Nelson Mandela was a legend, known affectionately by South Africans as “Madiba.” He fought tirelessly for democracy and civil rights in South Africa, spending 27 years in prison for his beliefs. After his release, he continued to work for peace and reconciliation, ultimately becoming the country’s first democratically elected president. Madiba’s legacy is hope and inspiration, and his example continues to strengthen those fighting for justice worldwide. We are forever grateful for his leadership and courage. 

On July 18th, we celebrate the life and legacy of Nelson Mandela. A man who devoted his life to the pursuit of justice and equality, Mandela is an inspirational figure for people worldwide. As we reflect on his life and achievements, we are reminded of the importance of working towards a more just and equitable society. Mandela believed that every person deserves to be treated with dignity and respect, regardless of race or background. This belief inspired his work in campaigning for equal rights for all people in South Africa. 

In 1994, he was elected as the country’s first black president, and his election was a symbol of hope for many that a better future was possible. Today, on his birthday, we honor Mandela’s memory by recommitting ourselves to working towards his vision of a fairer world for all.

One of the most important things people can learn from Nelson Mandela was how a conviction could make a person larger than life. Having confidence in anything that you do is very important. Not only would it affirm whatever you’re standing for in life, but it would also help you carry on despite problems and hardships. Nelson Mandela exemplified the power of standing up to your convictions in his life.  

Another thing that makes Nelson Mandela an iconic leader is his love for his country and race. Showing an early interest in African culture and history fueled his passion for blacks and South Africa. His love for his country and race pushed him to fight for black rights. While there were tough days, he persevered and ultimately accomplished his vision of South Africa, devoid of racial discrimination. If people would begin to love their nation and lineage as Nelson Mandela did, there’s no real reason why nations won’t flourish.

Nelson Mandela also stood out as a leader because of his remarkable compassion. When he became president of South Africa, it would have been easy for him to act vengefully towards whites. After all, he and his allies are the victims of the various atrocities committed by the apartheid regime. However, he recognized that doing so could only worsen things and further increase the divide between blacks and whites. So what he did is to show compassion toward the whites. While improving the status of blacks in the state was his top concern, he ensured that whites’ rights were still kept. This approach ultimately led the country to the state of unity it enjoys.

Last but not least, Nelson Mandela stands out as a bastion of world peace and equality. He is considered in South Africa as “the father of the nation” due to his widespread contributions to helping the country to become united once and for all. Besides being a peace icon in his native South Africa, he is also considered a global crusader for world peace. He is not afraid to speak his mind on several issues and is more than willing to go the extra mile to ensure an agreement between conflicting parties without resorting to violent means.

Mandela also learned a powerful lesson when he left prison after serving 27 years there. He knew how to forgive and let go of the past. He once said, “As I walked out the door toward the gate that would lead to my freedom, I knew if I didn’t leave my bitterness and hatred behind, I’d still be in prison.” He understood that he would only lock himself into a self-imposed prison by holding onto bitterness. He also said, “Resentment is like drinking poison and hoping it will kill your enemies.”  

Holding onto bitterness will only hurt you by preventing you from moving forward and clouding your judgment. Focusing on what could have been will only keep your mind stuck in an unchangeable past. Instead, follow Mandela’s lead by accepting what happened, no matter how unpleasant, and move on to more substantial and better possibilities. 

Because of these factors, Nelson Mandela is considered one of the most remarkable men of the 20th century. His life is a testament to the transforming power of courage and compassion. He is one of the best role models people from different walks of life can have, as he’s an exceptional blend of character, action, and class. He may have been gone now, but his spirit and legacy should live on for eternity.

In 2009, Nelson Mandela’s birthday (July 18) was declared Mandela Day, an international day to celebrate the South African leader’s legacy and to promote global peace. According to the Nelson Mandela Foundation, the annual event is meant to inspire and encourage citizens worldwide to give back the way that Mandela has throughout his lifetime. Like Mandela, you shouldn’t be daunted by what life dishes you. You may be in a different predicament from the South African patriot, but you could always follow his tracks. But, as you’ve read, the path to becoming a revolutionary legend wasn’t precisely paved for him. It was his initiative to rewrite his fate. He knew he had a long way to go, but he was willing to embark on the journey. By believing in himself, he could pull the almost impossible off.

Nelson Mandela is important to all of us regardless of where we live. Our work is not over as long as inequalities, racism, and other social injustices exist. I am thankful for Nelson Mandela’s work, strength, and courage to stand for the truth. He dedicated his life to the fight for justice and equality, and his legacy continues to inspire people worldwide. His example reminds us that it is always possible to change the world for the better and that each one of us has the power to make a difference. Remember Nelson Mandela’s words: “It always seems impossible until it’s done.”


  • Dr. Tomi Mitchell

    M.D | Leadership Coach| Wellness & Productivity Coach

    Dr. Tomi Mitchell Holistic Wellness Strategies

    Dr. Tomi Mitchell, MD, empowers executives, lawyers, doctors, business owners, and other leaders to eliminate burnout and increase workplace productivity and relationships.  She uses her three-step framework, Embrace, Evaluate & Energize, to empower her clients to have clarity. 

    As a public speaker and trainer, she brings energy to the crowd, captures their attention, and gives them clear, actionable steps to apply immediately to their life. Dr. Tomi Mitchell believes in getting to the root causes of life's challenges, instead of taking a temporary BandAid approach to life. She is a writer, with a book coming out in Summer 2023. She is also the host of The Mental Health & Wellness Show.  To learn more about her framework, check out the following link: Learn More.