Me, some of my quirks (showing off my muscles, posing at every and any opportunity and my desire to ‘over’ dress than to ‘under’ dress. Also, my quirk of love for dogs (and in particular, my pirate dog) and animals in general.
Being different and appreciating & developing your uniqueness can make you stand out in a world 🌎 that is very cluttered.
That is a positive thing if that is what you desire.
Know YOU (your strengths).
Love 💕 YOU (not in a narcissistic way).
Work on YOU (your talents & gifts).
Share YOU (& your strengths ) with those who love what YOU DO (by being the best servant you can) because YOU love others.
With care, trust and compassion.
Choose love 💕 not hate.
Now, there is a difference between positive thinking and delusional thinking. I have been like a sponge absorbing and educating myself from the University of Life, in all streams of knowledge sources – books, mentors and leaders of various fields, more books, family, friends, strangers … even more books, videos and … more books.
For almost five decades now.
Everyone and everything teaches You something.
Champions practise a lot of visualisation and simulation.
To create magic, you need to fuse the worlds of sanity (where you are) with insanity (where you dream/imagine you are, before you are).
That is difficult.
That is one of the key keys.
Don’t stop. Trying. Believing.
Keep on … keeping on. You’ll get there. Everyone always does.
Especially, if you do it with your heart. and ….
Manage your funnel better
One of the skills is to squeeze out irrelevance and “bull-sh*t” as your sponge-like-brain absorbs knowledge and know-how. In other words, in the wise words of an ex-business/life mentor of mine –
“learn to manage your funnel better”
Here’s one maxim that was mis-leading growing up: –
“You can be anything you want to be, if you just try hard enough.”
Now, like most people, I embraced this maxim at a young age. Along with thousands of other kids, I spent a good chunk of my childhood trying to be the next Rugby 7s star ( in my case, it was the Fijian Rugby 7s legend – Waisele Serevi, on par with New Zealand’s Johah Lomu).
Every day growing up in Fiji, we played rugby 7s and practised the “goose-step/side-step” and explosive lateral movements and ‘dance like a twinkle toe ballerina on a rugby field’ kind of play.
But, there was always someone better.
After giving 100% of my effort for most of my primary and early secondary school life, I couldn’t even make the junior Rugby Team (well, its very hard to crack a team in Fiji as there is a multitude of supreme athletisism when it came to rugby).
I was just one of the many other fans on the side-line, part of the cheer squad for the schools.
backstage with a fellow competitor
Who you already are
The truth: playing a starring role for Fiji at the Rugby 7s or World Cup wasn’t in the cards for me.
I realised early that I CANNOT BECOME anything I wanted to (like I was told to believe) and that I needed to focus on building on who I already was.
Each of us, unique individuals has a greater potential for success in specific areas, and the key to human development – all our individual development is building on who you already are.
While my story may be simplistic, in many cases, I have found (in helping people, helping themselves, find their best selves over the last two decades) is, amongst other key things – aligning yourself with the right task can make things easier.
Even the great Michael Jordan of the basketball courts could not become, well, the “Michael Jordan” of golf or baseball, no matter how hard he tried.
When we’re able to put most of our energy into developing our natural talents, it seems, extraordinary room for growth exists (just like building quality – muscle if your have the genetics for building muscle, like I do …. Remember, I didn’t have the height gene and so never played basketball but I did have the muscle genes).
Let’s say I didn’t discover bodybuilding when I did. Say, even though I had the potential to build large muscles, quickly and I didn’t train it regularly enough, they wouldn’t develop to World Standard Quality.
However, because I discovered it in my late teens and I did work, they grew. Keeping everything else constant, if I did the work equally as hard as someone without as much natural potential, I am likely to see a greater return on my investment.
And I did.
Representing Australia at the World Natural Physique Championships in New York, USA.
Placed: 4th In the world.
Success = Preparation meeting opportunity. I was prepared.
It also includes knowing what to leave out to allow you to focus on what is important to achieve your goal(s)
Taking the I M out of IMPossible
I was one of two (the Top 2) who was picked to represent Australia at the World Natural Bodybuilding Championships – the two best in Australia. Imagine that story – boy from developing country, the Fiji Islands makes it all the way to compete against the best in the world at, not one, but two World Natural Bodybuilding Championships in New York, USA.
A city (New York) that is at the opposite end of development and modernity. An island boy, wearing grass skirts and living the simplest of lives beats the best in the world, with access to the best nutrition and training equipment and multi-million dollar machines and coaching.
Not a bad story I think.
You can take the “I M” out of IM Possible if you identify and work FROM your strengths.
I am living proof of this.
Result of time x hard work => multiple NSW, Australian Bodybuilding Titles and 2 x World Natural Bodybuilding Top 5 placings, two years in a row. I discovered my sport rather late … when I was almost twenty years of age.
I don’t think so.
The old maxim told us by well-intensioned elders of –
“you-can-be-anything-you-want-to-be” should be modified to accurately reflect reality as we perceive it:
YOU cannot be anything you want to be – but you can be a lot more of who YOU already are.
Know YOU and your talents/gifts.
Don’t chase the un-chaseable. You’ll waste the most precious gift given to you: LIFE.
working triceps in my gym
Taking the path of most resistance
Do you know what your gifts or talents are? Are you working and doing a job that is working from your strengths? You don’t know?
Well, it seems that many people go through life, living a life, not from a strengths approach for several reasons –
- They are simply unaware
- Unable to describe their own strengths …. Or the strengths of the people around them
Because they have been told and have been working on “ their perceived weaknesses or shortcomings” or ‘areas of improvement’ in their corporate jobs, most of their lives.
It seems that from ‘cradle to the cubicle’ we devote more time to our shortcomings than to our strengths, and taking the path of most resistance. Why, why, why!!
Sadly, studies show that the vast majority of people don’t have the opportunity to focus on what they do best. What happens to these people? Well, they’re not their best and … they’re simply a very different person. Studies show that, for example, in the workplace, you are six times less likely to be engaged in your job.
So, when you’re not able to use your strengths at work, chances are that you :
- Hate going to your place of work
- Have more negative than positive interactions with your colleagues
- Treat your customers badly
- Tell your friends and family what an awful company you work for
- Achieve considerably less on a daily basis
- Have less positive and creative moments
Not ideal and healthy for you, is it?
This is why doing work that you love and working from your strengths is very important, compounded over your lifetime, given that life is the most valuable thing given to you.
side chest in the gym
Some key steps to identifying your strengths.
Ask yourself, what are you really good at? What did you like doing as a child that your kind of enjoyed and had fun doing? Is there anything that springs to mind? Did you find it easier to accomplish a certain task or activity while others struggled?
That could be a talent or gift of yours that has been laying dormant all these years.
Add time (it took me about ten years to get to my first World Championships in New York, USA) and hard work (deliberate, specific skills at your art/in my case, through education and coaching – building maximum muscle with shape and balance & symmetry and being able to show it off on stage and ‘paint a motion picture of the flow of sculptured muscle/art” ) – makes it a strength (s).
As one of my favourite business gurus said (Dr Peter Drucker (1909 – 2005):
“Most people think they know what they are good at. They are usually wrong ….. and yet, a person can perform only from strength”
So, find your unique gifts and develop them into strengths.
And value the difference that YOU are.
Cheers 🍻 & ahoy!
The Old Captain Viking Pirate 🏴☠️⚔️Muscle 💪Monk 🤔😎….& being different/wierd
Quality Plan + Quality Implementation allowed Team Valentine (my wife & I) to beat the best in the sport here in Australia and stand on the stage against the best in the World.
The best thing you can do to help the world is … to continuously strive to be the best you can be, for you first, then for everyone else.