4 Lifestyle Habits That Will Make You Successful
Motivation & Wisdom -
Like peer pressure, habits can make you do stupid things or spur you on to achievement. Cultivating these four habits will help you become your best self.
An entire industry has sprung up around the pursuit of success, full of self-help books, motivational conferences, and decorative Etsy items with uplifting messages. But self-improvement doesn't require shelling out tons of cash for a patented and trademarked formula for success. Your best self is just a few slight adjustments away.
I, for one, know I could add quality and productivity to my day just by eating breakfast. There's no big cost. There's no formula. It's just a bowl of cereal to kickstart my mind and body each day. Too often I rush out in the morning, living on repeat, never correcting my bad habits.
Breaking (and Making) the Habit Loop
Every repetitive action that we take in our daily lives, good or bad, is a habit we've built up over time. According to Charles Duhigg, author of The Power of Habit, this is due to a three-step pattern he calls the "habit loop." The decision-making part of the brain goes into a kind of sleep mode when the habit loop kicks in, which is why we continue even problematic behaviors.
While this is great for those healthy, success-building habits, it doesn't bode well for changing negative behaviors. The good news is that there's a way to break the habit loop.
What it takes is changing the environment that normally cues up the habit loop. "If you want to quit smoking," says Duhigg, "you should stop smoking while you're on a vacation -- because all your old cues and all your old rewards aren't there anymore. So you have this ability to form a new pattern and hopefully be able to carry it over into your life."
But what are those habits that are most in need of an adjustment? Try working on these, and you'll be on your way to a more successful life:
1. Don't talk so much.
Some of the key pillars of success -- learning, building relationships, establishing connections -- have one thing in common: You'll never accomplish them if you're the only one talking. Training yourself to actually listen during a meeting will make you more effective than mentally drafting your next pronouncement.
Tom Peters, successful business author and writer of The Excellence Dividend, actually writes the word "LISTEN" on his hand as a regular reminder to pass the mic during meetings. Listening is especially important in a business setting, where salespeople tend to prepare their next pitch instead of listening to a customer. Retrain your brain to focus on what others are telling you.
2. Read as much as you can.
It may seem clichéd, but there's a reason why being well-read is considered a compliment. A study by University of Edinburgh and King's College London researchers found that there is a correlation between earlier reading capability in kids and higher cognitive function. Leisure readers even report less stress and happier lives, according to a survey by the University of Liverpool.
Even more impressive, a study published in Neurology showed that seniors who had engaged in regular mental activity like reading throughout their lives were less likely to develop the brain plaques that cause dementia and Alzheimer's, meaning that the simple act of reading may have helped keep their memories sharp in old age.
3. Give it a rest.
Why do you think Calm -- an app that features sleep stories read by narrators like Stephen Fry and Anna Acton -- was Apple's 2017 iPhone app of the year? It's all about soothing the mind and encouraging a restful state. Even Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos said in an interview with Thrive Global that he gets eight hours of sleep every night, so there's no reason you shouldn't prioritize a healthier shut-eye routine.
Some of us find catching enough Z's easier said than done, but there are some tricks that can help you reach dreamland without medication. 2920 Sleep, an online mattress retailer that focuses on improving sleep quality, recommendswriting down one bad habit that's agitating your sleep -- like too many nightcaps -- and trying to kick it for just five days. As with Peters' "LISTEN" note, the simple act of writing it down can spur you to take corrective action.
4. Rethink your relationships.
One of the greatest predictors of health, happiness, and longevity has nothing to do with quitting smoking or eating breakfast. Instead, it's about cultivating stronger, more fulfilling relationships with others.
An eight-decade, ongoing Harvard University study shows a strong correlation between healthy relationships and healthy individuals. Improving not just the quantity of your relationships but the quality of them will go a long way toward ensuring you live a long and happy life.
By taking just a few small steps, you'll be paving a clear path toward the happiness and fulfillment you've been seeking your whole life.
Genuine Act of Kindness: A Nigerian lady has taken to her Instagram handle to recount an emotional encounter she had with a soldierA Nigerian lady identified as Olanireti Adegoke Babalola (@nireti), has taken to her Instagram handle to recount an emotional encounter she had with a soldier.According to Babalola, she disclosed that the young man helped watch over her car at Apogbon area of Lagos while she went in search of a taxi for her children and their nanny. Babalola also added that Joshua Ishaya once fought with Boko Haram insurgents and lost his brother during the fight.That was not all, she revealed that Ishaya’s father is also a retired soldier. She shared his picture on her Instagram handle and thanked him for his good works.Her post reads: https://www.instagram.com/p/BqAuOJ8llXU/?utm_source=ig_share_sheet&igshid=16v76vd9mm1bpHere are some of people's comments: -
7 Things You Should Know About Life and Money According to 'Shark Tank's' Kevin O'LearyIf you haven't met the real "Mr. Wonderful," you're missing out. Kevin O'Leary is one of the most intelligent, gracious and helpful entrepreneurs I've worked with. You'll get one of the biggest favors if he gives you direct feedback of what he thinks about your business idea. He'll let you know if your idea is gold, it won't work, it needs tweaking, or you should give up.On screen, he won't tell you something nice to save your feelings. His tell-it-like-it-is approach gained him the nickname "Mr. Wonderful" on Shark Tank, but that isn't all he knows and that isn't the way he is in real lifeAfter 30 years of building businesses, keynote speaker and entrepreneur celebrity Kevin O'Leary knows what works and what doesn't for starting a business. His intuition rarely leads him astray. After chatting with him in New York this May and listening to his advice in various interviews, here are seven things you should know about life and money for startup success.1. Know how to execute.O'Leary has met thousands of entrepreneurs and heard all their pitches. What separates those with a great vision from those with great success is execution. "Vision is easy; execution is hard," These entrepreneurs know how to take an idea, set goals, take action, and learn from mistakes. The rest are just dreamers. 2. Know your weaknesses.O'Leary said, "If you're a leader and say you have no weakness, you're full of crap." The best businesses have leaders who know their weaknesses and build teams to augment the areas where they are weak.3. Know it will be hard work.Don't become an entrepreneur if you don't want to work hard and sacrifice. Due to global competition, you have to be able to work "25 hours a day, eight days a week," he told Bryan Elliott of Behind the Brand, while giving up time with your friends, family, and yourself in order to build your business. If you aren't willing to sacrifice for success, you'll be out of business because someone else will.4. Know when it isn't working.The best entrepreneurs fail a number of times before succeeding. If you aren't making money after three years, you have a hobby--not a business. You must get your customer acquisition costs below their lifetime value or your business will never make enough money to survive. You'll blow it all on advertising.5. Know your life partner.When it comes to choosing a life partner,you have to choose someone who understands the entrepreneur life, he told Inc. Being an entrepreneur means sacrificing your personal life in the short term (which may be years and years) before having freedom in the long term. If your significant other, fiancee, or spouse doesn't understand your drive and motivation, find another one.6. Know your reason.If you go into business with the main goal of making money, you will not succeed. "The whole reason to be an entrepreneur is the pursuit of freedom". Making money is the derivative of your desire to be in control of your own destiny. Freedom should always be the goal.7. Know how to spend money.If you want to make money in the long term, don't spend money on crap in the short term. Don't purchase $2.50 coffees, pay $20,000 for wedding dresses, or buy brand new cars, Instead, "Save your money, invest it, and later you can take everybody out for a great time on the interest you're making off your bonds and the dividends your stocks are paying."O'Leary is a good human, great business person, and a money mentor to millions. He walks the talk by making coffee at home, working long hours, and investing wisely. If you get one thing from his take on money, it should be this: spend little and invest the rest in your business.
Lady Who Wrote JAMB 6 Times & Got Admitted To Medical School On Her 11th Application Shares Her StoryA self-sponsored Dental student of College of Medicine of the University of Lagos, Odia Iyoha has shared her inspirational story of how she juggles through the stress and endless demands of Medical School, while running a full time business on the side.The 27 year old young Entrepreneur who already holds a first degree in Biochemistry revealed that she got admitted to Medical School on her 11th application and her 6th purchase of Jamb form!.According to her, every time she applies to any School, something always goes wrong and she ends up not getting admitted.Odia says she already lost hope and thought something would go wrong again even when sheknew she wrote the qualifying examination very well.She then concluded plans to start her natural drinks production company already before she got admitted.She revealed that she had mixed feelings when she saw the result. She was 25 at the time. She almost did not take the admission again because she felt she would be too old by the time she would be graduating from medical school.When asked how she has been coping with running a full time business and meeting the demandsof Medical School.“I won’t say it is difficult neither will I say it is easy. You just have to find your balance”Asked if the business pays her bills in medical School, she said;“Absolutely. Asides this business, I also write CVs and resumes for people. I had to stop when the demands started taking a toll on my reading time.But I was able to pay my bills from the two businesses.I also have e-books on production of different household materials which I sell. In all, I have been coping fine.”Odia says even though it has not been an easy ride for her, she is not relenting on herself becausewhat she experienced in the Labour market between 2013 when she finished her first degree and2015 when she got admitted to medical school is not encouraging at all.In her words,“I don’t want to experience it again. There is thin hope for the common man. Therate of unemployment is on a dangerous rise. Everyone is looking for how to exit the Country.People advised me to leave the Country too when I finished from the University instead of staying back but I kept my hope alive applying for jobs in major Beverage Companies while at the same time applying to medical Schools.I will continue to build my business because I want a reason to stay back in the Country and contribute to its development when I am done with medical School.If my business can attain the height I have for it, then nothing will make me run out of Nigeria to practice. I will stay back here to practice while also running my business to meet all my responsibilities. Nigeria has disappointed a lot of graduates including myself but I am keeping all hope alive that Nigeria can be great again”.On her advice to young Entrepreneurs who are finding it difficult to kick off their businesses orideas due to one challenge or the other, Odia said;“Just hit the start button wherever you are and be consistent at what you do. Start small if you can’t start big, start big if you can’t start small. No matter how you start, it would eventually be small compared to what you will achieve if you keep pushing”.On her advice to all youths, she says;“It takes you to stop you. Do not be discouraged by the situation in the Country. Just try harder. You shouldn’t give up easily when things are not going well.I know what it means to be without a job for long, I also know what it means to be frustrated but I tell you what, there is power in you.Everyone has that unique thing in them. Search yourself, go on a lone trip if possible, just search deeply.There will always be something that can help you overcome your worries buried deep within you. It takes you to dig it out. Remember, giving up is not an option”.
(VIDEO) How to Succeed in Life - Jack Ma's Ultimate Advice to Young PeopleJack Ma Yun (Chinese: 马云; pinyin: Ma Yun, [mà y̌n]; born 10 September 1964) is a Chinese business magnate, investor, and philanthropist. He is the co-founder and executive chairman of the Alibaba Group, a multinational technology conglomerate. As of August 2018, he is one of China's richest men with a net worth of US$38.6 billion, as well as one of the wealthiest people in the world. Ma's primary ideology was for an open and market driven economy.
Lets Talk: Emotional Eating; What You Need To DoEmotional eating is simply consuming food in copious amounts as a response to feelings other than hunger. If not checked, this obedience to the urge to eat more than you need, is a sure-fire way to gain weight.It’s been statistically proven that 4 out of every 10 people, eat to alter their moods.This is some real high stats.TRIGGERS OF EMOTIONAL EATING• Relaxing and turning out in front of the tv.• ANHEDONIA- a form of boredom that is difficult to satisfy and it often leads to overeating.• Comfort from a bad day or escape from an emotional setback.• Sadness can be easily mistaken for hunger, since food triggers chemical reactions in the brain linked to mood.AN EXTENSION OF THIS IS:Increase in blood pressurePleasure deficiencyEating disordersDiabetesGAINING CONTROLYou can get back in control of your emotional eating. The surprising part is, it’s not really about food at allTRY OUT THE FOLLOWING QUICK STEPS FOR A SURE-FIRE WAY TO GAINING BACK CONTROL:1. Ask yourself if that feeling you have is really hunger.2. Don’t skip your meals -have a proper breakfast, lunch, and dinner regimen.3 .Keep snacks and munchies away from your refrigerator and if you must, snack on healthy options such as Carrots or a handful of nuts.4. Never grocery shop while hungry. You will buy everything!5. Make a list of what is stressing you and make a plan to take control of the situation6. If you cannot change the situation Please see a counselor.7. Exchange your bad habits with healthyones like doing physical activities.
8 Things Successful People Do Every Day That Most People IgnoreWhen you spend time with great leaders, you start to recognize the behaviors and habits successful people all share. What's interesting is that some of these are very obvious, while other leadership traits are actually quite subtle. In fact, the best leaders make leadership look so easy that you don't even notice what they do.Here's a list of eight unspoken habits of highly effective leaders that you can adopt yourself to create the success you want in your own life.1. They strive to better themselves.You'll never find true leaders growing complacent. They're voracious learners, constantly expanding their skills and knowledge by reading, networking, or trying things.Don't underestimate the power of reading. Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates, Oprah Winfrey, Warren Buffett, and other extraordinary leaders make daily reading a big priority. Here's a list of top books you should read for business and personal success.2. They surround themselves with achievers.Leaders associate with achievers who inspire them to live a fulfilled life. Remember what entrepreneur and motivational speaker Jim Rohn once said: "You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with."It makes sense when pursuing greatness to surround yourself with people of similar character and ambition. And of course, avoid surrounding yourself with negative people.3. They accept that improvement is a process.Exceptional leaders are patient. They don't expect to achieve significant results all at once. Rather, they know that incremental steps taken each day will lead to growth over time. The best leaders don't overestimate what they can do in the short term or underestimate what they can produce over time.4. They're open to feedback.Successful people solicit input and advice along the way as part of the self-improvement process. They take responsibility for their performance and have the self-awareness to incorporate feedback.This can be feedback from people, customers, and investors. It is also important for leaders to learn from their mistakes and realize there are gifts in failure.5. They resist dogma.Strong leaders have the self-confidence to challenge their own assumptions and biases -- and those of others around them. They think for themselves and typically resist following others (which is not the same as not listening to others). Strong leaders know that biases and rigid definitions today become land mines in the future.6. They face their fears head-on.Leaders acknowledge that their ambitions usually involve some level of fear or self-doubt. Bottom line: They won't always feel good, but they move forward anyway. Driving forward in the face of fear and uncertainty is often what separates the best from the rest.7. They believe in their vision.A startup is a group of people who believe in a future that doesn't yet exist. Great leaders reach a high level of clarity around their vision and cultivate a strong-enough belief to motivate others to join the mission.8. They think long-term.The most successful entrepreneurs know better than to live and die by every day. They plan long-term, constantly visualizing future versions of themselves and their business. They know that small steps will add up to bigger things. They know how to balance present-day urgencies while protecting the future.Final WordBy identifying the habits and qualities that make great leaders, you can adopt them in your daily activity. Use the list above to focus on one of these at a time. When you're around successful people, see if you can notice each principle in action.This combination of awareness and focus will help you create habits that stick. The same approach has been very effective for me, and I'm certain it will be for you as well.
Michelle Obama shares photo from her early school days and pens down an empowering messageMichelle Obama is reflecting on the importance of good education and how it helped build her.To mark the International Day of Charity on Thursday, September 5, the former US First Lady shared a photo from her early school days and penned down an empowering message.She wrote: ‘It’s after Labor Day, so I’m thinking about all the young people heading back to school and reflecting on my own days as a student in Chicago.I learned a lot in school—how to do my multiplication tables and structure a paragraph, yes, but also how to push myself, be a good friend, and dust myself off after a failure.It’s so easy for us to take our education for granted, especially here in the United States. Right now, more than 98 million adolescent girls around the world are not in school.I believe every girl on the planet deserves the same kind of opportunities that I’ve had—a chance to fulfill her potential and pursue her dreams. We know that when we give girls a chance to learn, they’ll seize it. And when they do, our whole world benefits. Girls who go to school have healthier children, higher salaries, lower poverty rates, and they can even help boost their entire nation’s economy.So today on #WorldCharityDay, I want you to share your favorite #BackToSchool photo and to join the @girlsopportunityalliance to take action for global girls’ education. Visit the link in my bio to learn more—because the future of our world is only as bright as our girls.
22 Qualities That Make a Great LeaderFocus“It’s been said that leadership is making important but unpopular decisions. That’s certainly a partial truth, but I think it underscores the importance of focus. To be a good leader, you cannot major in minor things, and you must be less distracted than your competition. To get the few critical things done, you must develop incredible selective ignorance. Otherwise, the trivial will drown you.”--Tim Ferriss, Bestselling Author, Host of The Tim Ferriss Showpodcast Confidence“A leader instills confidence and ‘followership’ by having a clear vision, showing empathy and being a strong coach. As a female leader, to be recognized I feel I have to show up with swagger and assertiveness, yet always try to maintain my Southern upbringing, which underscores kindness and generosity. The two work well together in gaining respect.”-- Barri Rafferty,senior partner and CEO, Ketchum North AmericaTransparency“I’ve never bought into the concept of ‘wearing the mask.’ As a leader, the only way I know how to engender trust and buy-in from my team and with my colleagues is to be 100 percent authentically me -- open, sometimes flawed, but always passionate about our work. It has allowed me the freedom to be fully present and consistent. They know what they’re getting at all times. No surprises.”-- Keri Potts, Senior Director, PR, for college sports, ESPNIntegrity“Our employees are a direct reflection of the values we embody as leaders. If we’re playing from a reactive and obsolete playbook of needing to be right instead of doing what’s right, then we limit the full potential of our business and lose quality talent. If you focus on becoming authentic in all your interactions, that will rub off on your business and your culture, and the rest takes care of itself.”-- Gunnar Lovelace, Co-Founder and Co-Chief Executive Officer, Thrive MarketInspiration“People always say I’m a self-made man. But there is no such thing. Leaders aren’t self-made; they are driven. I arrived in America with no money or any belongings besides my gym bag, but I can’t say I came with nothing: Others gave me great inspiration and fantastic advice, and I was fueled by my beliefs and an internal drive and passion. That’s why I’m always willing to offer motivation -- to friends or strangers on Reddit. I know the power of inspiration, and if someone can stand on my shoulders to achieve greatness, I’m more than willing to help them up.” -- Arnold Schwarzenegger, Former Governor of CaliforniaPassion“You must love what you do. In order to be truly successful at something, you must obsess over it and let it consume you. No matter how successful your business might become, you are never satisfied and constantly push to do something bigger, better and greater. You lead by example, not because you feel like it’s what you should do, but because it is your way of life.”-- Joe Perez, Founder, TastemadeInnovation“In any system with finite resources and infinite expansion of population -- like your business, or like all of humanity -- innovation is essential for not only success but also survival. The innovators are our leaders. You cannot separate the two. Whether it is by thought, technology or organization, innovation is our only hope to solve our challenges.”-- Aubrey Marcus, Founder and CEO, OnnitPatience“Patience is really courage that’s meant to test your commitment to your cause. The path to great things is always tough, but the best leaders understand when to abandon the cause and when to stay the course. If your vision is bold enough, there will be hundreds of reasons why it ‘can’t be done’ and plenty of doubters. A lot of things have to come together -- external markets, competition, financing, consumer demand and always a little luck -- to pull off something big.”-- Dan Brian, COO, WhipClipWonkiness“Understanding the underlying numbers is the best thing I’ve done for my business. As we have a subscription-based service, the biggest impact on our bottom line was to decrease our churn rate. Being able to nudge that number from 6 percent to 4 percent meant a 50 percent increase in the average customer’s lifetime value. We would not have known to focus on this metric without being able to accurately analyze our data.” -- Sol Orwell, Cofounder, Examine.comStoicism“It’s inevitable: We’re going to find ourselves in some real shit situations, whether they’re costly mistakes, unexpected failures or unscrupulous enemies. Stoicism is, at its core, accepting and anticipating this in advance, so that you don’t freak out, react emotionally and aggravate things further. Train our minds, consider the worst-case scenarios and regulate our unhelpful instinctual responses—that’s how we make sure shit situations don’t turn into fatal resolutions.” -- Ryan Holiday, Author of The Obstacle is the Way and Former Director of Marketing, American ApparelAuthenticity“It’s true that imitation is one of the greatest forms of flattery, but not when it comes to leadership—and every great leader in my life, from Mike Tomlin to Olympic ski coach Scott Rawles, led from a place of authenticity. Learn from others, read autobiographies of your favorite leaders, pick up skills along the way... but never lose your authentic voice, opinions and, ultimately, how you make decisions.”-- Jeremy Bloom, Cofounder and CEO, IntegrateOpen-mindedness “One of the biggest myths is that good business leaders are great visionaries with dogged determination to stick to their goals no matter what. It’s nonsense. The truth is, leaders need to keep an open mind while being flexible, and adjust if necessary. When in the startup phase of a company, planning is highly overrated and goals are not static. Your commitment should be to invest, develop and maintain great relationships.”-- Daymond John, Founder and CEO, The Shark Group and FUBUDecisiveness“In high school and college, to pick up extra cash I would often referee recreational basketball games. The mentor who taught me how to officiate gave his refs one important piece of advice that translates well into the professional world: ‘Make the call fast, make the call loud and don’t look back.’ In marginal situations, a decisively made wrong call will often lead to better long-term results and a stronger team than a wishy-washy decision that turns out to be right.”-- Scott Hoffman, Founding Partner,Folio Literary ManagementPersonableness“We all provide something unique to this world, and we can all smell when someone isn’t being real. The more you focus on genuine connections with people, and look for ways to help them -- rather than just focus on what they can do for you -- the more likable and personable you become. This isn’t required to be a great leader, but it is to be a respected leader, which can make all the difference in your business.”-- Lewis Howes, New York Times best-selling author of The School of GreatnessEmpowerment“Many of my leadership philosophies were learned as an athlete. My most successful teams didn’t always have the most talent but did have teammates with the right combination of skills, strengths and a common trust in each other. To build an ‘overachieving’ team, you need to delegate responsibility and authority. Giving away responsibilities isn’t always easy. It can actually be harder to do than completing the task yourself, but with the right project selection and support, delegating can pay off in dividends. It is how you truly find people’s capabilities and get the most out of them.” -- Shannon Pappas, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Beachbody LIVEPositivity“In order to achieve greatness, you must create a culture of optimism. There will be many ups and downs, but the prevalence of positivity will keep the company going. But be warned: This requires fearlessness. You have to truly believe in making the impossible possible.” -- Jason Harris, President and CEO, MekanismGenerosity“My main goal has always been to offer the best of myself. We all grow -- as a collective whole -- when I’m able to build up others and help them grow as individuals.”-- Christopher Perilli, Creative Director, Pixel MobbPersistence“A great leader once told me, ‘Persistence beats resistance.’ And after working at Facebook, Intel and Microsoft and starting my own company, I’ve learned two major lessons: All great things take time, and you must persist no matter what. That’s what it takes to be a leader: willingness to go beyond where others will stop.” -- Noah Kagan, Chief Sumo, Sumo GroupInsightfulness“It takes insight every day to be able to separate that which is really important from all the incoming fire. It’s like wisdom -- it can be improved with time, if you’re paying attention, but it has to exist in your character. It’s inherent. When your insight is right, you look like a genius. And when your insight is wrong, you look like an idiot.”-- Raj Bhakta, Founder, WhistlePigCommunication“If people aren’t aware of your expectations, and they fall short, it’s really your fault for not expressing it to them. The people I work with are in constant communication, probably to a fault. But communication is a balancing act. You might have a specific want or need, but it’s super-important to treat work as a collaboration. We always want people to tell us their thoughts and ideas -- that’s why we have all these very talented people working with us.”-- Kim Kurlanchik Russen, Partner, TAO GroupAccountability“It’s a lot easier to assign blame than to hold yourself accountable. But if you want to know how to do it right, learn from financial expert Larry Robbins. He wrote a genuinely humble letter to his investors about his bad judgment that caused their investments to falter. He then opened up a new fund without management and performance fees -- unheard of in the hedge fund world. This is character. This is accountability. It’s not only taking responsibility; it’s taking the next step to make it right.”-- Sandra Carreon-John, Director, NikeRestlessness“It takes real leadership to find the strengths within each person on your team and then be willing to look outside to plug the gaps. It’s best to believe that your team alone does not have all the answers -- because if you believe that, it usually means you’re not asking all the right questions.”-- Nick Woolery, Vice President of Brand Marketing, Stance Socks
Chimamanda Adichie Wins 2018 PEN Pinter Prize For ‘Outstanding’ Literary WorkChimamanda Adichie has received the 2018 PEN Pinter prize for her outstanding work of literary merit that has defined the truth in human lives and societies.The critically acclaimed author received the coveted prize at an award-giving ceremony, which took place at the British Library in the United Kingdom, on Tuesday.Adichie was selected by this year’s judges, Inua Ellams, Philippe Sands, Antonia Fraser and Chair of English PEN and Chair of Judges, Maureen Freely.She is the first African to have clinched the award which is focused on defending and promoting freedom of expression, while removing barriers to literature.In her acceptance, Adichie said she feels honoured to have received the prize, which was established in 2009 in memory of the Nobel-winning playwright Harold Pinter.“I admired Harold Pinter’s talent, his courage, his lucid dedication to telling his truth, and I am honoured to be given an award in his name,” she said.At the ceremony, Adichie named Waleed Abulkhair, a lawyer and human rights activist, as the 2018 International Writer of Courage, a title awarded by the PEN Pinter winner each year.Congratulating the Saudi Arabian lawyer and activist, she said: I am proud to share this year’s PEN Pinter Prize with activist, lawyer and writer Waleed Abulkhair.“Waleed has dedicated his life to holding the Saudi authorities accountable for human rights abuses. He has dedicated his life to speaking out, to supporting the victims of those abuses.“Waleed, like Harold Pinter, has shown a lucid dedication to telling his truth. But rather than being lauded for this dedication, Waleed has paid a heavy price – 15 years behind bars.“I am deeply proud to share this prize with Waleed and I hope that this small act of solidarity will bring him some comfort, and will remind him that his struggle has not been forgotten, nor will it be in vain.”