We are trained from childhood to associate negative emotions with failure. This leads to the desire to disassociate one’s self with that outcome that was deemed a failure and therefore lose incentive to examine the situation carefully in the end. The greatest lessons are truly learned from failure. The greatest people in history have talked about their failures and what they’ve learned from them. As Thomas Edison once said “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work”. John Lee Dumas of Entrepreneur On Fire always asks his entrepreneur guests about that great big failure and there is always a lesson to be learned from it. Those entrepreneurs have also attributed the success they have now to that great big failure they experienced. However, in the society we live in, the need to appear almost always perfect is causing us to miss out on life’s greatest lessons. We don’t push ourselves too hard or set goals that are seemingly unrealistic due to our fear of failure. To aid in my goal of getting out of my comfort zone for 2015, I’m setting goals that seem somewhat impossible. I need to test myself. It’s not only about the success of it but it’s about becoming comfortable with the concept of failure and understanding the true joy of it all. It’s about being able to look back on experiences and pull as much knowledge from it and use that to move forward in achieving more success. I am giving my all to accomplish my goals but knowing that the process is about learning and building character, makes me feel as if I’ve succeeded regardless of the outcome.
“I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life and that is why I succeed”…Michael Jordan
Yesterday after my last C++ class, I chatted with 3 of my students for a little more than an hour. It was really an enlightening conversation. Since I started lecturing in 2008, I noticed that most students form an opinion about my upbringing, the schools I would have attended and the area I live in, most times being completely wrong but interestingly assuming an improved version of the life I lived and currently live. This is all based on the way I interact with them, the way I dress and speak, my knowledge of the topic area I’m lecturing and in essence, the way I portray myself. Last night I spent some time with these students and we all shared details from our lives and our upbringing. We talked about so many things but it was important for me to share some of the things I learned in life. I sent them an email this morning thanking them for the little chat after class and wishing them all the best in their exams. I also took that opportunity to remind them of some of the things we discussed last night.
- You are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with. (John Lee Dumas – Entrepreneur on Fire)
- Everything in life is energy.
- Anything you can think about you can bring about.
- In life, you get every thing you want. Most people just don’t know how to want. They focus on the things they don’t want, which draws that thing closer to them.
- Where attention goes, energy flows and things grow. Focus your attention on the things you want to see grow.
- Form a mastermind group with individuals of like minds with a common goal.
Yesterday was awesome. I attended the last day of Startup Weekend in Trinidad as a guest with my friend Ian Alleyne, who was one of the sponsors for the event and it was such an inspiring experience. The ideas presented by the teams were so innovative. In third place, was a group called Talk Down and their idea centered around providing a social media hotline for persons thinking about committing suicide or who have made attempts to take their lives, to talk to trained professionals about their situation. In second place was Peoples Holdings, a group focused on providing financial services at a higher interest on savings than the banks by focusing on investing in real estate. In first place was Smart Hook, a concept geared towards the oil and gas industry where an automated hooking system is used for lifting equipment. The current system in place uses human power and this has resulted in severe injuries and loss of life in some instances. At the end of the session, I took the opportunity to let the participants know how fortunate they were to have found such an event, as I walked this road alone for over a year and a half but now that I’ve found Startup Weekend, I’ll definitely be coming back. I also shared three valuable resources with all the aspiring entrepreneurs. I told them about John Lee Dumas and his Entrepreneur on Fire podcasts as well as his Quotes on Fire podcasts, these will definitely keep that entrepreneurial fire burning on a daily basis. I also told them about Lewis Howes, The School of Greatness. This guy is awesome and while his podcast format is different from Entrepreneur on Fire, it rocks just the same. Before the end of the night so many of them had already subscribed to all the podcasts. I would definitely be attending more of these events in Trinidad. As John Lee Dumas constantly reminds his listeners, “We are the average of the 5 people we spend the most time with”, so it’s very important that I spend my time with individuals who share my passions and some of my goals in life.
Focus is the word of the week for me. I listen to Entrepreneur On Fire or Quotes on Fire Podcasts with John Lee Dumas almost every day. In most of the podcasts, he gives his meaning of the word FOCUS, which is Follow One Course Until Success and I quite like this explanation. For now, I’ve had to shift my focus from securing an iOS Developer role in the UK to my ill mother. I was placed in this exact situation in May of this year and now five months later I’m in the same predicament. I’ll be slowing down the job applications for a bit but I’ll continue to write blog posts about my other work and develop this blog in the way I visual it to be within a year from now. I honestly believe that everything happens for a reason and it only lasts for a season, so it’s up to me to read the signs and figure out what I’m not doing that I should be doing and vice versa as well as what changes in my life need to be made, if any. For now I’ll focus on family and my work here in Trinidad. I’ll also seek out work as an iOS Developer working remotely for companies in the UK from Trinidad for the time being, it’s the best compromise I can think of at the moment.