Finish The Race

For an athlete to be able to compete in a race, it requires hours, weeks and even years of preparation, hard work, and dedication. In an Olympic distance running, there are eight runners that compete for the biggest prize: the gold medal. Therefore, in spite of every ones’ effort only one runner wins. Now, you might ask: how can we compare our daily lives to an Olympic race? There are four principles that Olympic runners must follow if they want to succeed in a race. We can also apply these same rules to succeed in our lives.

Desire

This is the motivating principle. If runners do not have the desire or willingness to run then chances are that the runner will not continue with the rigorous training needed to succeed. If we don’t have passion or desire for what we are doing, we will not be able to even start the race. We have to be motivated in some way or another motivated in order to do something.

Prepare

This is the training principle. All athletes must train for a race and follow a set of exercises to help them to reach their peak at the moment of the race. Like athletes, we should constantly keep practicing, training and building endurance to give our best when it is time for the race.

Dedication

This is the self-discipline principle. Athletes devote a lot of time for their physical and mental training. They invest in their hard work and suffer for their passion. If we are not dedicated and eager to continue, it will be difficult to conquer and win our personal race.

Finish strong

This is the endurance principle. Many beginners focus on the beginning and attempt to go faster at the early stages of the race. However, the most important stage is towards the end. It is near the finish line where the winners get the most advantage and win the race. Just like the runners, we must give everything we have to finish strong and be successful.

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Always remember that we must maintain our focus on the end goal: crossing the finish line. There will be struggles along the way that will undoubtedly test our will and discipline but, as the saying goes: “no pain, no gain”. Dig deeper and strive to maintain the four guiding principles so you can obtain a gold medal in your own lives.

 

The Hidden Benefits of Mentoring

How many of us have not sought for an advice to someone with more experience? We look for our parents, a friend, a counselor to help us and guide us to achieve our goals. In the work environment, the need is the same. Young professionals are seeking for roles models that would take the time to listen to their aspirations and goals, and at the same time these roles models can provide suggestions from their experience.

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Having a mentorship program at work provides a lot of benefits that can be or not be observed, but all benefit the company.

It integrates and engages employers

The mentor is the friend young professionals are looking for. The mentor helps his mentee to walk the bridge that connects knowledge and experience and promotes the company culture. By developing this relationship, the mentor is also developing loyalty in his mentee.

It promotes free talent development

By listening to the mentee’s suggestions and ideas, the mentor has an quicker access to a fresh set of ideas that if they are implemented, they can incentivize and motivate the mentee to continue working and developing more ideas in favor of the company. By listening to the mentee’s ideas, the mentor is stimulating aspirations.

It provides high job satisfaction

Once the mentee has established a relationship with his mentor, mentee feels more secure and relies on his mentor for questions or issues at the workplace. Then, the mentee starts feeling more comfortable and confident with his decision, which then increase mentee’s job satisfaction. By providing high job satisfaction, employers are also fomenting employee retention.

Mentorship offers solutions to the questions books or school cannot answer. Mentors provide the experience and knowledge mentees are longing for. It’s a free program that requires time and effort from the mentor’s and the mentee’s side. The program brings a lot of benefits some can be observed and some are hidden. Share your experience if you have been a mentee or a mentor!

Be Happy By Being Yourself

As I was growing up, every weekend I would get up in the morning and turn on the TV to watch my favorite show. In the show, there were two girls who would sing, dance, and play with the audience. During the commercial breaks between cartoon shows, the hostesses, who were former models, provided positive messages to the kids. These messages included phrases such as listen to your parents, take care of the earth, enjoy the happiness of life, don’t smoke, etc. My dream was to go to the show and see these two beautiful girls in person and I would tell my mom that when I grow up, I want to be just like them.

My dream of going to the show never came true due to a tragedy. One of the hostesses, who was only 21 years old, decided to take her own life. I remember reading the story in a newspaper and, when I turned on the TV, all of the national TV channels were talking about it.

In the 1990s, the show was the most popular show for kids in South and Central America and, until now, the show has been the most successful kids’ show in Latin America. The theme was a cloud where dreams come true, where people are happy, and there is no reason to be sad. The show even had songs that talked about the happiness of living. Ironically, that was not reality for one of the main characters, the girl that I wanted to meet and idolized. It was hard to explain to a 7 year-old girl that your hero is no longer here. So, this raises the questions: what about everything she used to say? Is they true? Does it even matter anymore?

The only answer is of course it matters and it’s true. There are so many reasons why we should celebrate life and have joy in who we are. It’s been twenty years since the tragedy and I fully understand that she wasn’t being herself. She was portraying someone that she was told to be and she probably had her own reasons to take her life. The bottom line is that we don’t have to pretend to be someone else. There is beauty inside each and every one of us and once we believe it, that happiness radiates inside out. Always be yourself, don’t pretend to be someone you’re not and, most importantly, be happy. You are beautiful!

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The cloud with its 4 hostesses including the original two

Do We Need To Be Team Players?

During these modern days, there are more jobs that don’t require a person to work in a group. Sometimes, the job only requires a person and a computer. People are getting used to work by themselves. However even if the job only requires an individual, there are tasks within than job that requires the person to work as a team. Therefore, it is important to learn to work as a team and be a team player.

What is a team player?

A team player is a person who willingly works in cooperation with others. This person is willing to assist and help out others knowing that the goal is mutual. There is no individualistic approach. All members work together.

Whose team are we playing for?

The team is the people that are associated, linked or bonded with the same goal. The team might change depending on the task. One day your team is group A when you are working on project A and the following week your team is group B while you work on project B.

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You might remember when you were looking for a job, everyone told you that employers are looking for team players. You might ask why do they need a team player if the job only requires one person?

To answer let me give you my personal example. I am a Quality Engineer responsible for two areas in the manufacture I work for and the warehouse. There is no one else sharing the responsibility with me. If I don’t work as a team with other departments such as Operations or Planning, it will be nearly impossible to get all my work done. I can’t simply be in the three locations at once.

The method? I focus on a task, acknowledge my team members on the task that we will be working together, help them getting started and be there when they need me. Always be available when your team needs you.

Apply the team player method in your currently. People want to feel that they are part of a group of a team, once they get that feeling things just work on itself. Let me know your results!

A Story Of Perfection

According to Thesaurus, perfection is the highest degree of proficiency, skill or excellence. So it is the action of improving something until it is faultless as possible.

An lesson of perfection

It was July 18th 1976; the Olympic games were taking place in Quebec Montreal. It was the turn of a 14 year-old girl to show her gymnastic routine on the uneven bars. The audience was expecting a good performance, and what they got was even better. At her young age of 14, Nadia Comaneci gave the audience a lesson of perfection.

Nadia Comaneci achieved the unachievable, something that no eyes had ever seen before. She earned a perfect score (a 10 on the uneven bars) in gymnastic on her first night at the Olympics. Her performance was so clean and smooth that judges had no other choice than giving her 10s. Overall, during the Montreal Olympics, she won gold medals for her 7 perfect scores.

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Perfection: The result of a hard work

Nadia started practicing gymnastic at a young age. At the age of six, she began to train two to three hours a day. At the age of seven, she entered her first official competition, obtaining the thirteenth place. The results did not demolish the young athlete instead it encouraged her to do it better.

The following year at the same competition, she won the competition. When she turned 12, she trained eight hours a day, six days a week. Shortly, she continued improving and excelling her own records to the point that winning competitions became usual for her.

The night of perfection wasn’t until two years later in 1976 at the Olympic games in Montreal when she became the first person in the Olympic history to score a perfect 10 in gymnastics.

That night, Nadia showed us a lesson: a lesson of perseverance, practice and dedication. She didn’t stop when she obtained the thirteenth place at her first competition. How many of us felt dishearten and stopped trying after our first attempt? She didn’t, and what did she get in return for keep trying and persist on what she wanted? She got a perfect score.

Perfection is not about doing everything right and getting it at the first try. We need to keep practicing more and more each time. Perfection is the action of improving until it is faultless as possible.

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What You Do In The Dark is What Brings You To The Light

A few days ago, as the Olympics games in Rio are approaching, I saw an Under Amour advertising video about Michael Phelps (the Olympic swimmer who has set the record of 22 medals) training prior to a competition. The video showed him training very hard at the gym and swimming alone in a long pool when the flash from the cameras was off. The video ended with the phrase: it’s what you do in the dark that puts you in the light.

An Olympic swimmer like Michael Phelps has to train several hours a day several days a week. The swimming practice can change depending on the focus of the swimmer. Sprinters can swim a few hours a day for about 5,000 meters while distance swimmers can swim up to 12 miles at some practices.

In addition of the swimming practice, Olympic swimmers have a regular workout routine and live a healthy life style. They lift weights, as they need to build up strength in their upper body. They work on flexibility in the shoulder area. They eat a balance diet between carbohydrates for energy and protein for muscle growth.

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As Olympic swimmers train hard during their practice to shine during the race, we should take the same approach in our daily lives. Let’s do things in our quiet time or when we are alone so that later we can excel. For the swimmers, the race comes quick, the practice is long and the glory last long. For us, an opportunity comes quick, the preparation is long and the result last long. Let’s use the Olympic swimmers preparation example to motivate us to practice in the dark to shine when there is light. As a result, we will see what we do in the dark is what brings us to the light.

How to Achieve a Goal in 4 Steps

Has it happen to you that you wanted to do something but didn’t know what steps to take to accomplish it or wonder if you could achieve it. Yes, you can! A goal is important to set up because it gives us motivation to keep going. After the goal is selected, there are certain steps that we need to follow to achieve the goal.

Before we continue with the four steps to achieve a goal, our mind needs to be convinced that we need to do something about it. We need to decide to take action!

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It is easy to say: “I want to do this”, but never do anything about it. After we are ready, to take action, the following steps should be followed:

Step 1: Define the strategy

This step covers the path that we are going to take to reach the end result. Strategy is different than plan. Strategy explains with reason why we want to accomplish the goal instead of the plan that outlines the step. For example, in 2013 I set up a goal to buy a house within the next year. The strategy in buying a house was to start investing in a property since the house market was still low and slowly picking up.

Step 2: Develop a plan

The plan includes the steps we are going to follow to accomplish the goal. This step is important because it provides an outline of what needs to be accomplished and how it will be achieved. The plan for buying a house was to look for house during a low season, after the holidays in December (less competitor lower the market). In this step is where the price range, location and who I was going with for realtor services were discussed.

Step 3: Execute the plan

This step is extremely important. This is the step where we take action of what we defined on the previous steps. From the house example, this is the step where the realtor was contacted at the end of the holidays; and discussions in regards of the house took place.

Step 4: See results

The last step is for us to enjoy seeing the results of achieving the goal. This is the reward for accomplishing the goal. Within two weeks, I found the house I liked. Within a week, I placed an offer. Within a month, I was closing on the house. Follow the steps and achieve your goals.

Leave a comment and feel free to add the steps that lead you to fulfill your goals.