“Sometimes happiness is a blessing, but generally it is a conquest. Each day’s magic moment helps”. – Paulo Coelho
“Every day God gives us the sun, and also the moment in which have the ability to change everything that makes us unhappy. Our magic moment helps us to change and send us off in search of our dreams”. – Paulo Coelho
“I could have. What does this phrase mean? At any given moment in our lives, there are certain things that could have happened but, didn’t. The magic moments go unrecognized, and then suddenly, the hand of destiny changes everything” – Paulo Coelho
“Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness. Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth, the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favour all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamt would have come his way. I have learned a deep respect for one of Goethe’s couplets: Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it!” ― William Hutchison Murray
“Dare to dream! If you did not have the capability to make your wildest wishes come true, your mind would not have the capacity to conjure such ideas in the first place. There is no limitation on what you can potentially achieve, except for the limitation you choose to impose on your own imagination. What you believe to be possible will always come to pass – to the extent that you deem it possible. It really is as simple as that.” ― Anthon St. Maarten
“Is there magic in this world? Certainly! But it is not the kind of magic written about in fantasy stories. It is the kind of magic that comes from ideas and the hard work it often takes to make them real.” – Robert Fanney
“I have always been delighted at the prospect of a new day, a fresh try, one more start, with perhaps a bit of magic waiting somewhere behind the morning.” – J. B. Priestley
We all admire great objects in life which include famous buildings, fabulous landscapes, beautiful gardens, luxury cars, luxury yatches, beautiful gadgets etc. In the same vein we also admire great personalities, art, music, great inventions and other works of repute.
When we break down and deconstruct that famous building, art work, car or garden we forget all the tasks, activities that went to making this happen. Those tasks and activities are what I term the magic moments.
Numerous magic moments brought those objects and personalities into being. Some will call it the moments of truth, the grind or drudge. In this article I highlight those magical moments that bring these objects into being. They become objects that are legacy items and historical points of interest.
What are magical moments?
–Working on that proposal or business case
– learning that hard skill or language
– getting out of bed when you don’t want to on a cold rainy morning
– chasing that new prospect making that call, sending the mail
– giving that public speech
– enforcing discipline on your kids
– taking that walk doing your exercise
– eating your vegetables instead of those chips
– feeding the animals instead of playing
– tilling the land and planting seed at the right time
– getting negative feedback and acting on it
– taking that annual medical checkup
– providing charity
– Participating in the community clean up call
– giving that negative feedback and receiving negative feedback as well
– writing that song and recording it in the studio
– Making that encouraging call
– Taking that leadership position
– serving that customer with 110% effort
– calling out bad behavior
– working on that invention or patent
– cleaning your room and laying your bed
– working on your critical goals and path consistently
– training for that marathon
– painting that portrait
– writing that article, book or memoir
The sight of a beautiful flower garden always takes the breath away. There is nothing relaxing and soothing to our souls, than gazing at nature at its best, appreciating the smells and sight of a well-kept flower garden. It’s a magical moment but there are other magical moments behind this sight.
It takes intention, deliberate steps have to be planned and executed to make this happen. These are the cumulative magical moments of input that result in that magical garden. The planning, digging, planting and daily maintenance of that garden are the magical inputs.
We always forget the process behind any creation. The application of energy and it’s redirection to the right area. This is the magical application of energy to create beautiful wonders and scenes that we enjoy. Please see an example of a checklist of steps to create a flower garden below.
Entebbe Express Highway, Uganda (The M3 Highway)
I live in Uganda and it’s a mix of chaos and pockets of sanity in the Capital city Kampala and gives it it’s unique characteristics. One striking feature of most developing countries is the state of the roads. We still have numerous areas and stretches of the road network that are not tarmacked or lie in a terrible state.
When tarmacked, most of the roads are ridden by potholes. Lack of a maintenance culture renders them almost impassable over time. To aggravate this state of affairs further, traffic rules and regulations are regularly flouted with motorbikes and a messy public transportation system.
This brings a major development in Kampala to light, a new addition to the road network, the Entebbe Express Highway. The country has one international airport which is situated 30 kilometers away from the Capital City. Prior to the construction of this highway one had to plan to travel 5 hours in advance to the key airport.
The only paved road between the Capital City and the Airport was highly congested and could not cope with the increasing volume of traffic. This situation was affecting business and tarnishing the country’s image. A Chinese firm China Communications Construction Company was contracted to construct this stretch of motor way in the year 2012 and it was opened in the year 2018.
This road is literally a pocket of beauty and sanity in the chaos that mar Kampala Roads. It’s the first toll road and is maintained appropriately. The landscaping along the side of the road is well maintained and perfect. Normal public transportation is banned and restricted on this route.
We, the normal citizens, always feel we have been transported to another world when we travel along this route. The order, cleanliness, lack of potholes is a contrast to the normal chaos we experience in the daily commute along other Kampala Roads.
The magical road would not have been possible without the input and activity of many stakeholders including government officials, the project sponsor and financer, the construction workers and personnel and all other entities involved to make the idea come into reality. Reference Entebbe–Kampala Expressway – Wikipedia
The Burj Khalifa – United Arab Emirates
The Burj Khalifa is the world’s tallest building, with a total height of 829.8 m and was completed in the year 2010. Construction of the structure begun in the year 2004 and it took 6 years to get completed.
‘The decision to build Burj Khalifa was reportedly based on the government’s decision to diversify from an oil-based economy to one that is service and tourism based. According to officials, projects like Burj Khalifa needed to be built to garner more international recognition and hence investment’
Source Burj Khalifa – Wikipedia
The UAE government embarked on diversifying its economy away from total reliance on Crude Oil Exports to a service and tourist-based economy. One of the pivotal decisions to make this happen was to build landmarks that attracted worldwide attention.
They embarked on an infrastructure upgrade across their capital cities with Dubai been the epicenter of this upgrade. Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum was the key architect behind the rise of Dubai as a key tourism hub and destination point in the Globe.
He commissioned a Master plan for the city in 1962 and pursued an infrastructure upgrade plus the requisite funding need to realize the dream of the Modern Dubai Metropolis. These were magical moments that have been pursued consistently over the last 40 years.
Dubai is now a recognized center for regional and international trade, a major global transport hub for passengers and cargo and a major real estate and tourist hub. This is all out of pursuing magical moments and making things happen.
Crafting Personal Destinies
You can also craft a personal destiny and create magic in your own life. Many have done it and we also have the capacity to do it.
There are key magical elements involved in crafting a great personal destiny. Which include:
– Providing value to the community
Impact other’s lives positively. Be of service to others both in your family and wider community. There are many forms and ways to do this. You can be an employee, entrepreneur, volunteer, farmer, doctor, plumber etc.
– Getting the right skills and education.
Both academic, social and professional skills matter. Get competent and capable. Aim to be among the top 1% in your area of expertise. Ensure you provide ‘A ‘class service wherever and whatever you embark in.
– Building a great network
Always reach out and build a network to touch more lives. Keep on educating others and touching them positively in all areas. Shine a magical light wherever you go.
Individuals who made it
Here are two excerpts of rags to riches stories courtesy of the History Channel
Often described as the quintessential “rags to riches” tale, the story of steel magnate Andrew Carnegie’s rise begins in 1835 in a small one-room home in Dunfermline, Scotland. Born into a family of destitute laborers, Carnegie received little schooling before his family emigrated to America in 1848. Arriving in Pennsylvania, the 13-year-old soon got a job in a textile mill, where he earned only $1.20 per week.
Carnegie went on to labor as a messenger boy and factory worker before eventually winning a job as a secretary and telegraph operator at the Pennsylvania Railroad. By 1859, the enterprising young worker had become superintendent of the railroad’s western division. Carnegie invested his newfound wealth in a variety of businesses including a bridgework company, a telegraph operation and—most famously—a steel mill. By the turn of the century, his Carnegie Steel Company had blossomed into an industrial empire, and Carnegie became the richest man in the world after he sold out to J.P. Morgan for $480 million. Proclaiming that, “the main who dies rich dies disgraced,” Carnegie spent his later years donating his fortune to charitable causes, eventually giving away some $350 million.
Although she was born a slave, Bridget “Biddy” Mason eventually found fortune as one of America’s first female real estate tycoons. Following a youth spent in bondage in Mississippi, Mason travelled to Utah in 1847 after her owner converted to Mormonism. The family later moved to California, where Mason petitioned for and won her freedom in 1856.
Mason spent the next decade in Los Angeles working as a midwife, and became one of the city’s first black landowners after she bought a small piece of property for $250. An astute businesswoman, Mason later sold some of the land for a profit, and went on to build commercial properties in some of L.A.’s fastest-growing business districts. In time, her shrewd land deals saw her amass a fortune of some $300,000. Along the way, the woman known as “Grandma Mason” also gave generously to charity and disaster relief, helped feed the poor and financed the founding of the city’s first black church.
The two anchors that drive magical moments
1. Crafting a compelling vision and strategic planning
The crafting of compelling vision and strategies is the first step before any worthy creation can be realized. Here are examples below
Before we lay any brick or lay any foundation for a house we need to get an idea of what the finished product will look like. This is where an architect’s vision both in 3D and 2D is essential.
The compelling vision of the architect is what will drive enthusiasm for the entire project. When we see great buildings we always forget they were ideas sketched on paper before they were brought into reality.
Most of the greatest businesses that have endured were started with a compelling vision by the founders. The founders wanted to make an impact in society. It’s the vision that guided them to endure when the going got tough.
Mercedes- Benz- “to be the best, the first and last choice” to purchase an automobile.
BMW – “to become the world’s leading provider of premium products and premium services for individual mobility”
Microsoft – “to help people and businesses throughout the world realize their full potential.”
Coca-Cola “to craft the brands and choice of drinks that people love, to refresh them in body and spirit.”
Ford “to become the world’s most trusted company, designing smart vehicles for a smart world”
We cannot forget necessity. The adage ‘Necessity is the mother of invention’ rings true. Most of modern man’s tools and creations were built out of the need to survive and thrive in our environment.
As terrible and destructive wars are, the greatest technological progress is always advanced during war. You either prevail or die in the battle field. This has propelled the invention of the most destructive weapons.
Looking on the bright side the peace time application of this technology has enhanced our daily lives tremendously.
2. Tactical Project Planning and Execution
Once the vision has been crafted and the compelling dream has been realized. 90% of the key activity begins. These are the input magical moments that bring the vision to life and reality. This is where project planning and execution come into play.
Creating a project plan, key milestone identification, resourcing both human and financial is key to realizing the vision. Depending on the nature of the project, it can last from one month to 100 years. Yes, there are plans that are implemented over generations.
The key here is planning, execution and constant monitoring to ensure path correction. This is where the majority fall along the path. Consistency, drive, tenacity and persistence play a key role in this phase.
Execution of the vision is the hard nut that has to be cracked to bring the fruits.
We all have the capacity to create magic in our lives. The choice is always there “To be or not to be” Go ponder on this question and start crafting magical moments wherever you are. Get inspired and work your magic
Do the Work – Stephen Pressfield
A guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK)- Project Management Institute
To Do List Formula: A Stress-Free Guide To Creating To-Do Lists That Work! – Damon Zahariades