My 10 Most Favorite Life Lessons

My 10 Most Favorite Life Lessons

1. Love God above all things and trust His will.

2. Things in life move slow. Don’t rush into things without much thought.

3. Wishes come and go away. Buy only the necessary. Invest more spend less.

4. Marry well. A poor spouse can and probably will handicap his or her partner.

5. Read the fine print. Pay attention to the details. It will save a lot of headaches in your life.

6. It’s okay to quit. Quitting at the right time is an art to be learned. Master it.

7. People are selfish. Get used to this fact. Don’t expect much from people.

8. If opportunities don’t head your way, create your own opportunity. Life is too short.

9. The world isn’t just. Get used to it! When you get knocked down, stand up and start again.

10. Don’t compromise on your dreams. They keep you alive.

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Reflections About LeeU

Reflections About LeeU

In my career as a college professor, I’ve always taught in an institution of higher learning where about a third of the students in the class shouldn’t be in college, the other third is what we consider to be the typical average student, leaving the last third to those students who could potentially go to college anywhere.

I’m very familiar with teaching classes under those circumstances. Teaching classes at LeeU isn’t that different from the other institutions I’ve worked at with the expedition that we have a sizable number of home schooled students who need assistance with social finesse.

Some can be pretty callous and evil if you ask me but they are in the vast minority. Most kids in here are kind and nice, I must add.

Quite frankly, I feel that coming to Lee University has been like being Rocky Balboa having to retool with Apollo Creed in order to have a chance to beat Clubber Lang in so many respects.

I’m learning a new game right now… How to dance, how to defend, how to attack… dribble and even how to think strategically again. How to hold and how to handle conflict… How to train home school kids is a difficult challenge that has made me frustrated in many occasions. It’s a challenge. It’s the job.

I’m getting much better at it, I must add. The Lee system is hard, very hard. I like the challenge but I also like to win more than lose. I’m not different than any other college professor who wants to do what is right.

The LeeU system is good and can certainly serve as a stepping stone in the career of any college professor wanting to move academically to a bigger university. I admire the people who has been working in here for many years because mastering this system is an accomplishment in itself.

Teaching home schoolers, I’ve come to learn, is very tough. The game of teaching kids who believe that tutorials aren’t good enough for them to learn is one of the things I’ve struggled the most. I simplify things. They seem to expect complexity from a professor.

It has been my experience that kids in here literally want real life, click-by-click programmed instruction in all my classes in order to help them to better understand the content. An assignment and rubric isn’t enough or a tutorial to remediate instruction for that matter. Podcast? Not really. At least not in my classes. This semester, I’m doing the former and printing literally everything.

I’m collecting evidence of my work in a way that I’ve never done it before. The former has helped me to leverage my class materials as consulting sessions resulting in a sizable consulting career on the side.

My clients love what I give them. My students get the same materials. It’s a gold mine… I’m convinced that they will find the value of what they are getting as soon as they reach the workforce.

My frustrations? The majority of these kids don’t watch most of the many tutorials that I produce or listen to my class’ podcasts! How do I know? I check the analytics.

WAIT! WHAT? Really? Yep. I feel that I’m ready to face “Clubber Lang” this Spring sometime. It’s week #6. There has been unexpected challenges, already after many and many hours of class developing outstanding class content.

Unfair? I think so. I’m printing everything. Let’s show the cards and converse. My classes are harder this term, much harder. These kids are working their bottoms off. The great students are celebrating. The poor ones are getting the message. There is a new captain on the ship.

My Chair, a clever and experienced academic administrator shared with me something that has changed the way I see class preparation and delivery in higher education.

“They (students) pay $1500 in tuition per class. Offer more in value in return,” he said. So, I did. The conscientious student has been celebrating. The non-conscientious is ignoring this philosophy. Those in the middle appreciate my efforts to provide them value for their investment.

Welcome to private higher education. I get the message. Back to basics… I rebooted. I got the eye of the tiger again. Rocky is back and strong.

I’m playing whites. I had the first move. I’m on the offense. Check, mate in three, I see. Spring 2020 will be mine in one way or another. Give up? Never.

We Need Each Other After All

We Need Each Other After All

In faith I wait for a better future. A future of love, a future brought from a beautiful dove that won’t ever fly away again. A future where pain will never leave a permanent stain in my human brain…

Without faith, the present becomes the worse of the days. A present of hate, of contention from an ugly sword, which thank God will be temporary. A present where pleasure is unseen but the temporary impact in the spirit will be without blemish.

Thank God.

Oh brethren… your jealousy, fear, your words are so insincere my dear. It doesn’t take an engineer to break down your systems this year.

The most high shows me who you are. You ain’t a superstar but a ball of fragile air, so insignificant, defenseless against the winds from the west or the east.

North and south, we all need both. Listen to me this morning once and for all. Why would you want to be so arrogant, so small?

We need each other after all.

Be That Person That You Once Were

Be That Person That You Once Were

You say I, I say we… You too say I and I again say we with no remorse. We is better than I. Listen carefully to this, “I think you need a correspondence course in social intercourse.”

Self-centered statements bring the worse in us and is short-lived. Selfishness isn’t a trait of the Lord. You need to be restored, let’s go back to the blackboard and learn God’s ways.

Love your neighbors as you love yourselves… Even an evil thought is sinful according to Christ. Be aware! Repent. Change your ways. You will see much better days.

Say we. Let your I say goodbye. Why? Because in this life we need to obey the one who lives in the sky. Glorify!

Abide by the Lord’s laws. In a blink of an eye, you will choose to say goodbye to your own flaws. Pause, reflect… review the laws monsieur litterateur!

Be that person that you once were.

My Latest Participations In The Harvard Business Review LinkedIn Discussion Board

My Latest Participations In The Harvard Business Review LinkedIn Discussion Board
Here are they…
HBR: Men rate their performance 33% higher than equally performing women.

Response: Hmmm, not sure if I buy that. I wonder how many of these men (or women) were the head of the household needing to provide for their kids and spouse. Stop making men look bad HBR with headlines like this. It promotes sexism.

HBR: Leaders have a responsibility to convince their people that they value their talents — and that they should, too.

Response: Well, it’s difficult or could be difficult to use your strengths when leadership purposefully doesn’t want employees to use them. And then, there is politics, jealousy, power, and so on.

HBR: One of the reasons we see far too little emotional intelligence in the workplace is that we don’t hire for it.

Response: That’s true. Most organizations hire resumes not people. That’s a big error, obviously.

HBR: Recognition and appreciation are two different things. And your employees need both. 

Response: Not sure if they are the same term but I agree with you HBR. Recognizing and appreciating people’s work, even if the contributions are small, need to occur. Let’s not forget that no leader can accomplish tasks alone. It’s elementary.

HBR: Do you need charisma to be a great public speaker. 

Response: No but it helps.

HBR: Multiculturalism can help you accomplish cross-cultural tasks, connect people, and develop creative solutions.

Response: For sure. The understanding of culture can de facto assist diverse groups to solve problems in a novel way and most definitely connect people in ways to solve ill problems creatively. I’ve seen evidence of the former.

HBR: Be grateful more often. 

Response: Great advice. Being grumpy and entitled don’t take anybody anywhere.

Hope you enjoyed.

What I’ve Heard From Students This Fall 2019

What I’ve Heard From Students This Fall 2019

One of the joys of being a college professor is hearing back from students after a semester is over, via email. I’ve worked with students one-on-one A LOT this semester, to as point of giving to some of them daily feedback on assignments which resulted in students doing very well in all my classes.

The more feedback an instructor gives, the more students learn and the better they get. Like my colleagues and peers at LeeU, I like to give back more to my students than what the class cost them. I did my best with much care… I must add.

These are some of the comments I received this December, so far… Here we go.

“I wanted to thank you for everything this semester! I have truly learned a lot about Social Media, how to grow your account, how to be authentic, and so many other things! I also wanted to thank you for your passion and energy that you bring to class and your interactions with students!”

“Thank you for everything you did in class! I really enjoyed it and took away a lot of content that I am sure will help me in my future.”

“Thank you so much for an excellent semester. I have thoroughly enjoyed your web design course and have learned so much from you!!”

“I just wanted to thank you for everything you taught me, I’m most definitely utilizing those skills on a daily basis.” 

“I came to this class to get some tips to play better golf… Doctor A came and gave me a few tips… Kind of tailoring my swing for me… Giving me a lot of helpful tips on speed, accuracy and ball contact. I can definitely see an improvement now. I was able to break 45 on a nine for the first time ever.” 

“Thank you so much for the great semester, I really enjoyed your class and learned a lot about social media engagement.”

“I had so much fun in your class Dr. A. I did learned so much about WordPress, and thank you so much to help me out with my website. Thank you.” 

“You are an incredible professor and I thank you for all that you have done and for taking the time to personally help me with my website outside of class.” 

— Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be yet wiser: teach a just man, and he will increase in learning, Proverbs 9:9 — KJV. Thank you God for making me into a college teacher.

You Can’t Force People To Like You

You Can’t Force People To Like You

For many years, I’ve tried to be kind even to those who purposely disrespected me. Why? Because deep in my heart, I felt that I could win them over and live in harmony with them thereafter. I’m not sure if the former is even practical — The more I live, the more I realize that people can be pretty mean and ill intended many times

Here is a lesson I’ve learned five years age… There will always have people who don’t care or want to be associated with you. That’s fine. Less work for me, their loss, my gain.

It’s human nature.

Life has been good, for the most part. My guard is never down and my eyes are constantly scanning for double-faced individuals who have no character. It has become a way of living… studying the intricacies of non-verbal communication for almost seven years.

You can’t force people to like you or the things you do or have and that’s okay. Life goes on, you will survive. Fortunate are those who understand this simple fact. Live your life to the fullest according to what you want to do. If you like photography, go photograph! If you like sports, go play some. If your gig is reading, then go read! Who cares what people think?

Just keep in mind that people will find a way to blame you for something, no matter how nice or terrible you are. There are some nasty people out there, ladies and gents. They may carry a demon and they may not even know. Let them alone. It’s better to keep a distance from these kind of people.

What do I say?  Carpe diem — seize the day! Live your lives extraordinary as Mr. Keaning once said. Who cares what people think or do anyways, in the big scheme of things? If they say or do things you don’t like, flee from them or significantly reduce contact with these “angels.” It’s really that simple.

Live how you want to live and remember, “If a person wishes you evil in any way, evil will follow him or her until justice is done. Some call this karma. I prefer to refer the former as, “The wrath of God.” Don’t do it evil ones… It ain’t worth the trouble.”

At 45, I think about these things, you know? I admit. I pay attention and take notes. What do you think?

Youth, Listen (Or Shall We Say…) Read This

Youth, Listen (Or Shall We Say…) Read This

They are…

  1. “The maverick with no chips was born dead. I doubt that a “chipless” maverick will ever go anywhere with her beliefs and aspirations. In fact, I bet that “chipless” people wanting to be unconventional eventually loses the little that they have. Be careful “Chipless” mavericks out there. Rebels, be aware. Your free spirit may be a handicap after all. If you want to play this game, work on getting “chips” first but never forget that the house always wins. Think about it.”
  2. Partner with locals. One of the most successful strategies you can use is to partner with an influential local buddy. By abdicating part of your business in exchange for access and q-ratio, you can launch your business much quicker than your competitors and start competing for real dollars much sooner than having to build the business through traditional means of advertising. I can guarantee you that will take more capital to advertise a start-up than negotiating a 2-3% partnership with a local resident. As soon as you work with a local, he/she will (at least in theory) do some of this work for you. Even though friends don’t buy, friends refer business clients to their friends first. Sure, you need to be very careful not to partner with whatever person from your community. You need to interview him/her and make sure that they are well known and connected in their neighborhood.”
  3.  In this life, you must stay the course if you plan to achieve any form of success. If you have owned a business of any sort, you know that running a start-up is never easy and somedays can be quite frustrating. Your role as an entrepreneur is to strategize locally, create publicity campaigns and master your craft. In contemporary USA, competition is fierce and expected.
  4. When you have great content grounded in a niche along with an audience to receive it, then the next step is to distribute the content. It doesn’t matter which social media platform you use. If you have built a solid audience (on or offline), your content will be shared and spread, I bet. When that happens, all you need to do next is to repeat the process and you should be on your way to go viral.

That’s it! Hope you liked them.

Things I’ve Said Lately…

Things I’ve Said Lately…

If I may, let me share with you things I’ve learned in my life that perhaps, you should know before you graduate. These are my words words but important ones to process. Read these lines very carefully… Are you ready for them? Here we go.

  1. “This life is full of evil people with evil intentions. No matter where you go, you will find your fair share of falling angels claiming to be nice and kind but in reality, these bunch are as bad as your worse enemy. Be aware.” “Most of the wars people fight in life are a collection of uphill battles often fought with limited resources. No wonder why so much conflict is silent. The moment a person is silent (or absent) towards you…. Be aware.” “Never, under any circumstances, lose momentum. For your own sake, resist nothingness and the comfortable position of inertia. Do what you can to be in motion, always seeking what will come next. Embrace change and don’t be afraid to change course if necessary. Always live your life for God. The Love of God loves forever”
  2. Listen carefully: Inevitably, we all pass through challenges in this life. It’s normal, it happens. Sometimes we struggle with family members, close friends, acquaintances, a boyfriend or a girlfriend. Please realize that I’m here for you, if you need it. Sometimes I will make you laugh, sometimes, I will cry with you… or have a chat with you at the cafeteria at the university or any other place because I want to not because I have to. You matter to me. My phone is now available to you. My door is open to you all. Never, under any circumstances, forget the love that God has for you and me. The Lord loves you, always.
  3. If you want to have a positive impact on teenagers and young adults… Be relational. Be yourself. Everybody else is already taken. Never, under any circumstances, be who you are not.
  4. Being grumpy and entitled don’t take anybody anywhere. Don’t be afraid to fulfill your destiny. I love having perspective… Going to these shows (craft shows) have been a blessing for me as a small business owner and as a college professor. You should attend professional events as well. They are quite eye opening. 

More to come next month! 🙂

 

It’s My Time To Re-Brand Again

It’s My Time To Re-Brand Again

I’m 45 almost 46 years old. I can’t believe that I’m approaching 50. I don’t feel like it I must admit but hey… This is life, I guess. It’s time to re-brand again. Why? Because it is the right thing to do. At least, this is what Robert Greene recommends.

This is my new facebook banner. Do you like it? I hope so!

facebook_banner.jpg

I’ve always had a lot of energy, passion, desire, love for righteousness, my brand deliverables need to have some red color on it. Yellow! I’m a happy, positive, loyal, who values the intellect. It only makes sense to have some yellow as part of my brand, as well. White: I still believe in faith, spirituality… The color white must be a piece of my new brand look, that’s for sure.

Social_media post

The example shown above was released on instagram today. I will revolutionize the look of all my social media accounts, now that the re-branding is finally completed. I will go 1000% forward with my mission of being authentic and motivational with colors that represent who I’m as a person. This is exciting!

I feel now like a new person. Rebranding is good for your mind. I recommend that you do the same, once in a while. I’m looking forward to what is to come next.

When we trust the Lord, wonderful things head your way. I’m grateful for everything.

The Youth Is Relational… If Your Plan Is To Influence Them, Talk To Them

The Youth Is Relational… If Your Plan Is To Influence Them, Talk To Them

I’m convinced about this. The youth is relational. if your plan is to influence them for the better in life, you must talk to them in a place where they feel comfortable speaking with you. My plan is to have a positive impact on them. I meet and talk to them in the school’s cafeteria on a daily basis.

And I love it. This semester alone, I’ve met 300 new students in the cafeteria alone and an additional 50 across the university. We have talked, shared, laughed, celebrated, cried and dined together. My level of “relatability” was pretty high before I decided to target them and talk to them on a daily basis. Now, the level of through the roof to a point of students screaming my name across campus for a return response.

This is what students like these days. People (professors, friends, family…) who understand their struggles, wishes and dreams, along with being able to bring them up when they feel down. Anxiety and depression is at an all time high in this country. Students comprise a large portion of this new age epidemic. 

Technology overuse is definitely a variable in the growth of anxiety and depression conversation. In fact, I predicted, back in 2013 that by 2024…the globe would reach a global anxiety epidemic. We are over half the way there, it seems.

The beginning of the anxiety pains have already started. No wonder why the youth wants to be relational with people, including you and me. So, this is what i think… if you want to have a positive impact on teenagers and young adults, be relational and plan time aside to speak with them.

That’s how this is done, I’m finding. Like you and I, the kids want to live a good life that is meaningful. Be a servant and speak with them! They are relational. You will influence them by taking this stance. Trust me.

My Responses For The Harvard Business Review Magazine Lately

My Responses For The Harvard Business Review Magazine Lately

Much toxicity in the workplace is related to gossiping. Let’s not forget that like in Vegas, the house rarely loses. Eventually, gossipers are caught. Don’t do it.

In an economy of abundance with too much supply on the market, the only logical stance to take, it seems, is for subjects to leverage their uniqueness with the goal of becoming remarkable.

Smartphone technology in the hands of trained speakers/performers can become a voice of democracy and call to action, regardless of how algorithms act or react. A single video clip, in the hands of an influencer, will be as good if not better than a message pushed through a social media algorithm. I have empirical data to defend this former statement.

I Am, Therefore I Think. Be the voice of reason. The best ideas are often the simplest. Stop thinking and do it!

With all the respect HBR, we need to define what we mean by reading here. Scanning a book, or a few chapters, listening the book in speed isn’t reading in the true sense of how we define reading to be. To me, reading a book means reading every word in that book, from cover to cover… Perhaps underlying, and circling words and sentences for understanding. There is no way that a serious reader, doing all of the former and working full time, can read anything near 100 books a year. I would rather see people reading 5-10 books cover to cover (underlying content and practicing what they learned) than kidding themselves that they “read” 77, 85, or 100 books a year. No they don’t. I doubt that.

Complaining and blaming others for your misfortunes and lack of luck will not change the fact that we need to work with others in order to operate with distinction.

My concern: AI will hire resumes not the best people for the job, perhaps. If so, how is AI different from a biased human being?

Make the unknown known. Uneasy but only in the beginning. If you are afraid of conflict, read the 48 Laws of Power and Executive Warfare, immediately and engage in a conflict, even if you lose the battle. Embrace these challenges by facing them all heads on. It works. It changes you. It makes you a leader.

I hope that you don’t get offended by what I’m going to write in here because is so simplistic. Subjects learn essentially in only one way: They learn by receiving a stimulus of a sort from a source, responding to that stimulus… and receiving feedback from the source after that. There is room for technology to be a part of this model especially in the form of treatments.

How Excessive Competition Leads To Defeat.

 

 

 

The Purple Cow Is For Real

The Purple Cow Is For Real

During this past year, I’ve been engaging with college students, face-to-face, in a very different way — Dancing latin music on campus with them, skateboarding with some, singing karaoke with others, attending their rock concert events and playing guitar with many around campus. These former activities aren’t usually done by many college professors across the United States and I know it. That’s exactly the point! I’m the purple cow around here. I decided to make my brand remarkable.

Seth Godin, back in the day, introduced the concept of the purple cow, which literally means that in an market of abundance, much like the one that we are living right now in the United States, people need to be the only option available to their audiences because of the amount of noise/supply that there is on the market these days.

By being different, or shall we say eccentric, I’m finding out by students that many students perceive me as animated and fun to be around but more importantly… that no other professor behave the way I do. Ladies and gents, I’m the purple cow and I love it.

Attention is a currency as Gary Vaynerchuck once said. I agree with him. Leveraging this “attention,” whatever the method, often results in people/brands growing in their popularity and influence among their real target audience. Some may think that my approach is juvenile or too over the top but the reality is that it works.  How do I know this? I take a very close look at my social media analytics in order to test a working hypothesis on the topic.

Since early October 2019, my instagram account alone has grown 300%, after I literally met 300 students dancing merengue on campus. Of these 300 hundred, 30 of those decided to follow my account on TikTok, and many others my account on facebook. My office visitations doubled this semester, as well as the conversations I now have in my own building with them. Off-line communication is a must if you decided to be a purple cow in your own organization.

I cannot go to lunch at the cafeteria without a random student screaming, “Dr. A!”

In sum, The concept of the purple cow is for real. If you make yourself worth of making a remark about, AKA being the purple cow… you will grow and audience. Read Seth Godin’s work and apply his concepts if you want to grow a brand.

You won’t regret.

I’ve Learned As Much From My Students As They’ve Learned From Me

I’ve Learned As Much From My Students As They’ve Learned From Me

It is true. Every semester, I’m shocked by how much I learn from them. This semester alone, I’ve learned that great video games should have exit points, that click by click instruction is how college students like to learn these days… they taught me how to ride a one wheel skateboard, to sing better and innovative ways to make friends on campus. In addition, they have showed me how to use some of my own systems at the university and where to go for help a little better.

These are the lessons I can remember… There are so many more.

I have the humility to admit that they, the students, know so much… which reminds me of what my grandfather once told me, “Everybody is an encyclopedia.” “Listen to people because they often have something good to say.” There is wisdom to the former, that’s for sure. I listen to my students and put what they suggest into practice.

As I approach my 46th birthday, I’m starting to rethink the notion that old people are wiser than the youth. It depends! The kids know much more than people want to give them credit for. Today, in my website design class, I taught them how to use a google based web system to produce a landing page website for a potential business. These were some of the ideas that they came up with.

  • A foundation to raise money for Israel
  • A math tutorial business to help special education kids
  • A grocery shopping on demand business
  • A recruiting system for local organizations
  • A rapid website business for local communities
  • A mechanism to send 100 individuals to global mission trips

And more.

Who am I to tell them what or how to think? Clearly, they can think for themselves. I’m thankful for the opportunity to assist them in this process…

In this life, we all learn from each other, I say. I’m a fan of the saying, “In college, you don’t learn from a professor… you learn with a professor.” It is true man.  I feel that way. I’ve learned as much from my students as they’ve learned from me.

 

 

To every thing there is a season… Be Aware

To every thing there is a season… Be Aware

… and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
A time to be born, and a time to die;
a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
A time to kill, and a time to heal;
a time to break down, and a time to build up;
A time to weep, and a time to laugh;
a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
A time to get, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
A time to rend, and a time to sew;
a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
A time to love, and a time to hate;
a time of war, and a time of peace.

From the book of Ecclesiastes…

I must admit that at 45, I have the duty to speak a little more than listen especially with the youth. After all, the good God has given me a number of abilities that are often not given to many professionals I know. In fact, the combination of these abilities, I’ve come to realize, is very rare.

They are the following:

  • The ability to conceptualize, build, deliver and sell a business for a big profit.
  • The ability to use charisma for building teams and alliances.
  • The ability to discern good from evil through non-verbal communication.
  • The ability to write, speak, design, see and edit media.
  • The ability to learn new skills quick and lead others.

It is my time to speak, I feel. This is what I want to say today. I hope you find value in what I’m going to write in here. These thoughts and ideas are for real man. Listen carefully to them.

Here we go.

“This life is full of evil people with evil intentions. No matter where you go, you will find your fair share of falling angels claiming to be nice and kind but in reality, these bunch are as bad as your worse enemy. Be aware.

“I’ve seen good people get cancer and evil people retire millionaire, full of friends and with much influence. I’ve witnessed the poor being labeled lazy and faulty for their misfortunes. I’ve witnessed the ultra wealthy planning the demise of the poor in more than one country. It is real… Be aware.

“Everywhere you go, there will always be a ruling group, a group that wishes to be in the ruling crowd, the outsiders and the independents of thought. The “wish team” is often the group with the least character/integrity as they would do (or say) what is necessary to be in the ruling group. Be Aware.

“I’ve seen manipulators being labeled great leaders because of their wealth and influence. I’ve seen church leaders profit from the sweat of their congregation, sending their own kids to private school at the expense of the poor. A number of churches are social clubs instead of places of worship. Be aware.

“Most people are the opposite of what they show to the public. A quiet public character is often a loud private person. Those who claim to be great in a particular skill are often poor in the skill. Be aware.”

“The insecurity of people often leads to expensive purchases, e.g., big houses, luxury cars, fancy clothes and extravagant dinners and parties. People who are secure in who they are don’t need these former materialistic possessions or the need to show them to others. Be Aware.

“Most of the wars people fight in life are a collection of uphill battles often fought with limited resources. No wonder why so much conflict is silent. The moment a person is silent (or absent) towards you…. Be aware.

“Only a fool thinks that people aren’t paying attention. Things always make sense to someone. Be careful to assume because when you assume, you make an… Be Aware.”

“Never, under any circumstances, lose momentum. Give yourself maneuverability by being mobile. The former helps you to better understand different kinds of terrains. Eventually, you will find yourself in a position of inertia! It is normal, it is expected. Being a cog is a consequence of much inertia. Cogs are easily replaceable pieces in any operating system. Be aware.

For your own sake, resist nothingness and the comfortable position that inertia may bring you temporarily. Do what you can to be in motion, always seeking what will come next. Embrace change and don’t be afraid to change course, if necessary. Those who see trouble ahead and decide to fight a lost war, pay the price. Be aware.

The bible teaches us that, “As for humans, God tests them so that they may see that they are like the animals.Surely the fate of human beings is like that of the animals; the same fate awaits them both: As one dies, so dies the other. All have the same breath; humans have no advantage over animals. Everything is meaningless. All go to the same place; all come from dust, and to dust all return. Who knows if the human spirit rises upward and if the spirit of the animal goes down into the earth?” (Ecclesiastes 3:18-21).

There is nothing new under the sun, ladies and gents.

14 Quotes The Youth (and not so young) Should Read

14 Quotes The Youth (and not so young) Should Read

 A couple of things I’ve said over the years. Hope you enjoy.

“A true christian doesn’t live a life of envy. He lives a godly life always seeking to follow God’s message of love.”

“If you choose to stay in a job simply because of a title… I would argue that money isn’t the only problem you struggle with. You most definitely struggle with ego issues.”

“Compensation is far from being everything that there is about a job. Flexibility is as important and as valuable (if not more valuable) than income received.”

“I don’t let money or titles control me. I make my priorities based on scripture — based on what is written in the Bible.”

“The moment that you make God the center of your life, the former struggles start to disappear. You will quickly realize that possessions and job nomenclature is de facto meaningless.”

“There is tremendous power in calling your shots even if authority resides in the hands of others.”

“In the volatile market that we live in these days, having the capacity to engage in job maneuverability is without question a necessity these days.”

“Be good and do good in God’s eyes because it is good. Smile, give and receive hugs, laugh, eat and enjoy your family and friends — Work hard!”

“Brothers and sisters, you will find injustice in this world and even fools will reach positions of great authority. Don’t envy their privileged positions or try to justify your circumstances according to what happen to others.”

“Making a difference in the lives of others is a critical component of being a practitioner of Christianity.”

“Order can be brought out by fixing disorder. Don’t let jealousy and envious relationships get out of control and as important… control you.

“A true Christian doesn’t spend his or her journey comparing themselves to others or worse — putting themselves ahead of others. We put others ahead of us.”

“Don’t forget… Make someone happy. This is your duty and mine in this world.”

“Life is a miracle. This former fact, in itself, is worth celebrating the mercy and love of God.”

Hope you liked it.

 

3 Ways to Reprogram Your Subconscious Mind to Reach Your Goals

3 Ways to Reprogram Your Subconscious Mind to Reach Your Goals

It has been suggested that a lack of positive thinking can be detrimental to one’s chances to achieve their goals.[1] A series of negative thoughts in your subconscious can de facto have an impact on how you reach your goals.

Reprogramming the subconscious mind isn’t as difficult as it seems. It won’t be done overnight but it can be accomplished if you are serious about engaging in a series of well known exercises.

It is in an employee’s best interest to reprogram their subconscious in order to reach their goals because by doing that, they have a higher chance to be respected by their peers and promoted to a high position within the organization.

In this article, I will share with you three ways to reprogram your subconscious mind to reach your goals in plain English.

  1. Why Should You Reprogram Your Subconscious?
  2. 3 Ways to Reprogram Your Subconscious Mind
  3. Conclusion

Why Should You Reprogram Your Subconscious?

The simple answer is because people are often afraid of not succeeding. Many times, the fear of failure may cause some to believe that failure in their lives will then be eminent leaving them little control in the process.

I have to admit that I suffered from this when I came to the United States as an ESL student back in 1998. When I came to the United States in the late 90’s at age 24, I was terrified about the prospects of having to learn the English language in six months and having to attend college in a second language right after and graduate within four years.

Clearly, I had to reprogram my conscious mind and convince myself to believe that engaging in such a daunting endeavor was possible, rewarding, and within my reach.

It has been said that our conscious mind represents only 3% of our brain. The other 97% belongs to the subconscious mind. According to Dr. Collautt, our subconscious mind is one million times more powerful than our conscious mind which leads me to believe that working on our subconscious mind is worthwhile.

I’m not in favor of recommending anyone to engage in hypnosis, meditation or anything new age. I’m in favor, however, for people to realize that they do have the power to work in harmony with their inner self from a scientific standpoint which is what I will be presenting next in this article.

3 Ways to Reprogram Your Subconscious Mind

To reprogram your subconscious mind to reach your goals, do these following exercises for a period of a year and pay attention to what you feel.

The following exercises are exactly what I did to conquer my fears of failure in academics which lead me to complete a PhD in Instructional Systems from a big ten school in 2008.

1. Be Humble

Don’t assume you know everything

. Listen to your subconscious resistance.[2]

When I was young, I wasn’t very humble. I assumed that I knew everything. I definitely didn’t listen to my subconscious which led me to having to leave a country to find my place under the sun.

I grew up playing golf in a country with no history in the sport. I was great at it which made it very difficult to be humble. I thought I knew everything about life because I knew the intricacies of golf but as early as 16 years old, my subconscious used to tell me, “Yes, you are a great golfer but Brazil doesn’t have a healthy professional golf league. Shouldn’t you be studying instead of playing golf?”

Long story short, my subconscious was right. I spent way too long dreaming of being something unattainable because I “knew” what was best for me despite the fact that my inner person was skeptical about my prospects of being a pro-golfer in Brazil. By the way, most of my close friends agreed with my subconscious mind. I resisted and paid the price.

When I came to Mississippi in 1998, I decided to do something different. I used to sit down for one hour or so alone a day and listen to what my subconscious was saying which led me to be humble and have a much higher degree of humility. I embraced my subconscious resistance and made all the difference.

Lesson learned. I have been listening to my subconscious ever since.

2. Listen to Your Fears and Define What They Are

It is okay to listen to your fears and define what these fears are.

When I was a student of Sports Management at Slippery Rock University, I wanted to be a sports agent. But in order to be a great sports agent, people need to go to law school. I wanted to go to law school but the prospects of scoring high on the LSAT and read law causes extensively made me re-think my future academic decisions back then.

I was afraid of failure. I remember going to the Duquesne University campus in Pittsburgh, PA for a day with a notebook in order to face my fears and defining what these fears really were.

What a great exercise! Facing the unknown is an important exercise that should help to reprogram your subconscious.

I listened to my fears and defined what they were in order to help me to maneuver in life. I decided not to go to Duquesne Law School because of my fear of not speaking the English language well enough and due to cost.

I thought harder and realized that going to another smaller school to pursue a masters degree in Communication was a much better idea. In fact, it was a great idea. Six years later, I completed a PHD Summa Cum Laude. I was able to reprogram my subconscious in order to pursue what was the most logical.

3. Repeat What You Believe to Your Subconscious

Yes, you heard that right. You need to do affirmations or the action of affirming something — “You can do it!.”

I convinced myself that I was going to be a college professor throughout my bachelors degree experience. At Penn State University, where I completed my doctorate, I was studying among the very best students in the world interested in technology in education.

I repeatedly told myself that I was a top student in instructional systems in the United States and visualized my career being a college professor in a teaching university.

Ladies and gentleman, repeating my beliefs through affirmations in graduate school have proven right and today, I’m a mid career college professor in a teaching university on my way to senior status.

It’s amazing what you accomplish when you convince yourself that you can do something multiple times a day. Affirmations work. It worked out for me and it will work out for you as well.

Conclusion

Negative thoughts won’t take you anywhere. Reaching your life goals are directly related to how much you believe that you can achieve them along with God’s grace.

It is possible to reprogram your brain in order to achieve your goals with distinction. It will take more than a couple of hours though.

Be patient and keep course. Engaging in subconscious training may be the difference between you achieving your goals to failing in your life pursuits.

Be humble, listen to your fears and repeatedly tell yourself that you can do it. Take advantage of affirmations! The power of the mind is amazing. You won’t regret.

Things I’ve Said In My Life Before

Things I’ve Said In My Life Before

Hope you enjoy these sayings as much as I do.

“We all have our own beliefs and value system. I certainly have mine and won’t give them up. You have yours and we all have to respect that.”

“God takes care of His people by putting extraordinary people in your path. He also humbles us to make us different for our own sake.”

“Complaining and blaming others for your misfortunes and lack of luck will not change the fact that we need to work with others in order to operate with distinction.”

“Give yourself a chance of winning big by aligning your talents with what God has called you to do.”

“Money comes second: Do what you like first.”

“When a well executed strategy is put in place, winning becomes a consequence.”

“Don’t confuse temporary success with God’s will.”

“Live your life in the moment. Give a hand to someone, forgive often, listen more and be real.”

“Don’t be jealous of others because God’s people complement them. Be patient because your time of glory will come.”

“Excessive speech isn’t appropriate and should be avoided whenever possible.”

“A leader canʼt have an evil stream otherwise, problems occur.”

Thank you for reading.

Thursday Thoughts For The Youth

Thursday Thoughts For The Youth

These are Thursday thoughts for the youth!

1. Be yourself. In this life, nobody wanting to be original can be a carbon copy of somebody else. The qualities that made Napoleon great were not the same qualities that made Patton extraordinary. The great Patch Adams cared for his patients more than any other physician ever dreamed of. Yet, we have obtuse doctors who just get things done making them as great. Women are from Venus and men are from Mars and that’s okay. Whatever unique traits the good God has given you, He gave you your uniqueness for a reason. There are a number of things in this life that are possible — by studying one gets better grades; By practicing, one gets better scores; By forgiving one becomes a better man. What isn’t possible is to strive to be unique by emulating others. It simply doesn’t work regardless of what others may tell you. The great Jim Furyk would have never made it into the PGA Tour by swinging his clubs more like Ben Hogan. The earlier you realize that you need to be original, the greater your impact in this life will be and the most glory to God you will be able to give.

2. Challenge yourself. History is full of cases of individuals who put themselves in a bubble and accept mediocrity in exchange for complacency and security. Just because you can play football in a AA division doesn’t mean that you are ready to compete against the Quad A state champions. You need to be original or should I say — be different. What you really need is to ditch the idea that you should work for money and rather… work in the talent that the Lord has given you by doing the former, you will be able to be great in your area of strength which if you keep course, success will go your way when you least expect. Give yourself a chance to be challenged and embrace the opportunity to achieve high grounds by challenging yourself.

3. Create something worth sharing. Whenever you create something out of nothing, you are obligated to think with no box yet generate a working prototype of your imagination.  With the former comes conceptualization, production, revision, re-engineering, more and more revisions leading to a final product or outcome.  Even if your creation is a failure financially, there are great lessons to be learned by going through the motions of raw creation. The uniqueness of your efforts in many ways speak louder than your inability to take a chance.  If you want to be unique, you will need to take risks and give yourself a chance to achieve the unimaginable. Creating something worth sharing isn’t the test but a task and duty. Next time you think about being unique, create something worth sharing.

4. Tesla sell their cars to their tribes, always catering to them. 78% of Tesla sales are done on-line. It is different, it’s unique. Elon Musk seems to be empathetic with his team. What is the result of his efforts? Success! A lot of it. He understands his audience. He is clearly not catering to everybody. What are you doing everyday to cater to your tribe? remember: Whatever we do professionally, we do for our audience not to ourselves. “Be careful to not associate yourself with those who think that they themselves are the center of the universe.”

That’s it! Did you learn something? Let’s keep the conversation going and chat. Hope you have a great Thursday!

Five Ways To Develop Yourself Professionally

Five Ways To Develop Yourself Professionally

These are things I’ve done (or philosophies that I have adopted) in order to develop my career as a college professor. There is much wisdom in them! I suspect that these activities will also be of great value for you as it helps us to be grounded in things that really matter. Are you ready for it?

Here we go.  In order to develop yourself professional…

  1. Buy yourself a guitar and study music. You heard that right. Sell your computer and buy a guitar as Tom Petty once said. The act of jamming your six strings and singing alone but preferably in front of a group of listeners, friends, enemies, groupies… overtime can do miracles for you and will help you to reach your goal of being an extrovert. The act of playing the guitar and being in front of others is one of the first steps you need to do in order to becoming more comfortable when speaking with strangers. Why do you second guess yourself? You can be an extrovert overtime. Yes you can! Let me repeat: Yes you can! Do me a favor now. Go get yourself an acoustic guitar and schedule some guitar maybe voice lessons. The former can do miracles in your life, trust me. 
  2. Be a source of pleasure. No matter which career you are in or want to pursue, don’t be grumpy, melancholic, egoistic or egocentric, self-centered, or arrogant. Be the type of person you and your friends want to be around with. You don’t need to force your new image on others, either. Be a source of pleasure and celebrate creating harmony by making others to celebrate themselves.  Eventually, others will invite you in their circles and will legitimately enjoy being around you for the right reasons not because of  your position or authority. I see too many people today failing to re-create themselves into someone better because of a false belief that they need to stick to their century long traditions. Their stagnation is eminent; Loss of talent is predictable; lack of self-innovation and brand depreciation is likely.

  3. Question your assumptions once in a while. Be careful when making lifetime assumptions because when you assume, you make an… you know how the saying goes. Things change, life evolves, and people learn lessons. Not always but you know what I mean. In the spirit of wanting to recreate your image and questioning some of your lifelong goals and objectives, you have to be open minded to the possibilities that might head your way. One of the ways to accomplish the former is by questioning what you may think is untouchable to you. If I was so defensive about ever changing my upbringing instilled ideologies from childhood, I would have never turned into a college professor. In the country club culture in which I was born and raised in, becoming a college professor was seen as the ultimate sign of failure only after lacking a formal college education. I knew then and certainly know now, however, that the truth is far from what I was once told. It took me “questioning my childhood assumptions” in order to be able to see life as it is.

  4. Don’t be delusional. Many today live their lives in a world of fantasy and make believe because of their inability to question their own circumstances, values and inherited biases. There is tremendous power in re-evaluating what you believe, feel, and care about in the context of what is real. This doesn’t mean that you should be mean, treat others with disrespect, turn yourself blue when common sense calls you to be yellow, or totally ignore your history for the sake of change and advancement. Common sense plays a variable in the process, you now? Be realistic with yourself. 
  5. Avoid using the word “I.” Professionals who constantly use the word “I” rarely make the greatest impact in the life of others especially students. If you hear someone constantly using the pronoun “I” in conversations, be aware. Chances are very high that “I” means excluding you. A caring and dedicated professional must learn how to use the word “you” or “we” 95% percent of the time because the overuse of the word “I” will only lead to contention and suspicion.  As a responsible worker and leader, you need to create harmony and transparency… A star employee champions equilibrium in the life of his/her team and puts him/herself second to the needs of the team. A great way to accomplish such pursuits is by replacing the word “I” with the better alternative… “You” or “We.”

That’s it! These are five ways to develop yourself professionally. If you have a question or comments, don’t forget to leave a comment down in here. Peace. 

A Few Words I’ve shared With The Harvard Business Review Magazine And Its Readers

A Few Words I’ve shared With The Harvard Business Review Magazine And Its Readers

Here they are… Plain and to the point.

HBR Article

Harvard Business Review Stated: It is both a moral and economic imperative for companies to implement education programs to help safeguard the future labor force.

Dr. A Replied: HBR, I love your magazine and rarely disagree with you. Let me disagree with you on this one, if I may. Agreed! Automation will take away a lot of jobs in the near future. However, the responsibility for retooling lies in the hands of the workers themselves not the organizations. It is unwise, in my opinion, for any worker living in 2019 to wait on any corporate body to provide them with professional development opportunities in the age of YouTube, Edx… There is so much output on the market right now that workers can literally choose what and where they want to learn, often free of charge. I happened to have retooled on data science and analytics lately on my own. Of course! It’s the present. HBR, I won’t wait on any organization to provide training for me in any area. I read heavily and I’m always on the quest to learning something new and relevant.

HBR Article 

Harvard Business Review Stated: Failure hurts. But new research shows that it can sometimes lead to more impactful work.

Dr. A Replied: I fail, I get up… I fail, I get up… I fail, I win, I fail… I win… I fail less and win more. We all fail… Not everybody learns from their failures, though. Big opportunities come out of massive failures.

HBR Article

Harvard Business Review Stated: Boomers aren’t the only ones with skills gaps today. Younger workers also need to work to figure out which skills their career paths will demand.

Dr. A Replied: Great article. Things change, fast. It’s been 11 years since I graduated from Penn State with a doctorate degree unrelated to the field of business. 170 business books later, countless articles read from your magazine, many hours of YouTube learning and podcasts listened on the topic of marketing, too many conversations with industry leaders and my own master mind business group… Yesterday, I’ve learn a skill that will make our family a lot of money, finally. Students have to be obsessed with learning in order to figure it out themselves which skillsets they need to learn in order to help their careers. Students are different… It’s not a one-size-fits all quest, you know? The process is slow. It won’t happen fast but they must keep the course in order to learn the skill sets they need in life.

HBR Article

Harvard Business Review Stated: Skills like critical thinking are consistently valuable to employers — and still difficult for machines.

Dr. A Replied: Yes, of course. Critical thinking is valuable to any employer today as it was before… Our jobs will be automated, sooner or later unfortunately. Why? The globe should investigate what is happening in Shenzhen, China in order to see what will be the future of human business. Stores with no attendants, people not carrying a wallet… people using WeChat for transactions… an unprecedented push for innovation not seen in human kind history. Thinking about what machines can’t do is dangerous… Remember: We are in 2019. How are machines going to look like in 2034? Think about it.

HBR Article

Harvard Business Review Stated: Only 24% of the CEOs in this study had MBAs.

Dr. A Replied: Fact: Inheriting big messes call for strong leadership which can lead to presidency. “Everybody can hold the whelm when the seas are calm.” Syrus.

Qualities Of A Great Leader

Qualities Of A Great Leader

Leadership is action not position, as Maxwell once said. You can be a great “leader” simply by acting like one. Great leaders don’t “need” titles, a big salary, a secretary, or a bunch of groupies following them around in order to do what leaders do best — to lead and solve problems. A great leader understands that actions speak much louder than any given title especially when the topic is influence. They also understand that compensation is a consequence of great and consistent work done overtime. When given administrative support, great leaders never delegate tasks that they can’t complete themselves. Before I go any further, let me summarize what I just told you so that you never forget…

Just because an individual is placed in a position of leadership doesn’t automatically turn him Or her into a “great leader”. Authority is part of leadership but leadership that works isn’t always authoritative.

A great leader doesn’t need to scream at others in order to have his or her voice heard. The following are three traits that leaders should have in order to have influence over others.  

1. Be a man (or woman) of integrity: If a leader says that he/she is going to do something, do it. It is plain and simple. DO NOT gossip about anyone. If a work relationship isn’t working, don’t pretend that it is. Always tell the truth. Just because a person is given the title of a Manager, Director, VP, or Trustee doesn’t mean that they are a leader per se. Popularity isn’t synonymous with leadership. Although a great leader knows how to communicate with constituents, and can be charismatic, he knows that popularity by itself won’t make anyone into a great leader. In fact, pretending that popularity and charisma equals great leadership can be quite destructive overtime. Jim Collins, in his best selling book, “From Good to Great” talks about the former in great detail. I recommend you to start reading his book today, if you can. It is a great resource to have without a doubt if your goal is to be a great leader.

2. Be loyal to your company’s brand: As long as your company is writing you a paycheck every month, be loyal to them. Here are my ways to show loyalty to the universities I’ve worked for: First, I share posts on social media about their events, accomplishments, recruiting efforts… for thousands of people to see. It shows them that I care about them — which I do. Second, I immediately buy a school’s t-shirt, take photos with it, and make sure that my colleagues, family and friends see me wearing the t-shirt in public and in social media. Lastly, be yourself and be creative. You only live once so you might as well have fun in the process and do what you like.

3. Do the work yourself with the assistance of others: The moment that you need others to do your work, its time for you to retire or look for another career. Great leaders work very hard and often work alone with the input of others in order to complete challenging tasks. If your plan is to be a great leader, do the former. Caution: It is impossible to do everything as a leader no matter where you work at. Listen to your team, put your ego aside and make well thought out decisions taking into account the opinion of others. The former builds trust and leadership clout. You are going to need both in order to be a great leader.

Leadership is action not position. You can be a quite influential “leader” simply by acting like one. Leaders don’t “need” titles, a big salary, a secretary, or a bunch of groupies following them around in order to do what leaders should do best — to lead and solve problems. A true leader understands that actions speak much louder than any given title especially when dealing with influence. In this article, we spoke a bit about great leadership. Hope that the content written in this article was useful to you. What is great leadership to you?