If I informed you that Snoopy (yes, that Snoopy), was the main factor for the success I have actually had in my adult life, you may cock your head to the side, flutter your eyelids in shock, and utter an ironical “riiiight.”
I have run a number of companies, composed and released a handful of books, been on air as a tv broadcaster, won awards for my work in a number of different fields and assisted numerous individuals accomplish their own goals by bringing their worth out into the world. And it is all thanks to Snoopy.
Let me explain.
From kindergarten to the 3rd grade, I was a Montessori kid. If you’re not familiar with the Montessori method, the education philosophy focuses on self-reliance and self-learning. Looking back, it was a great fit for me and served me well. A few of the things I found out throughout that experience not only helped to form me into the person I am today, however continue to serve me as I run my own business and help others to discover their own self-confidence, discover self-sufficiency, and have the ability to interact successfully with others.
The sheets were the key.
Every Monday, when I strolled into my classroom, I would head towards the bin that housed our calendar of projects for the week. I would pull mine from the stack, sit down, and look at what I needed to accomplish that week. Every subject was a heading, and the list of specific projects for each subject was beneath.
As a kid, my primary incentive to accomplish whatever on my sheet weekly were the Snoopy stickers I got. After completing each job, you got to pick a sticker that an instructor would add to your sheet as a method to check the assignment off. Of the stickers available, Snoopy was constantly the frontrunner for me. It was something so little that lit me up so huge, week after week. Nevertheless, I realize (looking back) that those Snoopy sticker-covered sheets taught me 3 vital lessons that, to this day, are a part of why I succeed.
1. I got to pick when to do things.
Once I had my sheet in hand, I got to choose how my workload for that week would look. I might swing into action and get whatever done on Monday, I might spread out things out and do a little every day, or I could wait up until Friday and work under pressure.
My responsibilities, my choices, and my results depended on me.
I was tasked with determining how I work best. That likewise taught me that, as long as I got it done, there was nothing incorrect with how I did it. Think of this previous year and a half and the number of individuals found they are really more calm and more productive when they can work remotely or at particular times of day when they are more focused, have more energy, or in an environment that is reassuring, while others learned that they actually like and require the structure and routine of going onsite to work. Various individuals, various methods. No right or incorrect, simply efficient.
Learning how YOU work finest is essential to success.
“Keep looking up, that’s the secret of life.” – – Snoopy
2. I might ask for assistance when I required it.
There were times throughout the day when my time was my other and own times when I consulted with instructors or schoolmates for a specific project, group project, or test. I had access to a teacher if I wanted or required one. This taught me that requesting aid is not just acceptable, however motivated. When you ask and learn from the answers you get, it moves you forward more quickly.
Requesting help is key to success.
3. Educators weren’t the only ones to go to for assistance.
With several grades in the very same area (another Montessori thing), I could go to peers, older kids, and even be an instructor for someone else who needed assistance. The “hierarchy” that appears in a more traditional class wasn’t there.
What that taught me was that things like age and “seniority” didn’t instantly make you smarter or much better at anything. What made you smarter or better at things was details gathering, trying things, learning from the results and determining what works and what needs to be changed in order to work. You do not have to know everything; what you require to understand is how to take advantage of the cumulative intelligence in the space.
Comprehending that everybody knows something you do not, which you understand things others do not, is crucial to success.
The experience I had during those early years of my education taught me how to embody the qualities of a leader. While I didn’t recognize it at the time (we never do), recalling, I am uncertain I would be the person I am today had I not been exposed to those couple of years of believing in a different way.
I am forever grateful for that.