In my first job, my boss was an advocate for self-improvement.

He encouraged me to write down my goals.

He also pushed me to read books.

His belief was simple.

Continuing education outside of college was not just a choice, but a necessity.

In another company, a senior manager took me under his wing.

He saw potential in me and was eager to help me grow.

We would have lunches together.

During these meals, he would share his wisdom with me.

One advice that he gave me has stayed with me to this day.

He told me that everything happening to me was my responsibility.

This was a crucial lesson, especially for my journey as a manager.

I can hear you thinking, “What about surprises?”

“What if a problem arises unexpectedly?”

His answer to that was clear.

Even in the face of unexpected challenges, the failure is mine.

The role of a manager is to anticipate potential failures.

They need to prepare for them.

My boss emphasized that 90% of my time should be spent preparing for the worst-case scenarios.

I needed to create a defense or solution for them.

Dr. Stephen Covey’s “7 Habits of Highly Effective People” resonates with this.

The book teaches about the power of proactive living.

It proposes a formula for life’s outcomes.

10% is due to outside factors, 90% is how I respond, totaling 100% results.

On the contrary, reactive living attributes 90% to external situations and only 10% to personal reactions.

People in positions of power often live proactively.

On the other hand, those who find themselves losing frequently live reactively.

Here’s an activity for you.

List down the most painful events in your life.

From that list, select the most painful one.

Reflect on that event.

Ask yourself, how was it your fault?

In what ways did you contribute to that situation?

What lessons can you draw from that painful event?

How can overcoming that event improve you as a person?

Write down your answers in your journal.

Repeat this exercise with as many painful events as you can manage.

This exercise can help you gain more power by accepting more responsibility.

Thank you for reading.

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