I’m a mentor to many high flying entrepreneurs. Many come to me after the horse has bolted. We have a significant job to do repairing damaged reputation, family trust and health. But that’s the easy part. It takes just 30 days to get a sincerely committed person back on track. (seriously committed usually means in significant discomfort).
The hard part of mentoring a high flying exec, is slowing them down to a pace where life and work are enjoyable, fulfilling and effective. In other words, to value inspiration more than motivation.
In the 60’s motivation was the buzz word. It evolved out of the wars we’d been fighting. Hup two three four …. dig in and attack. That 60’s stuff still permeates the mindset of the children of those parents who adopted that process as a matter of survival.
But we’ve evolved. Not only evolved technologically, but emotionally, physically, and mentally. In this evolution, some people got left behind. Some still talk about profiling DISC and Myer Briggs, some still talk about loyalty, commitment and motivation as if there’s something we can do extrinsically to cause it. That stuff is dead and so is any business that applies it.
Evolve means grow. Grow means support and challenge. Some argue nature or nurture. The answer is both.
Enter the hippies. Seek peace. Seek harmony. Seek passive. Wake me up when you’re done please. A less healthy group of individuals you’d find hard to assemble. They are counterbalanced by their counterbalance. The gangs, the dealers, the addicts and the neanderthals in business who still think long hours have something to do with success.
In one hour a day, splintered and fragmented somewhere between wake and sleep you can evolve yourself. Simply, that means be your own life coach for free. My job as a mentor is not to solve people’s problems but to show them how to do it. The best approach is get out of the bloody office and go for a walk. Get away from a computer screen and get out into nature.
Sure, there’s still the big decisions you come to Chris to debate. Sure you still need a sounding board, a mentor who doesn’t mind pissing you off with a controversial perspective on your trajectory. But that’s the key to it. You evolve at the border of support and challenge. If you spend your whole day challenging yourself in your head, worry, work, typing, fighting battles, you must, by nature’s very hand come home to a domestic situation that is – shall we say – unpleasant or unfulfilling – or better said, unsustainable.
Behind every great person there is a family. If you spend your day arm-wrestling with your own head, your heart and soul, fighting for survival, greedy, always hungry, not balanced, you are going to turn your “non work” life into a fictitious expectation of peace, harmony and non disturbance, a form of violence against those who share your home. Or, an illness that knocks you off the horse.
I’m saying it. I’m saying what doesn’t get said. I’m saying don’t listen to rhetoric anymore. Anyone or anything that promises you success without challenge, pleasure without pain, a good job you won’t hate from time to time, a great relationship you don’t want to run away from every now and then, stop, smell the coral, get outside, see balance, come to centre, balance your mind, calm your nerves and remember nature’s law. It’ll make all that become transparent and you can, enjoy the promise but not become self critical because someone is presenting only half of who they are in representing the outcome of their product or service.
Simply say this “I am inspired and I will not be distracted by the offer of pleasure or pain – I am inspired – and whether it rains, hails, sunshines or freezes over – I won’t surrender to the poverty of half human existence”