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Thursday, 15 August 2013 07:14

Life is a Classroom

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Yesterday, I had the opportunity to be a part of an ATHENA luncheon. The ATHENA leadership model focuses on eight tenets: Authentic Self, Relationships, Giving Back, Collaboration, Courageous Acts, Fierce Advocacy, Celebration and Joy, and Learning.

The program celebrates women’s achievements and provides scholarships to young women looking to grow academically and develop as emerging leaders. At each meeting, one tenet is the topic of conversation/training. This time, it was all about Learning. It doesn’t matter if your male or female; if you keep your eyes and ears open every day, life is one big classroom. The question really is: Are you taking advantage of the learning opportunities around you?

The answer to that question is personal. And I challenge you to ask yourself these questions:

• How do you challenge yourself outside of your own “comfort” boundaries?

• Do you challenge yourself to look at solutions from different points of view?

• How and where do you look for opportunities to expand your knowledge, skills, and experiences, so you could advance your leadership capabilities?

• When/how do you assess what is your next opportunity to grow?

• Do you actively look for these opportunities, or do you wait until a growth opportunity is presented to you? 

We live in a world where life is flying at such an incredible pace. It’s easy to focus on checking off the items on our to-do list, but it’s critical to take a step back and focus on what I call “get out of the weeds” and look at your personal development from a high level. You just might find some missed opportunities.  

And it’s time to make those missed opportunities learning opportunities. Good luck!

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