• American journalist Charles Duhigg and Charlie Rocket emphasise the value of positive habits in our lives at the 11th annual International Government Communication Forum 

Sharjah: Having the willpower to succeed and transforming it into a habit can drive people to reach for their dreams and more. These insightful and inspiring messages by two globally renowned motivational speakers, Charles Duhigg and Charlie Rocket, set the tone for the second and concluding day of the 11th International Government Communication Forum (IGCF), held in Expo Centre Sharjah.

American journalist and author of bestsellers like The Power of Habit and Smarter, Faster, Better... Secrets of Production in Life and Work, Duhigg, noted during his talk: “If we understand our own habits, if we understand how to make ourselves feel like we are in control, and if we have teammates and leaders who teach us how to take control of our behaviours and fully believe we are in control of our lives, then we become the best versions of ourselves”.

“That is what governments can do, what leaders of businesses and society can do,” he firmly added, stressing the key role and responsibility of society including parents, educational institutions and mentors to teach children how they can develop and strengthen their willpower from an early age.  

“The way we teach them about will power is by teaching them how to make it into a habit,” Charles explained during his talk titled ‘The Power of Habits and the Secrets of Productivity’ which revolved around identifying simple habits and little life changes that can serve as powerful tools of productivity and drive individuals to continued success. 

Taking attendees on a journey of interesting discoveries made by neuroscience and the psychology of habit formation, Duhigg simplified the concepts and shared how they can be practically applied in our day-to-day lives to succeed with the least stress and sacrifices of what we care about, figure out the best uses of our energy, intelligence, and time, and seize opportunities with minimal effort.

Choose your dreams

Meanwhile, Charlie Jabaley, more popularly known as ‘Charlie Rocket’, shared his moving life story of how despite hitting rock bottom and being depressed at 305 lbs with a brain tumour, there was one thing that kept him going: his dream of being an athlete.

The Nike athlete proudly shared with the audience during his inspirational talk titled ‘Achieving dreams is not impossible’, that over the course of the next 12 months, he ran 4 marathons, completed an ironman, lost 125 pounds, and reversed his brain tumour. His dream saved his life, and he decided to dedicate the rest of his life to making dreams come true for others in need of a miracle.

He noted that with his strong determination to overcome any adversity and his fearless attitude that made him go against what other people considered unrealistic, catapulted him to be where he is now. His relentless belief in his dreams and in himself is what enabled him to achieve not just his personal goals but also help others through his Dream Machine Foundation, a non-profit that makes inspiring, life-changing dreams come true for stuck, hopeless people.

“Dreams are something that connect each and every one of us,” Charlie said, adding, “and if you really and truly believe in the power of your dreams, you will definitely do some crazy things to make it happen.”

Charlie added: “We need to try and get people to understand that good news is something that we should want and crave. When the younger generation wants positivity and support companies that support people’s lives, it becomes our collective responsibility to help inspire and change in this world because good news spreads faster.”