The workplace is a competitive environment. School is a competitive environment. Life, in and of itself, can be competitive. To become more competitive we need to focus on developing and refining our abilities. Here are three quick ideas on how we might go about doing that:
1.) Build upon a strength – Let’s say you are a good writer. When something needs to get written in your place of business or at home, everybody comes to you to do the writing. Maybe, you are a good writer because you have an innate talent for it. Perhaps, it is because of practice. Whatever the case, you might consider taking your writing – or other strong skill – to a higher level of proficiency.
You could do this by taking a course on writing, setting aside time each day to write or maybe putting together a writing club with likeminded individuals. In any event, consider taking an area of excellence in your life and really focusing on it. You might be surprised by how far you can go with it.
2.) Focus on a weakness – Many of us find math or foreign languages challenging. Unfortunately, many of us also tend to shy away from challenges. It is not that we are unable to achieve in those areas. It is not that we are unintelligent. Often, we just find challenges uncomfortable. I do not know who said it first, but I will repeat it, “There is no growth in comfort.”
So, go out and learn a second or third language or practice a foreign language you have already studied, in order to improve your abilities in it. Take a math course. Read some books on improving your math skills and do the exercises.
By focusing on our weak areas we can make ourselves more competent overall.
3.) Seek inspiration – Climbing the mountains often found in the world of business can be daunting. Advancing in your career or making your own enterprise work not only takes lots of effort, it can be an emotionally draining process.
One thing that might help you is seeking inspiration from other individuals who have already walked in your footsteps. You could read biographies of successful people to gain insight and motivation from their efforts. You could watch movies about their lives. You also might create a small group of people who meet monthly and invite successful individuals to come and speak or act as mentors.
Whatever you chose to do, self-improvement is a rewarding process that can be profitable and fun at the same time.
*Authors note: You might see this column pop up online in a newspaper, under the name Both Sides. I am publishing this column here first at CYInterview.com. For a bunch of years, I have been writing newspaper columns. Since my columns have received a good response on CYInterview, I thought I would share it with you. Hope you enjoy.
You can reach me with your questions and comments at Jay@CYinterview.com