17 years of studying from kinder to 7 years of Grade School to 4 years of High School to 5 years of College made me exhausted from studying so after graduating from College in 1996 I have been hesitant to enroll in courses that will require time commitment and brain resources from me.
The only exception is when I enrolled in our company’s Supply Chain Manager Excellence Program because it is related to my job.
But, enrolling in the Ateneo Leadership & Social Entrepreneurship (LSE) Program Singapore is one of the best decisions and “investments” I have ever made.
If you know me by now, I have difficulty waking up early on weekends hence the quote marks on the word investments and how I value weekends. 🙂 To think this is a course that will mean 11 weekends (across 5 months), 2 online courses, 11 journals, a 1000-word essay and business plan (including presentation and defense).
Now as I take a pause from doing the business plan, I took this opportunity to do some reflection – did I learn anything, am I a better person than when I started. So be the judge as I share with you my 5 Key Learnings from this whole experience:
1. Importance of Network – It’s not who you know but who they know. Your friends or colleagues or family may be able to hook you up or link you up to someone they know who can help you or provide mentorship or is providing the product or service that you need.
So, 2 things we need to consciously work on are:
a) Expanding our network through seminars, workshops, FB groups and other social events and being of service and helping others
b) Value relationships and do not burn your bridges because ending that relationship means not just ending it but cutting that whole network the person has.
2. Prepare, Prepare, Prepare – It took me a long time to understand the saying “When the student is ready, the master will appear” because maybe I, myself am not ready. Did you not notice that once you are mindfully intent about a certain topic or idea the Universe will conspire to open the doors for information and for you to find right resource persons?
Well, now Facebook took it to a different level that it took over that whole “conspiring with the Universe” concept and now are doing data analysis on the topics that you like or read and you will see that in the ads they feature in the right scroll bar and as you browse in your News Feed.
We need to be eternal learners as this will help us to be prepared when the opportunity comes.
3. Be of Service – We have different struggles and challenges but what we may not know is that the person next to us maybe worse off than us and we may have the skills or talent to help that person out. Do a good deed to others to make the world a better place.
Be a generous teacher and mentor and share all your knowledge because it’s a different satisfaction when your mentee succeeds and gets recognized by others. His success is a reflection how you are as a teacher.
We are fortunate that we live in a time that there is a great abundance.
When we empty our cup and clean our closet, it will be filled again.
It can be akin to donating blood, that when you donate you just don’t save a life but you also help out your body to produce new red blood cells with the added benefit of a free health check-up, among other things.
4. Be Humble – Have the humility to ask for help. We need to eat that humble pie in order for us to grow as a person and learn more. Get rid of shyness and pride. What’s the worst that the person can say to you? The person will say no which you actually expected already. But what if the person says yes? Because you did not ask then you will not know and you may have missed a yes this time but if you think about all the missed “yeses” then these are all lost opportunities because you never even gave the chance for the person to decide. You decided on your own and you made that decision for that person.
5. Keep the Positive Vibe Going – A class is like a mini community or mini company or mini world that will bring people together with a common vision but different belief, personality, maturity. As much as we respect those differences, we also need to protect ourselves from the negative energy by surrounding ourselves with like-minded people, believing in the inherent good of others, and staying positive by listening to podcasts, reading books and just finding inspiration in the good work done by other people.
The class will be ending in 2-months’ time though there are tons of things to do in order to prepare THE business plan including the presentation and defense but I am thankful to have the opportunity to learn more and get to know more people.
This whole experience re-ignited in me:
- the want to learn more so I appreciated more the 5 Choices Training that our company arranged, and I have signed up for online motivational and leadership courses, that I have lost count
- the passion to share what I have learned and be of service to others and I am busier than ever but this is the kind of busy that has a sense of fulfillment as I am inspired to give myself more and touch more lives in the process.
- the need to revalidate and challenge my limiting belief that I am not meant to be an entrepreneur.
Will I recommend others to enroll as well? Yes, definitely!
BUT I will tell them that they need to be open-minded and be mentally and physically prepared as they embark on a journey of self-discovery and the start of a busy, happy, purposeful life.