random thoughts

This has been a great week so far in terms of work. I am taking care of a large document and I have a great momentum. I hope to move it further tomorrow and almost end next week. I say almost as I am still waiting a part of it done by someone. Hopefully that part will go smoothly, too.

I have got a nice feedback today from a colleague. It was nice to get it in writing as in my workplace, this kind of “proofs” are considered significant in annual reviews. I am glad that I took the extra time (weeks) to prepare for a presentation that I delivered quite easily. Engagement by the participants was also great, which made it extremely useful and interesting. I like this kind of experiences and the positive feedback following them 🙂

Tomorrow is Friday, which always feels good. I hope to work really well and then do grocery shopping in the afternoon. This week I am likely not to spend too much. I am thinking apple, pears, chicken, trail mix, maybe yogurt, milk, some greens, and lemons as essential items to get this week. I have some veggies left from last week as I have not cooked lately; I must focus on consuming them before they go bad. Wasting food feels really awful.. There is no need for that.

I have been continuing my back exercises since they were first prescribed to me; it should be around 2-3 months now.. Sometimes I surprise myself 🙂 For someone who can get really `lazy`, the fact that I keep working to strengthen my back/abs and stretch the neighbouring areas mesmerizes me. In a good way, of course.

The truth is I feel a lot better when I do my exercises, it does take maybe around 10-15 min only, and I am very aware of the benefits to my body. For example, I have not had back problems since last time (for which I am extremely grateful!). My abs are tighter, so are my arms. My knees do not make that “cracking’ sound anymore and I feel like my hips are more flexible too.

This past week, I had noticed that my upper body was tight and my shoulders were not flexible. Starting today, I stretch my arms and upper back, too. Also, and I am very excited to say this, I started to do light weight-lifting, too 🙂 Nothing too much or heavy. Just 10 pounds dumbbell lifted up and down and moved side by side 10 times, both arms. That is it. It is great for now and if I feel like it, I can increase the training or the weight later. I am glad that I keep doing my exercises, I notice their benefits, my back is healthier, and I am motivated to do more 🙂

I have had an additional motivation to do arm exercises, though. This week I tried a nice shirt of mine that I had not worn for a year or so. I had a chance to see my arms when I wore it – they got chubby…. That made me sad. I knew I was struggling with my weight, but I was not aware that my arms had lost their muscular tone. I know from my past experience that my body easily is toned with little effort. So, from now on I will prioritize arm exercises, too.

I also noticed that my face looked tired and old… Not necessarily wrinkly or something but just not “glowing”. I used to have great skin, moisturized, and looking healthy. So, I am making facial care a priority from now on, too. I have night creams and daily moisturizers that are available already – why not to start using them again and maybe also initiate a daily cleansing routine?

Yep 🙂

the good things that come after feedback

In my profession, feedback from others, persons we work with, train, or provide consultations have a huge impact on our performance dossiers as well as for our own development.

Some of the activities we are provided feedback for are not a part of our education or training (such as presentations), thus we only learn it by trial, failure, trial again. Some people are naturally gifted, yet for others it is along journey.

Presentations are tricky in the sense that the presenter is not only supposed to know things, but also assess the previous knowledge of the audience, build on top of it, attract their attention, clearly convey the message, and able to answer the questions the audience may have. The slides should be very clear and well organized, too.

Today, I have got a very positive feedback for one of my educational presentations. I am so happy and excited about this. Considering how hard it was to arrive this point for me, you can understand my excitement.

I have been giving educational presentations for 6 years now. As I have said it is not a part of my formal education and even though I liked talking about the things I know, clearly I was not as good as I thought I was; at the beginning I have got such negative comments that I was disappointed in myself, quite shaken, I had to forget what I thought I knew, and re-build myself as a presenter from scratch.

I made use of the written feedback I have got.

I consulted my colleagues.

I searched the internet and read material about effective presentations.

I had casual conversations with the audience and learnt one or two tips.

I reflected.

I spent hours on my slides.

I prepared extra material to be distributed during the presentation to enhance learning.

I added extra slides for information that may be useful to present should someone who is not familiar with the subject matter was curious.

Every time I did present; I had a hard look, contemplated, digested the feedback, put an effort.

Most importantly, I learnt to ask myself whether I would understand this presentation if I was an audience (I found this one particularly effective).

And, each year my performance as a presenter improved.

Especially in the last two years – the leap I have made is more than satisfactory. Now that I am consistently getting highly positive feedback means I really have some skills now work well, across many different audience.

So next time you have got a negative comment or feedback on your performance, take a breath and listen. Think. Evaluate. Re-build if you must. Get ideas and integrate them. Make it a priority for you to achieve. Try. And enjoy the pleasure coming out of your efforts.

cheers everyone 🙂

 

 

random thoughts

This was another great work day; I am very grateful.

Tomorrow is off for us, as it is the Remembrance Day here in Canada. I have plans to meet with a couple of friends and then continue to work at home. That sounds good to me 🙂

Working, being kind to others, and being efficient feels good. Today, I have helped 4 trainees with their tasks. I feel like contributing to their development and moving the work ahead. They will do amazing job.

Young people are great; they have such great potential.

There is also a generational differences. For example, I still need to print out and read and work on the documents; they, on the other hand, work on the monitor. Better? Worse? I do not know. Whatever works for them I guess. I sometime envy this preference as I feel like consuming too much paper. Poor trees…

Young people also are easy to adapt to the changes and develop themselves technologically. One good example is how much they know about computers and programming languages. I can learn these too, but I will need a lot of time to do so. Well done youngsters; keep going.

Seasoned people like myself have experience that can help them develop themselves better. For example, today I was at the presentation rehearsal of one of the team members. He is good, and will get a lot better with the tips I have shared. For instance, to keep eye contact with the audience, not to turn our backs to the audience (while showing a point on the screen), hand gestures, body movements, and voice level and changes on the tone (all help to keep the audience’s attention on the presenter), having clear not decluttered slides, etc. I also helped with the sequence of the slides and animations to introduce points separately on a slide; he seemed to understand and like the feedback. How nice of him 🙂

I am hopeful about the next generations. I once was one of them, Now I am seasoned and old generation. We have a lot to learn from each other and the dynamism and energy of the young generations and the expertise and experience of the old generations make a great mix.

Life is good 🙂

joy journal – Nov 5, 2015

joy 🙂

happiness 🙂

self-appreciation 🙂

joy 🙂

1. I am grateful for today; it has been a no-stress and productive day 🙂

2. I am grateful for the warm house, clothes, and the blanket that keep me warm in this chilly early winter night. We have had snow in the last few days, which is quite early. They anticipate a warmer than usual winter yet the reality seems a little bit different. In the last two years we have had harsh winters with power loss and lost of shoveling (more than I have ever done before): I am not looking forward to another one, but I am hopeful that things can turn around – who knows?

3. I am grateful for the 3 bags of ice salt I had purchased last year; they give me a peace of mind. A couple of years ago, the entire city run out of salt and managing ice in front of the house had become quite a challenge. I made a mental note to buy others when I  see them.

4. I am grateful for making a change, taking it easy, and having a breakfast at a mall this morning. I must do this more often; I must go other places at the weekend and see different places, eat different food, walk on different avenues. Good plan! I am also extra grateful that even though I was on a shopping mall this morning, I did not want to buy anything 🙂

5. I am grateful for taking the bus on the way back from the mall to the office; I am lucky that there has been a bus and I only waited for 2-3 minutes.

6. I am grateful for my gloves! They keep me warm in this chilly weather. I should start having my scarfs with me; I really needed one this evening as it was lightly snowing and windy.

7. I am grateful for seeing and chatting a good colleague and friend of mine today; always a delight to be around nice and positive friends 🙂

8. I am grateful for getting another positive feedback about my presentation on monday! Truly one of the a highlights of my professional life! It is so amazing to see what I say and how I say was useful, clear, and understandable. The feedbacks are so useful and so exciting. Do yourself and others a favor dear friends; please say, write, email or report good performances, positive impacts, or useful actions of others; whether they are your own, your family members, students, friends, or co-workers. And hopefully these individuals will start doing this, too. There is nothing more motivating than knowing that you have done well 🙂

9. I am grateful for the milk I have drunk tonite; I know it nourish my body and it is a tasty snack. I am not a milk-drinker, but started to drink it since September or so after my doctor recommended it for my bone health – I am grateful for medicine and my doctor who help me help myself 🙂

10. I am grateful for my boots; they are in good condition, walking in them is easy and safe, and they will likely to be functional this winter.

11. I am grateful for tomorrow being Friday. Fridays are almost always great! This weekend I am thinking about doing grocery shopping and maybe visit a thrifty store – just to have a different weekend experience and perhaps to buy a nice shirt. I know I have a shopping freeze for shirts till holidays, but my favorite shirts are now getting old; it would not hurt to check the store out; maybe I will get a good deal.

12. I am grateful for the food I have in my fridge. I could not consume what I bought last week yet; I would like to not let them go bad; so this weekend I will prioritize consuming the produce I already have. I also would like to buy different things this week – I am thinking avocados, almond milk, tofu or kefir, fish, and collard greens or broccoli.

13. I am grateful for not feeling the pressure to go to bed soon; I love the serenity of the nights and I would like to feel this as much as possible. It is awesome that my job is flexible and I have no obligation to be at my office at 9 am.

14. I am grateful for looking out of the windows multiple times today to enjoy the scenery; the colorful trees, ponds, and the snow all make such a nice view.

15. I am grateful for starting my new budget week tomorrow; now that I have my fresh weekly allowance, I feel abundant and rich 🙂

16. I am grateful for starting to appreciate the good things I do, however small they may be, after each thing that require an effort, I thank myself. After each kindness I show to others, I thank myself. After eating healthy stuff, I thank myself. After making good decisions, I thank myself.

17. I am grateful for having all these beautiful experiences in my life.

18. I am grateful for being grateful 🙂

trashing type of feedback should be an unacceptable practice

Have you ever got your work, assignment, writing/poem, or other products reviewed or assessed by someone?

Which kinds of review did you get?

1. Constructive comments (stating both good and bad points of your work, with explanations about how to fix the bad stuff)?

2. Trashy comments (that belittle every single thing in your work or mention only the bad things about your work)?

3. Praising/positive comments (that find only good things in your work that make you feel proud of perfectness of your work, or  make you feel that the reviewer did not have any idea about your work)?

Individuals such as me like the constructive feedback, knowing that a perfect work is not possible – it is the industrial standard in my field. If the reviewer is someone who cares about you – like family members and good friends – then they are highly likely to be constructive or positive in their comments.

The worst is when when you give the POWER of reviewing your work to someone possibly not in your close social circle, that person almost always will be inclined towards trashing your work. As if, being a reviewer requires that trashing attitude….

This gotta change; trashing type of feedback should be an unacceptable practice. Constructive criticism is the best, whether the reviewers are family, friends, or foreigners should not change this.

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