A Collection of Thoughts and Insights
Today’s post is more of a prequel than a sequel to last week’s. Before we talk about the tool a person should use to be more productive, we need to talk about the mindset of the person wielding the tool. A tool helps you do things faster. But speed is of no use if direction is wrong. A tool can help win a race, but what if it’s an unnecessary race? This is why we need to talk about the Productive Mind.
The most common question I get goes roughly like this: How do you do it? How do you manage to be a hands-on dad to four kids, mentor scores of professionals and students scattered across the globe, perform well at a demanding engineering job and still have time to write a book and blog? The answer, as you may suspect, is not a one-liner.
As we close the page on 2018, we take one more look at the articles that elicited the most responses. This is one of them.
Today’s post takes the form of a letter to my oldest daughter, who just turned six. I want to let her know she is incomparable, as are others. I reflect openly on my journey with comparisons, how I struggled, how I overcame. The overarching message here is—you are one of a kind and the only person you need to beat is you.
As we close the page on 2018, we take one last look at some of the best articles published on this platform this year. This one talks about how crisis is an opportunity.
A crisis is a terrible thing to waste. This final installment in the Advice to Graduates series addresses the subject of crisis: what it is, and how to handle it, when (not if) it comes.
Mass layoffs are part of corporate life. Rather than fear layoffs, a more pragmatic approach would be to accept them as reality and understand how to play this game strategically. Earlier in the year, I gave three ways to protect your job. Today, I give three more ways to protect your career during these corporate storms.
Unless acted upon by an external force, a body tends to remain in its state of rest or of uniform motion. This is one of the fundamental laws of mechanics. But we see this law in action in our daily lives as well. We tend to prefer the status quo to taking a leap of faith towards our dreams. Why do we do this? And are those reasons valid?
A few years ago, I purchased a bicycle and began riding outside for exercise and enjoyment on the paved trail system in Northwest Arkansas There is something about being out in nature and being active that makes my brain see things in new ways. Here, I’ve compiled six lessons I’ve learned on the trail that can be applied to life in general.
As it is Thanksgiving week (for our US-based readers), today’s article discusses how to sustain an attitude of gratitude all year long. All too often, the relationships, jobs, environments, and possessions that used to excite us lose their shine as they become an everyday experience. We start to take these blessings—miracles, if you will—for granted. We feel entitled to them and the risk of losing them becomes real.
Today’s post is a little different in that there is no angle to the story. Here, I am simply describing a new experience I had some years back: that of traveling to work far away from land. If you have never been offshore, you may find this interesting.
Have you ever felt like a fraud? No, I am serious. Have you ever felt like a fraud because of where you are, what you have achieved? There is a name for that feeling: Impostor Syndrome. Like all syndromes, it can be handicapping. This post is about how to overcome it.
Michael Taiwo, PhD
Whether you are a high school grad going to college, or a college grad moving to the workforce, or a worker contemplating a career switch, transitions are unnerving. The old rules no longer hold true, and failure feels near. Your dreams brought you to this doorstep of change, but your fears can send you back. To change your dreams into reality, you must walk through that door, outside threats and inner doubts notwithstanding. DREAM inspires you to slay what terrifies you so that you can have more, do more and be more.
Hear what readers have to say
I want to reach out to 'personally' thank you for sharing your speech. I've read it four times now, and suspect I will read it a lot more over the coming few months. I was recently admitted to INSEAD to study for a MBA, and I'm certain it's the right thing to do next...but suddenly, I am realizing how much I have fallen in love with the predictability of working at --- (which is quite a good place to work), and I have been hit by crippling fear. I find that it helps to come back to read 'Dream' every time the fear peaks. So I thought to thank you for writing it. It almost feels like it was written for me.
Wow. I am inspired by this piece…It simply re-echoed what I believe in: winners never quit and quitters never win. As I push on with my PhD program, this piece has revved up my engine and I believe soon, I will be echoing these same words of yours. 'Fortune favors the bold'
This resonates so deeply, as it’s how I’ve consciously chosen to live my life and I’ve seen similar breakthroughs by pushing ahead for my dreams in spite of fear.
I will have my kids read this. I wish I read this earlier in life. Fear is surreal, never feed it.
What a great message. Dreaming will be my second nature. I should learn to starve my fears.
Your speech at the Spring 2017 Chemical Engineering Banquet here in Fayetteville was truly inspirational and your story and experiences truly aligned with mine here in Fayetteville. Thank you for coming back to our town and inspiring us young soon-to-be engineers!
Love it. A simple yet profound message from the heart that resounds and reverberates everyone's once heard inner voice... Act or do nothing.
Words on marble...."Your dreams will always exist side by side with your fears. Both of them are a product of your rich imagination. And you have the power to make one or the other a reality"- Dr. Michael Taiwo. I love the simplicity and the message. People need to come out of fear! It's evil!
About the Author
Michael Taiwo was born and raised in a town in the middle of nowhere in Nigeria. He considers himself low maintenance probably because he was raised on less than 50 cents a day. As a child, he would walk a mile to the town’s public library because there were orange, mango and cashew trees behind the library and he was welcome to them. He would have as many fruits as his stomach could hold, and then go into the library to enjoy yet another free item: books.