“While presenting a paper today on youth participation in governance processes for Recreation for Development and Peace (RDP) Uganda, I was posed a question by a national youth leader: ‘How is greatness created?’
I reframed his query to emphasise that the life you lead is a reflection of the world you shape. A few successful individuals have one thing in common: they live purposefully and with a clear mission. As young people, we must invest in defining our purpose and establishing values that keep us aligned with that purpose.
The key is to methodically chart a strategic path through a personal mission. When your mission is crystal clear, your dreams become a driving force, preventing you from simply sleepwalking through life. Those who drift aimlessly often find their dreams eclipsed by mere sleep.
Having multiple dreams can become a nightmare, not a vision. The dreams and life you construct must guide your actions. Young dreamers face two significant challenges: realising their purpose too late and hesitating to reinvigorate and restart.
However, each day brings new opportunities for energy. Approach your mission as if you have a century left to live. Ultimately, your legacy will be the question on everyone’s lips at the end of your journey.
Unfortunately, many young people fail to recognise that legacy is an ongoing process. Consequently, they invest more in their future outcomes than in their present actions.
For instance, my life principle is to be happy today, as today’s happiness shapes my actions and focus. I treat myself as though I have no obligations to fulfill. This forms the foundation of the good I do and the goodness I seek in others.
Many young individuals neglect to ask themselves critical questions and, instead, direct these queries towards others.
They rarely ponder why they are impoverished but readily question their leaders for causing their plight. Although the two inquiries may seem similar, one encourages youth to reflect on internal challenges, while the other concludes that leaders are responsible for their predicament.
Therefore, young people invest their time in matters beyond their control and neglect the areas where they can make a difference based on their abilities.
Young people must align themselves to be part of the solution rather than solely expecting solutions from external sources.
The world you create is the world you leave. We must introspect and determine what our legacy will be, as we are not immortal.
In the end, it won’t matter how much salary or degrees you accumulated, but how many jobs you created and the impact you left on others in your society.
The formula is simple: you deliver the society you embody. If you radiate positivity, discipline, inspiration, and entrepreneurship, the world you live in and leave behind will bear these same qualities.
These attributes will also be passed down to the next generation. Do not anticipate leading a great life if you choose to be malevolent; only eagles understand that sustained flight in the skies is attainable.
Young people need to be nurtured to understand that the society they create is a reflection of what they offer to others.
They should expect to inherit the same world they shape during their time. The world won’t inquire about your deeds or omissions; it will mirror and reward you accordingly.
Courage and time are the standout assets of young people, but their courage will be defined by the quality and impact of their continuous improvement on society.
The needs of others outweigh personal aspirations. The day you realize that positively influencing others is more significant than your individual success, you ascend to a higher plane.
Success transcends securing the best education for your family; the individuals you influence may contribute more to society. Remember, the world you create is the world you leave.”
Bbiira Kiwanuka Nassa is the Executive Director, Recreation for Development and Peace Uganda (RDP Uganda)