Your Best Teacher is Your Last Mistake

Your best teacher is your last mistake.

Whenever we make mistakes, we have a choice. Some people choose to blame, avoid responsibility, gaslight etc. What you should be looking at is understanding what went wrong, LEARNING from it, which in turn TEACHES you to – as best as you can – avoid making the same mistakes again. Your last mistake is your best teacher as there’s often a negative emotion associated to mistakes, which in turn can help absorb the lesson better.

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It’s Not What You Know or Who You Know

It’s not what you know or who you know, but who knows you.

Another way to look at it; Your reputation = Your Brand (what you say about yourself, advertising etc) + What Others Say About You (eg social media, press, word of mouth). It’s easier to be “known” if you can stand out from the crowd; for example, the sea of real estate agents in New Zealand.

What can you speak about that no one else can? For me, behavioural science & martial arts are my loves, plus I have what I think is a unique future vision of real estate.

It’s much easier to attract business when people know you.

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The Psychology of Bullying

“Strong people don’t put others down. They lift them up.”

Psychology can assist in understanding bullying behaviour – I’ve made my opinion very clear that I have a zero tolerance for bullying – however why are people “driven” to this sort of behaviour?

People Who Put Others Down: Psychology Of Bullying

The need to feel superior to others; Psychology says those who feel this need bully to knock others down. By making another person feel small, a person who bullies feels bigger.

Childhood trauma; Childhood trauma has a great effect on how people relate to the world around them as they grow up. Verbal and mental abuse are among the things that most people consider childhood trauma. These are not the only things that cause this type of behavior, though. Sexual abuse, being involved in a natural disaster, or losing a parent could also cause this type of behavior.

Low Self-Esteem; Low self-esteem is a major motivator to bullying. This goes along with needing to feel superior to others in a way, but it also has its own set of causes, as well.

A poor home life; If someone were to grow up in a home where ample amounts of violence occurred, these are the coping mechanisms that will result. Verbal abuse at home begets verbal abuse at school and in life as a child grows.

They have been bullied themselves; Studies have shown that people who have been bullied are far more likely to bully others.

Poor Education; Poor education or the lack of access to quality education is a leading cause of bullying. Social skills and moral responsibility are among the first things we learn when we are in school. If a person doesn’t have access to a good school system with teachers that care and want to guide children, the children are at a disadvantage.

Lack of Empathy (major warning sign); If a person doesn’t understand the way their actions affect others, bullying can result. A lack of empathy means the compass inside that tells us what might hurt people is broken.

Underlying mental health issues; Underlying mental health issues such as depression or anxiety are common triggers for people who put others down. Psychology explains that the way a person’s brain works has a lot to do with the way they act.

Insecurity; this is another common theme.

“Often, bullies target those who are different than they are or are least likely to fight back. This is because the bullies can use their power and feel better about themselves. If they went after someone who could easily fight back, it would not be as much fun to them.” – Mary Elizabeth Dean

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Listen & Silent have the same letters – Active Listening

Listen & silent have the same letters. This isn’t by accident!

We have 2 ears and 1 mouth 😉. Instantly become a better sales person, spouse or parent by actively listening. Listening is one of the most important skills you can have – I know I’ve been challenged with distractions etc. How well you listen has a major impact on your life.

Given all the listening that we do, you would think we’d be good at it – however research suggests that we only remember between 25% – 50% of what we hear (according to Edgar Dale’s Cone of Experience). That means that when you’re talking, people only pay attention to less than half of the conversation.

When you’re receiving directions or being presented with information, you’re likely to only take in 25% – 50%.

The way to improve your listening skills is to practice “active listening.” This is where you make a conscious effort to hear not only the words that another person is saying but, more importantly, the complete message being communicated.

In order to do this you have to pay attention to the other person – which is even harder in this day and age (tried getting a teenagers attention recently?).

You can’t allow yourself to become distracted by whatever else may be going on around you (e.g. phone), or by forming counter arguments while the other person is still speaking. Nor can you allow yourself to get bored, and lose focus on what the other person is saying.

If you’re finding it particularly difficult to concentrate on what someone is saying, try repeating their words mentally as they say them. This will reinforce their message and help you to stay focused.

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Some people are like clouds. When they disappear, it’s a beautiful day!

Some people are like clouds. When they disappear, it’s a beautiful day!

Who do you spend you time with? Do these people elevate you? Do they bring out the best in you, help you, drive you, provide support, as well as reminding you when you’re off course or out of line?

Or are they more negative, critical, hate your ideas, don’t believe in you and sap your energy?

Either person could be your partner, close family, friends or co-workers. Take care who you’re spending your time with, and take control if it’s unacceptable. I’ve certainly left particular companies because of the toxic environment, and have shed “friends” over the years who just “took” and weren’t good for me personally.

Do you need to do some trimming? Look after yourself and the company you keep.

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Keanu Reeves; Leads by Example

Actor, film director, film producer and musician Keanu Charles Reeves (Keanu Charles Reeves), missed the first 20 minutes of the party dedicated to the end of filming of his new film in one of the clubs in New York.

He waited patiently in the rain to be let in.

No one recognized him.

The club owner said: “I didn’t even know Keanu was standing in the rain waiting to be let in – he didn’t say anything to anyone.”

“He travels by public transport”.”He easily communicates with homeless people on the street and helps them”.

– He is only 56 years old (September 2, 1964)- He can just eat a hot dog in the park, sitting between ordinary people.

– After filming one of the “Matrix”, he gave all the stuntmen a new motorcycle – in recognition of their skill.

– He gave up most of the fee for the salaries of costume designers and computer scientists who draw special effects in “The Matrix” – decided that their share of participation in the budget of the film was underestimated.

– He reduced his fee in the film The Devil’s Advocate” to have enough money to invite Al Pacino.

– Almost at the same time his best friend died; his girlfriend lost a child and soon died in a car accident, and his sister fell ill with leukemia.

Keanu did not break: he donated $ 5 million to the clinic that treated his sister, refused to shoot (to be with her), and created the Leukemia Foundation, donating significant sums from each fee for the film.

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The Power of Stepping Away

The power of stepping away

A lot of things can trigger anger, in my opinion it’s triggered when our goal or objective is being interrupted. For example, a common problem with couples is communication. Couples can get angry with one another due to the other person not understanding, listening, learning etc – against their goal.

When anger is triggered, one of the hardest things to do is step away, and yet it is one the best things you can do too. Some people may see it was running away or giving in; this isn’t the case. When stepping away (leaving the room, having a walk etc), communicate; “I’m feeling angry and need to step away, I’ll come back and talk once I’ve cooled down and thought things through.”

Easier said than done, and you BOTH have to respect the needed space. The alternative could be a full blown war. If you’re the other person, let them have some space, however ensure a time is set to finish the conversation with less emotion.

Some anger management tips:

1) Think before you speak. Difficult in a highly emotional moment.

2) Once calm, express anger.

3) Get some exercise.

4) Take a time out.

5) Identify possible solutions.

6) Stick to “I” statements, avoid blaming “you” statements.

7) Don’t hold a grudge.

8) Use humour to release tension

9) Practice relaxation skills / meditate

10) Know when to reach out and ask for help.

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It’s ok if people don’t like you

It’s ok if people don’t like you. Most people don’t like themselves.

We used to spend far too much time worrying about what others think – and sometimes our biggest critics are the ones we’re doing better than (or have the potential to be better than).

Low self-esteem often begins in childhood; teachers, friends, siblings, & parents send us positive and negative messages about ourselves. Low self esteem seems to be a real problem; particularly in our teenagers today. Some research indicates that social media is a big part of it – always “out there”, “exposed”, easier to compare ones life vs an the illusion of someone famous posts – plus the internet trolls etc who create fake accounts and have cause a number of teenage suicides.

Improve self esteem?
1) Recognise what you’re good at!
2) Build (and surround yourself) with positive friends and relationships
3) Be kind to yourself, don’t put yourself down
4) Learn to become assertive
5) Learn to say “no” (which also helps fight peer pressure)
6) Give yourself a challenge

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Worrying is like praying for something you don’t want to happen

“Worrying is like praying for something you don’t want to happen. I have such an overwhelming sense that if you’re in the right state of heart, the next right thing appears to you.” – Robert Downey, Jr

Call it The Law of Attraction, faith, fate…whatever works for you. There’s a great saying that stressing and worrying is the waste of a good imagination – however what do you do instead? Sometimes you HAVE to worry, right?

Firstly, become more aware of what you can control. If you can control the outcome of [insert problem here] – then take steps to resolve it. If you can’t (there’s absolutely nothing you can do about it); there’s no point getting angry or upset, worried or stressed about it. Your being angry at the weather won’t change a thing. Let it go.

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People who defend your name when you are not around are the most loyal friends you could ever get.

People who defend your name when you are not around are the most loyal friends you could ever get.

I couldn’t agree more! Particularly in an industry (real estate) that is notoriously “catty”, I learned a long while ago that bad mouthing the competition makes THAT person look like an idiot.

Who’s got your back? Who can you always rely on to call you on your crap to your face, and defend you when your back is turned? True partnership and friendship. No one gets thrown under a bus!

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