A bit of continuation to the mature response -blog from last week.
That topic was in retrospect a big hit for myself, because by writing that I had prepared myself for rejection what followed the next day. Now I was ready to deal with it in mature way, because I had just revisited the notes and what it means to respond maturely. Despite knowing and remembering some of this, I have to say that dealing with rejection in personal relationships is never easy.
Even in professional life: sales and marketing people face rejection several or even dozens of times per day it’s not easy even though there it’s not so personal. Rejection hurts.
Here we come to the part what we are actually able to control: our response to the outside impulse. Separation between an animal and a conscious being is the ability to delay the time in between impulse and response. We have the ability to choose our response. This so called last of human freedoms is what many philosophies including stoicism teaches us.
Today I realized that choosing means that there are usually several different options for us to consider. Several paths, from which we can always choose the best suited path for our purposes.
How long can you take in between impulse and response? Try taking a moment of your time.
Usually the powerful have the time to be quiet and think before reply. Do you recognize the feeling?
Be responsible, choose your response carefully!
We have limited attention. Our ability to prioritize this attention is one of the few things we can truly control and is one of our primary sources to gain more power from the world.
Great decision making means you can have more of what you really need. You will have all the time in the world for the most important things. Decision making is powerful: not only does it mean commitment to do something, but also decision not to do something.
Decision you make, sharpen your focus, you will get more productive. Through deciding what to do, you decide what you become!
We have limited attention, we can only be at a one place at a given time and we can only focus to one person or a task at a time. In this sense we are rather limited.
Because of our limited nature, we should also be forgiving for those who wrong us and merciful towards ourselves, who cannot always meet our expectations. At very least we can learn at the end of the day and move forward slightly smarter than we were previously on today.
Humans have deep desire for attention and desire. Attention is the currency of power and love. We realize this as children that we are not the center of the world and we are not really omnipotent either. From there on we are seeking for some kind of drought for this deprivation.
A cure that cannot be given, unless we are first willing to give it to others.
How do you treat that who has no power above you? That is the measure of our being. We get that wellbeing which we create to our environment.
It’s not even the ill words that hurt us, it is when we get no attention at all. Yet do not hold grudge to those who ignore you by purpose or without purpose, because most likely they have no purpose they are merely not mindful. And if it was on purpose, who would like to have the attention of such person anyway as it would only mean trouble?
Being present and forgiveness are the cures for our deprivation of attention. We must first administer what we wish to have.
With increased power, comes increased responsibility. The moment we forget this, our good deeds start to decay and growth halts.
Victor Frankl said it well that freedom and responsibility go hand in hand. Responsibility is a topic that is too little talked and pondered about.
Once we understand our responsibility and are willing to exert ourselves for it, we gain actual freedom. Freedom to organize the necessary resources to attain a particular goal in life.
There is no freedom, when there is no responsibility.
Leader is willing to accept responsibility of things that they are not directly responsible.
We are all leaders. If we want to be great leaders we need to strive for more responsibilities. Then at times, when everything is alright going as it should we may enjoy our freedom. Usually this does not last very long thought or if it does, then you’ve masterfully trained more leaders.
Attention is the currency of love and power.
As humans we literally crave for attention. Lack of attention is worse than negative attention.
Attention to people doesn’t cost any money, yet this is one of the most easily overlooked sides of leadership. Attention does take time and caring effort.
It’s not money, luxuries or drugs we care, it’s attention and caring.
It’s hard for us to admit it, however it is so.
I think the way to give the attention is the caring way. It’s at least better than the denying angry or upset way. Because in the end all of us crave for the attention at least the caring way is a very nice to give the attention.
Fear is deeply motivating force. We are either safe or we are in danger. And for danger there is danger and then there is life threatening danger.
As a species we have persisted mostly because of this advanced fear motivator. We are risk mitigating pack animals. Sticking to the groups is a way to mitigate the risk.
When the basic security is achieved, then other needs to tend to pop up and through which we start to want to influence through the group and even control the group. That’s when the other motivators come in like having a social status and power.
Because of pack mentality, some kind of hierarchy always exists. A good question to ask is how high the hierarchy needs to be? The higher the hierarchy is, the more likely it is to be used wrongly and unethically. The more involved all the members of the group are, the healthier it is.
Also the lower the group hierarchy is, the better we can use our individual and collective wisdom. Even physically and biologically in a secure environment we can use our higher cognitive functions better and if we can think better and can communicate better the results are going to be better as well.
Humans are risk mitigating pack animals, always creating hierarchies. However in those groups everyone is in the end better with increased security.
Today’s insight has to do with the complete different levels of motivations: internal and external. Tuomo Loukomies was coaching us about learning and I learned that the motivation is in fact prerequisite of learning.
I understood the vast difference between these two possibilities for motivating action.
People who are mainly moved by external rewards are also very much comfort seeking.
Where are internally driven people are willing to even suffer for their purpose. Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi calls these people autotelic: “an autotelic person needs few material possessions and little entertainment, comfort, power, or fame because so much of what he or she does is already rewarding.”
Before I thought motivation is everyone’s own business, but gladly I understood today that the level of motivation can be of course influenced and changed. Even a person with zero influence can first to be motivated into some action with external rewards and eventually with patience even to the higher levels of motivation until the person becomes autotelic. With time and patience, this is possible.
Deep down, we crave for attention. Attention is the currency of love and power.
What makes life so difficult, is that we do not recognize our own might. We crave something, which makes fools of ourselves in the process.
We do not need the titles of kings and queens, gods or goddesses to have such like powers. When we are given life, we are destined to become the creators of our lives. This creation begins which the consciousness and ability to choose how to respond to that feedback which life constantly gives us.
The cognitive ability to choose our emotional response what makes human.
What will be the definition of homo sapiens? We can still influence this. Will it be the being who found the way, or lost the way?
How you will use your attention, will contribute to this definition and to the story of our species. Recognizing that all the power is in the present moment and how you will use each moment will determine everything.
We should direct majority of our attention to the present moment, because that is the source of our love and power. When we love ourselves, we become more lovable. When we do good to others, they will want to reciprocate.
World is abundant place when we start to see everything that is available in the present moment.
Today as I was waiting in the shops cashier line, I observed the people ahead of me paying for their groceries. People purchase goods based on their own value systems if options are available at affordable levels.
People are willing to sacrifice for the values and more importantly for the bigger story that’s at hand. However, if those choices are not made easy and affordable it does not happen.
Most of the systems are not in place to serve the bigger story of win-win-win. In shop queue I observed several such: plastic bags, cigarettes, betting, sugar… Just to get started.
The longer the stronger is connected, the more powerful it is. True value-chain.
When we want to consciously observe our actions, we have to look these through our habits and follow the string up until consequences.
Following up enough many strings helps us to make better decisions with all our most important resources: time and money.
Today we discussed the topic of power over lunch.
Power is intriguing, without it much doesn’t get done at all. Power can be felt threatening, or viewed as negative. Although the power in itself is very neutral, it’s all about the user after all.
From there we get to the virtues. Whatever power, has the two sides. Like the superhero comics: there are good guys and bad guys. Then rarely there are those random side characters that are rather chaotic neutral doing whatever happens to suit them.
In fact with any power, there is a choice. Often more than one.
Not all intentions lead to desired results: good intentions can be disastrous and even with ill intentions, one can fail to cause any harm. Power in itself is not good or bad, it’s all about how to use it responsibly.
Power is ability and freedom. With freedom comes the responsibility. We are prepared to wield power through our experiences. So therefore the experience is crucial. I.e. it’s past experiences that build the basis for Thomas Jefferson’s presidency.
Virtues are action, and striving. Combine the power, responsibility and virtues, there is nothing wrong with the power, instead it is harnessed for the good.