In our lives there are things that matter and things that don’t. There are aspects with greater meaning and some without. Many times energy is wasted based on misconception of these aspects. We sat with life coach Yasser Fathy to learn more about life and his upcoming book “The 6 Circles- A Breakthrough Model for Personal Change and Development”.
1How can you benefit from every minute of your office hours and put goals for your day?
We shouldn’t put a daily target; people should put a life goal which they will act upon as a big goal must be there first. If I want to build a building, I should create a structure for it first and not start with building separate walls that don’t connect. I must ask myself if I’m happy going to work or I’m grabbed off from bed. Youth today are exposed to different media and try lots of different things, nothing says that you’re successful only if you’re an engineer or a doctor. My photos for this article were shot by a doctor who wasn’t interested in medicine but was forced by his parents to go to medical school until he ended up doing what he loved best.
2Some people who aren’t paid a huge salary think they don’t need to exert so much effort, so how could we avoid this negative thought?
People must ask themselves a smart question, “Who do I work for”? People should know that they work for themselves and everyone must be his own employer. You work to build yourself as you are your own company. When you provide the amount of effort according to the amount of money you get paid at the end of the month, you are automatically classified and identified from your employer at work according to the work you do. But if you exert much effort regardless the money you get at the end, there is no way you don’t climb the ladder or get noticed from your employer. If you gave 10 Piasters worth why would they give you 11 Piasters? But if you give 13 they’ll start noticing your efforts, even if they didn’t, you’ll feel good about yourself. Everyone who is frustrated about not getting promoted must know the reason behind this and it’s not true that it’s always because his employer likes his colleague much better and all this nonsense. The job of your dreams might bump into you without prior notice and that’s because the credit you have built that people know about.
3What are the consequences of the interference of society, family and our relationships with our career choices?
Society is very judgmental but if I believe in what I want and show it to them things will become different. If we say that until college our choices are limited because parents interfere, then when you graduate from college you must see what you really need to be doing. If you don’t know what you want yet, try the jobs offered to you until you succeed in them and find the job you like. Success sometimes might be a trap to people as it makes them think that this is what they actually love but that’s not always true. Most people choose the easy jobs that require less effort and a greater salary.
4Does not loving my job affect my relationships and social life?
A woman once told me that she needs a certain job not because she loves it but because it pays her bills and her children’s college, when I asked her are you happy? She told me that “it is a total different thing to be happy, plus no one is happy”. The thought of “no one is happy” is absolutely false. Einstein tells you “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results”. This quote inspired me a lot to do the Six Circles Model. There must be some aspects of our lives that we don’t enjoy much and need to change. We should analyze some of the actions we took throughout our lives or review our job, relationships, car, home, health, in a nutshell; these factors are the breakdowns of our life. It could be an action we took or an action that had to be taken and we didn’t proceed with it so it drove us to the current result. This is the main objective of our life. Some people might say that this is what could be achieved at the moment or this all I could do, but that’s not true.
5Some people fear of doing the things they love and they do other things that makes them feel more secure, how could we get rid of this fear?
I have a statement that I always use “Fear fears” meaning that I won’t achieve anything in life as long as I’m responding to my fears. Fear of the unknown is a normal feeling that is common between everyone. The good news is that the more you approach the thing that you fear, the more you’ll find out that you do not fear it anymore. Young people especially in the beginning of their lives don’t have much responsibility. They need to try things out and face their fears. Nothing is guaranteed and the guaranteed could vanish after 10 years or something and their life will turn out to be mediocre. We should get out of the comfort zone, which is the home that surrounds our brain and makes us feel secure, so we could find new opportunities in life. One of the smartest questions to ask oneself is ‘how could I do this thing better than anyone else?’, and try to find an answer and do it.
6Do you think every person is born with a talent?
People define talent in an incorrect way. Everyone is born with a talent but unfortunately most people don’t discover it and that’s because they follow society norms.
7It’s a disaster when you say ‘MOST’ people.
Of course! When you say that there are people who are talented and others aren’t it is against God’s justice. I worked as a sales executive for 20 years and when I started working as a trainer people told me that I’m a great trainer, but I didn’t discover this before. I used to search for a long time for something that I was happy doing although I spent sleepless nights but I’m still happy doing it. This is talent. You should find a talent that you enjoy doing and people also benefit from. When I train people for free, to inspire them it’s my talent and passion that people benefit from and my happiness is displayed on my face. When you go to a certain workplace and monitor the employees there, it’s easy to pick out those who enjoy what they’re doing and those who check their watch every now and then until they leave the office. The worst thing is when people don’t enjoy what they’re doing they start thinking that that’s how things are and maybe the market isn’t ready so they don’t get the opportunities they need. That’s nonsense and there is nothing called luck or coincidence. The word coincidence is invented by people to justify incidents that they don’t have explanations for. We fall into self-victimizing that’s a waste of energy.
8How to harvest each day’s seeds? People should get the best they can out of every day they live.
When I wake up every day I do a small exercise. I tell myself today I’ll do something great. The most useful thing anyone could do for oneself and for others is work on oneself. I have a concept called ‘The Personal Company’ in which I picture myself as a company that always needs development. Religions state that in order to make the world benefit from you, you should develop yourself. I should be optimistic in the first place and not just sit waiting for something good to happen.
9How do you avoid living in the future and enjoy the present?
People who live in the future and wait for things they want to achieve and just keep on waiting will never achieve it. It will remain in the future. We need to have time for ourselves to think and re-calculate, like a time to reset. We all have half an hour a week for this. I wake up half an hour earlier every day and begin the day smoothly. You shouldn’t be grabbed from bed and rush your day. No harm will happen if we set our alarm half an hour earlier and start thinking of our day, believe me no harm will happen at all (laughs).
10Some people view success as the stage when your able to start your own business, others view it as being able to work at a multi-national company and some think it’s a total different thing, so do you think some people define success in an incorrect way?
There is no correct or incorrect definition of success. To me success is being able to do the job you enjoy. Joy is the best measure of success. 20 years earlier, my definition for success was to work in a multi-national firm and go to work wearing a suit and a tie carrying a hand bag. My previous experiences told me that people with these features live a happy successful life. When I tried this out I realized that it is not true; at least not to me because that’s not what I enjoy doing. I was successful at first as I was promoted many times but I didn’t enjoy it and left it to try out a totally different thing. It’s wrong to follow certain rules of success as it varies from one person to another.
11Is it important to practice your hobbies on regular basis?
I must think how to re-organize my day and I will always find time. I don’t have to practice my hobby on daily basis; I could practice my hobby once a week or even once a month. Everyone must find time for themselves to do the things they love. Let’s do a simple exercise; choose only one week of your life and do a small time sheet to list everything you do from the minute you wake up till the minute you go to bed. This week is a perfect example of how you spend your life through the whole month. You’ll see that there lots of activities that aren’t any useful that we do, seriously lots of activities. Especially at work, if you do a filtration for office hours you’ll find that there are lots of activities crippled in office hours that aren’t useful at all, for example I’m totally against social media on computers at work, they are time eaters that must be removed. Meetings that don’t need attending, long coffee breaks, telephone calls that aren’t useful at all the kinds of calls that are just gossip. You should measure the context of your phone calls and ask yourself if the topics you’ve talked about over the phone with your friends or spouse are subjects that matter.
12Why do we waste our energy?
We spend time being angry about things that have nothing to do with us in the first place. It takes energy needed to fulfill things in our lives.
13Is it normal that everyone might get depressed through their lifetime?
I don’t allow myself to get depressed! I might feel sad sometimes, I might feel pain but depression never. Little kids are very curious about everything in life until a certain age, and then they stop. The main reason behind this is the deformation that happens to us because of the interference of society, family and media around us. So the question of “why” and “why not” disappears. So we must always keep the “why not” on our minds and make sure that we pop this question whenever we want to do something new. We shouldn’t worry about people’s reaction towards our decisions because we might end up doing what we want right. People must always think that they can do things in a different way than others did and that’s the whole point. I should strengthen myself towards the events that I might face in the future, when people face problems that they aren’t ready to face they break down.
14Why do Egyptian women allegedly complain so much?
There are three psychological problems Egyptians fall for: complaining, arguing and the feeling of being victims. If you’re standing and waiting for the elevator there is no way it will come any faster even if you complain! We feel victimized, that’s the fear of facing the persona. I never arrived at any meeting more than 5 minutes late. In Egypt? Yes. With this traffic? Yes. Because I want to be a person who is always on time, so I manage my time according to my meetings and I don’t care what other people do. I measure how much time will it take me to get from one location to the other and I act accordingly meaning that I hit the road a little bit earlier so when there is a traffic jam, I’ll remain calm as I know that I’ll get there on time. If I texted someone that I’m stuck in traffic they’ll trust me because I’m already credited that I’m a guy who is always on time, so there will be nothing to worry about. We need to be trained to new methods of thinking; this skill is totally missing in our society. The lifetime romance is the love you have for yourself.
15Do you think age is just a number?
Absolutely. I’m growing younger, and that reflects my way of thinking and my actions. I’m 48 and I go biking because I feel healthy. Your age is what you feel. People tell girls that if they didn’t get married at a certain age it’ll be a disaster, well who said that? Guys who go to KFC to eat out with their mates and are worried about reaching a certain age without reaching a certain position at work should know that the guy who established KFC did so when he retired at 60.