The Art of Being

Yesterday evening on my way home I thought about attracting things into my life for the new year 2015. The law of attraction works when we are in a state of already having and not in a state of want. Not too long after I got home, a friend called me with a reading he said reminded him of me and it is something I would like to share today. It’s an excerpt entitled “The Art of Being” from the book Shock Therapy for a Brain Dead World by Gyeorgos C. Hanton.

The art of being is the assumption that you may possess, this very minute, those qualities of spirit and attitudes of mind that make for a radiant living. It is a philosophy of being today, instead of “becoming” in a tomorrow that never comes. It is recognising that courage, joy, serenity, faith, hope and love are immediately available now and preceding to open yourself so these qualities can be expressed through you in everyday living. It is following the maxim of Shakespeare: “Assume a virtue though you have it not… knowing that the dynamic power of habit can build it into your character”. It is being great now, being forgiving now, being tolerant now, being happy now, being successful now, instead of postponing positive and constructive living to some vague and indefinite future.

It is knowing that when we move into the future it becomes the NOW, and that now is the appointed time! It is facing the fact that your biggest task is not to get ahead of others but to surpass yourself. It is wasting no time dreaming about the rich life you may live next year, or ten years from now; it is beginning to live at your best right now, today. It is heeding the wisdom of the ancient Chinese seer who observed: “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step” and it is taking that step today. It is beginning today to be the person who you want to be. It is developing an awareness of the infinite possibilities in each magic moment. It is enlarging the now by pouring into it intense creative energy. It is immortalising the present moment that your life may have eternal significance. It is coming into a full realisation that the Master voiced the secret of victorious being, when He declared that the Kingdom of God is not afar off but that it is within you now. 

So be it. I also hear most often: “…but I only intended to…”. The road to Hell is paved with good intentions!


Not what I expected

I hope everyone had a joyful Christmas season and are excited to welcome the New Year. The past four days were extremely busy for me. I had hopes of using at least one of the days to relax and do absolutely nothing but rest, think and do some mental planning and organising for the first quarter of 2015 but unfortunately that was not the case. I spent my holidays cleaning and cooking and spending time with family and friends. Even though things did not go exactly the way I wanted, it felt great to have conversations with friends I haven’t seen in quite some time. The first quarter of 2015 will be filled with productive activity and the opportunity to spend time with people I care deeply for was greatly appreciated, as I know most of my time will be devoted to personal and professional development for the next couple of months.

A welcomed break

Today is one of the calmest weekdays I’ve had in a very long time. I’m at the office writing my blog post for the day and completing a few things while everyone else has left to attend the departmental breakfast at the head office. While I don’t fancy the hustle and bustle of the Christmas season, I will definitely appreciate the next 2 days that I’ll be able to take it down a bit and spend some extra time with close friends and family. I will also be taking a break from my blog posts until next week Monday, so to everyone out there, thank you for supporting my blog and reading my content over the past couple of months and I wish you and yours a wonderful, fruitful and blessed Christmas.

Remote working

When I attend the Microsoft M4 event about a month ago, one of the things I loved most was how Microsoft in Trinidad has embraced remote working. At NIBTT, this is yet to happen. Yesterday I had a quick chat with one of my co-workers who is also a mother of two beautiful little girls and she expressed her feelings about the commute to work, the management of her time and her productivity with regards to work and her personal life. Remote work is not extremely common here in Trinidad and Tobago, especially in the government sector. Every day so many persons, including myself leave home at 5AM to get to work in the Capital City for 8AM to avoid the horror and stress of dealing with the traffic. Most of the employees in my department have given up on arriving at work by 8AM and some actually arrive at 10AM or later. Another co-worker mentioned the effect the commute had on his health in the past, so he can no longer get to work for 8AM, he gets to the office whenever he can. This is really sad. Remote working is not something everyone will want as some folks are unable to be productive at home, which was a point expressed by a third co-worker in my department. A software development team is one of the easiest groups that remote working can be tested on to see how it can be implemented in other departments. My co-worker with the two daughters asked if it was something I can bring up again that can be considered, even if it’s for one day. I hope one day management at NIBTT can realise the benefit of remote work for some departments and some employees.

Entrepreneurial Spirituality

In 2006, I developed a habit of meditating for about 15-30 minutes everyday at noon. While I have not been as consistent as I would like to be with my meditations, I still make the effort when I can. It is my goal for 2015 to make this more of a daily habit than I currently do. As I thought about today’s blog post this morning, I received an email about Spiritual Fitness from Brandon Epstein’s Entrepreneurial Fitness. In the email the day before from Brandon, he mentioned the 4 pillars of Entrepreneurial Fitness. These include:

Spiritual Fitness: Developing a purpose driven vision that aligns your daily actions with your goals and aspirations.

Physical Fitness: Creating your dream body, perfect health and having the energy you need to achieve the success you desire.

Emotional Fitness: Developing the ability to overcome stressors without becoming overwhelmed. Learning the tools to keep you positive and enjoy the process of building your empire.

Mental Fitness: Gaining the ability to access flow states (your mental zone); as well as improve creativity, focus and clarity.

He stated that the reason for spiritual fitness is to give you purpose. To make you feel like you are working towards something that is greater than yourself. Brandon defines spiritual fitness as the conviction to follow through with daily actions that align with a purpose driven vision. Without that strong WHY, we can eventually burn out or lose interest.

To start building Entrepreneurial Fitness Brandon recommends you start by finding out exactly what it is you desire and then creating an identity that will get you that desired outcome. Once you discover what it is that you want you can hold yourself to standards and values everyday that will keep you aligned with your greater purpose. Having strong spiritual fitness is something we must train daily, it’s all a process of growth.

Brandon recommends this article to help you find out exactly what it is you desire and then create an identity that will get you that desired outcome.

Entrepreneur Fitness

I’ve heard over and over from podcasts, watched countless videos and read numerous articles that emphasised the correlation between physical training and one’s approach to professional work, whether you’re an entrepreneur or you’re employed by someone else. I paid my first gym membership at the age of 16 and I’ve been working out since then. I realised early on in life the importance of not just being active but being disciplined with it. While I would have altered my days at the gym to work with other life priorities like family, university and my job, it’s always something that’s a part of my life. My workout sessions happen even while I’m out of the gym. I usually visualise the weights I would like to push or lift before I go to the gym and before I perform the exercise. This concept of visualising, believing then actualising is important in many others areas of my life especially as an entrepreneur. Training at the gym also helps me to come out of my comfort zone. For the most part of this year, I trained in my comfort zone and this was evident in the way I approached other areas of my life. I know I’m not really pushing myself with weights when I don’t feel the need to train with my belt. I decided that’s going to change for 2015. I’ll be trying a new workout routine that will definitely take me out of my comfort zone, is based around consistently training heavier and one that I’ve never done before. These are qualities that I definitely need to develop in my professional life as an entrepreneur. I need to operate outside of my comfort zone a bit more to build my confidence, I need to push myself to do more or constantly challenge myself by increasing the intensity of the work I do and I definitely need to try new things. There are many correlations between physical fitness and professional readiness and building qualities in one area will definitely have a positive effect on the other area. I’ve also recently started listening to Brandon Epstein’s podcast Entrepreneur Fitness to help me master this aspect of my life.

Grades for the Java class

Yesterday I completed marking all the coursework and final exam papers for my Java class from this semester. I’m very thankful that all my students passed, some with higher marks than others. One of my students scored a disappointing 25% on one of his assignments simply because he had too much going on at the time and was not motivated enough to complete the coursework. Despite the number of exercises given and the fact that I prepared a mock exam, some students did not answer the questions in the final exam as well as I’d hope. The lowest mark for the final exam was 50% and the highest was 90%. I can accept this but sometimes no matter how much information you provide to students to aid in the preparation of examinations, it’s up to them to make that effort.