The most powerful engine of success – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Watching a group of spirited children playing one can’t help
but be drawn in and share their joy.

And will feel the same being around people with positive,
exuberant personalities. Enthusiasm is contagious!
And powerful!

Enthusiasm is one of the most powerful engines of success.
When you do a thing, do it with all your might.

Put your whole soul into it.

Stamp it with your own personality.
Be active, be energetic,
be enthusiastic and faithful,
and you will accomplish your objective.

Nothing great was ever achieved without
enthusiasm.
Ralph Waldo Emerson


/Comments/in Leadership,Success/by Mariana Fieraru

Privilege and Responsibility

Privilege
Responsibility

The two go hand in hand.
We have the privilege of living in this great country of ours.
With that privilege comes also a great deal of responsibility.

General Colin Powell:

You have been given citizenship
in a country like none other on earth,
with opportunities available to you
like nowhere else on earth.

What will be asked of you is hard work;
nothing will be handed to you…

Use your education and success in life
to help those still trapped
in cycles of poverty and violence.

Above all, never lose faith in America.
Its faults are yours to fix, not to curse.


/Comments/in Leadership,Success/by Mariana Fieraru

There are no limits

Far too often we tell ourselves we can’t.
We can’t because it’s “impossible”.
For one reason or another.

Don’t let self-limiting beliefs stopping you from
reaching your full potential.

Yes, there are real limits.
Wanting to be a basketball player or a high-fashion model,
most likely would not be a smart choice for a five-feet tall person.
(There are always exceptions, of course.)

But it’s a big difference between
real limits and self-imposed limits.

As Bruce Lee said:

“If you always put limits
on what you can do,
physical or anything else,
it’ll spread over
into the rest of your life.

It’ll spread into your work,
into your morality,
into your entire being.

There are no limits.

There are plateaus,
but you must not stay there,
you must go beyond them.”

         

/Comments/in Leadership,Management,Success/by Mariana Fieraru

Travel light on the road of life

This past week I went to the monthly meeting with the representative from child welfare
state agency. As usual, the discussion focused on children – their protection and well-being.

I’m looking around the room. It’s quite a mix of people from different industries:
Health, teaching, entrepreneurs, law and order). They are all volunteers.
(With one exception: the representative from the child welfare agency.)

All working together to find the best approaches in creating a safe environment for
children and their families. A group of people I’m happy to be part of.

Heavy, emotional baggage
Growing up I haven’t been exposed to the type of challenges these children and their families were facing.
And I thought, on my way home, how these kids start their young lives with a handicap.
Yes, we know children are resilient.
Still. Some will carry with them that extra “baggage” throughout their lives.

Betrayed trust
And I made a note to myself to be more understanding next time I meet someone that tries my patience.
Someone that may act, “rough around the edges” so to speak.
Maybe it’s an adult who had a rough childhood – one where the child’s trust has been betrayed.

You CAN build a better life
I’ll do my best – I’ll be patient and understanding to a point!
To those of you who know me, you do remember one of my favorite expressions:
When you know better, you do better!

That applies here as well. I would say to them:
“Yes, life has dealt you a bad deck of cards to begin with.
But you can’t use that as an excuse for the rest of your life.
Work on it and pull yourself up – you can do it!
You CAN build a better life for yourself!

That being said, before they can do better, they have to know better.
That’s when you and I come into the picture.
We don’t have a magic wand to erase all the hurt but we can still do magic.
What we can do is (kindly and gently) remind them to travel light.

Remind them to leave their heavy baggage behind.
Remind them good people do exist.
Remind them, and yourself, the world can be a beautiful place.

                        
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/Comments/in Leadership,Success/by Mariana Fieraru

Skipping school and the 3 C’s

On the wavy mountain road several children are walking to school.
It’s a beautiful sunny day and they decide to get off the main road.

Let’s skip school today
At a water stream they start playing and splashing each other with water.
That’s when the decision is made: let’s skip school today! Sun, water, trees – this is much more fun!

And they played there for hours.
When the time came to head back home everyone was quiet
(Each one thinking what to answer to, “How was school today?” question.)

Much to their surprise the parents already knew about their escapade!
And, they were told, their teachers knew as well.

How did that happen?!

Parents Teachers Community
All three play an important role in educating children.

Parents build the foundation.
Teachers continue to build on that foundation.
And community gives its support.
(And makes sure all is done by the “code”: )

To be successful this joint effort needs to have the 3 C’s:
• Connect
• Communicate
• Care

What happened on that skipping-school day is a good example of how effective a parent-teacher-community partnership can be.

That afternoon, few adults passed by and noticed the children playing.
At a time when they should have been in school. The adults took action.
They informed the teachers. The teachers then called the parents.

A strong connection to their community compelled the adults to take action that day.
They couldn’t just ignore what they saw. They spoke-up and informed the teachers of what’s going on.
In turn, the educators knew how important is keeping the communication line open between parents and teachers.

As for the children – they learned a valuable lesson.
It made a big difference in their lives knowing the adults around them cared about what they did.
(And from that day on, playing by the river became an after school activity only.)

We want our children to succeed.
And there is a lot we still need to do to improve our educational system.
Making the 3 C’s part of a strong support system is a winning strategy.

“Let us think of education as the means of
developing our greatest abilities,
because in each of us there is
a private hope and dream which, fulfilled,
can be translated into benefit for everyone
and greater strength for our nation.”
John F Kennedy

                     
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/Comments/in Leadership,Learning,Success/by Mariana Fieraru

Know Your Stuff

We know teachers are one of our most valuable assets.
With the school year starting soon I looked up
outstanding educators.

That’s when I came across this:

“Three things to remember when teaching:
(1) Know your stuff,
(2) Know whom you are stuffing, and
(3) Stuff them elegantly.”
Lola May

These words give us a window into Dr. Lola May’s personality.
This remarkable educator made learning math fun.

When she began teaching she promised herself that none of her
students would feel intimidated;
and she made sure to keep her brightest interested.

She had the extraordinary ability to make students of all ages
learn math and have fun while doing it.

Lola May looked at the world with an open mind.
A mathematics pioneer and a truly inspiring teacher.

As William Arthur Ward said,

“The good teacher explains.
The superior teacher demonstrates.
The great teacher inspires.”

                    
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/Comments/in Leadership,Success/by Mariana Fieraru

“Dreams are the seedlings of realities.” As a Man Thinketh

As a Man Thinketh.
The 1904 classic many of us have either read it or it’s on our TO READ list.
It’s been on my list for a long time.
And I’ve finally read this week.
(Only because I happened to be in a meeting and someone quoted from it.
So I borrowed it.)

As a Man Thinketh is a small book about a great truth:
The power of our thoughts.

This book reminds us of what is possible.
It reminds us of our personal power.
And that we are the master of our destinies.

On having a vision:
“Cherish your visions;
cherish your ideals;

…if you remain true to them,
your world will at last be built.”

“Your vision
is the promise
of what you shall one day be.”

On having dreams.
And transforming those dreams into reality.
“Dream lofty dreams, and
as you dream,
so shall you become.”

“…understands, how the thought-forces
and mind-elements operate in the shaping of
character, circumstances, and destiny.”

“You will be what you will to be.”

“The Ideal that you enthrone in your heart – this you will build your life by,
this you will become.”

“Dreams are the seedlings of realities.”


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/Comments/in Leadership,Success/by Mariana Fieraru

Words and Happy Memories

Words are powerful tools.
We use words to build confidence, motivate, and inspire others.
I’ve written in this post how, as a business leader, you can benefit from a well-written company newsletter.

Words and well-told stories can do wonders with rambunctious children too.
How do I know that?
Glad you asked : )

Words and Happy Memories
Growing up, as the oldest of five siblings, words were my “secret” weapon.
When the Chief and Indians game was getting out of hand all I had to do was say, “Who wants to come over here? I’ll read you a story.”
All would gather around me with big, expectant eyes.

Fast forward to 2010. I was visiting with family in Europe.
We were all gathered in the home we grew up in.
The weather was beautiful and everyone was in the yard – talking.

Someone brought me a magazine with an interesting article.
I wanted to share so I’ve read it out loud.

When I finished everyone was quiet for few moments.
I was thinking the article made a really strong impression on them.

Then my youngest sister spoke:
“That’s what you used to do when we were children.
And that’s one of my happiest memories”.

What we do and the words we say can have great impact on the people around us.
Often without us even knowing it.


Sharing this blog with your friends is much appreciated.

/Comments/in Success,Work Life Balance/by Mariana Fieraru

How Do You Measure Success

measure-successTO BE SUCCESSFUL 

What does it mean?
For some success is having a well-paying job allowing them to do what they love to do.

For others success is having a mansion with a million-dollar view, fast, expensive cars and a fat bank account.

I know successful people who have yachts, high-end motorhomes, and million-dollar homes with ocean view. I also know people living pay-check to pay-check and struggling to pay the rent or mortgage. And they also consider themselves successful.

(Read more about traits and behaviors of successful people, including the latest research on the science of success in the upcoming edition of OBI Report. For more information please fill out the contact form)

The question is then – can or should success be measured by how many things we can acquire?
Or is it more about what we have accomplished?
Is it about the path we’ve chosen and how far we’ve come?

We each define success differently

The answers are as different as we are.
There is no one right definition.

Personally, I don’t think is anything wrong with buying things you like – within reason, as long as it makes you happy, and you can afford it.

Whether you have to have the latest model car, or that pair of gorgeous shoes – go for it!
If that’s what puts a sparkle in your eyes (and financially you can afford it) treat yourself.
And help the economy in the process.

That however should not cloud your vision of other (perhaps better) ways of measuring success:

  • You measure success by how well your family is doing, financially and otherwise.
  • You measure success by the warmth of your friends’ smiles when they see you.
  • You measure success by how happy your pets are to see you.

(For those of you with pets you know this very well: give them food, a roof over their heads, and love.
Pets know that’s all they need to be happy. It’s us, humans, that complicate things ; )

When talking about success, Ralph Waldo Emerson said it well:

“To laugh often and much;
to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children;
to earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends;
to appreciate beauty, to find the best in others; to leave the world a bit better;
whether by a healthy child, a garden patch or a redeemed social condition;
to know even one life has breathed easier because you lived.
This is to have succeeded.”

How do you measure success?
And are you there yet?

Be well. Come back and visit often. And do tell a friend.

/Comments/in Money,Success/by Mariana Fieraru

A New Year and a New You!

The time of the year also known as the “prime time” of resolutions!

What’s your resolution for this year?
And (more importantly : ) how do you plan to keep it going past January?

I find this quote by William Arthur Ward to be inspiring and worthy of sharing:

“Do more than belong: participate.

Do more than care: help.

Do more than believe: practice.

Do more than be fair: be kind.

Do more than forgive: forget.

Do more than dream: work.”

Happy New Year!
And may all your dreams of success come true in 2015!

/Comments/in Management,Success/by Mariana Fieraru