“I’m Doing my Best”

Sometimes you will hear people say “ I’m doing my best” or “I tried my hardest”. Perhaps you have said these words yourself. Think about the last time you said those words – now be honest, was the effort you put forth really your BEST?  What is sad, is that more often than not those who say these words believe what they are saying.  . . . Check out the short video below for more on this:

5 Tips on Succeeding at College

Ok, you definitely DON’T want to drop out or quit before you graduate. Doing so will only leave you with a debt to pay back and no degree to support a better job or give you employment options. But, there are a lot of pressures on you: family, work, relationships, parents, kids, car problems, sitter problems, and on and on and on, which definitely can make quitting seem like an option.  IT IS NOT AN OPTION (say that a couple of times). You have invested too much to quit, and you are strong enough and smart enough to make it through to the end.

Here are a few tips that have worked for me.

  1. Don’t forget to pray. It may sound simple, even cliche`, but God does give strength and help. Praying can be a casual conversation that you can have at any time.  I also highly recommend some stray moments when you find a quiet place and write out your thoughts and concerns. I have found God really uses these times to help me find a perspective which can be easily lost in all the day-to-day pressures. Trust me in this, PRAYER does make a difference.
  2. Don’t miss a class except in an emergency. I know you can potentially miss a class without it affecting your grade, but when you do you are only short-changing yourself. The information in that class session could unleash the thought that could transform your understanding of the subject or even your life. Part of the benefit of any class session isn’t just the lectures and discussions, but how God works through them to give you epiphany’s of thought that be transformative.
  3. Take notes. You may not think you need to take notes, but that would be WRONG. Taking notes helps embed the information more firmly in your brain, allowing you to have better retention for tests, but more importantly allowing your brain to have fuel for solving real-life problems outside of class. Taking notes is one of the major secrets of those who succeed.
  4. Keep in mind that “all of life can be reduced to relationships.” This is something I believe with all my heart and soul.  No matter where you are at, God will use the relationships you have with those around you to improve you, or so that you can benefit them. We are never alone in our walk, although it can seem that way sometimes. Take a risk and reach out to the other students in your classes.  Begin to connect with them and you will find the class itself more enjoyable and your ability to stay the course enhanced.
  5. Speak up. Ask a question, get clarification, share an example that agrees with or disagrees with the point the Instructor is making. Make it a point to speak up, relative to the course, at least once each class session. There are several benefits that you reap by doing this: 1) You are more engaged in the discussion and will gain a better understanding, 2) You will retain the information better because you are making it more relevant to your own life, 3) Depending on your attitude, the Instructor will begin to see you as someone who wants to learn which creates a positive impression. Be genuine, but speak up!

Hope these tips help.  We are ALL pulling for you to finish the race and get that degree.

 

Excellence in All Things

The pendulum swing for all our actions ranges from no effort to a perfectionistic ideal which is impossible to achieve.  The medium point of the pendulum swing is “good enough.” Jim Collins wrote in his book “Good to Great” that “good is the enemy of great.” His point is that when we achieve good, most think that is “good enough.” I want to suggest there is a place beyond good that I’ve called Excellent.

For more on this check out the short video below:

Leaders Purposely Influence

John Maxwell defines Leadership with one word: Influence. What I know is that influence is the currency of achievement. The more influence you have, the greater your ability to achieve your goals, personal or professional. The reality is that unless you live on an uninhabited island, you are influencing others. Check out the short video below for more on this:

 

Add Value to Everything You Do

The uppermost thought in your mind as you approach any task, position, or responsibility should be “How can I add value.”  This applies to every part of your life. You should always be asking yourself, “How can you take my skills, experience, education, resources and add value to the lines of others.”  Check out the short video below for more on this:

Personal Reflection

Benjamin Franklin said, “It takes many good deeds to build a good reputation, and only one bad one to lose it.” Proverbs 22:1 states, “Choose a good reputation over great riches; being held in high esteem is better than silver or gold.” Be aware of your personal reputation with the various areas of your life. Check out this short video for more on this:

 

 

Leaders Take the Initiative

If you had to reduce leadership to one word, what would it be?  I’ve heard a lot of different answers to that question; influence, innovation, domination, manipulation, persuasion, problem-solver, etc.  For me, I would have to say that leadership, in one word, is initiative. A leader is one whose nature compels them to take action . . . .  Check out the short video below for more on this.

Leaders make decisions

In fact, that is one of the defining characteristics of a Leader: they make decisions. Leaders pull together information from a variety of sources and, based on their experience and education, they make a decision.  Sometimes the decisions made are good ones and other times not-so-good.  Typically if your good decisions outweigh your not-so-good decisions you are going the right direction.

For more on this check out this short video:

Everything rises and falls on Leadership

EVERYTHING!!  It is easy to see this wherever you go.  If something in your life is not going well, assume you have the ability to improve the situation. Ask yourself, “what can I do to lead myself, and or others to a different and better solution or practice.”  If good things are happening, it is because someone is exercising leadership (it might be you!).  If mediocrity prevails, it is because someone isn’t leading very effectively (it might be you!).

For more on this check out this short video: