This message is intended to relay a combination of an adventure I had last week concerning truck repair, Carl Paoli’s appearance on the Barbellshrugged podcast and how I relate to that, and generally being open to outside ideas regardless of the ramifications.
We can do a lot in our life time. we can commit to many things in varying degrees and have relative levels of success bringing us different experiences and successes and failures (if you want to title them such). The path to those things is not a frequented one as we all have our ways. That is both the misfortune and the beauty of the things. “If only there was a process to follow or some steps to take.” – massive error in our thinking. If you don’t do it wrong to eventually do it right, how can you own that thing and appreciate it (don’t chop my head off, there are obviously special cases). People have found countless ideas and products to compare Steve Jobs and Apple to, but one thing that may be overlooked is the commitment behind him and his ideas. He messed up a lot before he got it right. Apple is what it is because of the things it isn’t. Let that sink in. I know it will piss somebody off.
Drag that back to where we were. Would you value how you raised your kids more if it was the way you figured out with all the “wrong” things that made it the adventure you and the kids know and love or if you read a book with a step by step process and raised your kids like a robot. I doubt anybody reading this picks the later. That principle applies to everything ever.
A friend and I were working on the truck last week because something was draining the battery and us geniuses figured it could be a few problems (we know next to zero about cars, trucks, engines, etc.). I was ready to take it to the shop when we decided to attempt researching on our own and tinker around. We decided to do the fast and easy stuff first. Get the battery charged and swap out for a new ignition switch, which is way easier than it sounds. That went nowhere fast aside from a momentary fix. Through some more reading I found it was most likely a separate, but related issue and took it to a shop because they could replace an alternator much faster than myself. We were all set to get the battery charged again and take the som’bitch down to Grand Prairie to the shop who left their contact info sticker on the side of the current alternator. Not only was that going to be a long drive (40+ minutes), but we’d have to do it twice due to drop off and pick up. As we finished a morning workout and took a quick cool down walk, my buddy looks across the street and spots a small, unsuspecting place next door. We walk across the street and comment all to soon on whether they can swap an alternator or not (of course they can) quickly realizing there were only about forty seven alternators sitting on the front desk. Long story short, we end up pushing the truck over and the job took much less time and mula than anticipated — huge win.
I digress. The point is in my periodic and idiotic close-mindedness. I don’t consider myself someone who’s closed off to others’ ideas, but in this instance I was already locked in because I thought I’d found the optimal solution. A source had conveniently left info where I needed it and I was sold based on ignorance and lack of exploration. It was Chris’ curiosity (shout out) that made us walk next door simply because he saw the sign. Sounds minor, but ’tis far from.
Also last week I found myself listening to a popular podcast who hosted “movement coach” Carl Paoli. Dude is an ex-gymnast with tons of experience and analytical talent that affords him the specialty of breaking down just about anything to an understandable root based on the individual. Big fan of his. Of course he has a little bit of Bay-area flare to him with all his open-minded hoopla, but I don’t think it’s fair to group him geographically like that. Lots of people not from Cali are open-minded. He has a passion for not only gymnastics, but movement in general, that has an over-arching theme of making people better. We’ve become quite the lazy machine over the last zillion years and finally seem to be heading in the right direction again. He is a part of that movement.
I find connection with him because I don’t believe there’s any one way to do one thing. Now, there are rules, regulations, guidelines, basics, etc. to damn near anything in life, but outside of that it is our job to “get it on” and find our way. That applies to raising your kids, snatching a barbell, running a 5k, reading a book, how you hold a pen, all of it. Example: if you hold a pen upside down with the intention of writing on something, your success will be very limited. If you’re very careful you might be able to pull off writing through the paper by cutting it with the backside of the pen, but it will be, uh, less than legible. Now, if you hold the pen point-side down with two fingers on top rather than one and tilted more to the side than straight up and down, well then that’s just your style and I commend you for making penmanship your own.
Take that however you want, but it works for anything. Learn the rules, then make something work with your style. There are optimal methods, situations, and systems, but they’re only optimal for the person that figured that out for the people they figured it out for. That will not necessarily work for you, though you could fall into that same grouping.
Be open to change and absorb everything you can so you have the best chance of finding your best style. Gravity exists, but Michael Jordan found a way to fly from the free-throw line. Take home – take your blinders off. Couldn’t resist adding this. Cheers.