The news about my boss, Andy, giving his two-week notice spread like wild fire in the department. Everyone who reported to him was apprehensive about what the next guy was going to be like.
Is the new guy going to be better or worse than Andy? Everybody was concerned about how this change would affect them, including other managers that worked with Andy.
Weeks later after Andy was gone, as I was working on the production floor, one of the technicians came up to me and said, “So I heard you have a new boss now.”
“Do I?” I inspected some plastic parts coming off a molding machine.
“You didn’t get the news yet? You and I will both be working for Shawn now,” he said as he scrunched up his face in discontent.
“Is is that bad?” I inquired.
“I don’t know how much you’ve worked with him, but he doesn’t deserve to be a manager,” he added, “The stars were lined up just right for him and the timing of it was right; that’s the only reason why he got to become a manager.”
Years later, I asked my audience at a speaking event: if they believed that everything, every single thing that they have in their life was because of their action. Some of them agreed, others did not.
Look at the above scenario. Andy made a clear conscious decision to quit and move somewhere else. So Andy created what he wanted through his action. However, Andy’s action also resulted in creating a vacant spot in the department. It’ll be foolish to say that Shawn intended that.
Did Shawn get the position because of his own action?
Some might argue that just like Andy, Shawn made a conscious decision of taking the position, so he created what he wanted through his action. Yes. But one intricate component of this scenario is that the decision made by one person (Andy) impacted what the other person (Shawn) got. That is referred to as destiny by some and opportunity by others.
Every one of us experiences this phenomenon in our personal relationships or professional careers at some point of time in our life. That relationship that you so deeply desired with someone, but it never worked out. The job or career that you so yearned for, but you ultimately ended up doing something that you had never dreamed of. Perhaps there is a component that we don’t have a control over: people and events both, which changes what we end up with.
No matter what you call it: destiny or opportunity, taking action is what ultimately makes destiny or opportunity a reality. Whether the result in what you expected or not—take action.
Even though Millennials are dominating the workforce, they don’t necessarily like their jobs. That’s where Kit Gupta and iExcel Events come in. Coming from a background in engineering, Kit left a successful and growing career and followed his passion.
Kit now works with young professionals on how to find the job that best suits them. Kit says, “the goal is to find a job where you feel that is what you’re passionate about; where you feel fulfilled. Where every single day when you go in from 8-5 or 9-5, you feel that is where you belong.”
First, Kit suggests knowing yourself. Know what your strengths and weaknesses are and which job field you’d prefer to be in. Then, you should focus on three core principles:
-Rewire your brain
-Think beyond profits
-Live here, now
So, if you’re looking for a career change, check out Kit Gupta and iExcel Events.
Waiting at the light for over ten minutes, I heard the cab driver say, “We still have plenty of time to get to the airport, sir. We don’t have to rush. There is no point rushing for anything in life.”
“True,” I replied to him. Finally we were able to move past the light and onto the highway. The cab driver continued to talk about his life back home: his kids, wife and rest of his family. “The only reason I am here is for money,” he said, “If I had a choice I would never live in a crowded city like Delhi with so many people. He told me, that despite of having everything back home he still has to work here so he can earn more. “There are more jobs here and more money,” he said.
“Can I ask you a question?” I said. “Sure, ask anything you’d like,” the cab driver replied.
“What do you think is the real meaning of life? Why do you think everyone comes here?” I asked. With reverence, he said, “Sir, according to me the meaning of life is very simple. We are here to do good things for the world. We come here to experience, have babies, give our kids a good education; inculcate virtues in their life so they can also do well for the world and pass it on to their kids. I am Muslim and believe that this is what God’s message is for me. That is the only meaning of life and nothing else.” Quietly and patiently I heard every word.
While he was elaborating on the points, some of which were reiterating the earlier ones, I reflected upon the answer to the same question I asked to another cab drive during my day trip to Mumbai exactly one week ago. “Sir, I think there is no meaning to life. The reason why we all come here is because we have are supposed live. You come in world, live, eat, experience, enjoy and die. That is the meaning of life and nothing else,” is what he explained.
An hour later, we made it safely through the crowded streets of Delhi, the cab driver pulled close to the curb of the departures and said “If I would have said, something that you did not like, I would like to apologize. I hope I did not say anything to hurt you.” I believe, because I was sitting quietly in the back seat most of the time listening to him talk, he thought I was offended. “No, I really liked hearing your point of view. There is no right or wrong; it just is.” I shook hands with him and we parted.
Reminiscing, the conversation with both the cab drivers, I realized that they both used the word ‘nothing’ in their explanations. Perhaps there is really no meaning, no specific purpose to life for everyone who is here. The true meaning, true purpose is whatever we make it. Two years ago, I talked about definition of success in my studio recording: “If there are seven billion of more people on this earth, there are seven billion or more definitions of success.”
So how can the purpose of life for each one of us be the same? Even though both the cab drivers live in the same country and do the same thing for living, they seem to think differently about why we are here.
Perhaps, the page titled “My Purpose” for everyone who comes here is a blank page. We decide and make what that purpose would be. If it is to become an engineer, doctor, lawyer, dancer, cook, painter, musician, photographer, husband, parent or whatever else it might be, we write it all when we are here. The meaning of life or the purpose of our life becomes whatever we want to make it. And we create this purpose with only one thing—experience.
I was wrapping the boxes of precious gemstones after giving a presentation in an upscale retirement community in North Dallas. A lady approached me and said, “My husband, who died last year gave me this for our anniversary. I did not notice this before, but if you look carefully, there are a few black spots in this Ruby. Does this mean that this stone is fake?” I looked at her and smiled. “The technical word for the black spots is “inclusions.” That is what the industry refers to these black spots as and they are natural,” I replied.
That evening, while driving back home, reminiscing about my interaction with the lady made me smile again. But this time I was not smiling because of what she asked me. Co-relating her question to our personal, professional and social lives made me smile. Gemstones, including diamonds show inclusions because of a natural process. These could be impurities that become a part of the precious stones while its forming under high pressures and temperatures. A stone without any inclusions at all is more precious and rare. There is no laboratory process that can eliminate these inclusions. If you look at a cubic zirconia (a stone know for its brilliance and flawless characteristics), even under high magnification, you will find no inclusions in them. That is because they are lab created, they are not natural. Or as some people say “they are artificial.”
Flaws are a sign of being authentic. Most of us want to be flawless; we want to avoid making mistakes: doing or saying the wrong thing. But making mistakes, not knowing everything is being a human. That is what makes us authentic and acknowledging our flaws makes us absolutely authentic.
We all come across certain people in our personal relationships or work who have a hard time admitting what they don’t know. They feel the need to defend their position, they raise their voice and become dramatic. This happens when people are not connected with their inner-self. When we take ourselves for granted and always want to be right, that’s when we are fake. We are just dead-walking- alive!
Keep an open-mind, an open-heart and acknowledge when you are not right. Sometimes, it’s okay for others to know more than you. If you make a mistake, don’t be afraid to apologize. It makes you more genuine. There is nothing worse than defending your position to make a wrong- right. That’s fake.
Admitting your flaws is the quality of an authentic leader; they are hard to find but you can easily find crowds of those that don’t. Flaws are natural. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. Be authentic and you can succeed in your personal, professional and social life.
Ever since I can remember, I never missed a day without performing my morning ritual. I am awake; but I still keep my eyes closed, and I feel like staying in bed. I am physically still, but my mind is already in action—filled with thoughts. Sometimes I try to decode my dreams and make sense of it. But my thoughts don’t’ stop there. “What time is the meeting with the media reporter today? I will take my notes I wrote from last week to make sure I can answer the questions effectively. Do I have my white shirt and gray pants cleaned? We have not done laundry in the last four weeks. I will do that over the weekend. What else was I supposed to do over the weekend? I need to take Sunny (my dog) for his eye check-up. Do I still have his eye medication? I need to check that.” And then thoughts that have no connection with my previous thoughts. “I should appreciate everything I have, and not always want something more. I get food to eat, I am healthy, I help both our parents, my wife is very supportive, and everything is just fine. I should complain less. But I don’t complain too much, do I? I should get up and get ready now.”
Our morning rituals might not be identical but they exist for most of us. Sometimes, we feel there is so much that we have to accomplish, at work, with kids, with the family, in school, cook, clean, and the list is longer some days and shorter on others. Independent of our culture, race or background we are all here to accomplish. Every one of us has that to-do list for the day. Whether you go to school, stay at-home, work for someone, run a business or are retired, whether you are married, single or divorced as long as we are here and alive, we are all on this journey to accomplish—accomplish tasks.
Most of us like to know what is on our plate for the day, no one likes surprises. Why? Because most of us like to be prepared for things. If we have to execute a task at the last minute, we get uncomfortable. Why? Because of the unknowns. “If I get called for a last minute meeting or training at work on my day off, will I make it there on-time? Do I have to rush through the traffic?” No one likes unknowns because they bring fear along with them. Fear of not accomplishing the task.
However, being present in what you are doing even when the results are obscure, increases the probability of accomplishing the task successfully. If you get called at work at the last minute and all you have is questions and fear about not making it there on-time, or begrudging why you got called on your day-off, you have set the stage for a rough day for yourself.
Live here now is a practice shared at iexcelevents by IE Sigma® that could help you reduce or eliminate the fear brought from the unknowns we experience in our relationships, career or any other domain in life, and help create transformation for excellence. Implementing a practice to focus your attention on the task you are performing, can transform you, so you can enjoy even the unknowns that come your way in this journey we call life.
For years, I always wanted to climb the corporate ladder and become “successful” in my profession. Getting the next title, receiving a bigger paycheck, was of the utmost importance to me. A few years into any job, if I would feel that there was no potential for growth in the organization, I would start disseminating my resume to potential employers and recruiters. Two words that I never eliminated from the summary on my resume were —“results-oriented.” In almost every job interview, I would always use the words “results-oriented” to define myself. At the time, I thought that it creates a strong impact on the potential interviewer. Little did I know, that my obsession with results in any domain of life could also easily consume me.
There is a paradigm shift in how we create and consume everything. From the food and drinks, to electronic gadgets, we have a myriad of options to choose from. Obsessions with achieving more, accumulating more, in every aspect of life leads to becoming relentless to have the power to purchase from the myriad of choices the market has to offer. In this fast-paced roller coaster of consumerism, everyone wants results, so everyone can consume more. The skin product companies want to create better results so you could look ten years younger and use more of their products. The beer companies want to make better-tasting-low- calorie beer so you can consume more beer and also not have remorse over that beer belly. The mobile phone manufacturing companies want to make products so you can do more from the phones and not have to physically go anywhere. And the list goes on.
When we desire to devour everything that the market has to offer, we strive to have the power to purchase it. This power comes from having money. We work harder, longer and want to get our boss the results he or she expects. Before we even know, we get consumed by the need to produce results, so we can continue to be liked by others at work, continue to have the job, continue to have a paycheck, which gives us the power to consume more. It’s a vicious circle.
The results that science and technology have created to improve our lives are phenomenal but they also bring some negative aspects along with them. And if we are not cautious about how much we consume, it could hurt us. Evaluate what is “value-adding” to your life and then decide to consume it. It’s one simple way to control the conditioning that the consumer driven market creates in our lives. Rewire your thinking and you could transform the effect the consumer market might have created on you.
Pushing on the elliptical machine for over thirty minutes, I increased the resistance to simulate climbing stairs for the remainder of my workout. It was quiet until a trainer and his client (who is serious about losing weight) walked in. I had seen them at the gym for the last three months but never had a conversation with either one of them. We all get familiar with those voices that disregard the presence of anyone else around them, and talk as loudly as possible to make their presence known—this duo had that annoying loud pitched voice. Even with no intention to partake in their discussion, I was now forced to hear the conversation of the day.
“It has been three months and I am still struggling with my weight,” says the trainee. The physical trainer nods. “But I think your endurance has increased since you started,” he said in a positive tone. “But what about the weight?” asked the guy looking for hope to find a solution to his problem. “I have also changed my diet like you asked,” he added, as he breathed heavily and sped up on the treadmill. Questioning his weight loss program, the trainee said, “maybe I need more motivation.”
I wiped the machine I was working out on, picked up my keys, and walked out the exit door. Walking back, I realized that as human beings we are apt in blame storming; we rely on all the external sources that we so confidently assume will help us achieve our goals. Whether it is dropping the extra pounds, doing better in our relationship, performing better at work —always looking for some external force—that will help us make our mark. Motivation is that external stimulus that ignites the desire to achieve something more, but, it is not the sole ingredient that helps us accomplish that something.
The difference between those who accomplish their set goals and those who do not, is not the level of motivation. The primary reason why they are successful in accomplishing their goals, is the strategies they create to stay the course, and overcome all the challenges and roadblocks.
iExcel events by IE SIGMA® are transformational events that take you beyond motivation and help you build strategies to accomplish your personal, professional and social goals. The focus of the event is to create transformation.
Visit iexcelevents.com to attend a one-of-a-kind transformational event in a city near you. The only event where you can experience true transformational stories from the audience and build your success strategies.
Addressing the last question from the audience on raw material challenges in the medical device industry, I said, “Thank You.” Panning from the left to the right of the conference hall, watching attendees applaud; I continued to stretch my lips from ear to ear and sat on the table with the panel of speakers where my name was displayed. After all the speakers are done sharing their thoughts on the topics they had chosen to speak on, one question that can be felt radiating in every square inch of the room is— What time does the networking reception start? The evening receptions at these conferences are to relish the snacks you normally don’t eat at home, imported cheese and of course free wine; but we are all here with an agenda — an agenda to see what do you have to offer? The ubiquitous question that will decide whether you are worth anyone’s time— what do you do? At the evening reception, holding a glass of red wine in one hand, I joined a group which had some familiar faces in it. “Well done, that was a great presentation!,” said one of the guys in a gray suit and blue tie. “Thanks,” I replied followed by an abrupt pause. I had met him in the same conference last year as well. His name is Bill, maybe not; I am horrible with birthdays and unfortunately with names. I have mixed Bob’s with Bill’s and Sarah’s with Sandra’s. My wife has told me for seven years, “just don’t say their name if you are not sure.” This time, I did not want to embarrass myself, hence the abrupt pause. “So what do you?” asks another unfamiliar face in the group. If you are intelligent, you need to decipher that— “I am here to sell you anything, even if I don’t have it, I will make it for you!” The conversation went on for a few minutes for the guy to decide if I was worth pursuing as a lead. An exchange of business cards happened while I kept sipping the savory wine until the glass was empty. On the surface, it all seemed like a staged drama.
After attending numerous conferences around the country and as a speaker in a few, every reception, every marketing dinner, I knew the agenda everyone had for coming to these conferences. They say, sometimes it only takes one event to find the answer you are looking for. Well, the conference in Cleveland was the one for me— it was a life transformational event. As I was sitting on a round table with a “highly qualified” group of people from Fortune 500 companies, I glanced at the badge hanging from my neck that I was given to wear at all times. I saw my first and last name, and right below my name was the name of the corporation I worked for. While the group I was dining with was talking about the New England Patriots, in a very subtle manner, I quickly glanced at everyone’s badge. Clearly, every one of them had the corporations they worked for attached to their name. The only people in the room that did not have their corporation’s name hanging from their necks were the servers. In that moment, the only thought that came to my mind was — if I only had my first and last name written on my badge, would I get the same treatment like I did from the sales guys? As I dined that night, I kept thinking, what if every person here was to strike the name of the corporations they work for from their badges— would they be looked at differently? Would they be treated differently?
Our job, our profession, the work we do, whether we work for a small or big corporation, or if we are self-employed, we carry our job titles with us to give ourselves an identity. We all know and have used the conversation starter—so what do you do? Which implies, how do you earn a living? How do you pay your bills? How much money do you make? Are you any different than me? And all the other comparative analysis questions that are hidden in just one question, what do you do?
Try going to work for a day without a label. I am the owner, I am an IT engineer, I am the marketing director, I am the CEO, CFO, COO or whatever label you carry to describe to the world who you are. Instead, if you rewire your brain to think that I am here for service, to create excellence in my life, so I can help others excel; you start creating success in every action— every day—in everything you do. This is a tough transformation to create since our professional domains have been conditioned with years of “I am…” but once you transition into working independent of the professional labels, you become an open-heart and open-mind that creates excellence in his or her life and for everyone else around them.
As a continuous effort to help transform the lives of individuals, institutions and corporations around the world, IE Sigma® was founded in the interest of the public. The organization continues to work with individuals, institutions and corporations around the world to help create excellence. Educational institutions have taken the opportunity to help transform young students and adults striving for success in their professional and personal domains through iExcel Events-by-IE SIGMA®. Small and big corporations around the world have redefined how they would like their employees to succeed – by focusing on excellence instead of success.
iExcel Events by IE SIGMA® are held in cities around the world with a focus on transforming the lives of individuals, and helping them create excellence in their personal, professional and social domains. The primary focus of iExcel Events is to help individuals go beyond a motivation or inspiration seminar and build strategies to create excellence in their personal relationships, professional career, and social life. Audiences around the world have transformed how they live their lives without giving up their belief systems, by learning how to build the strategies to “Rewire The Brain, Think Beyond Profits and Live Here Now“. iExcel Events-by-IE SIGMA® shares practical strategies that help any individual, independent of their race, religion, nationality or any other labels which they could be born with or the society might have put on them. iExcel Events by IE SIGMA® are focused on the “how to” strategies rather than promoting a “can do” sales pitch heard in quintessential motivational and inspirational seminars.
If you are questioning how to take your personal relationships, professional career or social life in a direction of excellence, iExcel Events by IE SIGMA® will help you find those answers. Attend an iExcel Events by IE SIGMA® in your city to build your strategies for excellence and transform your life.