Some big credit here is due to Joe Jacobi in one of his “Sunday Morning Joe” bits “How To Perform In A Storm”. He mirrors what I’ve thought about in slightly different verbiage, but damn similar. Towards the end he talks about things I’ve valued for a long time and struggle with, but still have confidence in my personal ability to execute. No matter how rough things seem I’ll always have pride in these: (he wrote) mindfulness, physical capacity, reflection, and creativity or (I’ve thought . . . I suppose in a different order so thanks for the inspiration to organize my thoughts Joe) outward awareness, ability, inward awareness, and individuality. Same shit different toilet.
Going through each of these slowly could make for a fun book, but we’ll save that for later and just see where the wind blows.
Build a strong self physically and mentally. I think it helps that I’m bull-headed, which can be misconstrued as mentally strong, but it plays either way. When I think of mindfulness or outward awareness I visualize someone who doesn’t walk around with their eyes on the ground in front of them. Much like a hockey player that has to look at the puck and immediate ice in front of him will likely collide, hit, or be stolen from easily as he is unaware of his surroundings. Try walking around a store texting or counting the tiles in front of your feet, you’ll get knocked on your ass (or knock someone else on theirs) quick. Being aware has a lot to do with being able to keep your eyes up and having great vision. Of course, I mean that literally and figuratively. Physical vision only gets you so far. We’ve got to be visionaries as well.
Physical capacity or ability has a lot to do with fitness for me given the realm, but it also applies to just getting shit done. It doesn’t have to mean you can run fast or lift heavy, it can simply mean you have physical capacity to execute ideas. Without the ability to DO we are relatively useless. Develop your ability to KILL IT and get shit done and you’ll add quite the weapon to your arsenal.
One that is deceivingly special is reflection or inward awareness. It almost seems like the best explanation is if you could see how everyone else sees you, but from inside. Not many people have such a heightened sense of self awareness that they can learn from their mistakes in a way that almost makes them unrepeatable. Believe it or not a lot of us do make the same mistake twice. We’ll do this much less often and come to know ourselves in our most true sense if we have a great ability to see within. Heighten your inward awareness.
Finally, creativity or individuality is the most obvious chunk. It also happens to be something you can’t learn, teach, or replicate. That’s the definition. It’s bleeds from you and is palpable to those around you. Individuals stand out. DO IT DIFFERENTLY THAN ANYONE ELSE and being fucking awesome at it. No one cares if it took you twice as long to get from point A to point B as long as you killed it in the process. If you were the best at it they’re all looking at you and not in the negative way you think they are. If they are they can bite me, we don’t need them. Be different, be individual, be creative, and kick ass at it.
If that book ever comes out we’ll see how deep this rabbit hole goes. Regardless, put time into yourself. Read a book. Sit in empty space with your coffee and put your phone down. Hit a nasty workout. Walk around and try not to look at the ground. Seize an opportunity to go somewhere and develop your professional life. Grow yourself, the space around you, and the way you perceive it. You’ll be better for it, we all will.