It was a virtual audience of over 600 people. The occasion – seventh series of the Association of Surgeons of Uganda mentorship talk. The speaker – Prof. Emeritus Nelson Sewankambo. The topic – ‘Living a life of significance and building a lasting legacy.’ At 3:30PM, the prayer drum rolled and the show started. This happened on Friday 25th February 2022.
“I take it as a great honor to be given this opportunity to speak to you all. I spent a lot of time trying to understand how do we live and achieve a life of significance and realized that this varies from one person to another,” Prof Sewankambo started his talk.
As if performing an open surgery, he first wheeled the listeners into deep contemplation of what significance and legacy mean. To him, significance always outlasts people and keeps on giving. He cautioned listeners to shun worrying about the next get-rich scheme and rather, spend their time and energy improving the lives of people around them. In striving to live a life of significance, Prof. Sewankambo told listeners that failure is assured and is an opportunity to do better and succeed. To evade failure is to do nothing.
With the wisdom knife, he cut through examples of famous people that persevered through failure and rose to live lasting legacies. One was Abraham Lincoln, the 16th president of the United States. Lincoln failed in business; overcame the death of his fiancée; suffered a nervous breakdown; lost two congressional and senatorial races and failed to become vice-president at 47 years. Nevertheless, he was elected president of the US at age 52.
Others include: Steve Jobs, Walt Disney, J.K Rowling and Bulaimu Muwanga Kibirige (BMK), who was a Ugandan businessman, entrepreneur and hotel owner.
“Before you begin, it’s crucial to understand why you’re leaving a legacy behind and what it personally means to you. Do you want to impact your community? Your country? The world? Decide what kind of legacy you want to leave and you’ll have a map to follow,” Prof. Sewankambo advised.
Furthermore, he told listeners to hold onto their life’s values and always utilize opportunities that accost them to leave footprints in people’s lives. After one and half hours, the talk laden with real life examples, came to an end.