by Dr Charles Margerison
President of the Amazing People Club
Why is Christmas celebrated on the 25th of December? Well, the first recording of the event was in AD 336. Emperor Constantine of the Roman Empire was based in the town of York, UK about that time. He converted to the Christian religion and declared the 25th of December a holy day.
Mosaic of Emperor Constantine in the Hagia Sophia,Istanbul.
Now, that may sound a bit odd as it was in the middle of winter and as it was cold, there was not much to celebrate. However, we have more than made up for it in recent years, with much feasting.
We have Pope Julius 1st to thank for that. He made the 25th of December an official holy day of the Catholic Church. With the backing of the Emperor and the Pope, the day became a holiday as well as a religious day.
In the many years since, the tradition has been practised in many countries that have adopted Christian beliefs. Of course, there are various interpretations of such beliefs. Nevertheless, it can be said that the Ten Commandments have stood the test of time.
Therefore, it is interesting to look at amazing people who have, through their actions, shown what the commandments meant to them.
Helen Keller and Anne Sullivan
Early in her life, Helen lost her sight and her hearing due to an illness. She lived in a world of silence and darkness, until a remarkable lady called Anne Sullivan arrived. She became the main carer for Helen and over a period of 49 years, she guided her. During those years, Helen developed her ability to understand and to communicate. She went on to become the leading advocate for blind and deaf people. Her example of making the best of one’s life and helping others is inspirational. Helen Keller and Anne Sullivan showed what the Ten Commandments meant in practice.
Early in life, Albert discovered that he had musical talent. He had the opportunity for a good education and could have lived a comfortable life as a concert performer and professor of music. He chose to give up that kind of life to go and live with lepers in Africa. He started a new career by qualifying as a doctor. His aim was to treat the ill and injured where there was no access to modern medicine. He went to Lambarene in Equatorial Africa and set up a small and makeshift hospital. For many years, he spent Christmas Day treating patients and trying to convert them to Christianity.
Having had the experience of seeing his father go to prison for not paying his debts, Charles had to work in a factory to support his family. He endured long hours in bad conditions. Around him in the streets of London, he became aware that there were many families who were poor. He realized that it was necessary to change the laws. And so it was that he began to write novels about the appalling conditions. One of them was called ‘A Christmas Carol’ in which Jacob Marley visits the mean and miserable Ebenezer Scrooge and transforms him. In the novel, which is still popular, Charles Dickens shows the importance of the Christian commandments associated with loving and helping others.
So, with all of the commercial aspects of Christmas, does it still inspire people? It is a time when presents are exchanged and family and friends meet. It is a time to reflect on some of the basic commandments of life, whether they be Christian or self-made. They are guidelines by which mankind in the western world has lived, to provide some order.
Whether you are a Christian believer or not, what is your opinion of this time of year?
Amazing People are great examples of individuals who have used their time on this earth well, to contribute to the betterment of the world we live in. There is much we can learn from them. Christmas is a time to reflect on our own lives and our own commandments and establish plans for a new year!
Developing and Exploiting Opportunities
by Dr Charles Margerison
Amazing People Club
Richard Branson has done it. So, has Donald Trump. Before them, Walt Disney did it. Elizabeth Arden and Amelia Earhart in their different ways also did it. They had one thing in common in that they all took their opportunities.
What can we learn to improve our own chances of success?
The first thing to note is that all those mentioned identified their own strengths. In doing so, they realized they needed to find other people who could assist them in areas their weaker areas. Second, they thought through what deals they wanted to take and which to refuse, if it was not on their game plan.
Both Richard Branson and Donald Trump have negotiated some very good deals. They saw opportunities in markets and mobilised plans for creating wealth and value by giving their clients services and products they wanted.
Walt Disney was more of an artistic developer than an asset negotiator. He took his illustrations, converted them to animations, and created films. He had faith in his ideas and sold the message to others.
Elizabeth Arden watched closely what other people were doing in the cosmetics business. She decided that better products and service could be offered. With elegance and determined effort, she succeeded to grasp her opportunities.
Sir Winston Churchill, the great Prime Minister of Great Britain, said that; ‘A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity, an optimist see the opportunity in every difficulty.’
In effect, opportunities are in the mind. If you tune in to what people are saying and doing, you will hear them express needs and want. As a result, you can perceive opportunities. Many businesses have been based on an idea that developed from a short conversation.
Great examples jump from the pages of history. Columbus saw the opportunity to set sail on voyages to new lands, but the ‘flat earthists’ told him that he would never return. Marco Polo was offered the opportunity to travel with his father and brought back riches and tales of the orient. In more modern times, William Boeing saw one of the first planes to fly and decided there was an opportunity to build a business. Now, we fly around the world in Boeing planes. Henry Ford was born on a farm, but found the power of machines when he went to work in a factory. He perceived people wanted to travel and introduced the mass production of cars.
These are well known examples, but in every village, town and city there are people who have perceived an opportunity and developed it. Many of the best initiatives have been at the voluntary level, where local people have recognized a community need and responded, especially with voluntary and not for profit work. That is how most sports clubs developed in such places. In addition, people developed small business and shops to cater for local needs.
So, the spirit of opportunity and meeting with others to develop it is there in every community. The problems often occur when an organization becomes so established that it loses the original spark that created it. Instead of looking for new opportunities, those employed in the organization restrict their jobs to the role descriptions given.
That is when innovation declines and the organization and the individuals within it miss opportunities. As a consultant to medium and large size organizations, I have heard such complaints many times
. As a result, the more enterprising people look elsewhere to develop their talent and opportunities.
Analysis is important but action is essential. So, assess your situation.
Your Job – Does the organization encourage you to search for and develop opportunities? Think of specific examples and see if action was taken. If not, was it because you did not promote the opportunity or did others not act on your proposal?
A good way to approach opportunities is to suggest a research project on the issues and a small scale test on the information and ideas emerging. The aim is to build confidence at all levels in the new idea.
Too often opportunities are missed. In medical practice, particularly, some of the best ideas were ignored or rejected. When Dr Louis Pasteur discovered that bacteria were a key factor in the transmission of disease many people ridiculed his proposal. As a result, opportunities were lost. The same happened when Dr Fleming developed penicillin to attack harmful bacteria. His ideas received a variable reception and years where lost in the war on disease, as opportunities for solving the problems were missed.
So, if you see an opportunity find a way of testing it. Then, involve people who have political influence to gain the money and resources to make it work.
Your Hobbies – Opportunities here should be more under your control. However, I have met many people who say that they have missed chances to develop their interests, which they regret. They have excuses, such as they did not have enough time. One answer is to change your priorities to make the time.
Opportunities rarely stand still. If we do not take them, they will disappear. Therefore, develop a plan to develop your hobbies, as if they were a business and exploit the opportunities that you find.
Giving and Receiving
In terms of opportunities are you a giver or a receiver? You can of course be both. If you say to someone,’ it could be useful if you came to a meeting we are having,’ then you are giving a strong clue that an opportunity may arise. Some people act and attend. Others are slow and miss the chance.
To be a receiver of opportunities listen for the cues and clues people offer. They will not always be obvious. There is an old saying that ‘if you never go you will never know’. You will be offered various opportunities and if you know the direction you want to go then you will be better able to judge which invitations should be accepted.
So, either you take opportunities that are given to you, or you create your own. Time will fly. Those who set objectives and keep to them are more likely to make the best of chances, otherwise they will fail for the want of organization.
The great philosopher Seneca said: ‘Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.’
So, to start your preparation, make a list of the areas where you see opportunities that you wish to pursue with regard to both business and hobbies. To follow up on a planned approach, with examples from amazing people who succeeded in taking their opportunities, please go www.amazingpeopleclub.com
The Amazing People Club welcomes comments/feedback and is actively working to explore links with co-venture partners and/or organizations that may be interested in licensing or working with our Amazing products. Please contact email@example.com
Olympics – Amazing New Products
Olympic Fever At The Amazing People Club!
We are pleased to announce that in addition to our ‘Amazing Olympians’ ebook and audio, our new interactive multi-media iTextbooks ‘Amazing Olympic Stories’ Volumes 1-3 have just been launched in Apple’s iTunes Store. The Olympic story goes beyond those that compete and it is this story that often remains untold. In this iTextbook format, this unique collection is revealed in an entirely new way, with each chapter exploring life stories of different amazing people who played key roles in the history of the Olympic Games. The titles feature Pierre de Coubertin, William Penny Brookes, Fanny Blankers-Koen, Jesse Owens and many others. View ‘Amazing Olympic Stories Vol 1’ in iTunes HERE .
Teachers, Students, Parents – be sure to also visit our Education Page to download the FREE ‘Amazing Olympics’ resources and ‘Amazing People Toolkit’
If you would like to know more please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
We are proud to announce the birth of our new podcasting channel on Podmatic. Please visit and be enthralled as you listen to Charles Margerison tell you the story behind the stories. Listen to Charles Dickens, William Shakespeare and many other Amazing People recount their experiences and life stories. Gain a very personal and unique insight into how iconic people succeeded despite challenges and set backs. Discover how to become an amazing person yourself and so much more. We will be making regular updates so please do drop by and have a listen and be sure to follow us so you don’t miss out on these rivetting broadcasts. To access please click HERE.
CELEBRATE MOTHERS EVERYWHERE THIS MAY
Be inspired by ANNE BURRAS
An Amazing American Mother
America celebrates Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King, Amelia Earhart and many others who have contributed to building the nation. They have monuments and memorabilia named after them.
So, why has Anne Burras been ignored? She is one of the most important women in American history. At the age of 14, she arrived in Jamestown in 1608, as the maid of Mrs Forrest. They were the only two women amongst 200 men. Mrs Forrest died, soon after arrival, and teenager Anne had to fend for herself.
Not for long however, as John Leyden befriended her and they were the first couple to be married in the Jamestown colony. Anne gave birth to four daughters and raised the first colonial family in America. Therefore, Anne Burras, or Mrs Leyden as she became known, has the right to be called the founding European Mother of America.
It is time that Anne Burras, the maidservant who became the founding colonial mother, is recognized.
Why not build a statue to her memory?
Why not have a national holiday in her name, representing what women have done to develop America?
Why not make her a folk heroine whose story is told in every school?
Indeed, why is Anne Burras not already famous?
Read Her Story in AMAZING MOTHERS
Dr Charles Margerison – Founder – The Amazing People Club
INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY is celebrated worldwide on 8 March. It is a day to celebrate Amazing Women all over the world. The Amazing People Club has teamed with the International Women’s Day organisation and you will find out about all we are doing HERE.
10 March is Harriet Tubman Day
She is one of our Amazing Women and we are offering her inspirational story for free this month.
As the countdown to IWD continues, The Amazing People Club is giving away the inspirational story of HARRIET TUBMAN. Available 1-31 March in audio and ebook format. To access CLICK HERE , submit your email address and enjoy! A simple, pain–free process and we won’t bombard you with emails etc.
HARRIET TUBMAN – An amazing woman and civil rights leader. Nicknamed ‘Moses’, her brave and heroic efforts led her people from the wilderness. Her campaign for women’s rights was trailblazing and nothing short of inspirational. Instead of enjoying her freedom in safety, she became the first woman to lead an armed Union Army expedition. She is famed for the raid on the Combahee River which led to the freeing of over 700 slaves. Explore her life in the form of a BioView®, which is a short biographical story, similar to an interview. It is as if she is sitting right beside you and telling her own story!
Have you ever wondered what Marie Curie’s life must have been like? Or how Coco Chanel’s life took her from rags to haute couture? Or what inspired Ella Fitzgerald to become “The First Lady of Song”? Celebrate these and many other amazing women this International Women’s Day with The Amazing People Club!
We would also like to introduce our ‘Amazing Women’ title. A ‘MUST HAVE’ for every woman! To further celebrate women all over the world, this riveting title is being offered at a hugely discounted price of only $US4.99 for the month of March (US only). Available in ebook and audio format and soon coming in interactive ibook format, where you can gain even more in-depth insights into the lives of these characters.
Today, more and more women become doctors, politicians, entrepreneurs, scientists, financial advisers and take on other roles outside the home. This of course, has certainly not always been the case.
When running out of the door to pick up the kids, to go to work or meet a friend, you pick up your smartphone or iPad. You have places to go and people to meet but, what will you tell them when you arrive?
Why not capture their attention? Why not say you have just met some of the world’s most amazing women? This series about amazing women enables you to get up close and personal with amazing women and learn how to be even more amazing yourself. So, when you next head out, why not travel in the company of amazing women!
Why women should have been given the right to vote may seem obvious today, however, it was controversial once upon a time. There were many Amazing Women involved in the struggle to achieve such equality despite challenges. This collection includes the life stories of many heroines and trailblazers, who made outstanding contributions. Be inspired and encouraged to follow your dreams. Embrace their great stories and their determination to continue on, regardless of how difficult the journey.
How do you use your time?
You can discover how these amazing women lived, loved and worked in their own distinct ways. They believed in what they had to offer, and used their time well. We can learn key lessons from each one of them.
All Books Review International reviewer, Cindy Taylor has recently reviewed this title and she says:-
“Amazing Women provides an effective tool for people to learn without feeling overwhelmed. What a wonderful inspiration to women of all ages everywhere in the world but especially to the up and coming female success stories. Anyone lacking in confidence, but especially females, can read this book and come away with the knowledge that any dream is possible. I would love to see this book in the school systems to be utilized as a tool to encourage girls who don’t have the courage to chase their dreams. Turning the last page of this book, I was left with the knowledge that the battle was worth it and must continue!”
Full Review Link: HERE
Title: Amazing Women
The series is published by the Amazing People Club®, which was founded in 2006 by international management psychologist Dr Charles Margerison. We are an international digital publishing company. Our distribution partners are Hachette Book Group (HBG), a leading trade USA publisher, Ebsco, the world’s largest distributor to libraries, and Global Grid for Learning, a leading digital content broker and supply network for education markets worldwide. The Amazing People ebook, audio, itextbooks and audio-visual series brings readers ‘face to face’ with many of the world’s most inspiring and influential characters. As a digitally-based publishing company, with a huge library of high value eBook, ibook, audio, illustration and video assets, we understand the learning and development applications.
All the stories in the series are revealed through BioViews®; a newly-developed concept in storytelling that combines biography with virtual interview. The lives of amazing people can be explored through their achievements, challenges and experiences in a very personal way. The unique format and flow enables each person’s story to come alive, as if it is being personally told to you, reflecting their interests, emotions and passions. These are inspirational stories that can help people achieve their ambitions in their own journey through life. Our mission is to provide stories that will inspire, educate and entertain.
If this sounds interesting and you would like to know more, please do get in touch. We are always keen to explore opportunities with organisations where our respective synergies are mirrored in many ways.
Would you like to have met Abraham Lincoln and had a discussion about his life and career? Can you imagine what George Washington would have said if he was interviewed about his achievements?
This is quite an important week in terms of reflection on past American Politicians. With 20 February celebrating ‘President’s Day’ and 22 February celebrating the birth of George Washington in 1732.
WHAT DO YOU REALLY KNOW ABOUT AMERICA’S PAST LEADERS?
Introducing unique individual or collections of audio stories, where you will experience how these people lived, worked and loved. There are some stand-out presidents in American History. From the first President George Washington, to Lincoln, Jefferson and Franklin, these influential characters helped shape the nation we know today.
GEORGE WASHINGTON grew up in the English colony of Virginia. He was tall and strong and respected by his friends and colleagues as a good leader. As he grew older, George saw how England took advantage of the American colonies and he didn’t like it. When the colonies declared their independence, George was chosen to lead their army as its general. When the colonies finally won their freedom, George was elected to lead the great new nation as its first president. Discover what inspired him and get to know his great story.
ABRAHAM LINCOLN was arguably one of the most influential of all the American Presidents, who played a crucial role in the abolition of slavery. His inspiring life story has been explored in many ways, but you can now gain a very personal insight via these audio stories.
BENJAMIN FRANKLIN is perhaps the most famous of all the Founding Fathers. His great story comes to life as you travel with him from his early years, as part of a large family, to his time at the printing company with his brother James. This ultimately resulted in his journey to England and France, a turn of events that would define the rest of his life. His inspirational story is unfurled in this audio story.
Their lives have been documented time and time again, however, ‘Amazing American Politicians – Vol 1, is a new collection of audio stories that now brings them to life through BioViews. It is as if they have come back and given an account of their life, explaining their major challenges and achievements in the context of their family life and society. Their stories may also be purchased as individual eBooks or audios, simply click on their names above to view individual titles or visit THE AMAZING PEOPLE CLUB to explore the entire series.
BioViews are short biographical stories, similar to interviews. These unique stories provide an easy way of learning about amazing people who made major contributions and changed our world. At The Amazing People Club, we aim to provide stories that will not only educate, but will aslo inspire and entertain. We hope that these great tales of achievement despite challenges and set backs, will help you achieve your ambitions in your journey through life.
All the very best,
From The Amazing People Club Team