Lessons from the Edge:
I had the good fortune to produce a meeting where the great Tony Schwartz spoke. LINK
He reminded us that people are not computers and that in order for us to function at our optimal potential we need to – ready for it … REST. The essential message was that if we all treated ourselves more like professional athletes, balancing stress – rest, focusing on a healthier diet and sleep for 7-8 hours a night not only would we be more effective and productive, but happier too.
None of this is new information. It has all been said many, many times. The attack on our attention from email, conference calls and a constant pressure to work more hours is actually reducing our productivity and is making us very unhappy.
So, my holiday message to you is this, take advantage of a world that has slowed just a hint and put down your smart phones for 72 hours. Enjoy your families and get some very well deserved rest.
Lessons from the Edge:
We have mice. They live behind/in our stove. Seems like it would be a nice place to live; warm, lots of insulation and easy access to a steady supply of food. I catch and release them.. and so far this year I have caught about 6 of the little cuties. My husband reminds me often that, “No, we cannot just build a habitat and keep them.” In my fantasy I put together a maze habitat with a tube with a one w
ay door from the stove through a box like space with stuffing and food and then more tubes leading around the kitchen. My inclination is to just embrace the presents of our mice and keep it managed in a way that makes us both happy. They get to keep living in a safe warm place, and I get to keep them off my counter tops and out of my cereal… seems like a win, win to me. However, I know that they carry insects, diseases etc.. and that it is not ok for us to share a kitchen.. so I catch and release.
As I was walking today to the park with our dog to release yet another little Stuart I thought about this as a parable. It occurred to me, that in general, there are always multiple outcomes for every opportunity. Finding the right solution, not only can look very different from what you initially imagined, the solution for today may not be the solution for a week/month/year from now. Also, hitting on the right resolution for today requires consideration of all parties and compassion for all the positions, it’s only then that every interested party carries similar responsibility and reward. In the case of my mouse: I have to catch and then walk them to the park, the mouse is taken to a foreign, cold place, my husband has to hear about yet another catch. In the end we all get something we want too; my counters stay clean, the mouse lives and my husband does not have to live with a colony of mice. Longterm this is a better, healthier solution than my imagined elaborate maze. Eventually, we may need to borrow the neighbors cat…
Oops .. just caught another one..
Bottom Line: The best solutions are ones that include consideration of all the invested participants.
Lessons from the Edge
It important just to start.. I had breakfast with one of my favorite people, Amy, the other day and after patiently waiting for me to finish describing all the things I was doing BEFORE I started going after new clients, she smiled and said, “why not just start?” Isn’t it a girl issue to wait until everything is perfect before we go after what we want? We tweak, fluff, jooj, stress and pick. However, we actually don’t go after what it is we are fussing about.
It is a proven fact that this is a very common affliction for women in particular. Being right and perfect is nonsense and needs to be surgically removed from our heads – NOW! This affects a lot of us, the anxiety of being exposed and “out there” can be palpable to all walks of life.
Mistakes will happen. It’s part of life. Double posting is something I end up doing often cause some setting is on when it should be off and spelling errors?!? .. god knows I have loads of those.
Get it out there.. do it now. Life is messy, humans are messier.
My favorite Dr Seuss quote : “Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.”
Your audience is waiting for you. Get your message to them before they think you are not coming.
Lessons from the Edge
Who is the boss?
In my business the client is the boss. The client does not however, always know what’s best, that’s why they hired you. While it’s not a good idea to pull out the creative integrity, or reputation argument too much or too soon. If the client is compromising your ability to do the job they hired you for by delaying the process to an extreme, sabotaging your relationships or other wise being truly naughty, then you have every right to stand up for your brand. Do it professionally and do it in writing. Once the situation is resolved amicably, seriously re-consider keeping them as a client in the future.
Bottom Line: Life is too short for bad business.