Smile like a Tunisian

It is no secret that Tunisia is a dear country/city to me, it has a wonderful nature, exceptionally nice people, superb spirit and a long history of intellectual culture, and of course its people are always smiling :). But that is not the reason why I’m writing this week’s tip.

You see, since 2007, while I work across the Middle East and Africa, my travel schedule is usually very filled, and traveling across east and west is not exactly a bus trip, so you can imagine hours of travel with all the complexity of getting visas on short notice and even the absence of daily flights depending on the country boarding from and many more…

However, in about 20 countries I covered, there’s always something that has been a bit different about Tunisia; No matter how things went wrongtires-300x200, they eventually work out at the last minute. I can name many MANY examples, of when I thought I will miss speaking at events because flights were delayed, or that there was a 90% chance that I WON’T be able to get Visa on time or simply because a combination of all of the above made me feel like pushing my luck to the extreme to succeed.

You would really laugh when you read the details of most of my travel plans, how I needed to speak in 3 countries in 4 days, while there’s like only one chance for me to make it on time and it would be if I take one exact flight and I could make it to the airport on time with no traffic and there was no delays at customs and no delays on the flights and and and… so Chances of Success was like 1 in 75… And it was a huge risk… But yet things ALWAYS worked out… Only in that specific country…

So then I learned this wonderful trick to make me overcome the complexity of everything… SMILING… Yes I used to Smile :), and know that despite all the VIVID complexities and risks, things will work out. I was smiling like a Tunisian. 

And I still remember talking with a friend/colleague there (Selma) who was normally panicking x 100 because she’s the one organizing a training or workshop where I need to speak in…

“Don’t Worry Selma, Things will work out, they always do… It’s Tunisia, and GOD Loves Tunisia…”

Now in our life, there are so much complexities that arise while we are trying to accomplish something, and most would seem like very tiny details that could mess up everything, remember to keep your spirit high, and to smile, cause then the universe will smile back at you, and things will just work out. Smile like those wonderful people! Remember: Keep your Spirit High, Look up to the Skies and Smile like a Tunisian.

Have a great week!

Cheers,
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Samer Chidiac

Samer Chidiac is a Sr. Strategist, Author & an International Innovation Expert.

The Monday Tip Weekly blog is part of the “Influencing the Life of Others” project

Make your faith greater than your fear

At one point in time, I was doing a coaching session for a young woman, who was explaining to me how she couldn’t cope with all the problems she had, and how difficult this life is… And while most individuals would consider the amount of problems they have as being the Worst scenarios, I’ve had a different response to that young woman:

“It might sound weird to you, but I don’t think that these are the real problems you’re having… You see what you listed to me – Given that they really are the only problems you have – is a list of problems that you already know… and since you already know them, you have the chance to fix them… I’m not saying they are easy to fix… but it’s easier to fix or cope with a problem that you know than to deal with a problem you don’t know you have? ” 

Let me ask you a question, and please take a little time to think about it… Which situation would you prefer to be in?

  • If you knew that someone will be coming at an exact time, but that time is a bit LATE.
  • If you don’t know when that same someone is coming over… it could be in 10 minutes or in 10 hours or even not at all.

Based on research, people tend to accept the first assumption, because the discomfort of the situation where you are uncertain, is far greater to a person than the acceptance of latency.

The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.
Franklin D. Roosevelt

So let’s step back a bit, and analyze a bit, did I just told you that it’s OK to accept a bad news than an uncertain good news? Well not quite that… it’s just that the time you spend worrying about an uncertain thing, will damage you more than knowing than it’s coming to you at a specific time.

How many of us WORRY ABOUT THE FUTURE Vs  And How Many are EXCITED ABOUT THE FUTURE? 

I’ve seen very few people getting excited about the unknown… but many do worry and fear the unknown… While in fact, most of us, we don’t fear the unknown… We fear bad events that might occur… And the same thing we don’t get excited about the unknown, but in fact, we get excited about the possibilities of the great things that might occur in the future.

This week’s tip, is about Faith.

Irrespective what you believe in or not… Faith is and has always been about making the unknown to be known to us in a special format… It’s about picking up at the point when logic reached its limits, or in Friedrich Nietzsche’s terms, when reason commits a suicide.

So if your fears come from the unknown… Break the Unknown with your Faith about the good thing that will happen… and Make your Faith Greater than your Fear.

Enjoy your Week!

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Samer Chidiac

Samer Chidiac is a Sr. Strategist, Author & an International Innovation Expert.

The Monday Tip Weekly blog is part of the “Influencing the Life of Others” project

Evolve

This morning on my way to work, I stopped by the gas station’s supermarket and wanted to get myself some breakfast (by the way I start work REALLY early), it was almost 6 AM already, and while I was browsing the items in that mini-market, I saw a young girl, she was around 13 or 14, and all dressed up with her school uniform for preparation for school, and I continued browsing around… and then I saw her again across the hall.. I was a bit surprised of how fast she could move from 1 meter behind me to around 20 meters in a blink of an eye..

When I was paying for my items, I saw her and her again, they were twin sisters :), both wearing the same school uniform and getting ready to go to school. I smiled because when I saw each separately, I really couldn’t tell the difference, but when they were together, I could spot so many items to tell them apart.

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This week’s tip is not about similarities but about differences, and how to make a difference in our life and build a better us.

You can always take some time to reflect on your life and see how much you have accomplished and how close you are to realizing your dreams, or even how far you are from where you want to be, that’s a very healthy exercise you can do; you just need to keep in mind that life will take you places you just need to enjoy the journey with all its ups and downs.

Going from the story of the Twins, in biology, an identical twin have practically the same genomes (A genome is an organism’s complete set of DNA, including all of its genes. Each genome contains all of the information needed to build and maintain that organism. In humans, a copy of the entire genome—more than 3 billion DNA base pairs—is contained in all cells that have a nucleus.) and therefor neither (in simple terms of course) have a competitive edge over the other, yet that can literally guarantee nothing about their identical future.

Just for fun check out Wikipedia on the list of famous twins

alorsquoidefun.fr-regime-homme-sculpture-art

So the tip for this week, is how to make a difference in your own life, and mostly it goes down to a simple decision…

What do you want to be in your Life?

Do you want to be a famous actor? do you want to be superstar doctor? do you want to be an athlete? who do you REALLY want to be…

The most important part you need to understand, that in order for you to get to where you want to become… You need to EVOLVE… you need to evolve yourself, your style, your education and so many things… And realize that this PROCESS is imperfect, and often painful to do…

You just need to KEEP GOING, until you are free from your current self, and evolved into the person you want to be.

This can take time, but if you stop there… You will not WIN… and instead, you will stay in a phase that you will never feel satisfaction, so you need to KEEP GOING until you make it.

Reach till the END… and Then you will start a new beginning in a new Form, in an evolved manner…

‘What the caterpillar perceives is the end, to the butterfly is just the beginning.’

Enjoy your Week!

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Samer Chidiac

Samer Chidiac is a Sr. Strategist, Author & an International Innovation Expert.

The Monday Tip Weekly blog is part of the “Influencing the Life of Others” project

Be ready to make mistakes, don’t take things too seriously

By the end of 2015, I got asked a simple question, it was more of a concern than it was a question… “What if I failed?” combined with “What if taking this step was a mistake?”

I normally smile when I hear such concerns, because they reflect a lot about the person who is asking the question… And My answer would be that simple… “It’s Ok! So What?”

“Sometimes the questions are complicated and the answers are simple.” ~Dr. Seuss

We normally fail to achieve so many goals, because of the chance that we will fail in doing them, because of the chance that we may be wrong in the first place, or unsure about our capacity, and most importantly, because we are too AFRAID of Failure.

In the practice of Creativity and Innovation, one needs to be willing to make mistakes, and start all over, or even divert to a different direction as part of the process and repeat that over and over and over! and believe it or not, that’s the way you would be able to come up with great ideas.

This week’s tip, is not about being afraid, or about failure… It’s about the attitude, YES, the attitude. 

You need to start your project, with the attitude that you might fail, and it’s OK;
You need to start your project, with the attitude that you will embrace your mistakes;

You need to start your project knowing that the ending point, might not be the same as you expect it to be and it’s Still OK!

Do you want to succeed? then be ready to make mistakes and don’t take things too seriously… It’s not the end of the world, the more you do mistakes, the less your mistakes will have a major impact, and slowly, you will start having less and less… until you have very few.. It’s called Experience!

Cheers,
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Samer Chidiac

Samer Chidiac is a Sr. Strategist, Author & an International Innovation Expert.

The Monday Tip Weekly blog is part of the “Influencing the Life of Others” project

Sometimes you need to start walking first

Sometimes you need to start walking first

In my humble experience in the field of education, and especially when talking about “Innovation in Education”, I get stumbled by the old and new approach of problem solving techniques, especially how teachers used to teach students on how to use a specific process that should pay off.

For so many years now, I’ve concentrated my work on Innovation, whether in Business, in Life and in Education; there was a common item that, depending on how you perceive it, can make or break your plan or solution all together… It’s your attitude and reaction towards making mistakes. In Schools, students were mostly NOT encouraged to make mistakes, and therefore possibly the most noted successful entrepreneurs of our age, were either college dropouts or whom received a negative feedback from their professors and these same people did stick to what they were after even though most considered them in the status of committing an academic and business suicide.

Now depending on who you are and how your brain functions, you may be the type of persons who would look for the solution end-to-end before starting the execution or someone who can think about the highlight and then dig into the details, or just someone who have no idea what he or she is doing, and starting to see where that leads to…

For this week’s post, i’ll be focusing on the person who doesn’t have a clue 🙂 

Sometimes in order to find a solution for a problem, you need to dive into a journey or possibilities, a journey of YES and NO; Instead of just standing there, you can start walking, and then change direction, and maybe come back where you come from and start over, and repeat the whole process all over, and All over again and again…. is that a Sign of weakness? a Sign or strength?? is the person who couldn’t find the solution less qualified than the one who can? well.. Not Really.

Here’s 2 Rules that I learned from working among professionals in the field of innovation and also from examining success stories:

  1. You need to be ready to make mistakes.. It’s OK!
  2. You need to keep an eye on what your mistake lead you to.

Some of the innovations that changes our world, were not originally intended to be like that, but instead the inventor was trying to get somewhere else…

So The tip for the week, whether you are trying to solve a personal or professional problem, start walking down your possibilities and see where that would lead you, cause in that process you might find something more valuable than what you were looking for in the first place.

“If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.”

Martin Luther King Jr.

 

Enjoy your Week!

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Samer Chidiac

 

Samer Chidiac is a Sr. Strategist, Author & an International Innovation Expert.

The Monday Tip Weekly blog is part of the “Influencing the Life of Others” project

 

Jump, and you will find out how to unfold your wings as you fall

So many of us would have a very common and specific question in our head… “The idea is not yet mature, should I wait till it is to start or should I just Start?” 

Well from the title of this article, you SHOULD Start… But only if you are planning to give your idea enough effort to succeed. You See Jumping without wings or parachute is the same as the intention to Suicide, but having all the tools and materials you need to fly is still an attempt to fly. 

How many times, you thought of an idea, and even decided that when “you have time” you will work on it, and then years later, you hear about it being built and promoted and made that person millions of dollars while you think that you would’ve done it better? my dear friend Wessam Zeidan always used to tell me.. “Your Idea is now Worth 20$, and that’s it will all be worth if you don’t execute it”

I would highlight to you the following: do you start typing your words and then you do a spell check, or you start looking up each of your words in the dictionary before you start typing? they both lead to the same outcome don’t they?

It’s almost the same when you are starting a project or you want to realize an idea, or even when you are taking a decision. You first need to have a vision of what you want to achieve, and then try to look up what you need to make this happen, and then START… and don’t worry, You Will work out the details as you go…

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Few days ago, the weather in Dubai was very sandy you can almost not see the buildings from the sand storm and driving was not very easy, but people didn’t need to see the entire road, they just need to see 50 meters before them, and accordingly they would take the decisions where to turn, when to stop, when to speed up and when to slow down.

It’s pretty much like Life, Put your goals in front of you, and start, and then start working out the details as you go. And just like the Highway of Dubai, you can always park in a gas station, refuel, have coffee and get some goodies to help you out in your way.

Jump, and you will find out how to unfold your wings as you fall.
~Ray Bradbury

Enjoy your Week!

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Photo Credit: Elena Chepak
Photo Scene: Belarus
Model: Elena Chepak

Samer Chidiac

Samer Chidiac is a Sr. Strategist, Author & an International Innovation Expert.

The Monday Tip Weekly blog is part of the “Influencing the Life of Others” project

Patience is a virtue that pays off

It was back in 2010, I was scheduled to speak at an event about entrepreneurship, and the main audience was college students graduating the same year; The organizer was insisting that I talk about my career path and what were the lessons learned for me at a young age in a relatively challenging world.

It was about 45 minutes talk that covered many points, some were funny references, some sad and some very motivational… I finally ended up my speech with this:

One common attitude I used to find in fresh graduates I interviewed for various potions in my company was their apparent lack of patience, they want to reach to the top quickly and when you ask them where do they see themselves in 5 years, almost everyone would say : ‘A Manager’. Knowing that I love and admire ambition, I’m also a realistic person, and just because some 20 years old dropped out of college and made it big, doesn’t mean that it’s the right way to do things or it will happen to you JUST AS IT HAPPENED TO THEM.

But let me tell you a small secret: Patience is a Virtue that Pays off!

Practically, no one will care about how hard your start was, when your end was not a success, in fact, ironically, when you become successful, the MORE Miserable your life was, the more admirable your success is… At some point in time one of my jobs was removing dust from books in the university library and re-organizing the books in alphabetical order for what is equivalent to 60$ per month before I leave to my night shift job that paid 100$ per month and then rolling in the weekend to do some work for some additional 10-20$ / week and so on… I never looked down at my self, and I knew this was not the end… This is only the beginning and I need to be patient, cause great things WILL happen.. And Years later, I started making in 1 day of what an average classmate used to make in a full month…

Patience doesn’t have a value if you’re not paying much attention to almost every aspect of your life at that time, you could be waiting for a train to pass, but if you fall asleep waiting, you might just miss the train, and remember that it’s the VALUE that you bring to the company you work at is what matters and not the time you spend there, And Most importantly, when you reach your destination, it doesn’t really matter what had to happen in the process, you just REACHED THERE! I don’t really remember the exams I had to pass nor the grades I had on these exams… And guess what! till this day, after I became CEO and worked for one of the biggest companies in the world, Those Exams grades Still didn’t matter.

So today, 5 years later to that talk, I recall a time when I used to look up Job opportunities that perfectly matched my skills but where I was not interviewed because my years of experience didn’t match the requirements, and I still recalled the time (that I was lucky enough to have had) when I met the same Hiring Manager few years later, who was attending one of my talks, and was surprised that I was the  Keynote Speaker introducing a technology that he, himself thought I didn’t have experience to even work in one of his teams.

My advice this week is the following:

Don’t try to take shortcuts if you find the road is too long, as no road is too long for a destination worth reaching… Patience is a Virtue that Pays off… So Be Patient, and Keep Going!

Enjoy your Week!

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Photo Credit by Samer Chidiac
Scene Location: Beirut – Lebanon
For Purchasing & Licensing refer to 500px.com 

Samer Chidiac

Samer Chidiac is a Sr. Strategist, Author & an International Innovation Expert.

The Monday Tip Weekly blog is part of the “Influencing the Life of Others” project

Be the purpose you would run for

In a world where supporting a cause is a “click away”, it has become hard to REALLY tell if you would be willing to go the extra mile for your cause. You see it’s easy sometimes to support the hungry ones in Africa while sitting on your comfortable couch and pressing LIKE on a Facebook page before navigating away to do something else and never looking back, and it’s completely different when you would quit your job, and actually travel to Africa to work for free to help the unfortunate.

Although there are many ways to support your cause, from donating, to giving away your time and sometimes doing a physical effort to prove a point, (Like Climbing or running, etc). I want to be focus in this week’s tip on a very small and yet narrow objective… it’s called YOUR Cause.

We all run, some of us feel that life is more like a Treadmill, where you keep on running simply to remain standing still, but running has a lot more significance than just exercising a physical effort. Of Course there’s a nice physical reward to stay in shape and so, but the psychological impact that you would get impacted by running is far more great.

At one point in time, I have met a nice girl who works at the Bank I deal with, her name was Assia Y. and when I got to know her a little better, I discovered that her Silent Story was more Inspiring than much more than seeing a 1 Million Like on Facebook page; It’s plain simple, SHE RUNS… For Her Cause! The cause of becoming a better person, for the cause of making a difference, for the cause of learning, for the cause of ambition, the cause of aspiration and the cause of becoming successful. Assia knew that the 1,000 Step she took last time… Breaking her PERSONAL best of 10 KM, meant Career, Life, Social, Personal and much more… Silently… but Deeply.

What I always say to myself while running is: Never say I can’t.. U can and u will do it.. U will finish the race.. ~Assia Yassine

Inspired by Haruki Murakami from his book what i talk about when i talk about running “Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional”

My tip for you this week, is to simply… Make yourself a Cause Worth Running for… And keep on Creating a personal Best! Every time!

Here’s a clip that I’d love you to see from a Movie What Women Wants featuring Mel Gibson & Helen Hunt

You don’t stand in front of a mirror before a run
wondering what the road will think of your outfit.

You don’t have to listen to its jokes and
pretend they’re funny in order to run on
it.

It would not be easier to run if you
dressed sexier.

The road doesn’t notice if you’re not
wearing lipstick.

Does not care how old you are.

You do not feel uncomfortable because you
make more money than the road.

And you can call on the road whenever you feel like it. Whether it’s
been a day or even a couple of hours since your last
date.

The only thing the road cares about, is
that you pay it a visit once in a while.

Nike. No games…just sports.

Have a Nice Week!
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Samer Chidiac

Samer Chidiac is a Sr. Strategist, Author & an International Innovation Expert.

The Monday Tip Weekly blog is part of the “Influencing the Life of Others” project