One of the great benefits of nature in your work culture is certainty.
Many people poo poo certainty because they only know the rock hard head space of arrogant certainty which is really awful. The certainty nature provides is a softer, evolving, confidence that’s unshakable and therefore adaptable.
How does nature help you achieve certainty?
The opposite to certainty is emotion. The most potent revelation that a person is experiencing emotion is stress. Therefore, stress is the opposite to good leadership.
When I’m walking in the Himalayas with a group of people I acclimatise two weeks before they arrive. Why? Well imagine if we were all acclimatising at once. I would be unavailable to help others because I would be dealing with my own challenges. This is identical to a leader who is stressed and therefore unavailable to help others with their stress. The sign of a great leader is somebody who turns up and is available. The sign of a lousy leader is a stressed individual.
There is no way we can be stressed and in love. The most attractive ingredient of the human spirit is the love for the future and the love for a dream and a vision and these are impossible to hold when stress draws us down into the moment. The bigger the vision the longer the time frame, the bigger the stress the shorter the time frame. So whether it’s spiritual, mental, financial, social, career, health, relationship stress they all have the impact of drawing us down into shorter and shorter timeframes and therefore drawing our attention away from what makes us most attractive as a partner and a leader.
We are given a choice. An event is an event until we choose to make it otherwise. If somebody disagrees with us, this is simply an event. If we react to their disagreement then, we have chosen, with our free will, to react and embody stress. If something goes wrong in our life we can choose to hold onto it and therefore be disappointed and eventually depressed or we can let go and not be depressed. These are very powerful opportunities to consider when we are negotiating for our quality of life. Stress is a choice, we make that choice thousands of times a day.
By going to nature every now and then throughout the day you automatically develop the answers to These Four Great Questions – Unlimited Answers
The four great personal questions:
- Where did I come from?
- Who am I?
- Why am I here?
- Where am I going?
We ask these questions either subliminally or overtly in every activity we do in life. When one of these answers becomes vague panic sets in because it feeds uncertainty.
I recently hurt my back which is no big deal unless I define my brand as Mr Nepal Guy, a world leading Himalayan Adventurer who takes executives trekking in the Himalayas. Now, with a hurt back, answers to three of the four questions are dust, blown away in the wind: who am I? (Well you no longer at Himalayan mountain guide) why am I here? (Well, you’re no longer here to guide people up mountains) where am I going? (Well, very unlikely to the Himalayas) and I could also add a fourth, where did I come from? (Who cares).
In my world of nature I know that nothing is ever missing just changes in form, so, I immediately set about rebranding myself as “the nature guy” rather than the Himalayan man. Now, whether it is in a wheelchair or by bicycle I can continue to have certainty and confidence in the work I do rather than become depressed or stressed by a change of circumstances. I believe this skill, this adaptive ability, is one of the more profound executive skills we need.
This is another great example that demonstrates a way to think that rather than relieve our stress, eliminates the cause of stress and therefore gives us the freedom to respond in stressful situations in a way that is healthy.