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Operations: Aspire to Be a Diamond


Carbon must undergo 2,200 degrees of heat and be put under a pressure of 725,000 pounds per square inch to become a diamond. But put too much pressure, and it can effortlessly become toxic and carcinogenic carbon dust.

I implore you to think about this during your work days. Have you ever had a day where you felt like the weight of your entire company was on your shoulders? Like you were a failure? Not good enough? Maybe considered giving up?

What differentiates a mediocre leader from a great leader is how they bulldoze through pressure and adversity and come out on top! Here are some guidelines I follow, to help make sure I don’t dissolve.

Reconsider prioritizing.

No, this is not the typical prioritizing you learn about in Leadership 101. I want you to make a list of all of your “priorities” and rank them from 1 to 10. After you have formulated your list of wildly important things that you need to take care of “right now,” I want you to scratch off task numbers 2 to 10. Why did I ask you to do that? That is because the word “priority” wasn’t made plural until the 1940s, and focusing on one thing at a time allows you to complete each task with focus, excellence and without feeling overwhelmed. Don’t move on to task 2, until you’ve completed task one. Take the day one step at a time.


I know this is much easier said than done, but with the help of Dr. Bill Crawford’s book “Life from the Top of the Mind” I have been able to make my days more productive and have been able to better balance my work and personal life. My favorite thing from his teachings was the acronym BRAIN.

B: Breathe deeply, and clear your mind

R: Relax! Say it aloud as you exhale if you need to.

A: Ask yourself, “How would I rather be feeling?”

I: Imagine yourself feeling that way. When I’m stressed, I imagine myself in Aruba.

N: Notice the change. Notice how you feel after this exercise. Hold on to that.

Learn to say ‘No.’

We live with the mistaken idea that the way to success is by saying ‘Yes’ to everyone. Success is achieved when you work hard at your goals, and execute them. Don’t be afraid to put you and your goals first.

Every day we make a decision on whether to quit or continue pushing forward. Think of pressure and stress as a maker and not a breaker, and use it as an opportunity. Use the pressure to show how much you can overcome and achieve — aspire to be a diamond.


Annette Valero is the housekeeping director at Gainesville Health and Fitness Centers. 

Annette Valero

Annette Valero is the housekeeping director at Gainesville Health and Fitness Centers

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