Lincredible, Linsanity, Linsane – What is the meaning of this?

I got an unexpected phone call from my step-dad this morning, and for the first few minutes I was incredibly confused, I had no idea where he was heading with the conversation. He kept muttering words like Linsanity, Knicks, Lin, Jeremy Lin, New York Knicks, Lincredible – all of which were completely unfamiliar with me. And just two weeks ago most of those words wouldn’t have any meaning to anyone else either, but today it’s different.

After looking into this further upon his phone call to me, I found it one of the most inspirational stories I’ve read in a while. “May the best man Lin,” “Lincredible,” “Linning,” “Linsanity,” “Linsane” – these headlines and names are now sweeping through not only the NBA, but through the entire nation. To any basketball fan this is an exciting new guy to be watching out for but to me it’s much more than just the points he’s putting on the board. It’s where he came from, what he’s gone through and the tremendous amount of faith and effort he’s put into something he never lost focus of.

For those that don’t know the story, here is how I summarize it best after reading through a few recent articles. Basically he’s an extremely smart 23-year-old, Asian-American who was ignored by scouts upon his graduation from Harvard in 2010. Lin played, or should I say ‘warmed the bench’ briefly for a few NBA teams before being cut from the Houston Rockets on CHRISTMAS EVE – and then he eventually got picked up by the New York Knicks. Just as he was about to be cut again, the coach gave him a chance to play and since then he’s become a super-star, he’s been defying critics for weeks now. I’ve read many articles on him and statement after statement that is made about this talented player, has continued to grab my attention.

“Lin is able to block out outside pressures to allow his athletic skills to shine.”  

“How we think about whether we are going to succeed or fail changes whether or not our brain supports our skills,” said Sian Beilock.

“Focusing on what you want to achieve rather than why you’ve failed in the past prepares you to perform at your best. When you are focused on failing, often times you try to control every aspect of what you are doing. You essentially screw yourself up.” – Sian Beilock

“His coach gave him a chance to play.”

“Lin credits God for his success. Whether or not God is responsible for Lin’s astounding point totals, his faith is another factor in keeping him stable.”

“He is able to pay attention to the right things at the right time,” says Christopher Janelle a director of the University of Florida’s performance psychology laboratory.

If only we as professionals could learn to do this in the world of business, whatever your career path may be – imagine the ‘super-star’ you could become. Blocking out any outside pressures, focusing on success and what you wish to achieve rather than failures, being given a chance and then being able to attribute and thank God for your current place in life; these are all things we can easily do. Just when you think you’re struggling – look at Lin – from getting constantly ignored by scouts, facing cut after cut including a devastating one on Christmas Eve, crashing on couches… to his current standing, an international super-star who is now wanted and admired by every coach and fan out there. All it took was for that one person to give him a chance – someone gave him the opportunity to let his true talents shine.

Moral of the story; I think my step-dad was helping me try and put things into perspective. Although I may be facing a few let downs and struggles now, at some point life will start happening for me. And maybe you are ‘warming the bench’ at your current job, but what you may not realize is that it’s just a simple stepping stone to where you could eventually be. Somewhere out there is an employer that is just waiting to give you your chance to shine within their company. You’re the diamond in the rough, the one they’ve been waiting for, the one that will help them stand out above the rest and the one that will give a lasting impression on their customers and community around them. If this story doesn’t urge you to strive for something more, I’m not sure what else will.

If you’re still curious about this young fella, check out these stats from an article I read earlier, The Jeremy Lin Phenomenon – the numbers are literally mind-blowing (even from my perspective – and I’m clueless when it comes to basketball stats, trust me)!

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Striving for Something More

After coming across numerous Steve Jobs quotes since his death in October I’ve finally found ones that are most relatable to my passion for my current marketing and social media career path – and just because there are not enough blog posts out there listing his quotes already I decided to do one of my own 😉

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.”  – Simple enough. Be who you choose to be.

“You’ve baked a really lovely cake, but then you’ve used dog **** for frosting.” – I love this one, it puts things in perspective. You spend all this time and energy into creating something great, but if you don’t add the finishing touch – what’s the point? All your time and effort is almost wasted if the presentation isn’t perfect. Side note – I feel like Apply is kind of guilty of this in a way, they’ve built ‘lovely gadgets,’ iPods specifically, but yet they accessorize it with very uncomfortable earbuds. Am I right?

“I was worth over $1,000,000 when I was 23, and over $10,000,000 when I was 24, and over $100,000,000 when I was 25 and it wasn’t that important because I never did it for the money.” – This one is perfect for me. I have a passion for social media and unfortunately it’s not one of the highest paying jobs. But like Jobs says, I’m not doing it for the money right now – I’m doing it because I’m passionate about it and I truly enjoy engaging and interacting with online communities the way I do, the money will come.

“I make 50 cents for showing up… and the other 50 cents is based on my performance.” – Point made, follow through! Your performance and true colors will begin to shine in the end. Do your job well.

“Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.” – Depending on the type of person you are you may be perfectly happy following in someone else’s footsteps. However, there are those out there constantly striving for something more – those are the ones I’m trying to keep up with.

“Creativity is just connecting things. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they didn’t really do it, they just saw something.” – So true. Let your mind run free.

“I want to put a ding in the universe.” – Who doesn’t? I hope to start making an impact on those around me and then work on increasing the size of my “ding” from there. 😉

“People think focus means saying yes to the thing you’ve got to focus on. But that’s not what it means at all. It means saying no to the hundred other good ideas that there are. You have to pick carefully.” – Focus and conquer one idea to the best of your ability – then you can begin directing focus to your other opportunities. Learn how to do it and then do it well.

“It’s not faith in technology. It’s faith in people.” – Just because you’re using 10 different social media platforms and reaching numerous audiences, doesn’t actually mean you’re effectively connecting with your communities. Make sure your people are communicating not only with you but with others about YOU! The people are the ones that will spread the word more powerfully, not the multiple forms of technology you’re using.

“Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do.” – Never lose sight of who you are. Don’t stop believing. 😉

“And one more thing…” – Never stop thinking, creating, building, engaging or connecting – just keep growing.

Clearly Steve Jobs was an extremely brilliant and unique individual, with very few like him. But for some reason I feel like he inspires many and really gives us something to strive for – he encourages you to keep dreaming. Do any of these quotes relate closely to you? Any others I may have missed?

Goals Will Get you Where you Want to Go

I’ve been writing goals for myself since I was 8 years old – when I first started riding and showing horses. I can’t even begin to express the importance of them. Goals are what took me from an inexperienced, amateur rider to a successful, polished and confident equestrian.

Now relate this to the “real world” and your goals can take you from a young, beginner marketing/PR person, to an educated, reputable and respectable person in the business. As much as I hated doing it, my mom would force me to write down what my goals were for winter training – it prepared me and pushed me to be ready for the show season starting in early spring. The key with goals is that they must be detailed and specific – so in the end you can attain exactly what you were striving for initially.

One of my recent mentors encouraged me to set personal and work goals with a time frame of 3 months, 6 months, 1 year and 5 years. I’m so glad he had me do that because back when I set these in June: my number one goal for both personal and work was “finding a sense of stability and satisfaction.” As of December 1st, 6 months later, I felt as though I had not accomplished either of those which is why I am now making the necessary changes in my life and career path to help me get where I want to be.

Tips for Goal Setting:

  • First and foremost, write them down (I have mine in a simple Excel sheet).
  • Make a set of goals specific to both your personal life and work life.
  • Set them up in a timely order; 3 months, 6 months, 1 year, 5 years etc (timeframe also depends on what you’re reaching for).
  • Set them within reach; don’t make them so outrageous that they’ll upset you when they’re not met. Goals are milestones, you’re suppose to feel a sense of gratification once they’re met – so make them realistic and attainable.
  • Once you reach a certain goal, reward yourself! Order your favorite take out, grab some drinks with a friend or buy yourself a new pair of shoes!

How do you set goals for yourself? What do you find works best?

“People with goals succeed because they know where they are going… It’s as simple as that.” – Earl Nightingale

Gratitude Journal… yes I’m actually doing it.

This weekend’s reading in Simple Abundance suggests that I start a “gratitude journal.” At first I nearly skimmed over this day’s reading as this is not normally something I would consider doing. However, I continued reading and within 10 minutes I had found a blank notebook that a friend of mine had given me and began writing down things I was grateful for that day.

I know my previous post touched on this a little, but I never thought I’d actually take the time each day to write down a few things I was thankful for. It wasn’t until after reading this that I realized how many little things go unnoticed – that truly are important to me. For example yesterday I just jotted down how thankful I was to have my ‘other, better half of me,’ my best friend visit me in Chicago this weekend, and another new friendship that was in the making and the fact that my car finally sold this weekend after trying to sell it for the past 6 months. So as you can see it’s not the big things in life that matter the most, sometimes it’s the smallest things, things you are almost unaware of until you sit down and take time to reflect on the happenings around you.

The author states ‘the more you have and the more you are grateful for, the more you will be given. Two months from now you will be a different person after consciously giving thanks each day for the abundance that exists in your life.’ – I couldn’t agree more. How this simple book, with just a few paragraphs of reading each morning is giving me so much inspiration, I have no idea – but so far I am loving it! If your inspired by this post, I recommend finding an unused notebook lying around in your house and accept the same challenge I’m taking on. Take just 5 minutes before you go to bed each night and jot down some of the things you are most grateful for from that day.

My notebook of choice 🙂

Take Time to Get Inspired

In the frenzy of our everyday lives – it seems we never let 10 minutes go by without checking our phone or computers. Waiting for texts, emails, missed calls, Instagram and Word With Friends updates and countless hours browsing sites like Pinterest (my new obsession), all seem to have forced us to be so wrapped up in our work and social world that it’s really difficult to find time for yourself. I’ve gotten to the point where I’m half tempted to delete my Words With Friends just so I can enjoy the last 20 minutes of my day before I fall asleep collecting my thoughts. Instead, I’m making moves on the 10 games I’m currently playing with my friends, it’s pathetic.

So another habit I’m trying to make for myself – is to avoid engaging in some of these useless games and sites on my phone, in order to allow more “me time.” My mom bought me a few books for Christmas which after opening, were followed by the “oh sweet, thanks mom” thought process in my head – but I’m actually going to start devoting some time in the morning when I wake up and the last half hour before I go to sleep, reading them. I just recently finished reading Dave Ramsey’s: Entreleadership, a book that my mom and step dad gave to me. I have to admit, I thoroughly enjoyed it and walked into work everyday excited to share something new I had read about with my colleagues. Highly recommended! As of January 1st, I just started reading Simple Abundance, which has a short reading for each morning – so far, so good I’ve allotted 5 minutes after I wake up to read each day’s message. Another thing I’m doing with each’s day’s reading is jotting down anything important that happened that day. At the start of every year I plan to re-read this book, going through each day and looking back at what I accomplished the year prior or what things were happening – kind of a like a diary 🙂

I find that when I’m not distracted by TV, my phone or my computer, I come up with great thoughts and ideas – I become INSPIRED. Although, a lot of my thought processes and inspiration leads to things I eventually want to write a blog post about –  in the end takes me right back to my computer. However, I find that I can easily justify this because in all actuality it’s helping me to create a brand for myself and potentially my future. Do you have a certain time each day where you allot it to yourself and not work? If so, what do you spend it doing?

Getting Back on Track

Thanks to a Twitter friend, I was fortunately informed about a great opportunity to take part in. I’ve decided to challenge myself to the Better Blogger Challenge in hopes of getting back on track with my blog. Two months and 36 required posts will hopefully be just the push I need in order to get back in the habit of blogging. I initially started this for a project in college, then it turned into a place where family and friends could keep track of me after I moved to Chicago and now my current direction is to transform it into a Social Media & Marketing based blog.

I’m hoping that my writing is informative  and interesting enough that it will eventually create it’s own niche of individuals who will continue to follow along and share what they’re reading. Blogging has always seemed to have a positive impact on me, allowing me to release thoughts, feelings and ideas that I normally wouldn’t take the time to write down. This past summer I spent a lot of time blogging about my adventures after I had just moved to the city of Chicago, but after I took my current job position I’ve unfortunately lost focus and never made the time to blog – the past 3 months have been brutal, almost embarrassing.

I’ve come up with a few personal goals for myself after accepting this Better Blogger Challenge, hoping they’ll encourage me to stay on track:

1. Curate enriching and beneficial content that will result in more subscribers.

2. Once the challenge is over, I’m hoping blogging will become part of an EVERYDAY lifestyle for me, a habit – even if it’s a 20 word post, inspiring image and/or quote – I want to be able to contribute consistently to my ‘brand.’

3.  Base a large majority of my posts around my experiences as a post grad and social media and marketing tips.

4. Overall, I want to revamp my blog, find a general focus and through this process eventually find a better fit of a title for it.

If you’re reading this… Thanks, and please feel free to leave feedback or comments – they’d be much appreciated as I’m taking on this little two month journey 🙂

So what are we waiting for? Let’s kick this thing off 🙂

What character do you play on Facebook? Twitter? LinkedIn?

The Difference Between the Three 

(From my perspective…)

 

Facebook is for those you personally know, you’ve met at least once face to face (hopefully). You learn (or don’t really learn) and read about things you shouldn’t care about, things that benefit you in no way what so ever. Facebook is where you can still pretend like you’re “young” and in college.

Twitter is for those people you wish you personally knew and could meet face to face. You learn and read articles posted by them about some of the most important things – things that will actually benefit you in your life and career. Twitter is where you act a little more mature and interact with other professionals – it’s not a friend “hangout.”

LinkedIn is for connecting with people you one day would love to do business with – you learn and read about events and companies you could actually see yourself becoming involved with at some point in your career. LinkedIn is where you shouldn’t be able to tell one’s age (besides basing it off the picture and graduation year), you should be nothing but professional on here.

So with that, feel free to add me on Twitter and LinkedIn – preferably not Facebook, since there’s probably a good chance we haven’t met face to face 🙂