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True Winners Don’t Just Aim To Win, They Appreciate And Learn From Their Competitors

True Winners Don’t Just Aim To Win, They Appreciate And Learn From Their Competitors

So this year’s Academy Awards Show’s over, I bet one of your most remarkable moments would be the mixing up mistake for the Best Picture. After all, nothing like this had ever happened over the past 89 years of Academy Awards Shows.

While people are hotly debating over the internet whether it’s the host or Leonardo DiCaprio for causing the mix-up of the Best Picture, I would rather stick my focus to the incredible crew and cast of both Moonlight and La La Land.

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Once the La La Land team realized that the Best Picture actually went to Moonlight, La La Land’s producer Fred Berger felt proud to hand the award to their friends in Moonlight, and the team graciously handed over their statues to the people behind Moonlight. And during the thank you speech, the director of Moonlight, Barry Jenkins, also said “my love to La La Land” which showed his support and respect for the movie.

True winners see competitors as friends, not enemies.

Imagine the moment you realized you weren’t the award winner right after you’d delivered your thank you speech, how would you feel? It probably feels like something super precious being taken away forcefully with no mercy showed. You probably would feel so disappointed that you wouldn’t feel like your competitors could be your friends.

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Everyone works hard to play their best in any competitions. Both movies La La Land and Moonlight have an amazing team of crew and cast, they all did their very best to wow the audience and both movies are trying to deliver some really meaningful messages that would inspire people’s lives. The crew behind the two movies demonstrated to everyone how “competitors” are like friends who should respect and support each other’s effort.

True winners understand that they’re not “best of the world”, there’re always something they can learn from others. Instead of seeing the competitors as enemies, they’re friends who are passionate about the same thing (which is amazing), and they can learn from each other.

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When passionate people come together, they can grow and win together.

Well, most of us may not be taking part in competitions very often, or have the opportunity to be nominated for some very huge awards; but there must be something that you really love doing and want to do it better than others.

Say for me, I love writing. Though winning any writing awards is not my aspiration, I’d love to write better and have more readers who’d be inspired by what I write. If I see all other writers as my enemies, I’d just focus on winning over them instead of learning and improving myself. I might miss out all the amazing works all those great writers write and would never learn some of the best ideas or writing skills others demonstrate.

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But if I look at other writers from another perspective, I can see a lot of talented writers who are as passionate as me. I see friends, and I see mentors. When I learn to appreciate others, I see what’s lack in me and what I can do to get better.

Try to surround yourself with people who are passionate about the same thing like you do. Discuss your ideas with them, learn from them. Instead of just trying to show off how good you’re doing something, try to be humble and gather more perspectives from them. That’s how you can learn and grow, and become a true winner.

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Anna Chui

Communication Expert

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Last Updated on August 21, 2018

8 Ways to Train Your Brain to Learn Faster and Remember More

8 Ways to Train Your Brain to Learn Faster and Remember More

You go to the gym to train your muscles. You run outside or go for hikes to train your endurance. Or, maybe you do neither of those, but still wish you exercised more.

Well, here is how to train one of the most important parts of your body: your brain.

When you train your brain, you will:

  • Avoid embarrassing situations. You remember his face, but what was his name?
  • Be a faster learner in all sorts of different skills. Hello promotion, here I come!
  • Avoid diseases that hit as you get older. No, thanks Alzheimer’s; you and I are just not a good fit.

So how to train your brain to learn faster and remember more?

1. Work your memory

Twyla Tharp, a NYC-based renowned choreographer has come up with the following memory workout:

When she watches one of her performances, she tries to remember the first twelve to fourteen corrections she wants to discuss with her cast without writing them down.

If you think this is anything less than a feat, then think again. In her book The Creative Habit she says that most people cannot remember more than three.

The practice of both remembering events or things and then discussing them with others has actually been supported by brain fitness studies.

Memory activities that engage all levels of brain operation—receiving, remembering and thinking—help to improve the function of the brain.

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Now, you may not have dancers to correct, but you may be required to give feedback on a presentation, or your friends may ask you what interesting things you saw at the museum. These are great opportunities to practically train your brain by flexing your memory muscles.

What is the simplest way to help yourself remember what you see? Repetition.

For example, say you just met someone new.

“Hi, my name is George”

Don’t just respond with, “Nice to meet you”. Instead, say, “Nice to meet you George.” Got it? Good.

2. Do something different repeatedly

By actually doing something new over and over again, your brain wires new pathways that help you do this new thing better and faster.

Think back to when you were three years old. You surely were strong enough to hold a knife and a fork just fine. Yet, when you were eating all by yourself, you were creating a mess.

It was not a matter of strength, you see. It was a matter of cultivating more and better neural pathways that would help you eat by yourself just like an adult does.

And guess what? With enough repetition you made that happen!

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But how does this apply to your life right now?

Say you are a procrastinator. The more you don’t procrastinate, the more you teach your brain not to wait for the last minute to make things happen.

Now, you might be thinking “Duh, if only not procrastinating could be that easy!”

Well, it can be. By doing something really small, that you wouldn’t normally do, but is in the direction of getting that task done, you will start creating those new precious neural pathways.

So if you have been postponing organizing your desk, just take one paper and put in its right place. Or, you can go even smaller. Look at one piece of paper and decide where to put it: Trash? Right cabinet? Another room? Give it to someone?

You don’t actually need to clean up that paper; you only need to decide what you need to do with it.

That’s how small you can start. And yet, those neural pathways are still being built. Gradually, you will transform yourself from a procrastinator to an in-the-moment action taker.

3. Learn something new

It might sound obvious, but the more you use your brain, the better its going to perform for you.

For example, learning a new instrument improves your skill of translating something you see (sheet music) to something you actually do (playing the instrument).

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Learning a new language exposes your brain to a different way of thinking, a different way of expressing yourself.

You can even literally take it a step further, and learn how to dance. Studies indicate that learning to dance helps seniors avoid Alzheimer’s. Not bad, huh?

4. Follow a brain training program

The Internet world can help you improve your brain function while lazily sitting on your couch. A clinically proven program like BrainHQ can help you improve your memory, or think faster, by just following their brain training exercises.

5. Work your body

You knew this one was coming didn’t you? Yes indeed, exercise does not just work your body; it also improves the fitness of your brain.

Even briefly exercising for 20 minutes facilitates information processing and memory functions. But it’s not just that–exercise actually helps your brain create those new neural connections faster. You will learn faster, your alertness level will increase, and you get all that by moving your body.

Now, if you are not already a regular exerciser, and already feel guilty that you are not helping your brain by exercising more, try a brain training exercise program like Exercise Bliss.

Remember, just like we discussed in #2, by training your brain to do something new repeatedly, you are actually changing yourself permanently.

6. Spend time with your loved ones

If you want optimal cognitive abilities, then you’ve got to have meaningful relationships in your life.  Talking with others and engaging with your loved ones helps you think more clearly, and it can also lift your mood.

If you are an extrovert, this holds even more weight for you. At a class at Stanford University, I learned that extroverts actually use talking to other people as a way to understand and process their own thoughts.

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I remember that the teacher told us that after a personality test said she was an extrovert, she was surprised. She had always thought of herself as an introvert. But then, she realized how much talking to others helped her frame her own thoughts, so she accepted her new-found status as an extrovert.

7. Avoid crossword puzzles

Many of us, when we think of brain fitness, think of crossword puzzles. And it’s true–crossword puzzles do improve our fluency, yet studies show they are not enough by themselves.

Are they fun? Yes. Do they sharpen your brain? Not really.

Of course, if you are doing this for fun, then by all means go ahead. If you are doing it for brain fitness, then you might want to choose another activity

8. Eat right – and make sure dark chocolate is included

Foods like fish, fruits, and vegetables help your brain perform optimally. Yet, you might not know that dark chocolate gives your brain a good boost as well.

When you eat chocolate, your brain produces dopamine. And dopamine helps you learn faster and remember better. Not to mention, chocolate contains flavonols, antioxidants, which also improve your brain functions.

So next time you have something difficult to do, make sure you grab a bite or two of dark chocolate!

Now that you know how to train your brain, it’s actually time to start doing.

Don’t just consume this content and then go on with your life as if nothing has changed. Put this knowledge into action and become smarter than ever!

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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