Do you have what it takes to be a leader?

Leadership is influence. The first question you have to ask yourself in order to find out if you are leadership material is: “Do I have influence over others?” If you can influence others, then you can lead. If you can lead, then you can influence others. Leaders initiate and make an impact in others’ lives. Is this you? Do you make an impact and initiate? Or do you wait for others to take the first step and then follow? There is nothing wrong with being a follower, it just means you have not learned how to lead. Furthermore, in order to lead, you must also know how to follow. Leadership attributes are hard to measure, but I will tell you this, leaders are winners. Leaders take the wheel and drive the bus. Leaders do not motivate, they inspire. You follow a leader because of what is in it for you. Additionally, a good leader does not stand on top of the mountain and calls his people; a good leader comes down from the mountain and takes his people up there with him. A good leader genuinely wants others to win. Just as Zig Ziggler used to say, “you can get anything you want in life, if you help others get what they want,” and that is exactly what leaders do. Leaders serve and help others achieve their goals. This is often hard for some people, because as humans we are competitive; we want to win and we want to beat others, so putting other people before ourselves does not always come so naturally to us. However, I guarantee you, that if you start putting others first, your life will drastically change. Will you be taken as a fool sometimes? Well, yes, but more often then not you will become liked, and you will get that chance to influence others. As speaker and author, John Maxwell says, “People don’t really care how much you know until they know how much you care.” Maxwell is right; first you have to make that connection with people in order to achieve that common ground, then give them the very best by adding value to their lives.

Thanks for reading! I hope I add value to your life through this blog. If you enjoyed this blog please subscribe.

The only person you will ever have to beat

Today, I am going to retell you a story about a boy that I read. So this boy enters a race, but he had a crippling disease, so the boy had a particularly difficult time completing the race. Every so often the would fall. Every time he fell, he would hurt himself and get bruised. He, however, would get back up and keep going; fall after fall he would keep getting up and continue toward the finish line. The rest of the runners finished way ahead of him, but he kept on going. After all the runners had finished the race, all of them, inspired by the boy’s will, came back and helped him until he finished the race.

Now, what does this story teach us? What’s the moral behind the story? You might guess its something like perseverance or to never give up, right? Well, the underlying and important lesson to learn here is that the boy was not competing against the other runners; the boy was competing against himself. The boy was only trying to beat his previous race time.  You see, when you are not competing against anyone else, everyone wants to help you. When we are not competing against somebody else, that other person is more willing to give you a helping hand, such is the example with the runners, who came back to help the boy finish the race and beat HIS previous time.  The runners came back to help him, only after they had finished the race. This is how we humans work; when we don’t feel threaten or in a competition, we will gladly help the other person. Our culture, sadly, is filled with jealousy and envy. We are always jealous of other people, want to do better than them, and hope things don’t go as well for them. Rather than helping each other, we hold each other back. I believe we can change all that. Like I said, let’s help each other; let’s stop competing against our brother, sister, cousin, friend, neighbor or whoever. Instead of focusing on beating someone else, lets compete and beat ourselves. Lets keep pushing forward and beating our previous accomplishments. Let’s get up every morning and say this day is going to be better than yesterday. Implement this in every aspect of your life, school, family, or work. For example, if you work in sales, don’t say to yourself “I am going to beat so and so,” instead say, “I’m going to beat myself today.”  Beating ourselves should be the driving force.  You see, the thing is, that when we compete against ourselves, we grow. We become better. There is no need to compete against each other if we work to compete against ourselves everyday.  Only then will we win and gradually reach all the goals we want to accomplish.

 

Thank you for reading and your time!

Be Honest, Be Humble

I am currently reading Start with Why, by Simon Sinek.  There is a small excerpt in the book that discusses culture and it made me reflect on certain issues, and I decided to share some of the fragment with you. Sinek argues that as a human species, we were able to survive because we were able to form cultures (i.e. a group of people who have the same core values and beliefs). Sinek explains that when we are around people that believe in what we believe, we create trust and this was fundamental for the advancement of our species. Simon further explained that our ancestors in order to perform functional activities like hunting, gathering, and exploring, needed to have trust in the rest of the community. I believe that we can apply the same concept in the present and trust can help us come together. If you believe we, as a culture, can grow for the better, let’s start making some changes. My father always says that anybody can progress with only two things, honesty and humbleness. Unfortunately, a lot of us are arrogant and liars; let’s change that today! We are a culture in which every individual thinks they know everything! We think we are experts at everything, and that we know everything there is to know! Well, unfortunately, we don’t, we are one of the most uneducated cultures! But why don’t we see that? –Because we are arrogant! We are not humble enough to realize there is something that we can learn from every single person. Every person is better than us in at least one way. There are people out there in the world that know something that we don’t, and that is okay. Let’s promote a new way of thinking and become honest and humble; let’s start to learn from each other.  Let’s start to look for the information and stop simply assuming that we know everything. I’m sure we have all heard people speak about a subject and act like as if they got a Ph. D in it, when in fact, the Ph. D they do have is on STUPID. Our culture is always full of opinions and expertise even though we haven’t even done a simple Google search. Let’s make sure we really know what we are talking about before we make comments. Let’s keep on learning… and how do we do that? By READING!! Turn off the TV and stop watching most of the dumb stuff that is on and instead open a book, search something educational online or at least continue to join me in this blog! We are not going to get any smarter or change our life and culture by watching American Idol or Novelas. (i.e. Latino Soap Operas) Just remember that if together we are going to grow as a culture, we have to pass everything on! As I am encouraging you to read, learn, and look for information, you should do the same; let’s encourage someone today so we can start seeing a change in our culture and on the way we think. I want to leave you with a quote that says, “ Rich people have big libraries, Poor people have big T.V.s”

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Recommended Book- Start with Why- By Simon Sinek

Culture is our behavior.

I would like to start this blog by defining the word, culture. The Oxford Dictionary defines culture as the ideas, customs, and social behavior of a particular people or society. I think the most important part of this definition is the word “behavior”; our culture IS our behavior. We can all have a certain “culture,” but at the end of the day it is our behavior that defines who we are. This is an idea of particular importance because the way we behave can either break or enforce our culture. Our goal should be to remove the set of ideas we have about our certain/particular culture and change them through our behavior. How many times have you heard people use the excuse “ that’s how our culture is?” or “ that’s how we Hispanics are.” Well, lets change that aspect of our culture! Simply because our culture dictates that we act in a specific manner, does not necessarily mean that we, indeed, should have to behave in that particular way. Culture is not explicit, it is everything we observed and were taught growing up in our households and in our communities. As the definition states: our cultures  are ideas and customs, and it is these ideas and customs that are passed down from generation to generation.  I want to ask you this question, Why do we keep passing down the bad ideas, customs, and behaviors? Our culture can change for the best; as I mentioned before, our culture is not explicit—it is not written in stone! So today, I’m saying, let’s look at the bad things in our culture, change them, and then we can all progress together into the future. I am not saying that we should acculturate to another culture and loose our current identity; I am advocating a needed change that we must all make for our future generations; and yes, advance as a Hispanic culture.

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