Walking Past Your Fear
Today I wanted to talk about why being scared and still going ahead with it is okay. Everyone starts somewhere even the greatest of speakers or writers. So, why not you?
The job of one part of our brain (reptilian) is to ensure we stay safe and discourages us from trying out new things. The basal ganglia is referred to as the reptilian or primal brain, as this structure is in control of our innate and automatic self-preserving behavior patterns, which ensure our survival and that of our species. We might not be living in the same world as primitive man, but we are still met with threatening and potentially dangerous situations. The brainstem is responsible for keeping us safe now, as it was for early man. The health and functioning of this brain region largely determines our ability to detect and respond to threats. At the most basic level, the brainstem helps us identify familiar and unfamiliar things. Familiar things are usually seen as safe and preferable, while unfamiliar things are treated with suspicion until we have assessed them and the context in which they appear (More here).
So when you feel shaky about taking the stage- its your brain telling you its risky and something new... just stay in the couch, that's something you are used to.
The choice is always there and its yours to make, do you want to stay a newbie for the rest of your life or you want to make that touch call and speak up and ask a questions, volunteer for an opportunity or ask for more responsibility. The difference between those who have done well and who are still waiting is earlier has been scared and still gone ahead and tried something new. Its also Growth Mindset.
Here are 33 ways to overcome your fear and when you decide you are ready, here's a video to watch- Growth Mindset simplified. This is how I am working around my fears :)
(Pic courtesy: Google Images)
5 Changes: Game Changers for my Productivity
Over the time I have experimented, learned more about myself and made some major changes. If my job profile has changed, so should my life and routine.
Here are 5 things I changed and why you should too:
- Getting up early- I wake up at 6.30 am every single day except Sundays. Take it from someone who has never seen early mornings (unless there’s a flight to catch). I realized by waking up early I felt much more in control while having my cup of coffee and getting some fresh air. I clear my head before I start the day and somehow it feels more positive. Here are some benefits of waking up early
- Going to bed early- I still own a TV but never watch it. Instead I wind down early and sleep as early as 10pm. I work around a calming night time routine, so it takes the edge off my work day. More rest, better mind. Better mind, better workday- next day!
- Stopped Impulsive Sprees- I met friends at malls and coffee shops and spent money to buy happiness. Splurging felt good for a short span of time and I felt I deserved it after all the hard work. At some point I also realized that half of the items I bought I never wore them. Also, I wasn’t sure shopping was making me happy to even last a week. So, I stopped and now try to meet friends over casual dinners at home. The point isn’t about shopping at all; it’s about creating meaning in our life. So, if the time spend or the person you are catching up with isn’t adding any value for you, you should rethink.
- Using a Planner- Nothing beats a good planning even if you work impulsively. By writing down a plan and ideas from your head to paper- you take the stress out of remembering them. Our work life is mostly linked to planners (outlook calendar/Google calendar), why not try it out in our personal life as well. If you are a management professional, you are probably very good at it already, try to see what you plan and how much you actually get done. There are lots of ways to plan- a whiteboard, sticky notes, a planner, a bullet journal etc. Here’s how writing down things will impact your life
- Meditation- I am really not an expert on this, my version is very simple. Its just a way for me to connect with myself. Sometimes it can just be quiet 5 minutes for myself in a couch. I do have to mention that I like how it makes me feel. I am calmer and peaceful. Studies indicate that mindfulness meditation benefits women more than men. There are multiple apps that are available (both paid and free) to help you ease better, try them out.
What have you incorporated in your routine recently?
(Pic courtesy: Google Images)
Day 5: Flush out the toxins
Day 4: Dream big
- Dreaming big changes you- When you dream big, you know you are ready for it. Ready to take on the new challenge, ready to explore opportunities. You tend to become more disciplined.
- Dreaming big changes your focus- When you have already zeroed in on the dream, you now know that you have to focus. Getting the right focus means training your mind and getting ready to win big time.
- Dreaming big means thinking positive- Dreams are always good, they may be grander, larger than life but they are always positive. You have to find a way to keep the positive thoughts going on. Use visuals, try to stay happy by getting involved with positive work, meet awesome people who are making differences everyday, find a voice for yourself, do something that you have meaning to do for long and have never tried. Sounds good but you never have time, meet people (the one whom you admire) online through blogs, twitter and other social avenues. Chances of achieving your dreams are always higher when you can stay positive for a longer haul.
- Dreaming big allows you to be a better thinker- when you really want something, you will find a way to get it. Staring at the wall and thinking about your big idea isn't all, usually with big thinking and an upbeat positive attitude, you will start thinking about strategies. Strategies can be from meeting up and talking to people asking for advise, it can be finding out ways you haven’t thought of before, reading up for more ideas and then implement it.
- Dreaming big enables positive reinforcement- When you dream big and keep on thinking about it, you associate yourself with something positive. Staying positive will also keep you in a much happier place than constantly thinking about negatives in your life. So, no matter what your current status of mind is you will be looking forward to your big dream and that’s always good.
Read more on keeping up here:
Day 1 : Stop Complaining
Day 2: Stop making plans unless you are ready to follow them through
Day 3: Being scared is ok
(Pic Courtesy: Robinsharma.com)
To know how you can get into project management and all about it, read my book Stepping into Project Management (Welcome to the #PMOT World) and avail the special offer this month. . To connect with experienced Project Manager's from all over the world, get mentored or shadow for a day see the SIPM Community
Day 2: Stop making plans unless you are ready to follow them through
Promises are meant to be broken.
For how many years do you think you want to keep on writing resolutions and keep failing them? So, if you have made a plan and finalized your goal, let’s make sure you can follow it through.
Years ago when I was in University; one of the professors asked us to write down the 5 goals in an index card and keep it in our car. She said, when you start your car in the morning go through the card.
On one side were the goals in bullet points, the other side had a picture glued to it- a picture that would inspire you to attain your goal.
It did help and following through didn't seem that difficult.
- Keep a visual record of your plan- more you see it, easier to follow through. Make a practice of it.
- Set up a relaxed routine that leads you to follow through- If you think too much about doing your task, chances of procrastination are more. The way to deal with it is to stop thinking and create a routine; every morning have a cup of tea when you wake up and then get to your goal area whatever that might be (gym/study/outdoors) and be there for the next 30 minutes.
- Keep your failures close- moving on is good, however that doesn't mean you have to forget your failures. Keeping them close reminds you of the mistakes and keeps the focus on. Better, you know what it feels to fail. I bet you don’t want to repeat that.
- No shortcuts- Stop taking the easy way out; instead focus on long term benefits and the right way of doing things. Instead of preparing for your certification for the entire day today and then forget about it for the next 10 days, take small steps. Sit for 1 hour everyday at the same time and the same place. Yes, same place, don’t keep on moving throughout the house, find a comfortable place and study there throughout the preparation.
- When off the track, get back to it the next day- we all do it. The problem gets worse when we think, we’ll start from Monday or next months, now that I am already off the track I’ll take this weekend off as well. Wrong. Get back to it the very next day. You don’t want to fail this time.
- Rest Days- Keep a day off. Rest your goals, evaluate them and forget about it. Enjoy the day without stressing. Next day, get back to your routine.
(Pic Courtesy: Pinterest)
To read more about project management and know how to get into the domain, read my book Stepping into Project Management (Welcome to the #PMOT World). To connect with experienced Project Manager's from all over the world, get mentored or shadow for a day see the SIPM Community.
Change Series 3
What’s keeping you behind? What should your resume be like?
Here's a wonderful article you should keep in mind while writing your resume.
Prioritize what you should add and think of a plan on getting it done. Ask help and most of the project managers I meet through the social media are very helpful.
So, include real stuff in your resume and honesty helps.
Here are some tips to get you started:
- Decide what job you would like to go for
- Research some similar profile/resumes online
- Find out what you need to add to your existing resume
- Get the experience by self-learning, online courses, getting certifications, internships etc.
- Find out interview questions that you can expect
- Read about the company you want to interview for
- If you know anyone working in the same company or better same profile asks for insights.
- Learn what the company is looking for and go for it.
The process is simple, so create a task sheet and go for it.
Change Series 2
Being a project manager is hard, when you are starting out – its means lots of hard work, getting certifications, taking the tough job, volunteering for more without the financial rewards.
I’m not an expert on handling finances, however, I do read Ramit Sethi’s site and I think I like most of it of what he says. So, I’m trying to incorporate some of them in my finances and see how it helps me saving more, so I can spend on the books that I need for the certifications.
Get going and there’s no time for excuses anymore.