When I moved into a new apartment sometime last year, the bed rooms were all painted in dark colours and I’m a lover of White. So, this year, it was part of my budget to repaint the rooms.

We painted the rooms and the front of the house, then I realised that I had no budget for painting the store in the kitchen and the back of the house.

Why do most of us forget to paint the backyard of our house? Because the back of the house and the store in the kitchen are areas of the house that are rarely seen by others as they pass the house. 

It is a mindset, and many of us are like that.

We care less about the areas of our house (and our lives) that are hidden from the public’s eyes.

This is how we treat our personal lives. We spend a lot of money and time on the outward appearance, the one people see, yet we neglect and under-develop our minds and our attitudes – the inner areas of our lives.

It is a mindset, and I want to help you take care of your inner life. 

Your inner life, though may not be seen but it reflects on your outer life. Who you are inside will ultimately be who you are outside? Inside determines outside, in the long run.

How are you taking care of your inner life?

People who have more information have a big advantage over people who don’t. You may think it takes years to acquire the knowledge you would need to become super successful but the truth is that the simple act of taking care of your inner life every day like reading can make it easy to increase your knowledge and have a competitive edge.

One recommendation I have for you to take care of your inner life is to create a budget for knowledge. Knowledge should not be something that you acquire by chance. It should be deliberate.

2 kinds of budget:

1. Money budget:  Out of your income every day or every month, set aside a percentage and the purpose of that money is to buy books in your field or books written by leaders in your field. Buy books to grow your mind. Buy inspirational autobiographies of successful people. Buy books on Psychology, Sales, Finance and Health. Buy books on spirituality and study the principles of the leaders in your field. Principles makes leaders – you need to buy those principles

2. Time budget: Buying books is just one thing, reading the books is the most important thing. Some years ago, when I was starting out in my career, I mastered the art of taking away money from my salary to buy books every month. One of my uncles came visiting and saw my bookshelf (in my father’s house) and asked me “where do I find time to read books despite my work schedules”.

I create a time slot every day after my morning devotion where I just read and think. This is a daily routine!

If you have time to eat, then you must have time to read. The time you used to browse social media feeds in a day can finish a chapter of a book. 

Reading books will help you achieve mastery in the areas of your life that are central to your fulfilment. Books contain some of the best life tested wisdom, information, methodologies, systems, techniques, and secrets of success that have ever been recorded.

Create the time to read, no matter how busy you are. Set alarms. Go to a place in your house where you force yourself to finish a chapter of a book and you will do nothing else until that is done.

Let everybody in your house know that there is a time in the house where you are not available – they will respect it! Do that today.

If you make a commitment to read one book a week, review what you have read and apply just one thing you learn from each book, you will be miles ahead of everyone else in creating an extraordinary life.

If you don’t know what to read, start with biographies and autobiographies. Biographies and autobiographies are some of the best books out there of great people ever lived on earth. By reading them you will learn how to become better or great yourself.

I was reading a biography where the Former Mayor of New York, Rudolph Giuliani once said that reading Political biographies as a teenager made a huge impression on him. Many years after he became Mayor, he said that what he had read earlier from biographies of Winston Churchill and how he led England through the bombings of World War II helped him lead New York after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.

Reading is powerful.

What you read today shapes how you lead today!

What are you reading?

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