By anguillian August 22, 2014 08:27



Ms Donna Banks

Ms Donna Banks

The Eastern Caribbean Central Bank and the Eastern Caribbean Currency Authority jump-started Financial Information Month (FIM) 2014 on August 13 with the launch of the theme song and preview of music video. FIM, which this year has as its theme Soar To Success, is held in October annually.

The message for the theme was delivered by Anguillian Ms Donna Banks, Accounts Supervisor and Acting Finance Manager of the Anguilla Air and Sea Ports Authority. She was widely commended by participants in the videoconference from the eight member territories of the ECCB/ECCU.

Following is the full text of Ms Banks’ message (Published without being edited by The Anguillian newspaper.):

Success is the favourable materialization of a vision; accomplishment of a mission; or attainment of a goal. Success is not a defined outcome as expressed in a scientific experiment but must be a personal standard set by an individual who understands the plan and purpose for their life. Whatever the standard set, success must first be an inward attitude; a place of freedom that ultimately manifests itself on the outside. The strategy for success must include education, training, experience, exposure and most importantly Godly Wisdom regardless of the field of endeavour or the standard set.

Success is not a onetime event but rather a lifelong journey requiring a strategic plan to guide us and which will inevitably require course adjustments along the way as we examine the different signs and indicators of our progress. The thermometer of true success will measure the level of inner peace we have as we continue our efforts to soar to that tangible or intangible place of success.

Soaring for success implies that successful people do not start at the top. To soar means that we must move from a lower level to a higher plane. Therefore successful people do not despise humble beginnings because they understand that their success will be as a result of them continually rising from those lowly and humble beginnings, to a place of influence.
There is no success without a challenge; no triumph without a trial. Soaring for success implies that on our journey there are calculated and strategic responses we must adopt for every opportunity or challenge that present themselves along the way. Soaring for success however cannot mean “at all cost”, for what shall it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses his soul. We have lots of examples to look at and learn from.

As we soar for success, we will be confronted by many challenges which will tempt us to give up, cave in and quit. But we know quitters never win and winners never quit. To succeed when the challenges and pressures of life mount, and they will, we must demonstrate the characteristics of an Eagle and soar high above the situations and circumstances that are saying to us “it’s not worth it”; “just give up”; “it is over”. (1) Like an eagle we must be fearless. We must face problems head on evaluating possible alternative courses of action. (2)Like an eagle we must also be tenacious. The challenges of life will be many. There are storms to be faced and success demands that we use these challenges in life just as the eagle does – to rise to greater heights rather than run for cover in the time of a storm.

(3) Eagles fly high. Successful persons solve problems; they do not make excuses because of the problems.
There are different phases and stages in the journey to success and there are different paths that can take us to our ultimate destination, in the same way as there are different roads on Anguilla to take us from West End to Island Harbour. And we must never be afraid of the detours and rest stops on our journey. Remember that just as delay is not denial; so too setbacks on our journey are not failures.

So how does one measure success? Do we measure success by the wealth we acquire; the accolades we receive; the titles we wear; our professional advancement; a major achievement in our life; finally winning a championship; the well adjusted children we raise; the marriage we commit to; or the good character we develop? We must establish the benchmarks for what we have predetermined to be our success goals and we must find the path that leads to our successful place; and walk it. Not the path of others; and not the criteria of others. It is only then that we will walk in to our destiny of true success where not only every need in our life is met but we are able to add to the lives of others.

To effectively soar and be a success we must recognize and appreciate our individual God-given gifts and talents and not long for or envy those of others. Our gifts and talents were assigned to us for a specific purpose and we will only find deep fulfillment as we pursue those gifts and talents given to us. Everything that goes towards making us a success is inside of us. What appears to be easy for others therefore will be a burden for us, outside of our gifts and callings. Inside of our gifts and callings we will have sweat-less victories. It is only then that we will walk in to our destiny of true and lasting success where not only every need in our life is met but we are able to add to the lives of others.

WORDS OF CAUTION: As parents, teachers and leaders we must avoid strangling the gifts and talents of young people to make them fit into our predefined moulds and prejudices. (musician, artist, mason, carpenter, doctor, lawyer, teacher, athlete etc.)

We must be careful as we soar for success not to measure success merely in the money we accumulate or the material possessions we acquire because when the money dries up as it recently has, and the possessions disappear we will not stand and if we do stand we will be on wobbling knees, paralyzed by fear and hopelessness. We must soar on the wings of confidence where we cannot be moved and cannot be shaken by any challenge or adversity; (4) we must have eagle vision that is focused and leads and guides us to our goal. As the Eagle never takes its eye off its prey so too we must never take our eyes off of our goals. We must plan and prepare ourselves for success and we must understand that the only person that can stop our success is we ourselves. Success is hardly ever a matter of chance; luck; a gift handed out or down; or wishful thinking, but it takes place when preparedness and opportunity meet.
We must educate ourselves for our chosen path; acquire the experience develop our skills through apprenticeship and hard work; be committed and loyal giving our best effort to every task; and use every opportunity to continuously grow and develop both personally and professionally. We must keep at it; keep at it; keep at it. Always striving to “improve our game” but never being so consumed that it works to our detriment.

We must want success; we must think success, and we must be prepared to pay the price for this success. Price of diligence; keep at it; keep at it; keep at it. When others sleep or are enjoying other pleasures, successful people are the ones up and keeping at it, honing their skills and perfecting their talent. Warning: As you soar, you will encounter the stormy winds of envy, rejection, undermining and other obstacles in your pathway. But these are not to, and should not stop your flight. Like the Eagle, use these stormy winds to push you higher; and keep soaring and soaring. Only you can stop you; provided you do what you need to do.
Remember: True success is success that impacts the lives of others.

(5) Eagles nurture their younger ones. Successful people are not those threatened by the generation that follows but rather brings those individuals along with them, teaching them and guiding them; empowering and directing them to reach their full potential. Success cannot be contained but extends outwards. Successful people are givers and not takers. They are influencers.

Success will require us to surround ourselves by persons who think successfully; as well as feeding our mind with the right words and images as these will impact the way we think. For as a man thinks, that is what he becomes. When our thinking is right, our emotions will be balanced and we can make right and powerful decisions which will lead to positive and focused actions which in time are habit forming, shaping our character and taking us to our destiny of a fulfilled life. Warren Buffet said he always knew he would be rich and doesn’t think he ever doubted it for a moment. So too, we must see and taste success on the inside; however we define that success. We must know that we were created for success.

Finally, soaring for success will require us to (7) possess the vitality of an Eagle. Eagles are full of life and are visionary but they find time to look back at their life and re-energize themselves. When in this journey of life we find ourselves becoming stagnant, plateauing out or losing our zeal we must never give up on our goals and dreams but like the Eagle we should retreat, regroup and recreate ourselves to then reemerge current and relevant, thereby extending our impact and influence.

Success is a lifetime journey and we must each determine the pleasure and fulfillment to be derived along the way. We cannot allow the dictates of others to determine our standard for success. We must however be focused, fearless and tenacious like the Eagle never losing sight of our goals; as well as using the storms and challenges of life to push us and cause us to soar high and higher and closer to our destiny.

I will leave you with this poem, Author unknown

If you think you are beaten, you are
If you think you dare not, you don’t
If you’d like to win but think you can’t
It’s almost a cinch that you won’t
If you think you’ll lose – you’ve lost
For in the world you find
Success begins with a fellow’s will:
It’s all in the state of mind

Full many a race is lost
Before ever a step is run
And many a coward fails
Before even his work’s begun
Think big and your deeds will grow
Think small and you’ll fall behind
Think that you can and you will
It’s all in the state of mind

If you think you are outclassed you are
You’ve got to think high to rise
You’ve got to be sure of yourself before
You can ever win a prize
Life’s battle don’t always go
To the stronger or fastest man
But soon or later the man who wins
Is the man who thinks he can.


By anguillian August 22, 2014 08:27


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