5 Timeless Lessons From Steve Jobs

6 Min Read

By Clever Mavanza

Every time we hear of Steve Jobs, we think of Apple. Many people are more inclined to assume great innovators, inventors, leaders, and anyone who has made a global impact does not go through tough times. But it is actually the opposite. Martin Luther said, ‘true character is seen not in moments of comfort but adversity’. It is when you face violent winds that you must develop absolute focus and not give up. The bible says in proverbs, ‘if you faint in the day of adversity your strength is small. ‘Strong character is built under pressure. That is why valuable minerals such as gold and diamonds are not found on the surface. Calm winds never made great pilots. Great leaders emerge in turbulent situations.

Connecting dots

“You connect the dots by looking backward…” he said. Most people think history is a dead subject. It is commonly said if we do not learn from history, we are bound to repeat it. When he dropped out of college, he studied calligraphy. The intimate study of visuals led the founder to utilize this skill in the first computer. Everything you study can be a gem that opens doors of opportunity to predict the future with accuracy, you need to know about the past and your current position. Intuitive leaders have an uncommon sixth sense of detecting what will happen in the future. This is also true for Bill Gates.

If not now when? If not you then who?

It is unbelievable Steve Jobs started Apple with his partner, Wozniak in a garage. By then he was twenty. Never complain about lack of resources. Do not magnify your incompetence. Steven King wrote his first manual and threw it in the bin. His wife picked it up and it launched his career. Murray, the mountain climber started again when the first book he wrote on toilet paper was destroyed by Nazis. When you put a vision in place, you magnetize resources, people, and machinery to make dreams come true. Find great partners. Nothing of consequence was built by an individual. Microsoft had IBM. Steve had Wozniak. Teamwork allows facilitates a large pull of resources and diversity of skills.

The best help you can find is at the end of your arm…

You must start where you are with what you have. You have something, it’s only that you may not realize. What you know is a good platform to start. Do not wait two years to start. Do you know that one of the first cars had no reverse gear? An evil invention but it’s better than eloquence. Amplify deeds not words. Waiting is making yourself a candidate for failure. The world respects doers, not critics or complainers. Whilst you are waiting, the world is racing forward. You gain momentum by moving.

Every disappointment is an appointment

At the age of thirty, he got fired from the company he started. What a tragedy. Surprisingly this became fertile ground to start two companies– Pixar and Next. What made Steve have the tensile strength to overcome such a heavy blow? He had one rare commodity inside him. He always did what he loved. When you have passion, you stand tall amid disappointments, critics, and losses. Do not expect many to believe you. They do not know your dream. He later confessed none of his great achievements would have happened if he did not face strong winds.

Facing death

No one can escape death. However, coming face to face with death awakens our senses to focus on what matters. If you live your life as if today was your last, you will do the right thing -Steve Jobs. Imagine if you knew you had five years left to live, what will you do with the limited time left? What if you had 2 years or two months? You will notice that as the time shortens your intensity to focus on important goals increases. One general once instructed his soldiers to burn the bridge boats which they used to enter a territory. They were left with only two choices. To fight or die. The reason why people do not achieve any meaningful progress is because of too many options. Narrow down your focus to wildly important goals.

His last words are worth noting…

“Your time is limited. Stop living as a result of other people’s thinking…

Stay hungry, stay foolish.

Written by Clever Mavanza

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