I wrote these books because I've had so many experiences, challenges and interesting events in my life that I felt compelled to share. By sharing these experiences, perhaps it will be an inspiration for others to do the same. I wrote the first book, “Ready for the Next Round: Tapping the Power Within” because I felt it was time to take a good look at myself and define who I am. Writing this book helped me find my purpose in life and that is to be free and help others find freedom. I also learned that I couldn't free anyone. Freedom is something individuals have to do for themselves.
“Ready for the Next Round: Tapping the Power Within”, 2nd edition, is a revised edition of my first book, “Ready for the Next Round: Tapping the Power Within.” The second edition was concerned with clarification and defining who I am. If you do not define yourself, someone else will do it for you and it may not represent you at all. Remember, only you can know who you really are. During the 1970s, there was a television program called "The Newlywed Game." On this program, married couples learned that they didn't know very much about each other. Likewise, there are people who claim they know you, but in reality, they have no idea.
I achieved many goals in life, in spite of being told I could not because of my natural attributes such as my skin color, height, weight or that I was not intelligent enough. I proved them all wrong by going ahead and achieving those goals anyway. When I achieved my goals, it angered many people. They wanted me to maintain their perception of me. Sometimes people want to see you as a person they can look down upon.
I also wrote this second edition because I have since learned that from the time we enter our mother's womb to the time we die, we are trying to get "Ready for the Next Round." We want to get out of her belly and onto her lap. From her lap, we get on the floor and crawl. When we are strong enough and feel ready, we begin to walk and talk. During the next round, we began developing a personality where we want to be accepted and liked by others. These rounds become challenging because there are things that happen to us before we are born that preclude us from being like everyone else. These are things that are completely out of our control. We don't have control of our height, weight, race, gender, physical or mental condition, whether our parents are rich or poor, educated/uneducated or abusive. These are rounds we have to learn to get through in order to be a part of the rest of the world and survive.
I love and admire singer/songwriter, Stevie Wonder. He was born blind and he learned to work his way through the rounds of life by accepting the fact that he was blind. He discovered the options he had in spite of his blindness.
While writing this second edition, it became clear to me that pain is inevitable. We will all experience pain at some point in our lives, but suffering is optional. Stevie could have sat crying and complaining about his condition and spent his life asking for handouts and feeling sorry for himself, but he chose to accept his blindness and focus on what he could do rather than what he couldn't do. Suffering was not his choice. Being ready for the next round can relieve or even eliminate suffering.
Maurice Hamilton is a retired New York City high school administrator, motivational speaker and author who resides in North Carolina.