Abeer Qumsieh

Today, as we face the crisis of corona, I would like to share with you how we can transform this crisis into an opportunity and how we can turn this situation to our own advantage. As we all know, this crisis is not only affecting us here in Jordan but the entire world, and in that we might find something that solaces us, knowing that we are not alone in this journey but sharing these hardships on a global scale.

Quoting Michelangelo “The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short; but in setting our aim too low and achieving our mark.”

A quote that implies the concept of complacency, which is the feeling of satisfaction with your own abilities or with situations that prevent you from trying harder. Complacency is a very precarious path. As humans, we should never settle for mediocrity cause once we do, there will be no room for motivation & excitement in our lives.

Our webinar today will revolve around one substantial word, perception.

How do you perceive what’s around you today? How do you organize your thoughts and think whether you’re facing a crisis or not? In times of distress like this, we have to ask ourselves, what is that one strength that will help overcome this crisis?

Let me start by sharing a few riddles with you:

Can you guess who the author of this quote is?

“Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement. Nothing can be done without hope and confidence.”

Is it; Mahatma Gandhi, Helen Keller or Jubran Khalil Jubran?

The right answer is Helen Keller. She was a blind author who wrote multiple literary works and has extensive knowledge in various great fields. I encourage you to read her story, despite all of the physical challenges she endured, Helen was actually the author of that quote.

The second riddle:

“A man is but the product of his thoughts. What he thinks, he becomes.”

Is it; Mahatma Gandhi, Helen Keller or Jubran Khalil Jubran?

The answer is Gandhi. Gandhi, as we all know, is an international leader who made an immense impact & a great difference in the life of his people.

The last quote – I’m sure you already guessed it. It has been said by Jubran Khalil Jubran. 

“Your living is determined not so much what life brings to you as by the attitude you bring to life; not so much by what happens to you as, by the way, your mind looks at what happens.” 

When you look at these three individuals, what do you think is the common factor between them?

Khalil and his literary works, Mahatma Gandhi who advocated for his people, and Helen the blind-mute author that faced drastic challenges. What do they all have in common? What is it that made them succeed and motivated them to make a difference for others and for themselves?  

It was their mind, their perception, the realization of possessing that inner strength within themselves.

Today as we are all facing a pandemic, the easiest thing to do, is to give in to our negative thoughts and a depressive state of mind, maybe now if you are reading the latest studies published by the World Health Organization, you’d know that one of the biggest dangers we are facing now, is not only the corona virus but also the depression that many people are facing, due to the current circumstances of the quarantine.   

Before we move on to discuss how we can alter this crisis to our advantage. I would like to point out that change is not easy. Talking about change and actually making a change happen are two different stories. 

In this webinar, I will be sharing five keys that will help you turn a crisis into a positive situation. Personally, these simple keys were truly helpful in my life.

As we all know this pandemic is already changing the world and these keys will help you adapt to the changes:

1.  Focusing more on your circle of influence than your circle of concern

The circle of concern encompasses anything and everything that occupies our thoughts and troubles and takes up space in our hearts and minds. The main problem of this circle is that we cannot control it, the decision to make a change within this circle is not in our hands.

Meanwhile, the circle of influence is made up of things we can actually control and change.

The circle of concern is large in comparison to the circle of influence. This is where your skills can come in and help you transform the crisis to your own advantage. What you have to do is, make a conscious effort and decide to expand the circle of influence and minimize that of concern.

Here is a quick example for you, minutes ago someone mentioned that they are looking for a job. In this case their circle of concern could includes:

I’m not getting accepted, nobody is getting back to me, why aren’t there jobs in the country? The economic situation is difficult, etc.

While the circle of influence includes: What can I learn in this period so that my skill set would suit the market demands? What courses can I take online to make my CV impressive, appealing and would make recruiters want to meet me?

2.  Learn from the experiences of others

Look around you, find those who inspire you and start learning from them.

With the internet, today’s resources are unlimited. From Ted talks and podcasts to great books, there’s always something new to learn. It could be as simple as dedicating 10 minutes of your day to nurturing your brain, nourishing it with the right information whether it is by reading or hearing the experiences of your inspirers. 

Whatever you do, you should never stop learning and you should always know that failure is not an option. 

Don’t take no for an answer, don’t give up! Colonel Sanders who founded KFC at the age of 65 was bankrupt 7 times, rejected 1009 times before anyone supported his business. 

Don’t say I can’t do it because we all can and we all have it in us. All we have to do is persist.

3.  Stay away from negativity and negative people

Surrounding yourself with the right people is crucial. Surround yourself with those who inspire and motivate you and those who push you to do more. Being around those who are making a difference and achieving things will push you out of your comfort zone, will help you grow and inspire you to do more.

4.  Set your goals and prioritize

“The only thing worse than being blind is having sight but no vision.” - Helen Keller 

Simply knowing what your dreams and goals are is not enough! You have to write them down. I cannot emphasise enough on the importance of writing down your goals and reviewing them constantly, as simple as it may seem, is crucial. It will change your perspective and the way you look at these goals; it will help make your daily decisions to go closer to those goals. Let me clarify with an example, if you’ve written down that you’d like to become a manager in five years, and that today you were given the choice to either watch a TV show or to read a book on leadership, you’ll likely choose reading the book, your motivation for your goal will drive you to read that book despite the fact that reading might be tiresome sometimes and requires self-discipline.

5.  Continuous Self- development

“If I always do what I have always done, I will always get what I have always got”. 

Logically if you’re doing the same action over & over again, you’ll keep getting the same results. If you are not working on developing yourself, if you’re not improving your skills, then your situation won’t change and you’ll be stuck at the same place.  

Don’t let your fears stop you from trying and learning new things, don’t be afraid of failure. It is better to try and make mistakes than to just sit on the sidelines and watch others conquer mountains.