Accepting Criticism

Hey guys! I know it’s been a while, buuuut… I recently traveled to Australia!!! I did a week-long program that united other scholars from different countries with a common interest in business and entrepreneurship! It was an amazing experience and I hope that in the coming posts I can share with you some very important things that I have learned from this whole excursion.

australia traveling travelling travel

Photo by Catarina Sousa on Pexels.com

The week consisted of waking up early, getting on the bus on time, taking notes from various speakers, seeing new things and meeting new people, as well as learning from these people.

The one thing that I gained from this program has got to be the willingness to accept criticism. Not destructive, but constructive criticism. One day, we were in Melbourne at RMIT (Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology) and we were doing an exercise– as directed by a professor of that University– that was called an “elevator pitch”. For those wondering what an elevator pitch is, it’s basically a hypothetical (but possible) situation where you try to get a potential employer of a company that you have a strong desire to work for them, to look your way and consider you as a candidate for a job at their company. All while you’re in the elevator with them. It’s really fascinating! Here’s the prompt:

the challenge was: we had to keep this short, sweet and to the point. All under 2 minutes. Starting off, I did something simple.. which was follow the exact skeleton of this flow chart:

The Professor then asked for 3 people to come on up to the front of the room. I raised my hand because, well, why the fuck not? I wanted to learn how to craft a good pitch that didn’t sound too wordy.

So I go first, but before I started, the professor asks me what job am I going for and what type of company: both of which were already answered on this little piece of paper I had. I basically read off of my constructed flow chart and I trip up a bit, and as a result, I ran out of time.

It was time for people to critique me and give me their honest opinion of my elevator pitch. I’m not going to lie to you, but I felt like I was being attacked. People left and right were critiquing me really hard and I really was resisting the urge to talk back to them. But then in that same moment, I realized that I was taking it way too personal. I chose to do this because I wanted to push myself out of my comfort zone.

So I listened intently to the people who were giving me feedback, I let them ‘roast’ me. Because I’m always looking to grow as a person. Further, I noticed that we, as humans, are so quick to judge/critique someone else, yet fail to look at ourselves and see where we fall short. We neglect to see it in ourselves, but choose to see it in other people.

Accepting criticism has been one of my toughest feats. I get it on a daily basis from some friends and a good bit of my family. I’ve never been good at accepting it, because well, I thought that if its something that I’m doing wrong, I should be able to learn it by myself.  My thought process was, No one really likes being told what to do. Anytime someone critiqued me, I would get on the defensive with a lame excuse. But thankfully, all those excuses ended the day I decided to accept criticism.

I decided that in order to grow, to learn, I had to learn how to accept criticism of others who may have more experience than me. What if I land a job that requires me to learn new things and to accept constructive criticism on the daily? How is getting mad at each critique going to help me out in the long run? It won’t.

Getting mad at critiques from people who expect better, isn’t a reflection on the person giving them, it’s a reflection of the person who takes it. I mean, picture this, you’re doing your work (whether it be in college, at an internship, etc) and your superior comes up to you to give you feedback on some work. If you get angry and storm off, then it just shows that you can’t accept criticism. What person is going to hire someone who cannot take open and honest feedback?

So Back to the story… with all the constructive criticism that I received from the audience, I was then able to re position my stance a bit:

And I made it with enough time to spare! What followed after I gave this pitch another try, were less critiques. A lot of people clapped for me, while others still critiqued by saying that I sounded ‘too desperate’. Nevertheless, I learned something new that day and it gave me more of a motivation to grow and to get out of my comfort zone.

Advertisements

What Happens When We Act on Our Expectations?

Awhile back, I had watched an interesting TED talk by Psychologist Dr. Jennice Vilhauer about how we don’t really act on what we want, but rather on our own expectations of things. It’s a subconscious thing. We’ve probably heard the saying “Thoughts become things” at some point, right? Well basically if we think about an event coming up, like a date, a party, a festival, etc, If we keep thinking about how everything is going to be great, then chances are, it will go right, because you already made it clear that this is going to be your moment or your time to shine. Sometimes, however, we have terrible feelings about how the event will go that it becomes a subconscious thing where you’ll do or say certain things that really enhance the negative feeling.

So say you play the lottery, you’re just trying your luck, and you find out later on that day that you won. What do you do? Was this what you expected would happen? No, of course not. You weren’t expecting to win, you were just playing for shits. In this example, our expectations of certain things don’t really align with what we want.

Then again, when we think something isn’t going to go well, it can sometimes end up going better than expected and vice versa.

What I’m trying to say is that this concept can be applied in just about everything from relationships to events/experiences. Vilhauer goes on to say that she had a client who was gorgeous and accomplished and decided to give online dating a try. Once the client received matches and started going out on dates, the guys that she went out with either weren’t who they looked like in their profile photo, forgot their wallets, or just wouldn’t show up at all whatsoever. Through all these dates, the client began to settle with the terrible dates. They became her expectations.

At one point, she had agreed to go out on a date with this one guy after her yoga class. She, thinking that the date wouldn’t go well, arrived at this cafe to meet up with this guy. The guy was a well-groomed, all-around great guy and the client basically didn’t know how to act. Because she had gotten so used to such terrible dates, she never once thought that she might actually land a pretty decent guy. So the whole time, she stared at the ground and felt really self-conscious. At some point during the date,  she told the guy that she needed to put more coins in the meter and just left the date.

The bottom line was: he was great, but given the fact that she had no idea how to act in a situation like this, it was something new and out of the ordinary for her. I mean, think about it: put yourself in her shoes, shes gorgeous but over time she realized that she wasn’t worth those second dates or a decent man who wouldn’t forget his wallet. Imagine how that must feel. Pretty shitty, right?

Vilhauer then poses a scenario to the audience like:

Say you’re going on vacation to a tropical island.

She then asks something along the lines of: How is what I am expecting, making me feel?

This question not only brings into mind the idea of the future, but it also brings to mind how you feel about a specific thing in the future. This gives you a chance to be in tune with your mind and body.

If you’re like me and are down for a new adventure to a tropical island, then there’s nothing to do. If you’re having positive thoughts and feelings about the whole thing, then you’ve already achieved the goal.

If you’re anxious for this trip, then she follows up with another question: What would I like to have happen instead?

Here, you address to alternatives that go with what you’re comfortable with. What you really do want in the situation. What you want isn’t really what you expect. She then goes back to the example of winning the lottery : you want to win, but you don’t expect to win

She then asks: What do I need to do to make what I want happen?

She says that when we have a negative expectation, we think about all the things that would go wrong. Your aren’t really generating any thoughts and/or ideas about this experience going right.  You begin to see a shift in your thinking once you generate some positive thoughts. In other words, what can go right?

Vilhauer had a client who was depressed and they had been doing a ton of work together, to help this person gain some coping skills and be better equipped with what life throws at them, but nothing really seemed to be working. So Vilhauer posed the question, “Where is the light at the end of the tunnel?” The client looked at her with a puzzled expression. When you’ve been depressed for a while, you don’t really think about the future, you just see everything as a big black hole. It’s like time goes by, but you feel like you still hang in the middle of it, not going forward or backwards, but staying there. So Vilhauer began to pose a variation of this question to many more of her clients, she recalled that she received the same response. Five years later, this is where she began to pioneer a new approach to counseling, called Future Directed Therapy (FDT).

I find this stuff amazing that psychologists like Dr. Vilhauer are changing the way they approach a patient’s unique illness or issue in life. The more we have this, the more we will have psychologists and mental health professionals provide a more interpersonal approach to each patient they treat, which is absolutely fascinating! You focus on what you want, keeping in mind that your expectations should align with your wants.

Check out the video!

Where Being Honest and Authentic Get You In Your Professional Life

Hello everyone! I hope you are all enjoying the fall weather and all its festivities! What are some of your favorite fall festivities? I personally like pumpkin picking, hay rides and apple picking! So piggybacking off of a more recent blog post (link here) I’m going to talk more about the importance of authenticity and being honest with yourself in today’s modern world

Being authentic is an integral part of professional life. I mean people want to work with someone who is real (am I wrong?). Someone who really knows what’s going on, especially in terms of what your career is. Okay! So think of this scenario, imagine you’re the boss of this awesome business and you are looking for people who share the same passion you have, are willing to create more, and contribute to the ideas you have for this business. Now that you have an idea of who you want on your team, you are not settling for anything less than that ( and if you are, then you should probably get you priorities straight and get focused). You are not going to bring along someone who ACTS like they care about the job and the business you are trying to promote, nor are you going to bring along someone who is just in it for the “yearly bonus” or salary. You made it explicitly clear that you want focused, driven, passionate individuals. When you’re driven to do something, money doesn’t matter and the right job will definitely bring your best self to the table. Your dream job should be everything that you look for in a job and more, it should go in accordance with your dreams and your overall drive in life.

A job isn’t a one size fits all type of thing, it’s either you like the job you’re doing or you don’t. It’s quite simple, I really don’t understand why people stick around at a job that constantly stresses them out and does nothing but bring in negative energy. That negative energy is dangerous and all of you have heard me say it before so I’ll say this again and louder for those in the back, when you bring in negative energies into your life, you are opening yourself up to a lot of stress and many illnesses associated with it, including mental health illnesses. So don’t quit the job just because you don’t like it, quit the job because you see that it doesn’t do you any good sticking around something that really drains you.

Image result for 11 laws of likability

A while back, I had gotten this book as a gift from my parents. The book is called The 11 Laws of Likability: Relationship Networking . . . Because People Do Business with People They Like by Michelle Tillis Lederman. In this book, Michelle talks about these 11 laws of likability and how she was able to apply these laws in not just her professional life, but in her personal life, as well. She goes in to detail and talks about how when she was teaching this Business course, student made her realize that we, as human beings, have a strong desire of being liked by other people.

Whether we like to admit it or not, we really do care about being well liked by our superiors at work or by our very own professors in college. Michelle also teaches you how to network with potential employers and with being able to relate to different kinds of people in your everyday life.  Now, this book doesn’t help you get people to like you. It’s more about getting people to like you AND doing so, by just being yourself. This book has done an amazing job in terms of helping me find who I am and how I can uncover my authentic self. Regardless of your career, I definitely recommend this book to anyone who is willing to embark on a journey of self discovery into finding out your most authentic self. I hope this book gets you to where you need to be in your academic, professional, personal life and more!

Like I’ve said before, I have no tolerance and no time for fake people, Why should I even be around people who don’t value me or see me the way I see my most authentic self?

Through that book and many other resources in my life, I have been able to walk away from people and things that just drain me, fill me up with doubt, and make me feel less like myself. Honestly, if I had stayed around at the retail job that I used to work at, I think I’d become a more different person than who I am now. I wouldn’t be following my heart or what I wanted, I would be following the way of a lot of people who just don’t like their jobs and are only in the job because the pay is decent. Why should you even settle for something that’s just ‘decent’? When you have the ability to go further.

Now, I’m the kind of person where I’d rather be out here looking for my authentic self.  In my journey of self-discovery, I realize that friends-who actually value me- to be with will eventually come at some point. Either way, as long as I know that I am living my best AND authentic life, I know that everything else (i.e friends, new career, etc) will fall into place. Thankfully, I can say that I have found those friends who definitely value me and see me as an authentic individual.

Instead of being stuck at a job that you hate, why not just branch out and go back to school? Now, in today’s world, there are many more resources that can help you become more qualified for the job that you want. All you have to do is look. I see a lot of older people who didn’t have the opportunity to do that, and now they’re following their dreams.  They’re just becoming their most authentic self.

In order for your life to come together, you have to figure out who you are, what you stand for, and most of all how you value yourself. Surround yourself with people who share similar values and who challenge you everyday to be a better person, an authentic person. 

 

Here is Michelle’s book on amazon!

//ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?ServiceVersion=20070822&OneJS=1&Operation=GetAdHtml&MarketPlace=US&source=ac&ref=tf_til&ad_type=product_link&tracking_id=adynamicmenta-20&marketplace=amazon&region=US&placement=0814416373&asins=0814416373&linkId=2206baf9e10eb8e92f70bc5f5aae1b4e&show_border=false&link_opens_in_new_window=true&price_color=333333&title_color=0066c0&bg_color=ffffff

My Definition of Success

All throughout my life I have seen success in so many ways. Whether it be in a small milestone, or in a team that finally achieved their goals in winning a game, or even seeing someone you love finally get that degree they have worked so hard to earn. I have seen it all. My family has always told me the importance of success, especially my dad. Throughout my life, I’ve realized that achieving success isn’t always easy but that in the end, it would be worth it. I aspire to get my associates in communication, continue my studies in communication with a focus in public relations to obtain my bachelor’s and ultimately my masters of fine arts in visual arts. I aspire to become a creative director of a magazine or a movie. For that, I realize that I’d have to work my way up and make connections along the way. Remember: success also means that you need to network along the way, it’s all about making yourself well known.

 I know that with God, the success He will give me will be well worth it The bible talks about success in the book of phillippians. In Phillippians 4:13, it reads ” I can do all things through which God will strengthen me”. That’s powerful. We can do all things we are capable of doing through God! Praise Him! I ask that god may grant us the serenity to accept the things we cannot change, the courage to change the things we can, and the wisdom to know the difference. Amen.

God bless you all on this somewhat muggy, yet beautiful day!

Vibe a Little

Learn to Live

UptightPrettyGirl

Lifestyle and Fun

Alys Journals

mental health and lifestyle

UniquelyMe

Why be normal when you can be unique?

%d bloggers like this: