A Letter to you from…


If you can keep your head when all about you   

    Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,   

If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,

    But make allowance for their doubting too;   

If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,

    Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,

Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,

    And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise:


If you can dream—and not make dreams your master;   

    If you can think—and not make thoughts your aim;   

If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster

    And treat those two impostors just the same;   

If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken

    Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,

Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,

    And stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools:


If you can make one heap of all your winnings

    And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,

And lose, and start again at your beginnings

    And never breathe a word about your loss;

If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew

    To serve your turn long after they are gone,   

And so hold on when there is nothing in you

    Except the Will which says to them: ‘Hold on!’


If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,   

    Or walk with Kings—nor lose the common touch,

If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,

    If all men count with you, but none too much;

If you can fill the unforgiving minute

    With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,   

Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,   

    And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son!


If you haven’t read this before, well now you have. I never thought of it as a master piece but it captured the hearts of many people. I wrote this for my son John. I was inspired by my friend Leander Starr Jameson, the Scots-born colonial politician and adventurer responsible for what has been deemed the Jameson raid that led to the Second Boer War. He was an amazing character and I knew we all had something to learn from him. How he won his life when he was imprisoned and then fought his way back to Cape Colony is South Africa and eventually became the Prime Minister.

I want you to know that life is precious and things that are precious come with a price. For life, we have many challenges and the worst of all is it can make you go crazy. Honestly some of you blokes have to know of what I’m preaching here about. You see life has its own way of operating. Just like we all have our ways and attitudes. When you want it to be sunny, it starts to rain and sometimes when you want it to be sunny, it stays sunny. Funny isn’t it? In this journey we have other mates with whom we travel and there are many barriers to overcome and many rocky avenues. That is why this writing of mine I believe can be helpful and maybe it should be your anthem for life.

Humans are funny creatures you see, they tend to cover their faults and sugar coat their lives and always find an excuse to escape a situation they do not like facing. And that is why you should be strong enough not to lose your head when you are being blamed and framed for a fault. It teaches you to endure things in this world. You should have faith in yourself and never for one second doubt you, because everyone else is indefinitely prone to doubt you. Don’t deal with liars or start backstabbing each other. Give love and never be a part of hate. There are people who test your nerve, keep poking you until you catch fire. Be patient, it is patience that makes it easier to win this game.

Dreaming is a part of your big journey and where you want to be in life. But remember staying awake and walking towards that dream should be the goal. Be able to adjust the sails and travel this life, and don’t make dreams your master. We never know what life has in store for us. You will win and you will lose several times; if you don’t lose you will never know what it is to win. Always bear in mind that we should be grounded at both points, nothing lasts long. You will see what you’ve spoken being turned in to what you never thought it would be, don’t lose your grip. This is a journey and these are incidents and phases you meet. What if you lose everything you’ve built? Your relationships are falling apart, your business seems to be losing its vibe; you have to patch it up, move on and rebuild.

If you feel you’ve lost everything you everything that mattered to you in life. Stop for a minute and breathe. Even when you know you are in the verge of losing your head, don’t give up. Keep fighting and rebuilt from the beginning. It is a journey so keep travelling. It’s your will which matters when you’ve got nothing left; the ability to pick yourself up when the whole world is crumbling beside you. Hold on!

Treat anyone you know equal, don’t lose your virtue. Greed, jealousy, hatred and anger are what make you uncommon; don’t fall in to that category. If you can bear the pain for just 60 seconds and pass the moment, it is possible for you to conquer this world because you are great as who you are.

Have a safe journey,
Rudyard Kipling


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