Swim Like a Shark

A challenge to my staff to never stop seeking new knowledge.

You probably know that many species of shark need to continually swim forwards to keep a fresh flow of water across their gills, else they may perish.  Well, you might think this is an odd metaphor, but I think there is something similar that happens to us.  If we don't keep ourselves challenged and moving forwards, both intellectually and spiritually, we will also perish in the sense that when we are not growing and evolving,  the depth and dimension of who we are begins to contract and diminish.

Many of us are extremely fortunate that the nature of our work in IT requires that we study, research and explore new technologies and concepts all the time.  This aids in naturally providing challenges in one aspect of our ongoing professional growth.  But we need to grow as people too, both professionally, and in the larger context of being better coworkers, managers, spouses, parents, members of our communities and in general, better human beings.

How does one go about this daunting exercise? 

Just a little over two years ago, a group of us in this department undertook to read 'The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People' and to sincerely go through the exercises put forth in the book.  One of the most powerful exercises was to write our own personal Mission Statement.  I found this to be a genuinely trans-formative exercise and I continue to challenge myself to live up to mine. 

I encourage you to consider reading this book and genuinely undertake the challenges it presents.  I guarantee that in doing so, you will be rewarded a richer, more fulfilling life and the benefits will even extend to those around you.

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