Volume 3, Issue 26
Who among us does not sometimes hold himself/herself to an excessively high standard, like playing Iron Man or Superwoman? Believing one’s own press releases, as they say in showbiz?
A client recently said he wanted to be more like me — always smiling, always happy, able to leap tall challenges in a single bound. Fact is, recently I’ve started to take this press release too much for granted and discovered that bits of a kryptonite-like substance can still knock me out of the sky.
In my case it’s an absurd perfectionism that grouses if a conversation with a client goes by without a Big Idea and a client aha moment. Silly, right?
Always wanting to top oneself is an attachment like any other. All attachments are kryptonite, robbing you of your superpowers, even when they are supposedly idealistic and positive.
Okay, time to get back to basics. Getting enough sleep is one. Days of treating the body as if there’s another one hanging in the closet (Len Matthews once told me that’s what I tend to do) — sleep and dream deprivation takes its toll. The quest for infinitely extended Zone or Flow state performance requires attention to such mundane details.
What’s your kryptonite? I imagine that since you read this blog, you too are on the quest for Flow state day in and day out, getting there a lot of the time and not getting there too. Flow tends to happen in the thing that is your métier, the thing you do, whatever you do best, that which it makes sense to make your life’s work, the thing you love to do the most. A day is not made only of that activity — there’s always a lot of other stuff to do, and Flow might not come as easily in those peripheral activities. At those times, if you focus on staying in the Observer state, the jump back to Flow will be much easier.
It’s useful to assume that whatever is happening, if it’s happening, it might be good enough, so long as you’re not bringing anybody else down. If it feels like you’re coasting now and then, don’t assume you’re not hitting it out of the park, or that you have to do something so you’re always hitting it out of the park.
The Wilhelm/Baynes edition of the I Ching says somewhere “He hastens to that which supports him”, having to me essentially the same meaning as John Lennon’s line “whatever gets you through the night”. This would be your own personal anti-kryptonite — meditation, sleep, yoga, working out, running, solo car karaoke — erasing whatever is tumbling through the washing machine of your mind and emotionarium. Use whatever trick you find works to back you out of your own self-imposed hell, whenever you find yourself imposing it. Maybe something as simple as asking yourself, “What’s the hidden assumption causing this irruption of displeasure?”
Best to all,
Follow my regular blog contribution at Jack Myers Media Network: In Terms of ROI. It is in the free section of the website at Bill Harvey at MediaBizBloggers.com.