Monthly Archives: May 2011

Learn New Things By Teaching What You Know

27 May 2011, by A. Cedilla

Are you at a point in your life where you’ve met many of your big goals and most of the shine has worn off the accomplishment?

If you’re bored with what you’ve been doing and you’re looking for a way to make it new again, why not teach about what you know?

Teaching can revitalize your life in the field of your specialization, your subject of interest and of expertise. It’s not a joke when people say, “the best way to learn is to teach.”

See, it’s not watch and learn, it’s teach and learn.

“Watch and learn” can have some pretty flimsy premises attached to it, akin to a “I know how to do this, I watched it on the internet” kind of mastery. Actual learning is experiential. You do it, you learn how it’s done.

Deeper learning, on the other hand, happens when you task yourself into passing on what you know.

For instance, take a moment and recall how you learned how to drive. If you ever taught anyone else to drive, there’s a world of difference between learning how, and teaching how it’s done, right?

As the student, all you had to do was do what show up, follow the instructions and copy what you were shown. As the teacher, you have to know why things are done a certain way, or in a certain sequence, for example, and have the student trust you enough to follow along for the time being, and wait for more detail later.
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How To Make Discipline A Habit

20 May 2011 , by A. Cedilla

Discipline is a habit that, like muscle, gets stronger the more often you use it.

Yeah, so that probably sounded all worn out and hokey, but it still stands. Aside from leaving you with a sense of accomplishment, discipline helps you grow: from “I don’t think that’s possible,” to “Well, yeah, I’ll try…” to “I did that? I did that. Whoa.”

Enough of this, you get a sense of strength you can’t get from just making plans, but from carrying them out to fruition.

Discipline builds self-confidence in your capability, your capacity to do things, and to get them done. You grow stronger in your good habits, and those habits stand stronger in their support of you. So how do you make discipline your strength? Continue reading How To Make Discipline A Habit

The Art of Stress Free Project Management

13 May 2011, by A. Cedilla

A.K.A: The Zen of Project Management, or, “Why So Serious?”

One of the ways we trip ourselves up is that we put too much of ourselves into a project.

Aside from perfectionism, which is a looping dead-end in itself, our focus disperses under the weight of all the details, decisions, choke-points and politics inherent in the process.

If you’re a group leader, you’re responsible for leading your people, and checking their production and effectiveness in doing their jobs to get the results needed to bring the whole team to the next stage.

The downside is that you can edge towards being over-responsible, taking the blame or the burden for something that really isn’t under anybody’s control.

Our advice? Don’t be too emotionally invested in the outcome, or the micro-details. Take a zen approach, finding the middle way between the big picture and the small strokes. Once a certain momentum is reached, things will move beyond your control. Learn to go with the flow, neither obsessing over what went wrong in the past nor anxiously trying to predict the future.
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Identifying and Building Your Skill-sets

06 May 2011, by A. Cedilla

A skill is something you know how to do. Practice makes it better.

“That which we persist in doing becomes easier, not that the task itself has become easier, but that our ability to perform it has improved.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

When you learn patience and perseverance in the process of mastering a skill, it ripples out. It carries over to other parts of your life. We’re not programs or machines, which work within a very strict set of parameters to produce a very specific set of results. In human beings, skills bleed over.

In martial arts: you learn to take a hit, and leave your problems off the mat. You learn that when you step on the mat and come in distracted, you get hit, over and over, until you learn to focus on who’s in front of you — and no one else. Not your boss, not your kid’s teacher, not your client, no one but your opponent. And then you also learn to get up. You take the hit, and keep moving. Here, Rocky Balboa is awesome.

Outside the dojo, annoying things at the office seem smaller and petty next to getting caught in a headlock, or slammed into the mat. You made it through 500 side-kicks per side for warm ups, making it through another staff meeting is nothing. As you focus on what’s in front of you, distractions are shunted to the side with ruthless efficiency. If people criticize, you listen, and keep moving.
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