Connect with us

Life

5 Powerful Life Lessons from David and Goliath

Published

on

5 Powerful Life Lessons from David and Goliath

David and Goliath dates back all the way from the 4th century. You know the story behind David and Goliath, right? Or at least how David took down Goliath regardless of him being such a giant, regardless of everybody being too terrified to challenge Goliath.

There are 5 powerful life lessons from David and Goliath that you can learn from and they relate to almost ANY situation.

Here are the 5 life lessons:

 

1. Be bigger than your fears

Twice a day for 40 days Goliath would challenge the Israelite’s demanding a 1 on 1 battle. All the Israelite’s were as terrified as a Lions prey on the verge of death. None of them would dare to challenge Goliath. But after David heard about the reward for defeating Goliath, he accepted the challenge as if it were nothing but a child’s game.

When David confronted Goliath who had armor and a javelin, all David had was a staff, sling and 5 stones. Not to mention he was like a baby in size compared to Goliath. But did that stop him? Yeah right. Not long after the battle started, he pulled his sling back with a stone attached to it then he let it rip right into Goliath’s forehead!

Killed him in the process. If that happened to be any of the other people around him, they would have ran in the other direction and backed down, because the Israelite’s were smaller than their fears, and David was bigger than his fears…

But are you?

If you’re not, you’ll end up settling for the things that are LESS than your fears….And you’ll be enslaved by your fears no matter what situation you’re in or what decision you need to make. Look at things logically, look at the facts, get out of your head and take action already!

“Thinking will not overcome fear but action will.” – W. Clement Stone

2. Size doesn’t matter

In life you’re bound to come across big challenges, small challenges, tiny challenges and enormous challenges. But the size of the challenge, problem or obstacle is Irrelevant. Why? Because that doesn’t determine what’s possible for you.

The only thing that determines what’s possible for you is YOU, your mindset and your beliefs. If size mattered to David (as it did with the Israelite’s) he wouldn’t have had the courage to take on Goliath. Especially with just a staff, 5 stones and a sling.

David knew size doesn’t matter, it’s HEART, COURAGE, and COMMITMENT that matters. You can apply the same principle and same level of thinking to your life and the challenges you’re facing. Think bigger than the challenge, be bigger than the obstacle, and act as if it’s impossible for you not to fail. Have self confidence, conviction and believe in yourself MORE than you believe the challenge is too big to handle.

 

3. Make use of what you already have

Many people complain about:

  • What they don’t have
  • Why not having what they don’t have is a problem
  • Why they need “that thing” before they can get started
  • Why not having “that thing” is holding them back

But the truth is you have to make USE of what you’ve already got to get what you want. Compared to the armor and the weapons Goliath had, David seemed insignificant. After all he only had a sling, 5 stones and a staff (Even though he turned down armor that was offered to him).

Yet he made use of it and it happen to be more than enough to get the job done. He still defeated Goliath regardless of the comparison in weight, strength, Armory, weapons, etc. David didn’t moan or whine because of the differences like the Israelite’s would have. He had a “so what?” attitude and left everyone in shock after defeating Goliath so effortlessly. With nothing but a sling and a stone.

Stop making excuses!

You want to start a business? Improvise and use what you already have. Want to start singing? Record through your phone If you’re not ready for the studio. Want to make YouTube videos? Record videos through your phone instead of complaining about needing expensive equipment. Want to be a graphic designer? Watch tutorials on YouTube instead of moaning about not having “Photoshop” yet.

 

4. Believe it’s possible

The Israelite’s didn’t believe it was possible to defeat Goliath which is why they feared him. If you were to rate their self belief on a scale of 1 – 10, their self belief would have to be less than 5.

But on the other hand, David’s belief would have been at least an 8 or more. That’s why it wasn’t an issue for him to challenge Goliath head on and even take him down. And don’t forget David turned down the offer for armory, which proves he strongly believed it was possible.

Do you believe it’s possible?

Without a strong belief that what you’re pursuing is possible, you’ll fail. You’ll quit on yourself before you even get half way. Think of it like the guy who’s too afraid to approach the girl he likes. How come he won’t approach her? His self belief isn’t strong enough, so he quits on himself without making a move.

If your fears are stronger than your self belief and faith, you’ve shot yourself in the foot without knowing it. Until you believe in yourself more than the fear or the obstacle, you’ll continue to quit on yourself.

“In order to succeed, we must first believe that we can.” – Nikos Kazantzakis

5. Don’t underestimate your capabilities

It’s always dangerous to underestimate yourself. When you underestimate yourself and your own capabilities, you end up achieving less. Judging how Goliath looks and appears compared to David, you’d think Goliath was the superior one.

But the outcome of the battle turned out to be a lot different than the Israelite’s expected. David didn’t underestimate his abilities or himself. He had self confidence and lots of it. He was smart enough to know that he was more than capable of succeeding.

Stop underestimating yourself!

It doesn’t matter If: You’re a writer, a pianist, plumber, real estate broker, personal trainer, musician, parent or college student; You’re capable of much more than you believe. You’ve just yet to see it because you haven’t given yourself the chance to.

If anything you should be overestimating, because then you’ll end up giving and doing more than is expected and you’ll end up achieving more and reaching your potential in the process.

“It is always dangerous to underestimate anybody.” – Abdallah II of Jordan

Thank you for reading my article! Which of these 5 life lessons has helped you the most?

Theo Ellis is a blogger, author, writer, and online retailer. Speaking on subjects such as confidence, personal development, he writes from personal experience to benefit the lives of others through justbereal.co.uk.

Advertisement
13 Comments

13 Comments

  1. Eric

    Sep 21, 2018 at 6:44 am

    Hey Theo great article and it’s great for me and my wife. We have two sons both in high school one a freshman and the other a senior. The freshman is always doubting himself and he let others bring him down. No matter what me and my wife say it doesn’t seem to get across to him but this article speaks directly to his situation thanks for the word. On the other hand our senior is a football player and plays quarterback he is a good player but his issue is he is short like 5’7 short. We all know in the football world that is way to short for a quarterback but after reading this there is definitely hope and encouragement for him. Again Yheo thanks for such a powerful word.

  2. Dike Daniel

    Aug 1, 2015 at 9:03 pm

    Good work!
    I will like to talk about that of size doesn’t matter. you know in this world of ours people seem to be underestimating there fellow human being; what do I mean? when someone is achieving a great feat or showcasing there talent, some people will like to pull them down. but we should all know matter anywhere we may find ourselves, and in anything we may be achieving, we should shut our ears to antagonists and keep on moving as if nothing is happening. because whoever is trying to pull you down knows within them, that they are below you. again; it is always good to trust in the lord….nice article one again

    • Theo

      Sep 6, 2015 at 7:54 pm

      Hey Dike. Yes you’re absolutely right. When someone tries to poison you with their negative attitude towards your dreams, how big you think or what YOU believe is possible, it says more about them then it does about you. Act deaf and block it out!

      Thanks for sharing I appreciate your comment 🙂

  3. Jagdish Kashyap

    Jul 24, 2015 at 8:56 am

    I agree!
    Most of all “Make you of all you have” and I totally agree, peoples see the negative side always.
    They make excuses and give up easily, if you don’t have potential to go beyond your limits then I have an advice for you, don’t start working on your dreams!
    Thank You!
    Cheers! Great Stuff 🙂

    • Theo

      Jul 29, 2015 at 6:35 pm

      Wow. Great comment Jagdish! You made q great point there. It’s all about shifting your perspective on to the things that will push you forward as opposed to holding you back. 🙂 Thanks again

  4. Stella Chiu

    Jul 20, 2015 at 11:12 pm

    Hi, Theo

    Good Article about overcome the “Fear”. It is also a story about “small is big”. David knew battle was won already because he believed the mighty God was inside him.

    Thanks for the good article.

    • Theo

      Jul 21, 2015 at 12:14 pm

      I completely agree. It’s amazing what you can achieve and do with a simple shift in mindset. Conviction is important. Thanks for commenting, Stella!

  5. Lawrence Berry

    Jul 20, 2015 at 3:24 pm

    These are some very powerful lesson that really correlate with what happened with david and goliath, I really like the one where you stated that you should be bigger than your fears and face them. The main thing that hold people back from living the life that they want to live is their fears. Les Brown once said, so many people are not living their dreams because they are living their fears. Once you face your fears and believe that you can do it, you have already won half the battle.

    • Theo

      Jul 20, 2015 at 6:58 pm

      Absolutely, Lawrence. Fear is a BIG one and we all have to be bigger than each one to get past them. Les Brown is a great by the way. Thanks for commenting I appreciate it!

  6. Heide Padilla

    Jul 20, 2015 at 9:17 am

    David and Goliath is one of the favorite stories from the Bible and has a lot of moral lessons like these, and though sometimes it’s so obvious, sometimes we ignore them, we give in to our fears and just give up fighting for what we believe in. This is a nice reminder that life may be hard but it’s not as complicated as we think. Nice post.

    • Theo

      Jul 20, 2015 at 6:56 pm

      Hey Heide. I agree David and Goliath is a great story that I’ve only started getting into as of recent. Many great lessons (which is why I shared) Thanks for commenting 🙂

  7. Stefanie

    Jul 20, 2015 at 7:22 am

    Great article! I like the comparison because it’s easy to understand and got me an “aha!”.
    What I liked most was the first lesson “Be bigger than your fears”, especially the aspect “If you’re not, you’ll end up settling for the things that are LESS than your fears”. That made clear what it really means in life. Thank you!

    • Theo

      Jul 20, 2015 at 9:42 am

      Hey Stefanie. That’s amazing you took an “aha” moment from reading this post. I’m happy to hear it! 1. Is a big one isn’t it? Thanks for taking your time out to comment 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Life

Why Do We Have An Unconscious Bias and How Can We Manage It?

Published

on

Image Credit: Unsplash

When I hear someone using my name once in a while throughout the conversation we are having, I cannot stop myself thinking “this person must have read Dale Carnegie’s books or must have been influenced by someone who read them…” Have you just recalled a similar moment and it felt nice?

As Dale Carnegie famously said, “Remember that a person’s name is, to that person, the sweetest and the most important sound in any language”. Why did Dale Carnegie highlight the importance of an individual’s name to that person in his “How to Win Friends and Influence People” book published in 1936?

Each and every one of us wants to feel special and unique. I guess he recommends using the person’s name in the conversation because that is one of the easiest ways to grab that person’s attention so that we can enhance the chances of getting our point across. However, I am more interested in this from the other side; hearing our names directly addresses our individuality, our need or desire to feel special and unique.  

Let’s park this one for now and we will come back. 

Categorization is essential to our survival

There is countless scientific research telling us about how our brains recognize similarities and put things into categories, which has been crucial to our survival in evolution and still helps us with a lot of things from learning new things to coping with the continuous influx of massive amounts of information through our senses. 

The continuous influx of information is mostly handled by our subconscious mind rather than conscious. It is estimated that our brains receive about 11 million bits of information every second through our senses, of which only 40-50 bits can be processed by our conscious mind. We process more information than we are aware of. The magic here is the subconscious mind.

An example is when you are at a very loud party where you hear a lot of words flying around without you recognizing each one of them, then suddenly, you immediately catch it when you hear your name. Your subconscious had been processing all of those words, without your awareness, but informed your conscious mind when your name was out there because it was relevant to you.

In order to most effectively process this much information and inform the conscious mind with only the relevant ones, our subconscious employs categorization as one of its strategies.

When our ancestors encountered some deadly predators in the African savanna, their subconscious prompted their conscious mind to immediately fight or flight by categorizing the information gathered through their senses into “predator / life threat / take action”. Most probably we are not descendants of the ones that were frozen rather than fighting or flighting! 

Although it is a completely different situation, the same strategy applied in remembering lists. Let’s look at the below two lists.

  1. lion, eagle, shark, leopard, hawk, whale, panther, falcon and dolphin 
  2. lion, leopard, panther, eagle, hawk, falcon, shark, whale and dolphin

The second list is easy to remember because it is reordered into relevant groups even though the content of the both lists are identical.

Subconsciousness is the magic and categorization is one of its key strategies. It is essential to our survival, learning new skills and processing information as well as bringing back the information we had processed and stored. 

This amazing skill has its drawbacks

As a result of our brains’ categorization strategy, we also categorize people, especially if we don’t know them as well as our closest ones.

Imagine I am sitting at the table next to yours while you are having your favorite coffee and working on your computer or reading your novel at your neighborhood coffee shop. I stand up, very calmly grab your bag, and start walking away. Your reaction might be quite different depending on my outfit. It could be much more vocal and harsh if I have a dirty T-Shirt and a pair of torn jeans on. However, if I have some navy colored, 3-piece suit and well-pressed white button up shirt on, you might even say something like “Excuse me, you might have picked up my bag by mistake”. (There is an experiment done by social psychologists which reported similar results)

Similarly, I would not be surprised to hear that my co-worker’s spouse is very skilled and knowledgeable in English grammar and literature because he is an English teacher. However, I would not expect it from my co-worker herself because she is an outstanding chemical engineer.  

This is defined as unconscious bias or stereotyping, as a result of our subconscious brain’s categorization strategy. The outfit I have at the coffee shop impacts your response to my action, because it puts me into a different category in your mind depending on my outfit. My co-worker’s and her spouse’s backgrounds make me put them into different categories, which might mislead me sometimes.

Just like we categorize things, it is very natural that we categorize people.  

The key question here for me is; how do we truly treat people as individuals so that they feel unique, just like as they would want, while we know that our brains categorize people

We can overcome unconscious bias 

Leonard Mlodinow, in his enlightening book “Subliminal”, suggests that “if we are aware of our bias and motivated to overcome it, we can.” That doesn’t mean that we need to fight our brain’s categorization strategy. We just need to employ our conscious mind more when we are working or dealing with individuals. 

Our unconscious bias might tell us scientists are bunch of technical nerds who cannot understand abstract concepts that marketers are talking about or it might say that marketers are some daydreamers who need to be grounded by scientists to the real world all the time. I am an engineer and I love thinking in abstract terms and I worked with quite a lot of marketers who thought primarily in factual and concrete terms. 

Spending some effort to learn more about individuals will help overcome unconscious bias. Gathering more information and qualities about them will make it easier for us to treat them as individuals rather than a member of the category we put them in our minds. 

The moral of the story here is to recognize the fact that our brains do categorize, and it is essential; but also, to recognize that every individual wants to feel unique. When we appreciate these two and keep reminding them to ourselves, we are one step closer to figuring out our own way to overcome unconscious bias and treat people more like individuals. 

What was the most interesting part of this article for you? Share your thoughts below!

Continue Reading

Life

The Problem Is Not Actually the Problem: Here’s Why

Published

on

Image Credit: Unsplash

With my understanding of the Three Principles, which is deepening month-by-month, I’m becoming more curious about whether the ‘problem’ that we think we have, is really a problem. Not for one second am I dismissing a persons’ experience; I’m human after all and I encounter challenges and what I think are ‘problems’ just like the next person. (more…)

Continue Reading

Life

5 Things You Can Do to Fend off Boredom and Stay Focused

Published

on

Image Credit: Unsplash

Curiosity is human nature and it’s only natural that humans will lose interest in a topic after a while. This has been a topic that has been extensively explored among children, teenagers and adults by a psychologist with similar results being reported from each of the categories. Human’s minds are therefore prone to boredom, making it important for each professional to spend some time to understand the factors that drive boredom and strategies the individuals needs to use to overcome boredom and focus on their profession and development. (more…)

Continue Reading

Life

Decision and Failure: Deciding That Failure is Not an Option

Published

on

why failure is important
Image Credit: Unsplash

Nobody likes wasting time, money or opportunities by making a bad business decision. We can certainly identify what “bad” looks and feels like, however we should be identifying what the “win” looks like too. Too often we focus on the bad, which puts us in victim mode that perpetuates a scarcity mindset which leads us directly into becoming frozen or stuck. (more…)

Continue Reading

Trending