Asalaamulaikum. Here's the notes on the lecture about how we need to be doing A LOT more than we are doing now, (I alluded to it in comment on a previous post)
You are never too young to achieve, influence and make an impact
The perception that people had about life in the past motivated them and pushed them to do more with the time they had.
Today, we relax, thinking we have many years.
In the past, education didn't follow a standard, time- dependent, education system. The lack of heirachies made people believe that they are not restricted, and why should we be? Now, people believe we can't do certain things until a certain time, we are somewhat conditioned to follow the system and this leads us to limit ourselves. For example, we don't read University books until we are at that age or at that level, but why wait til that age, what is stopping us? this is one of many examples and it has a negative impact on heroism.
Roots of Greatness Come From Within You
If we look at A'isha (radiallahu anha), she learnt to read and write, she learnt medicine, through her own incentive. And look at what a great woman she became, alhamdulillah. Age was not relevant, for any of the sahabah, as long as they could achieve and survive. Their lives were short, they had no standardized cirriculum and this lead to early achievement
Even from this small example we should realize, if we want to do something, just do it. Especially nowadays, we have so many resources available to us but even still we don't make full use of them. No one but ourselves is losing out.
Keep yourself away from distractions and increase responsibility.
Discover your talents, your abilities and be yourself
The Prophet (salallahu 'alaihi wasallam) had a great way of talking to his companions, he would talk to them within their limits, he knew their strengths and encouraged them to fulfill their potential.
For example: Amr Ibn Al-'Aas, who converted to Islam 2 years before the Prophet's death, was asked to lead the battle (Muslim conquest of Egypt) and lead those who had been Muslim all their lives.
He asked who the Prophet loved most, and was told that even though he may not be number one to him, he is number one on the field. He realised his talent. Even if others questioned his position, the Prophet new best.
So even if others are doubtful, don't doubt yourself and do not lower the limits on yourself, everyone has great potential and if you know your potential, use it. Identify and compete, not with others but with yourself and your potential, if you are good then be better. Stick to your own abilities but draw benefits from others. And don't direct your aim to strengthening your weak points but rather spend time working on and building up on your strong points.
But remember talent is not enough, you need things alongisde it such as patience, perseverance, discpiline. With these, you will achieve. InshaAllah.
Be ambitious and set your bar high
(from lecture by Hesham Al-Awadi)