Speaking in Iran
It was Father’s Day in Iran on 24 May 2013, and the huge auditorium was full of managers from all over Iran who had decided to spend Father’s Day at an International Conference on Modern Management!
It was obvious that Iranians are a people with an enormous hunger for learning and a dedication to personal growth and development.
Before coming to Iran to speak on “How Winners become Champions” at this conference, my perception of Iran and Iranians was pretty much shaped by the media portrayal of the “Axis of Evil” after 9/11.
When I mentioned that I’d be travelling to Iran, the unanimous reaction was “Why are you going there? Aren’t you concerned for your safety?”
People are the same the world over.
I am delighted to report that it has been a pleasure being in Iran. The Iranians I met were kind, generous to a fault, gentle, loving and peaceful. The hospitality I was treated to was second to none.
Once you by-pass the trappings of clothing and superficial cultural differences, you find that Iranians are the same as people the world over. Their concern for their family, relationship difficulties, career aspirations and their desire to cultivate a happy, harmonious and productive team at work are no different to people of any other culture.
Perception is NOT reality.
I’d like to illustrate this point further by telling you a story of two boys, Tom and Gary, who grew up in the suburbs of Adelaide, in South Australia.
Tom grew up with his grandfather who had been incarcerated in the Changi Prisoner of War camp in Singapore during the Second World War.
When his grandfather returned to Australia he carried a hatred for the Japanese soldiers who had mistreated him, and passed on this hatred to his grandson, Tom, by telling him stories of his ordeal.
Eventually, Tom grows up, becomes a young man and meets me – a Korean Australian woman who could easily pass for a Japanese.
What does Tom see when he sees me? Seeing through the perception lens of hatred, Tom would obviously see a monster he’d prefer to avoid.
On the other hand, Gary lived next door to a happy Chinese family and spent his childhood playing with the girl with pigtails next door.
What does Gary see when he sees me? Seeing through the perception lens of fond memories, Gary would see a nice girl – someone he might like to get to know better.But what am I? The monster or the nice girl?
Tom and Gary only just met me. They don’t really know who or what I am beyond the visual and verbal cues interpreted by the beliefs that make up their perception lenses.
Your beliefs (pre-conceptions) colour your experience of your world. When you explore this in depth, you come to realize that the world you live in is a projection of your belief system. Put in another way, your world is a mirror reflection of your beliefs:
If you don’t feel good, when you are OUT of the Zone, remove your perception lenses by debunking your limiting beliefs and experience a new world of peace, love and joy – where creative ideas flow into opportunity and success feels effortless!