism are constructive, they are useful and intended to help achieve something)
--- Aggressive: >> (behaving in angry or unpleasant way towards persons)
--- Polite: >> (behaving in a way that is socially correct and shows understanding of a care to other people and their individual feeling)
--- Sufficient: >> (enough for a particular purpose)
--- Sheepish: >> (embarrassed because you know you have done something wrong or silly)
--- “mental ear muff” (ability to take your ears off any distracting statement towards what you are doing or a purpose you are pursuing in life)
--- Snappy: >> (brief and prompt)
--- Behavioral: >> (relating to behavior)
--- Ecstasies: >> (a state of extreme happiness, especially when feeling pleasure)
--- Analysis: >> (used when you analyze something)