Entry By Aina Tunde Joseph

  Information is power. The advancement in writing technology has increased the spread of information.  When talking about the history of literacy, it is necessary to examine the history of writing technology. Writing is often referred to as one of the major communication revolutions in human history. There have been several significant developments in writing over the course of time. First, people only used pictographs to express ideas. Then, word-based writing systems developed. After that, people developed sound-based syllabic writing systems. Lastly come the invention of a written alphabet. The invention of paper greatly influenced the printing press. The invention of paper was the turning point in the history of printing. The invention of paper also changed the physical act of writing. Josef Lazlo and Georg Biro invented the modern version of ballpoint pen in 1943. In October 1945, the ballpoint began its first sale in the US market.  Pens and paper still remain as major writing instruments.  

According to Instrument Manufacturers Association, the US market for pens was approximately $3.25 billion in 2007. The U.S. also produces and consumes about 100 million tons of papers per year. The invention and development of pens and paper have been influencing the literacy of people for many centuries. Only those that can think on paper can thrive in the twenty-first century. Haven't studied wisdom, intelligence, mental prowess, discernment and how people become smart generally, for many years now. I've discovered that many people break the laws that allows for easy access to what they desire, while others have not come to the understanding of this important element that is responsible for intelligence and/or making the right decision at the right time. As a result many under utilize their brain and the result that it could deliver.        

 The brain of a normal twenty- year- old human possesses 100,000 miles of myelin covered nerve fibers. Inside the human brain are approximately 86billion neurons interconnected by more than 100 trillion synapses, which science has only barely begun to understand. Sensory signals move along an alpha motor neuron in your spinal cord at 268 miles per hour (mph). This is the fastest transmission of this type in the body. Skin sensory receptors which travel at about 1mph are the slowest in the body because they don't have myelin shealth.  This organ system is very unique in that it has the ability to extract information from the past and the present and coordinate it into a useful tool in the future.  Your brain is very sensitive and capable of picking the smallest signals and it has the ability to recognize everything that you've ever seen, heard and touch.        You might however be tempted to ask;  1. Why do people forget things completely in the examination hall? 2. Why do people forget places, events, locations and people? The answer is simple - LACK OF FOCUS. The human brain actually has the ability to recall anything that has been registered in it when the appropriate area of the brain is stimulated with a depth electrode. The brain, without FOCUS and STIMULATION however can recall few things. This is where a PEN and a PAPER become very important. There's a connection between your brain, your pen and your paper. More signals and signs are created when you write. This is why studying and doing things for long time births mastery.  Every individual actually have the capacity to become smart if only the energy, synergy and the patience to create focus is made available.   

     HOW TO CREATE FOCUS 1. Spend enough time on the subject matter that you desire to know 2. Source for different materials and books by different authors on one subject matter per time.  3. Go for an extensive research. Broaden your horizon. 4. meditate on the subject matter. 5. Write down any relevant and important information   Your PEN and PAPER is the rod that aids in knowledge acquisition, adequate assimilation and an effective dispensing of a right and a thorough information.  There's power in a colored ink when in contact with a plain sheet.  

 ACTION: Learn to connect your pen, your paper and your brain.    Mental transformation is no more than prayer, neither is it less than prayer. Whenever God want to take a man to a new level, He will upgrade and increase his knowledge in that area. Otherwise, he may fall back to the mire. If you are not informed, you will certainly be deformed.       In order to know you must admit that you don't know enough. Knowledge will only come to a humble fellow, who is willing to admit that he's ignorant.  

I established earlier on how the brain can gather, process and even store information for the future through the law of focus. Becoming smart therefore entails that you feed your brain with important information and document (write down) key points. The more you do this, the smarter you will become and the more informed you would be as regard to many subject matter.   Here are five reasons why you must study:   1. It shows that you value wisdom and wants to learn  2. Because zeal is not enough, you must be well informed before taking any major decision 3. The more you know, the less the stress in achieving success 4. It keeps you updated 5. It gives in dept knowledge   Studying at random does not help and cannot generate the result. Always go for the required knowledge and use enough time to assimilate.        

Here are five things that you must strive to study on:   1. What you don't know 2. What you know (for in dept knowledge) 3. God's promises  4. People's failure and success 5. Yourself   Next is the time factor. What to study and how to study is as important as when to study.  You must study when: 1. You are not tired  2. There are little or no distractions 3. Your brain is ready to assimilate.   
ACTION: Source for relevant materials in areas that you are ignorant, and begin to study. 
The creator made us all with a touch of excellence and creativity. A fragment of His innovation was deposited in each and everyone one of us.   This is not just some preacher's sermon. We are all unique in our design.      

Creativity is the ability to invent something. It is the ability to form out of nothing. It is the act of starting something for the first time. Creativity is originality. We are all creators, initiators and inventors in different fields. This is what makes the world a beautiful place.    

Creativity however, requires a forward looking. It requires been ahead of current thinking. This is why I'm opposed to the philosophy of studying the invention and discovery of our heroes and heroin in universities and colleges almost "forever" without given any opportunity to make our own discovery.  We are taught to celebrate the invention of others but never exposed to the process of making one. As a result we've been wired to consume and not to produce, made to clap for others and never empowered to invent.    We must learn to look down within us and bring forth the dormant ideas and creativity that are yelling for expression.    ACTION:   Provide answers to these questions   1. Who am I? 2. What can I do? 3. Why am I here?   You can go to school and not be schooled. It is your being diligent, deliberate and intentional about your life that can open you up to your destiny.    

 You must look deep down within you and allow those things that only you can do to find expression. Tap into the wells of your creativity. You were designed and built for it.   In these series I've exposed you to the numerous benefits of PEN and PAPER, therefore, refuse to be a pessimist, a procrastinator, or just a talker.  Rather become an optimist, a goal setter and a worker.    You see a pen on a paper is very powerful Artist can't draw without it Bankers can't do without it  Mathematicians can't solve without it Students can't learn without it Business gurus can't thrive without it Leadership experts are incomplete without it   It separates the the mediocre from the successful. I move with a pen to virtually everywhere, because I'd factored it out that somehow, something tangible will come from somewhere that will become useful someday.      

Give a wise man $1000 and he would think of planning, increase and multiplication, before spending.   HINT:  He knows the power of PEN when in contact with a PAPER.   Give a foolish man $1000 and he would think of shopping and spending before planning and multiplication.   HINT: He doesn't value the power of PEN and PAPER.        

  For few years now, I've been studying, praying, meditating and carefully calculating the reason behind the 'foolish' and the 'wise' decisions that were taken by the characters in Jesus' parable in Matthew 25.  

Two fascinating stories drew my attention to that chapter.  First is the story of the ten virgins of which five were tagged 'wise' and the other five were tagged 'foolish' (vs 1 - 12) Both groups did everything exactly the same way except for the fact that the 'wise virgins' were prepared for the challenges ahead of them. They could see through the horoscope into the future and beyond their present situation. The 'foolish virgins' couldn't see ahead and they settled for instant gratification and the present comfort that life offered. This principle is also applicable to finances. You must have a long term and a short term plan. None is of less importance. You can't eat today's bread and expect to have enough tomorrow, neither can you save everything for your tomorrow and starve your today (you must learn to balance them). Know where you are. Know what you want and what should wait.        

  In the second parable, three folks were entrusted with some talents individually according to their abilities. First, I want you to notice that they were not told what to do with the talents. Meaning that whenever you are entrusted with anything in the kingdom you are expected to make a profit. Secondly, the folks that made profit were smart, well articulated, and they gave their report with precision (vs20---23) Their report shows that there was an accurate documentation (pen and paper) of their business transactions. They invested their capital, reduced liabilities and made profits.  On the other hand, the foolish guy with one talent had no record. He wasn't just lazy, he was also careless and truly foolish. I've learned personally that God cannot entrust his wealth into your hand if you haven't been faithful with the little He's given you.  
  Financial gurus would tell you that you can't control certain amount of money if you can't keep financial records. Neither can you multiply your money if you don't understand certain elementary mathematics. And you can only achieve this through your PEN  

ACTION:   Get a PEN and a PAPER and put down your short term and your long term financial goals.            

The first step to giving your money a mission is to know and learn how to handle your capital. Do not use your capital to intimidate people.  Some people complain that they do not have a capital yet they move about with four phones and wear the latest Gucci and Versace products. There's absolutely nothing wrong with all of that, if you have the means. But the problem usually is that most of those people move around saying that the money they have is not enough. And you see, the money will never be enough if you don't save it diligently. Please don't get me wrong, I'm not kicking against buying things neither am I against giving, but you must know when to give and when to save. There are different ways that you can sow, you either sow by planting or you sow by investing. Some people want to become free before they kill Goliath, little did they know that freedom can only be attained by killing Goliath. I often tell young people that megabytes they use everyday is converted to "cashbytes" in someone else account. If you doubt me ask Mark Zukerberg . Give a mission to your money Your business can be rich whilst you are broke. This is especially true when you are just starting out in business.  If that's the case do not worry it is only for a while. It is better to fight now and eat the spoils later on.        

 I believe in the power of a gifted hand holding a pen. But, beyond that, I also believe in the divine help of God.     You can know a man that prays by the aura and power that his presence commands. Similarly, you can know a good writer by the dept and vastness through which he communicates. The spiritual dimension that is responsible for this kind of result is invited by maintaining a studious life. The equation for mastery is consistency and commitment without complacency equals mastery.  The work of a writer is synonymous to that of a teacher. A teacher ensures that she gathers the necessary information, access every material that can help her to understand the topic. She even gets visuals and relevant materials to help aid and ease her work.  A good writer in a similar way must be able to position his write ups in order to motivate people into believing in what he believes and this can only be done by understanding the psychology of man. To motivate others through your writing you must become super motivated yourself by accessing the right information at the right time.  Another important element in effective writing is your ability to your quite time. During this period you uncluttered your mind from every disturbing thoughts and noise, then constructively organize your persuasions and document them. I always look forward to my 'thinking time'. I utilize those moments to evaluate my pain, failure, success, and wisdom and then, use them as tools that I would use go motivate others.   Any one that desires mastery in communicating his persuasions through writing must learn to learn daily. He must maximize his quite time (time to be alone) and invite the spirit dimension to his writing skill by maintaining a studious life.  

ACTION: make a decision to read and learn daily.        What make certain piece of writing and articles outstanding? What make certain books to be so profound and intellectually deep that they are tagged ' best selling'?  Could it be the ability of the writer to move a ball pen on a paper?  The speed in using his note pad, or perhaps, his ability to connect letters and alphabets? Though I'm still studying and learning the secrets that allows for the flawless result of some writers.  I'd love to share some of the secrets I've discovered in my quest to know what separates the successful from the mediocre and what transform some books to become bestseller, while others remain in the bookstores almost forever.      

1. UNDERSTANDING: A story was told of two men who started their business separately with the same amount and similar environmental conditions. Mr. A studied business administration in the school but, knows little about the kind of business that he wanted to start yet didn't care to search in order to eliminate his ignorance.  Mr. B didn't have the opportunity to go to school and could barely read and write. He, however, gathered the necessary information that was needed for him to start the business.  At the end of two years Mr. A had lost all the money he had and the business didn't produce profit. The business later crashed because there was no money to continue its smooth running.  Mr. B had doubled the initial amount that he invested at the end of two years.  This analogy is also true in our everyday life. I've seen writers who know little or nothing about what they intend to write about. Always ensure that you understand the subject matter before writing.  

2. BECOME A LIFE COACH: One great way to motivate people is to expose your scar, pain, failure and setback, and show them how you overcame them. This will offer comfort and birth strength in your readers.  On the order side of the pendulum show them your success, achievement and achieved goals. It will create a sense of possibility in your reader.   ACTION: Get a book and put down your persuasions. Be willing to start small.