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Enhance your Physical and Professional Strength

This is a classic question - Is it better to improve upon the skills that give you a competi tive advantage, or address the areas that are your weak points? Do you make the peaks higher or do you smooth out the valleys? I came across a similar debate in one of my personali ty development classes in the college. There is a story relating to this concept. It is about some animals deciding to improve the world by creating an animal school with classes such as running, swimming and flying. I won’t go into the details but basically it calls into question whether being well-rounded (say, like a duck) is better than being excellent in a certain skills (say, like a cheetah or an eagle). Although it was a story for children, I came across this story and I appreciated it.Based on all the di fferent arguments about this topic, I think a reasonable conclusion is to make sure that your weaknesses are improved to the point that they are not a liability anymore, but ultimately, success depends on your strengths and the competitive advantage they bring.

Part of this process i s to understand what are your strengths and weaknesses. A classic tough interview question is, “Name one of your weaknesses?” The best answer is the truth - be open about your weakness. However, make sure the answer is accompanied with what you do to mitigate your weakness, and also that this weakness is a byproduct of one of your strengths that gives you your competitive advantage.Strength training: Get stronger, leaner & healthier Strength training is an important part of an overall fitness programme. Here’s what strength training can do for you — and how to get started. By Mayo Clinic staff (Please check this out, how this figured here) You know exercise is good for you. Ideally, you’re looking for ways to incorporate physical activity into your daily routine.

If your aerobic workouts aren’t balanced by a proper dose of strength training, though, you’re missing out on a key component of overall health and fitness. Despite its reputation as a “guy” or “jock” thing, strength training i important for everyone. With a regular strength training programme, you can reduce yourbody fat, increase your lean muscle mass and burn calories more efficiently. Use it or lose it Muscle mass naturally diminishes wi th age. “If you don’t do anything to replace the lean muscle you lose, you’ll increase the percentage of fat in your body, but strength training can help you preserve and enhance your muscle mass — at any age.” Strength training also helps you: Develop strong bones. By emphasizing on your bones, strength training increases bone density and reduces the risk of osteoporosis. Control your weight. As you gain muscle, your body gains a bigger “engine” to burn calories more efficiently — which can result in weight loss. The more toned your muscles, the easier it is to control your weight. Reduce your risk of injury. Building muscle helps protect your joints from injury. It also contributes to better balance, which can help you maintain independence as you age.Boost your stamina. As you get stronger,  you won’t fatigue as easily.

Manage chronic conditions. Strength training can reduce the signs and symptoms of many chronic condi tions,including arthritis, back pain, depression, diabetes, obesity and osteoporosis.Sharpen your focus. Some research suggests that regular strength training helps improve attention for older adults. Consider the options Strength training can be done at home or in the gym. Consider the options: Body weight. You can do many exerci ses wi th li ttle or no equipment. Try push-ups, pullups, abdominal crunches and leg squats. Weight machines. Most fitness centers offer various resistance machines. You can also invest in weight machines for use at home. When to expect results You don’t need to spend hours a day lifting weights to benefit from strength training.

Two to three strength training sessions a week lasting just 20 to 30 minutes are sufficient for most people. You may enjoy noticeable improvements in your strength and stamina in just a few weeks. With regular strength training, you’ll continue to increase your strength — even if you’re not in shape when you begin. Strength training can do wonders for your physical and emotional well-being. Make it part of your quest for better health. Professional Strength: Professional career development planning often builds upon education, experience, and interests. Recent psychology studies into characteristics of unique and special abilities called strengths, shows the value of building personal strengths analysis into a career development plan. Utilizing strengths strongly correlates with improved performance, high quality work, greater creativity, and increased happiness; all significant reasons for better understanding one’s strengths and how to utilize them. So you want to enhance your career. You are on a look out for what you can do to greatly impact your Career path. Are there simple strategies that you can implement that can immediately have a positive influence on your career? If there are, what are they? The answer is – yes, there are simple strategies that you can do in order to enhance your career.This is a self-reflective strategy.

I refer to it as simple because you alone can do this. For as long as you are truthful with yourself then this is as simple as it gets. However, there is a word of caution. Nothing can enhance your career if you feel that there is not much you can improve on already. And while these strategies are simple, they can only be achieved IF you are willing to make that change.


1. Attitude - When it comes to atti tude, I have always championed that you can define your attitude as one of pride, passion and belief. Remember, while doing anything, do it with pride, passion and belief. And remember to back these up wi th skills and knowledge, direction and action. Let’s take these further. To enhance your career, hardworking, humility and honesty is essential. Hardworking i s fairly straightforward. It just means nothing comes easy. There are no rewards in the working world that comes without hard work. In fact, there is nothing in life that comes without hard work. When you know, you do not know enough then you begin to be a student again. You will want to enhance your skills and knowledge, which will in turn enhance your career. Do you conduct your work honestly? How do you deal with your colleagues? Is i t wi th integrity? Do you admit to your mistakes and not blame anyone for it? Honesty is not just about dealing with others. It is also being honest with self.Can you face your own g host? Are you afraid to face your weaknesses without being defensive? Are you afraid to confront your lack of strengths? Being honest with self leads to awareness. Step one to enhance your career is to define your attitude.

2. Awareness - Being aware of your strengths and weaknesses is a necessary step if you want to enhance your career. This awareness is one that is selfreflective. One that makes you feel a sense of inadequacy. This sense of inadequacy creates an intrinsic need for improvement. The energy generated from this awareness is a positive energy that propels you with the confidence to improve. If you want to enhance your career, ask yourself - do you have this awareness? One that is clear about where you are, why are you there, where you can be and how to get there? An awareness of the need to improve and an awareness of what you truly want is a simple strategy that can enhance your career. But how many of us can truly claim that we have this awareness? And how many can claim, with this awareness there is an action that works on it? Many sit around all day lamenting why are they not progressing? They feel unappreciated. Hard work is not being rewarded. Let me point out something.Accordi ng to the Webster’s Universal Ccollege Dictionary - appreciate is to be fully conscious of; be aware of. If you want to be appreciated, start appreciating your strengths and weaknesses. Then only can you begin to talk about how to enhance your career.

3. Action - You have a positive attitude and a positive awareness of yourself. But do you act upon them? If you do act upon them, do you do it at a pace that is right for you? Knowing the pace that is right for you is all about self-awareness. There are two parts to this action - one is patience and the other persistence. Patience is about proceeding calmly or moving slowly with zero anticipation. No plans to enhance your career can be successful without solid action from your end. And solid action from your end means hard work, which is the other part of action, one that is persistent. One that is doing incessantly or progresses with dogged determination. As you can see these are truly three simple strategic tips you can implement immediately that can positively enhance your career. Each is inter-related to another and feeds upon each other. If you can get it smoothly into motion there is no telling how far you can go. Mainly focus on:

1. Determine any factors holding you back from being a stronger person. Create a list of character flaws you observe in yourself. Ask friends and family for input if you are unable to come up with this list. Lack of trust, indecisiveness and low selfesteem are a few characteristics that can lead to lack of strength.
2. Create a list of character strengths to build upon and increase your inner strength. Acknowledging your existing positive traits can build up your self-esteem, a key component to an increase in inner strength
3. Develop a personal mantra for everyday use to increase your self-worth and strength within yourself. Say, “I am strong, I can succeed” or “Every day is a new opportunity for success” to motivate yourself to find and use your inner strength. Write the mantra down and hang it at several places around your house, such as your bathroom mirror or refrigerator door, to see before leaving the house for the day.
4. Recall times in your life when you felt or acted strongly. Remembering times when you used inner strength in the past can help you rekindle those feelings in your current self. For example, a friend may have turned to you in crisis and you helped her through. This is indicative of someone finding and using strength within.
5. Strive to emulate people who exercise inner strength on a daily basis. Talk to friends and family whom you admire and ask how they channel inner strength. Use their guidance as a model for you own life. Try yoga or other meditative exerci se practices. Yoga combines deep breathing, stretching and physical poses to achieve flexibility, balance and inner strength. Practice yoga or meditation on a daily basis to continue channeling your strength within.