Preparing to win is more important then winning (confusing motivation with effectiveness)



motivation alone is not enough, if you have an idiot and you motivate him,now you have a motivated idiot
-Jim Rohn

Everything happens twice in life, mentally first and the physical comes second. Why is motivation so popular? Everyone would like to feel good about what they are doing,  human nature dictates that we do. The best thing we could do to a person on the wrong path is give him or her direction. 

Proper direction and right guidance is far superior to motivation, when motivation is given to us alone. Why? Good intentions, with a scoop of wrong direction , mixed with motivation has carried many good hearted men and women to the wrong place at a fast rate. In the end you have a motivated person in the wrong place possibly too motivated to realize it.

There are a lot of snake oil salesman in this world, who will tell you anything for a dollar and fame. There are talented people who can make you happy while stealing your joy. To avoid this begin each task with the end in mind.

With good directions you may not be motivated but you will get to your destination. Dr. Dennis Kimbro points out that success in anything is statistical.  Its a mathematical formula, its crawling before walking, its following the recipe to cooking your favorite dish.

Universal Principles
If you combined one atom of oxygen and one atom of carbon you would get a poisonous gas carbon monoxide every single time. It doesn’t matter who you are, what you are or where you are on the earth this principal rings true. If you combine two atoms of hydrogen and one atom of oxygen you get water every single time. Again it does not matter who you are or where you are, there is no mystery to this.

All life is formulas,  figures and combining the right ingredients to get the desired results we want.  Why guess at it any longer? you are living under your acres of diamonds right now, but you need the “know how” which includes the right tools to dig them up. There is no longer a point in desiring what others are or attempting to be what others appear to be, when you can use the same formulas to achieve your personal best.

We are responsible adults or should be, we must now set the example for those coming behind us. Take the time to incorporate the proper formula for your life that they may see the example and be inspired.  Waiting on someone else to do the job has not done much good for the planet, waiting to be motivated hasn’t done much good for you.

If you want to keep getting what you’ve been getting,  then keep doing what you’ve been doing.  But if you want to succeed there is a formula you must follow.  Nothing happens by chance around here…..YOU FEEL ME?

We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.
– Aristotle

You must first be a king of your own personal kingdom. If you can’t lead that kingdom on your own two feet, you can’t lead a bigger kingdom
– Dr. Naim Akbar

Faced with what is right, to leave it undone shows a lack of courage. 

It is Good To Recognize and Salute the God and the Good in Others. But The Greatest Mistake You May Ever Make is Not Recognizing The God and The Good Within Your Own Self.
– Malik Zulu shabazz

Menelek Shah @


Benefits Of Alkaline Water

Here are a few facts about and benefits of alkaline water.

The Power of One

The Power Of One
One song can spark a moment,
One whisper can wake the dream.
One tree can start a forest,
One bird can herald spring.

One smile begins a friendship,
One moment can make one fall in luv.
One star can guide a ship at sea,
One word can frame the goal

One vote can change a nation,
One sunbeam lights a room
One candle wipes out darkness,
One laugh will conquer gloom.

One step must start each journey.
One word must start each prayer.
One hope will raise our spirits,
One touch can show you care.

One voice can speak with wisdom,
One heart can know what’s true,
One life can make a difference,
You see, it’s up to you!

By: Ashish Ram


Menelek Shah @

The Refined Image


          (Menelek(me at 17), Yoonek (older brother acting crazy), and my son Marcus)

If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away.
-Henry David Thoreau

At 16 I was a reflection of my environment.  The young men I associated with were just as troubled as I was. The individuals I chose to be around were selling drugs, fighting for the hell of it,  into easy girls, partying etc… at 16 I couldn’t see beyond my choices.  My mother would say “when the phone rang at night I prayed before I answered, that someone wasn’t calling to tell me you were dead”.

My chief rival in high school was the Dean of students. At the beginning of April in my 3rd year of high school she was tired of me and I was tired of her targeting me. She told me in front of my classmates (in the middle of accounting class) if I returned to school the next school year she would make sure I would be arrested.  Ironically within a few days my high school girlfriend informed me she was pregnant.

These words “I’m pregnant” began to change me. You see the Dean of students was right, I was giving the police and school administrators all the reason in the world to place me behind bars.  I didn’t want that for myself in light of having a child on the way.  I wanted to be a man my child could be proud of and instinctively I knew what I was doing at the time was not going to bring the desired results.

I wish I could tell you, I got my head on straight and went back to school and got the best grades and became a model student. But my history wasn’t recorded that way. The environment I was in had such a strong gravitational pull on me that i felt it was impossible to change and grow into the person I envisioned I would be.

When I weighed my options and the vision I had for what I wanted to be, dropping out of high school became the only option for me. No matter how wrong everyone told me I was, I believed this decision offered the most benefit to my life because it would offer me breathing room from the weeds in my life at that time.

God answers the righteousness of your call, once you make a decision to step in the right direction,  it doesn’t matter how many individuals are against you, it doesn’t matter what happened to others who made the decision, I believe and I’m a witness that the universe will dispatch angels to aid you.

I was walking one day and one of my fathers friends Derrick Smith, who is a very positive man in the community stopped and asked me why I wasn’t in school.  I was too afraid to give him my answer in fear that he would tell my father. But I got in his car and when we arrived at the school I refused to get out of his car. Just seeing the school at the time seemed like death to me. No matter what he said or the threats he made I was not going into that school building. 

I told him I was going to get my G.E.D. and I was going to get in college.  He made a deal with me. He told me that I had to come to his office at Northern Illinois University every day and read during normal school hours until I recieved my G.E.D. , the deal was that if I didn’t he would come find me and handle me. That was a good enough deal for me.

When I began going to Northern Illinois University’s “Center for black studies” I seen a whole new world.  The books he made me read began to shape me into a new individual.  Being around college students every day was enough motivation for me to change and reflect that new environment because it seemed very fruitful and prosperous.

I received my G.E.D. within 3 months, by August of that year I enrolled at the local community college as a college student at the age of 17. Derrick Smith would take me to the middle schools and church groups and have me speak about the power of the people you associate with, the choices we make and the destiny they create.

When ever I made a choice that was centered on doing the right things there was an angel in different forms there waiting to guide me.

I encourage you today to let go of complacency.  The road you are walking right now is a reflection of the decisions that you made in your past. All you have to do now is make a new decision. Einstein says ” We can not solve our problems with the same level of thinking that created them”.

Instead of asking yourself “why me”. Ask yourself “HOW”. How can I turn this lemon into lemonade,  How can I use this stumbling block as a stepping stone, How can I become what I hope to be? When you ask questions the universe begans to answer you. But its up to us to ask the right questions.

Today is Friday, I challenge you to take the courage today to become who you really are. Today decide you are not going to numb the pain with partying,alcohol and anything else that numbs the pain of an every day unfulfilled life.  Decide today you will be like David and face the Goliath in your life, and if you do, you will only need one stone “faith in God” to win the victory.

I’m not saying to you that it will be easy but I’m bearing witness to you that it will be worth it.

– Menelek Shah

“If You try to plant a rose in the conrete,
When it GROWS, and the rose petal has
scratches and marks, you not gon’ say, Damn, look at
all the scratches and marks on the rose that grew from concrete”
You gon’ be like, Damn! A rose grew from the concrete!
Same thing with me,  I grew out of all of this
Instead of sayin, “Damn, he did this, he did this,”
just be like, “DAMN! He grew out of that? He came out of that?”
That’s what they should say,
All the trouble to survive and make good out of the dirty, nasty
unbelievable lifestyle they gave me
I’m just tryin to make somethin out of all this..”
– Tupac Shakur

Menelek Shah @

Black Mental Health: 3 Myths That Hurt Us

This might be difficult to accept, particularly because African Americans have taken pride in the myths about our mental health. We believe that mental health is controlled by willpower, faith and even our race.

The Science of a Good Marriage | Psychology Today

This is a good read check it out

Menelek Shah @



“Don’t wish it was easier wish you were better. Don’t wish for less problems wish for more skills. Don’t wish for less challenge wish for more wisdom”
– Jim Rohn

What do we base our decisions on? How do we arrive at conclusions? We live in a world purely focused on the physical side of things but we neglect the necessary.

In this world we prefer to look good then to be good. We prefer to be fit over being healthy. We prefer looking valuable instead of being valuable. We waste time seeking momentary praise and pleasure over life long value.

Ask yourself would you prefer to be comfortable over excellent? Although many of us dream of excellence we don’t have the character to be our best. The quick meal, the quick lie, the fast dollar the easy target robs us and blinds us to the process that is absolutely necessary for anything of value.

There is a price for everything in life. When we eat a cheap quick and easy meal, we may feel we have saved a dollar for the moment but your doctor bill will rise, the medicine you pay for will eat at your wallet slowly but surely and the long term effects to your health you will one day pay for with your life.

But Character is a self saviour. My life bloomed when I developed character. Character is doing the right thing when its unpopular. Character is being truthful when the lie is very easy and helpful to your cause. Character is paying a little more because it will benefit you in the long term although you may not see it in the short term.

Good character causes seperation, as the Bible says “bad company corrupts good character”. Good Character is correcting your mistakes and living life off high moral principles.

It is true that individuals with bad character succeed for a time. But what appears as success is in truth their own undoing. Why? Because there is no right way to do the wrong thing. A happy life is a process filled with obstacles of many different kinds.

Character will not stop problems from coming your way, but it will give you the God centered focus you need to overcome them. All we need to do to prove this point is to put the clean glass (lifestyle) against the dirty glass (lifestyle) and allow you to choose.

Thoughts lead on to purposes; purposes go forth in action; actions form habits; habits decide character; and character fixes our destiny.
— Unknown

Character is power.
— Booker T. Washington

May your life preach more louder than your lips

Faced with what is right, to leave it undone shows a lack of courage. -Confucius

Menelek Shah @

The $20 Lesson


A well known speaker started off his seminar by holding up a $20 bill. In the room of 200, he asked. “Who would like this $20 bill?”

Hands started going up. He said, “I am going to give this $20 to one of you – but first, let me do this.”

He proceeded to crumple the 20 dollar note up. He then asked. “Who still wants it?” Still the hands were up in the air.

“Well,” he replied, “what if I do this?” He dropped it on the
ground and started to grind it into the floor with his shoe. He picked it up, now crumpled and dirty. “Now, who still wants it?”

Still the hands went into the air.

“My friends, you have all learned a very valuable lesson. No
matter what I did to the money, you still wanted it because it did not decrease in value. It was still worth $20.
Many times in our lives, we are dropped, crumpled, and ground into the dirt by the decisions we make and the circumstances that come our way. We feel as though we are worthless; but no matter what happened or what will happen, you will never lose your value.

Dirty or clean, crumpled or finely creased, you are still
priceless to those who love you. The worth of our lives comes, not in what we do or who we know, but by …WHO WE ARE.

You are special – don’t ever forget it.”

Author Unknown

Menelek Shah @

The Test is Mandatory (The Test before the Testimony)


“Do people think that they will be left
alone because they say: “We believe,” and will not be tested. God indeed tested those who were before you”

How in this hell do you think you will get by quiting every time you are tested? Your situation,  your outlook and your troubles will always revisit you until you rise to the occasion.

Why not you?  Who is more worthy to face this challenge that you have called into existence by simply saying you want what you desire. There is always a price to pay,  the greater the desire the greater the price. What would God and his universe be if they set up a law that everything of value would come to you & I cheaply?

Have you ever observed men & women who get things cheaply without paying the price? Sure you have.  80% of lottery winners go broke after winning millions of dollars. “Most ordinary people who come in contact with large sums of money become victims of their own lack of financial savvy or discipline” – Don McNay (other of life lessons from the lottery)

Most of us are waiting for opportunity,  but when opportunity knocks it slips through our hands because we haven’t prepared for the test. Instead of having a testimony of how we got over , we produce complaints of how life hasn’t been fair to us. Here is something you should know…..anything of value won’t just be handed over to you it will be battle to take it. It will be a fight to just get near what you desire.

When you have goals & dreams and you decide to jump on the highway of life, its only right that I tell you there are things coming your way that will test your resolve. Its only right that you know your tires on this highway may get flattened,  the transportation you decided would get you there may end up totaled on this highway. You have to be willing to walk and crawl if you must on this highway. Why? God rewards persistence.

Life wants to know how bad you want it? How will you handle it when you get it? Will you cherish it once you have it? The only way you can answer back is by facing the test, working through the test, learning from the test and applying what the test has taught you.

The great thing about life is its full of examples.  The example of those who succeed and the example of those who failed.  The example of those who did it anyway and those who gave up anyway.  God never leaves you without the answer. But he is always gonna bring the pressure of the test.

Today look at your God ordained challenge and be thankful for it, then stand your ground and conquer it. Decide that you will get to your goal no matter what comes, and if nothing comes throw that goal out and get a worthy one.

Remember on this day as you face obstacles of different kinds, opposition is ordained for you. The test is God’s love for you. The test is your grounds to prove you are worthy.

– Menelek Shah

“If you want to succeed, think about what’s best and not what’s  popular” – Samuel Shaw

Hakunamatata (no worries)  What a wonderful phrase
– The Lion King

God rewards persistence
– Habideen Olaniran (Professional Body Builder)

People who avoid failure and avoid the test avoid success. Don’t Avoid Success
– Jim Rohn

Menelek Shah @

The Road Not Taken

The Road Not Taken
A Poem By: Robert  Frost

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.


Menelek Shah @