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The 9 Career Hacks of Successful Marathon Runners

The 9 Career Hacks of Successful Marathon Runners

Marathon running is one of the most demanding sports in the world. That is why many highly successful people enjoy the sport. Ever wonder about the career benefits of running in marathons? Check out these 9 career hacks marathon runners utilize to win first prize both on the track and in the office. Whether you’re interested in occasional running or training for your next race, you’ll likely find these habits both helpful and inspiring.

1. They Know How To Set Specific Goals

For over a hundred years, the marathon distance has been set at 26 miles, 385 yards (or 42.2 Km). That well-defined distance makes setting goals easier because it encourages runners to set time goals. Setting a goal and working hard to achieve it is a key reason why marathon runners are successful. According to Mary Wittenberg, CEO of New York Road Runners, the average runner’s household income was $130,000

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2. They Invest In The Right Equipment

Taking on a challenging assignment is easier when you have the right tools. That’s why marathon runners often buy top notch quality shoes and other equipment. The same principle applies in the business world. Everyone in your office may have the same basic computer. You can set yourself apart by investing in productivity books such as Getting Things Done.

3. They Work Hard Even When Nobody Is Watching

When you train for a marathon, you have to work hard to stick to your training schedule. There are a lot of mornings where you have to get up and train by yourself. That principle is valuable in the career world as well. If you need to be constantly monitored in order to be productive, your capacity to be promoted will suffer.

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4. They Know That Business Is An Endurance Sport

Running a full marathon takes hours of sincere effort and weeks of strenuous training. Charlie Brown, a sports psychologist, finds that highly successful people have character traits such as focus and persistence. That means they can achieve success in a race and in the business world.

5. They Track Their Results

Marathon runners often become fixated on tracking their numbers. Runners who track their miles, times, heart rate, and other information have the ability to improve their performance. Likewise, tracking your accomplishments with a brag sheet is essential. In a marathon race, your results are clear to everyone. In the business world, you will often to have to track and present your results to be recognized.

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6. They Understand The Mind-Body Connection

Taking care of your body helps improve your mental health. Entrepreneur and Authors Unite Founder Tyler Wagner regularly runs 10 miles a day. “Running keeps me balanced. It keeps me centered and calm. The run is the key to my success.” Balance and mental clarity are valuable traits as you work through major business problems.

7. They Observe Rest Days After Significant Work

Almost every marathon training plan strongly recommends rest days, especially after long runs. Resting and reflecting gives your body time to recover. Laura Vanderkam, author of What the Most Successful People Do On the Weekend, found that planning to rest on the weekend is a common trait among successful people. Taking the time to rest gives you a fresh perspective on your challenges and goals.

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8. They Know How To Motivate Themselves

Finding your own motivation is essential to running a marathon. According to Harvard Health Publications, many marathon runners “hit the wall” about five miles away from the finish line. At this stage, exhaustion becomes a major obstacle. Motivating yourself to keep working is essential in marathons and in business. For example, if you are in the sales field, making one or two more sales call per day adds up to major results over time.

9. They Network With Other Successful People

Author Jim Rohn famously observed that “you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” Given that reality, taking up marathon running makes a lot of sense. If you want to be successful in the business world, spending time with people dedicated to tackling tough goals will inspire you. Successful people who have run marathons include actor Will Ferrell and chef Gordon Ramsay. Many leading CEOs also run marathons including Robert Iger, CEO of the Walt Disney Company, and John Legere, CEO of T-Mobile.

Featured photo credit: Runners/Skeeze via pixabay.com

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Bruce Harpham

Bruce Harpham is a Project Management Professional and Founder and CEO of Project Management Hacks.

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Last Updated on November 5, 2019

How to Use Visual Learning to Work More Effectively

How to Use Visual Learning to Work More Effectively

Knowledge is essential to become successful in life, your career and your business. Without learning new concepts and becoming proficient in our craft, we cannot excel in our chosen careers or archive knowledge to pass down to the next generation.

But content comes in various forms, and because how we learn influences how much we know, we need to talk about learning styles. This article will focus on how to utilize visual learning to boost your career or business.

The Importance of Knowing Your Learning Style

Knowing your learning style enables you to process new information to the best of your ability. Not only does it reduce your learning curve, you’re able to communicate these same concepts to others effectively.

But it all starts when you’re able to first identify the best way you learn.

As a college student, I soon figured out that taking online courses without visual aids or having an instructor in front of me led to poor retention of concepts.

Sure, I got good grades and performed excellently in my online exams. However. I discovered that I couldn’t maintain this performance level because I forgot 80 percent of the course content by the end of the semester.

There are several types of learning styles known to mankind. To give an idea of how visual learning stacks up against other learning styles, here’s a brief mention of some of the different types of learning styles we have.

The four most popular types of learning styles are:

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  • Visual learning style (what this article talks about).
  • Aural or auditory learning style (learning by listening to information presented).
  • Verbal or linguistic learning style (learning that involves speech and writing).
  • Tactile learning style (learning by touching and doing)

But for the purposes of this article, we will be focusing on using visual learning to boost your career or business.

How to Know If You’re a Visual Learner?

When it comes to boosting your career, business (or education), a visual learner is one who would most definitely choose shapes, images, symbols, or reading over auditory messages.

I’m talking about preferring to read an actual map when navigating to a new place over listening to verbal directions. I’m talking about discovering that you actually have trouble remembering what your manager said at the meeting because there were no graphs or illustrations to support the points raised.

Most people who struggle with learning probably aren’t leveraging their best learning styles. The earlier you identify how your learning style can boost your success, the less struggle you will encounter with processing new information throughout your career.

However, visual learning in particular CAN 10x your career or business whether it is your preferred learning style or not. And here’s why:

Several studies have arrived at the conclusion that the brain retains more information with the help of visual aids. In other words, images are directly processed by our long-term memory which helps us store information for longer periods of time.[1]

While some lessons can be performed orally, several concepts can only make sense if you have an image with an explanation of sequences (i.e learning about the human DNA).

Visual learning does use a different part of the brain and visual cues are processed by the part of the brain known as the occipital lobe.

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By engaging more parts of the brain during learning, you’re able to have a fuller understanding of concepts and facilitate better interaction with your immediate environment.

How to Use Visual Learning for Success

Here’re 4 ways to use visual learning to boost your career or business:

1. Bring back the to-do list. Then add shapes and colors to boost productivity.

We live in an age where computers have taken over virtually every aspect of productivity and most human functions. But written lists are making a comeback, and with an endless number of important tasks to complete, having a to-do list of tasks in order of importance can improve your productivity.

While coming up with a list is initially challenging, adding colors and shapes to written lists that you personally write and manage gives you an extra layer of assurance and boosts aids recall so that you actually get stuff done.

I have tried this technique in my work as a registered nurse and discovered that adding shapes and colors to to-do lists helps me delegate tasks, recognize where more work is needed, and makes it easy to cross off completed tasks at the end of the day.

2. Add graphs, charts and symbols to your reports.

Yes, it seems like more work cut out for you. However, graphs enable you monitor the heartbeat of your business.

Graphs and charts help you trend your finances, budget, and pretty much any data overtime. With the help of free and premium software available on the market, it has become easier to take plain data and in a matter of seconds, have relevant information displayed in different shapes and images.

As an entrepreneur, you can make predictions and allocate funds wisely when you’re able to see whether your efforts are rewarded. You can use colors and charts to delegate actions to members of your team and track performance at the same time.

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And when broken down into monthly, quarterly, bi-annual or annual goals, graphs and charts communicate what ordinary text cannot.

3. Effectively brainstorm with mind-mapping.

Mind-mapping is not new but I don’t think it’s been talked about as often as we do to-do lists.

With mind mapping, you’re organizing information accurately and drawing relationships between concepts and pieces from a whole.

Think of a mind map as a tree with several branches. For example, the tree can symbolize healthcare while each branch stands for nursing, medicine, laboratory science, and so on. When you look at nursing, you can further branch out into types of nursing; pediatric, women’s health, critical care, and so on.

It’s an interesting relationship; the more ideas you’re able to come up with for your chosen subject, the deeper you get and the stronger the association.

Mind maps really show you relationships between subjects and topics, and simplifies processes that might seem complicated at first glance. In a way, it is like a graphical representation of facts presented in a simple, visual format.

Mind mapping isn’t only limited to career professionals; business owners can benefit from mind mapping by organizing their online learning activities and breaking down complex tasks into simple actions so that you can accurately measure productivity.

4. Add video streaming to meetings.

What if you could double the productivity of your team members by video streaming your meetings or adding flash animation to your presentation at the same time?

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When you offer video as an alternative method of processing information to colleagues, there is a greater chance of retaining information because we recreate these stories into images in our minds.

For organizations that hold virtual meetings, it can also be an effective way to enhance performance during if people can see their colleagues in addition to flash animation or whatever form of video is provided during the meeting.

Is Visual Learning Better Than Other Learning Styles?

No, that is not the point. The goal here is to supplement your existing dominant learning style with visual learning so that you can experience a significant boost in how you process and use everyday information.

You might discover that understanding scientific concepts are much easier after incorporating visual learning or that you’re able to understand your organization’s value when projected on a visual screen with charts and graphs.

The overall goal is to always be learning and to continue to leverage visual learning style in your career and business.

More About Learning Styles

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

Reference

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