Hello Everyone.  I am excited to say that I have a guest contributor to Mr. Rodge’s Neighborhood.  This writer shares their various personal and professional experiences to provide down to earth, practical insights into our daily lives.  Please welcome Sam Choi of Simple Wisdom Web and Blog.


Now, besides cooking, there was a few things I learned during my times as a chef in a 2 Michelin Starred restaurant.


Some Back Story

success
Before people jump to conclusions, I was never considered an exceptionally gifted child. I had some talent in writing and drawing, but what child didn’t? And I never really harvested that talent, and so by the time I was in the fifth grade, my reading comprehension level was two years behind, at the 3rd grade level.

 

However, later on in life, I got tired of being considered average, and so I pushed myself. I put myself in situations that were uncomfortable, because I knew that I would grow. To give you an example of my somewhat obsession, one of the times I was homeless(and there have been several), I became homeless on purpose because I thought there was something to learn there, and I was right.

 

And if there was any overarching theme in my life, it would be that growth comes from experience, and you do not have to wait for life to give them to you. As we get older, our focus becomes more narrow, and we start to worry more. We focus on our careers, and we worry about retirement or rent. We lose sight of something much more important than financial security.

 

We forget to be better people. And that doesn’t only mean being smart or “intelligent”, it also includes our morals, ethics, and principals. How do we become more grateful? How do we become happier, and how can we spread that happiness? The genre of self-improvement has a narrow scope of being more productive or more active. A lot of the material out there tries to motivate you to be more successful and sexier, which is great, but what about our morals?

 

I think we should focus on our inner state of mind, as much as we focus on our outwardly success. But I don’t want to preach that right now either. Back to what I learned from being a chef.

 

If you lift weights, this idea will come easy for you as well. When I was a chef, everything was about repetition. I have probably cut 100,000 mushrooms, peas, tomatoes, and scallops. I have probably cooked the same 3-5 dishes over 1000 times each. And what I have learned is, that is mastery. If you want to truly master something, get closer to a goal, it’s all about repetition. Arnold Schwarzenegger thought the same thing when he was a bodybuilding champion. For him, every rep was a step closer to his goals. Getting better slowly, but surely getting better.

 

But just blindly repeating something is not enough. You also have to reflect. Every time I cooked a dish, I looked back, and saw what I could do better the next time I cooked the same dish. Perhaps the flame was too low, and I could save some time at a higher heat, or the dish tasted to salty, and so I should put less salt next time. You have to reflect and see what you can improve on every time. And then, the final and most important step is to actually make the change.

 

So if there is something you want to learn or improve upon, however you practice the skill, habit, or craft, remember: it’s all about repetition. And who cares if it takes you longer than a week to master a skill? Too many people overestimate what they can do in a week, and underestimate what they can accomplish in a year. Give yourself some time, you deserve it.

repeat

 

Here’s an outline

  1. Find your path
  2. Get closer to mastery through repetition.
  3. And reflect every step of the way.

Now if you guys want more from me, you can find my info below~

Thanks for reading, and special thanks to Mr. Rodge!

-Sam

 

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It-s-all-good-baby-babyWow!!  We are already half way through 2016.  To think, just 6 months ago, many of us made New Year’s Resolutions, committing ourselves to some sort of improvement in our lives.   Fast-forward to the present.  Where do you stand with your goal or resolution?  Were you able to stick with it?  If so, I congratulate you on your dedication and persistence.  On the flip side, however, is the cold reality that many of us have abandoned our resolutions.  And know what?  That’s ok.…….you are still on the path to accomplishing your goal!  I want to encourage you to regroup and refocus.  Remember, success is a process and not an event.  In many cases, the process involves some stumbles, whether it is failure or losing focus.  If you slipped up, the past is the past; it is what it is.  Learn from it and apply it to the future.  You can get back on track. It’s all good.

travelYou are instructed to travel to New York City from your present location.  What different modes of transportation can you use to get there?  You could fly by airplane, drive a car, or ride a train or bus.  You may use a combination of those forms of transportation.  The amount of time and directions will likely be different for each form of transportation, yet, the bottom line is you can get to NYC.

This same principle applies to our lives.  We all share the same destination:  a desire to have success at something.  It may be related to family, finances, relationships, etc.  Even though we share the same destination (success), the path to reach that destination may be filled with delays, detours, and construction when compared to others who are traveling to the same destination.  The great thing is, despite those obstacles, we can all reach the same destination.  You have what you need to get there!

keysThe path to greatness seems to be a steep and, sometimes, lonely climb.  Lately, I have been observing people who are successful in their fields; they have some traits in common.  They seem to have 3 simple keys to greatness:

  1. Know your purpose or what you want. Contrary to what’s popular in society, discovering your true purpose can take years of soul searching.  That’s ok.  Trial and error will likely bring you to your purpose.  What you want can change, but you need to have an idea of where you’re headed
  2. Tune out distractions. I hate to break the news to you, but there will be things that will happen along the way which will take you off your game.  Some will be major, some will be minor.  You may have to modify your plans.  You also have tune out yourself.  Sometimes we have negative thoughts or self-talk based on our experiences.  We have to learn to counter these thoughts with positive affirmations.
  3. Continue to improve. Always look to sharpen or develop new skills.  Read up on your goal or craft.

The keys to greatness are simple to remember, but take a lot of time and effort.  Remember, success is a process, not an event!

 

3d small people - alarm clockThe challenge of timing.  If you are waiting for the perfect time to start your goal, it probably will never happen.  Don’t get me wrong, timing is important; but finding the perfect time is rare.  There is always going to be a challenge whenever you start; it is likely the reason you have the goal in the first place!  The key is to get started and make progress.  Starting off with a bang is not as important as making consistent progress.  As you make progress, you can always add to what you are doing to reach your goal.  Stay encouraged and don’t give up!  You may need to put your goal or dream on pause, but you don’t have to abandon it.  One thing I know for sure:  if you quit, you definitely won’t reach your goal You’re on the clock!