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Mind Blown Moments: 4 powerful lessons that have made me a better (business) person

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We’ve all had that mind blown moment. A moment that resonates so completely within us; we internalize the experience and it changes the way we think. Those moments shape our future actions and motivations. The lessons we learn in life are just as valuable in becoming a better business person as the qualifications we hold. Here are 4 powerful moments that have changed my thinking and how these lessons have helped me become a better business person.

Travel will make you a stronger decision maker in uncertainty

Travel is one of the greatest influencers in changing people’s thinking and behaviour; it makes you gain a vast amount of perspective and is the perfect environment to test how you manage uncertainty because, like in business, things are not always going to go your way. And in this uncertainty we learn when to be firm, when to be flexible but most importantly when not to ‘sweat the small stuff’.

“Destiny is not a matter of chance; it is a matter of choice. It is not a thing to be waited for, it is a thing to be achieved.”

― William Jennings Bryan

Being Successful does not equal being happy

TedTalks are inspirational, motivational and a great resource for gaining insight but this specific TedTalk I watched because it was listed as ‘funny’, which is something I don’t usually associate with TedTalks. As I watched it I was in stitches with tears of laughter; but it was the point that psychologist, Shawn Achor, was making that stayed with me long after the 12min video had finished. There is a fundamental flaw in the way we perceive happiness and success as being mutually inclusive at work. This video supplies valuable lessons that will change how you think about being successful compared to being happy.

Emotional Intelligence is just as important as your other qualifications

The great poet and author Maya Angelou passed away peacefully this year on May 28. Having come from New Zealand I wasn’t overly familiar with her work so this year was the first time that I read her following quote.

“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

– Maya Angelou

This is something that I have always intuitively understood but having someone put this experience to words takes it from being a subconscious thought to a conscious understanding. It helps us to understand how our interactions affect people. When we are genuine or insincere it may not be heard by others but it will be felt.

Always walk the talk

This song was strong and meaningful to my 12 year old self and even though I didn’t yet comprehend how these words of wisdom would impact my adult self, they resonated with me none the less. Many of these lessons can be challenging at times but I’ve been working on sticking with them for 15 years now. Sometimes I go back to this song and remind myself that it’s easy to make promises and knowing how you should be conducting yourself doesn’t equal living by those lessons. Same goes for business. Walk the talk. It won’t always be achieved but you should always strive to do what you know is right.

Lesson Takeaway

The powerful moments that reshape our thinking broaden our perceptions make us more receptive to learning, compassion and new experiences and these experiences in turn make us into better, in business and as people. What life lessons have you learned that have made you a better (business) person?