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10 Life Truths That Will Set You Free

10 Life Truths That Will Set You Free

Do we really learn about life truths as we grow up? Do we ever grow up? There are lots of things that get in the way. We are conditioned by family, education, religion and social media. They are all telling us what we should do, how we should look and what we should even think!

Here are ten life truths which will help you to keep focused and set you free.

1. You know that perfection is impossible.

Parents, governments, schools and companies set high standards. There is nothing wrong with that at all. Having high ideals to aim for is great; just do not expect perfection, as perfection is just an illusion. Recognize your limits and try to work on correcting defects.

2. You know that you will make mistakes.

Yes, you are going to screw up, make blunders and gaffes. The worst thing you can do is to try to cover them up, blame others or just plow on as if nothing had happened. These are all bad moves.

Instead, say sorry if someone is hurt or damaged in some way. Make a promise to do better the next time. Learning lessons from failure is an essential life skill.

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3. You have to do something.

Lots of people glory in their wonderful human qualities. They pat themselves on the back for being kind, compassionate and honest. But unless they actually do something to demonstrate that they have all these qualities, they come across as losers and fakes. Look at the famous Glengarry Glenn Ross video where Alec Baldwin tells the losing salesmen that they might be great family men, but they suck as salesmen. They have to get up and close the deals; otherwise they will be sacked.

(NSFW: some adult language is present in the following video).

4. You can do much more than you think.

“Sometimes life knocks you on your ass… get up, get up, get up!!! Happiness is not the absence of problems, it’s the ability to deal with them.”

—Steve Maraboli

How often do you feel overwhelmed at the sheer height of the mountain that you have to climb? That new project your boss has given you may seem like an impossible task. But just stand back for a moment and repeat to yourself how much experience and skills you have and also reflect on your past successes.

5. You have to be less severe with yourself.

We set some impossible goals for ourselves. We want to be the best, the most intelligent, the most competent and the most successful. This is why we are so self-critical. Being kind and compassionate with others is fine, but sometimes you forget yourself.  A much better approach is to set more realistic goals which match your skills set. If time management is your problem, try to get that right before taking on that enormous challenge.

6. You are aware of your prejudices and bias.

“Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth.”

—Marcus Aurelius

One of the most difficult life truths to accept is the fact that you see everything through spectacles which are tinted with bias and prejudices. This colors everything you think, feel and are passionate about. This is your truth. Bias is the default position. You project that on to people you meet. So, you have preconceived ideas about people with weight problems, different race, sexual orientation. If you are not sure about this, why not take the Implicity Association Test (IAT)  (Social Attitudes) organized by the University of Harvard.

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7. You are not prepared to compromise on your values.

You know that certain values are vital to your existence and your social relationships. Your work ethic is sacred and your desire for honesty and transparency in all your dealings is admired and respected. You are the one who shows by example and nobody will ever say that you should practice what you preach. This is a treasure that you must always safeguard because it is the key to self-fulfillment.

8. You know how to deal with fear and stress.

“You must learn to let go. Release the stress. You were never in control anyway.”

—Steve Maraboli

A lot of the stress you feel is related to negative thinking getting out of control and irrational fears about what might happen. Try these tips for taking care of yourself when things get tough. The stress will not disappear, but it will become more manageable.

9. You are in control.

If you are in control of your life, you will be less vulnerable. But it is not always so easy. Do you know that feeling when things start to get out of control and you have the horrible feeling that you are a puppet on a string?

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Here are some ways that you can regain control:

  • Think less about the past failures.
  • Stop asking the question, ‘What if…..?’
  • Try to be less dependent on others for simple decisions.
  • Stop putting things off.
  • Make a daily list of things to do which will make you feel better.
  • Always include one task that you have been putting off for some time.

10. You know how to handle truth.

The desire for truth permeates every level of our lives, from the law courts, government, religion and our own personal relationships. If there is any suspicion of a lack of honesty, we are furious. It leads to mistrust and can be corrosive and toxic. Innocuous questions about your partner’s cooking or their latest outfit may require more kindness than honesty.

But are you prepared to tell and demand the truth when it comes to your own and your partner’s failings and weaknesses? Sometimes, these questions and answers can hurt or be hurtful. If you can deal with that, then you can really be set free.

“Three things cannot be long hidden, the sun, the moon, and the truth.”

—Buddha

Featured photo credit: beautiful young woman opened her hands with delight at the blue sea and sky via shutterstock.com

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Robert Locke

Author of Ziger the Tiger Stories, a health enthusiast specializing in relationships, life improvement and mental health.

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Last Updated on March 14, 2019

7 Questions to Ask in a Job Interview That Will Impress the Interviewer

7 Questions to Ask in a Job Interview That Will Impress the Interviewer

Recruiters might hold thousands of interviews in their careers and a lot of them are reporting the same thing—that most candidates play it safe with the questions they ask, or have no questions to ask in a job interview at all.

For job applicants, this approach is crazy! This is a job that you’re going to dedicate a lot of hours to and that might have a huge impact on your future career. Don’t throw away the chance to figure out if the position is perfect for you.

Here are 7 killer questions to ask in a job interview that will both impress your counterpart and give you some really useful insights into whether this job will be a dream … or a nightmare.

1. What are some challenges I might come up against this role?

A lesser candidate might ask, “what does a typical day look like in this role?” While this is a perfectly reasonable question to ask in an interview, focusing on potential challenges takes you much further because it indicates that you already are visualizing yourself in the role.

It’s impressive because it shows that you are not afraid of challenges, and you are prepared to strategize a game plan upfront to make sure you succeed if you get the job.

It can also open up a conversation about how you’ve solved problems in the past which can be a reassuring exercise for both you and the hiring manager.

How it helps you:

If you ask the interviewer to describe a typical day, you may get a vibrant picture of all the lovely things you’ll get to do in this job and all the lovely people you’ll get to do them with.

Asking about potential roadblocks means you hear the other side of the story—dysfunctional teams, internal politics, difficult clients, bootstrap budgets and so on. This can help you decide if you’re up for the challenge or whether, for the sake of your sanity, you should respectfully decline the job offer.

2. What are the qualities of really successful people in this role?

Employers don’t want to hire someone who goes through the motions; they want to hire someone who will excel.

Asking this question shows that you care about success, too. How could they not hire you with a dragon-slayer attitude like that?

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How it helps you:

Interviewers hire people who are great people to work with, but the definition of “great people” differs from person to person.

Does this company hire and promote people with a specific attitude, approach, worth ethic or communication style? Are the most successful people in this role strong extroverts who love to talk and socialize when you are studious and reserved? Does the company reward those who work insane hours when you’re happiest in a more relaxed environment?

If so, then this may not be the right match for you.

Whatever the answer is, you can decide whether you have what it takes for the manager to be happy with your performance in this role. And if the interviewer has no idea what success looks like for this position, this is a sign to proceed with extreme caution.

3. From the research I did on your company, I noticed the culture really supports XYZ. Can you tell me more about that element of the culture and how it impacts this job role?

Of course, you could just ask “what is the culture like here? ” but then you would miss a great opportunity to show that you’ve done your research!

Interviewers give BIG bonus point to those who read up and pay attention, and you’ve just pointed out that (a) you’re diligent in your research (b) you care about the company culture and (c) you’re committed to finding a great cultural fit.

How it helps you:

This question is so useful because it lets you pick an element of the culture that you really care about and that will have the most impact on whether you are happy with the organization.

For example, if training and development is important to you, then you need to know what’s on offer so you don’t end up in a dead-end job with no learning opportunities.

Companies often talk a good talk, and their press releases may be full of shiny CSR initiatives and all the headline-grabbing diversity programs they’re putting in place. This is your opportunity to look under the hood and see if the company lives its values on the ground.

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A company that says it is committed to doing the right thing by customers should not judge success by the number of up-sells an employee makes, for instance. Look for consistency, so you aren’t in for a culture shock after you start.

4. What is the promotion path for this role, and how would my performance on that path be measured?

To be clear, you are not asking when you will get promoted. Don’t go there—it’s presumptuous, and it indicates that you think you are better than the role you have applied for.

A career-minded candidate, on the other hand, usually has a plan that she’s working towards. This question shows you have a great drive toward growth and advancement and an intention to stick with the company beyond your current state.

How it helps you:

One word: hierarchy.

All organizations have levels of work and authority—executives, upper managers, line managers, the workforce, and so on. Understanding the hierarchical structure gives you power, because you can decide if you can work within it and are capable of climbing through its ranks, or whether it will be endlessly frustrating to you.

In a traditional pyramid hierarchy, for example, the people at the bottom tend to have very little autonomy to make decisions. This gets better as you rise up through the pyramid, but even middle managers have little power to create policy; they are more concerned with enforcing the rules the top leaders make.

If having a high degree of autonomy and accountability is important to you, you may do better in a flat hierarchy where work teams can design their own way of achieving the corporate goals.

5. What’s the most important thing the successful candidate could accomplish in their first 3 months/6 months/year?

Of all the questions to ask in a job interview, this one is impressive because it shows that you identify with and want to be a successful performer, and not just an average one.

Here, you’re drilling down into what the company needs, and needs quite urgently, proving that you’re all about adding value to the organization and not just about what’s in it for you.

How it helps you:

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Most job descriptions come with 8, 10 or 12 different job responsibilities and a lot of them with be boilerplate or responsibilities that someone in HR thinks are associated with this role. This question gives you a better sense of which responsibilities are the most important—and they may not be what initially attracted you to the role.

If you like the idea of training juniors, for example, but success is judged purely on your sales figures, then is this really the job you thought you were applying for?

This question will also give you an idea of what kind of learning curve you’re expected to have and whether you’ll get any ramp-up time before getting down to business. If you’re the type of person who likes to jump right in and get things done, for instance, you may not be thrilled to hear that you’re going to spend the first three months shadowing a peer.

6. What do you like about working here?

This simple question is all about building rapport with the interviewer. People like to talk about themselves, and the interviewer will be flattered that you’re interested in her opinions.

Hopefully, you’ll find some great connection points that the two of you share. What similar things drive you head into the office each day? How will you fit into the culture?

How it helps you:

You can learn a lot from this question. Someone who genuinely enjoys his job will be able to list several things they like, and their answers will sound passionate and sincere. If not….well, you might consider that a red flag.

Since you potentially can learn a lot about the company culture from this question, it’s a good idea to figure out upfront what’s important to you. Maybe you’re looking for a hands-off boss who values independent thought and creativity? Maybe you work better in environments that move at a rapid, exciting pace?

Whatever’s important to you, listen carefully and see if you can find any common ground.

7. Based on this interview, do you have any questions or concerns about my qualifications for the role?

What a great closing question to ask in a job interview! It shows that you’re not afraid of feedback—in fact, you are inviting it. Not being able to take criticism is a red flag for employers, who need to know that you’ll act on any “coaching moments” with a good heart.

As a bonus, asking this question shows that you are really interested in the position and wish to clear up anything that may be holding the company back from hiring you.

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How it helps you:

What a devious beast this question is! On the surface, it looks straightforward, but it’s actually giving you four key pieces of information.

First, is the manager capable of giving you feedback when put on the spot like this? Some managers are scared of giving feedback, or don’t think it’s important enough to bother outside of a formal performance appraisal. Do you want to work for a boss like that? How will you improve if no one is telling you what you did wrong?

Second, can the manager give feedback in a constructive way without being too pillowy or too confrontational? It’s unfair to expect the interviewer to have figured out your preferred way of receiving feedback in the space of an interview, but if she come back with a machine-gun fire of shortcomings or one of those corporate feedback “sandwiches” (the doozy slipped between two slices of compliment), then you need to ask yourself, can you work with someone who gives feedback like that?

Third, you get to learn the things the hiring manager is concerned about before you leave the interview. This gives you the chance to make a final, tailored sales pitch so you can convince the interviewer that she should not be worried about those things.

Fourth, you get to learn the things the hiring manager is concerned about period. If turnover is keeping him up at night, then your frequent job hopping might get a lot of additional scrutiny. If he’s facing some issues with conflict or communication, then he might raise concerns regarding your performance in this area.

Listen carefully: the concerns that are being raised about you might actually be a proxy for problems in the wider organization.

Making Your Interview Work for You

Interviews are a two-way street. While it is important to differentiate yourself from every other candidate, understand that convincing the interviewer you’re the right person for the role goes hand-in-hand with figuring out if the job is the right fit for you.

Would you feel happy in a work environment where the people, priorities, culture and management style were completely at odds with the way you work? Didn’t think so!

More Resources About Job Interviews

Featured photo credit: Amy Hirschi via unsplash.com

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