Five years back he couldn’t face an audience of even ten people. But the will to overcome his fears bore fruits and helped Muhammad Saud Kashmiri become a well known public motivational speaker. Saima Rashid reports

Muhammad Saud Kashmiri
Muhammad Saud Kashmiri

Every summer Muhammad Saud Kashmiri, 25, visits his motherland to stay connected with his roots.

It is his father’s wish that Muhammad should spent at least two months in Kashmir every year so that he can get to know the people and their way of living. “And thus the tradition started,” said Muhammad.

But after spending time in Kashmir, Muhammad could sense the natives are bright and as intelligent as any other society, all they lack is exposure and confidence. “Helping my people was always on my mind,” said Muhammad.

When this year Muhammad came for his customary two month stay in Kashmir, he had already charted out plans to help the youth. “I will interact with youngsters at a seminar titled ‘Unstoppable: Developing Habits of Success’. This will help them develop leadership skills, discover their potential, and excel in life,” said Muhammad.

At the age of sixteen Muhammad joined an American University. It was there that he honed his leadership skills and focused on public speaking and youth engagement.

“No one is a born genius. But when you are exposed to right people at the right time, success follows you,” said Muhammad.

Five years back Muhammad was a shy and a ‘reserved kind of person’ who would fret at the thought of facing an audience.

“I would tremble if made to express myself in front of people. But my teachers helped me overcome that fear. Now I want everyone, especially Kashmiri youth to believe in their talent and overcome their fears,” said Muhammad. “That is what my seminar is aimed at.”

The event in University of Kashmir on August 23 2015.
The event in University of Kashmir on August 23 2015.

But it is in Malaysia from where Muhammad was pursuing a degree in Robotics Engineering that he started his journey as an inspirational speaker.  “I’m really thankful that I get to do this everyday! This is where I come in to help overcome fear of people because I’ve been there too,” said Muhammad.

While still an undergraduate, Muhammad formed a Malaysia based organisation with a motto to instil ambition and develop leadership skills among the youth. So far he has led dozens of project teams and organized over 200 events including five international conferences. These events were attended by 30 international speakers from over 15 countries and 75,000 participants.

“It feels good people say, ‘you have changed our lives for better’. I have seen people who have knowledge, money, and job but couldn’t express themselves. And the hesitation to speak leaves a void in their lives. Lack of confidence makes their lives less appealing. That is where they need me or the people like me who have overcome fear,” said Muhammad.

Muhammad has directed and hosted regular FM radio shows and curated large social media campaigns for global audiences. During his two month long stay, Muhammad has, so far, held a number of interactive sessions in schools and colleges across Kashmir. The main theme of these sessions is: ‘Personality development, Leadership skills, Confidence, Winner’s attitude and overcoming failures’. “Since I can’t reach to everyone in Kashmir I am organizing an event in Kashmir University.”

Unlike other summers Muhammad wants this one to be a memorable and productive one. “I feel good when I am among my people. This is where I belong to. And this is where I must use my skills,” Muhammad asserts.  “These are my annual summer holidays and I’m working harder now than I do during the rest of the year! From the overwhelming response I’ve seen so far from
our youth, I am positive that this is only the beginning of a long ‘Unstoppable’ journey Insha Allah.”

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