This latest Perspective letter is a short note on what I think of as a genuinely useful nugget that is relevant to growing your business, or yourself, or just going to your own next level, which if explored deeply, will reveal to you a key insight that will help you to overcome whatever you’re working through at the moment.
Here and There
There’s a phrase that I have used with clients over the years that I’ve started to hear more and more in the past few months.
I’ve read it in a few places recently, and have also heard people say it in popular media, and I just thought it might be worth going a little deeper into it to hopefully convey the real power and the importance of it.
The phrase is:
“What got you here won’t get you there”
Now, before you groan and say I’ve heard that before, that’s the reason I’m writing this, because there is way more to it, and yet it’s also very simple.
On a basic level what it really means, is that you will need to do something different or something new if you want get to your next level or goal. No problem there…
But what that really means is this (and this is the key):
If you are experiencing resistance and repeated obstacles in an endeavour right now, then what it means is what got you to where you are today, is exactly what is stopping you from getting to where you want to be.
Controversial? Maybe. But it’s true, think about it…
Zen Mind and Business?
Instead of adding a million new things to our lists and diaries and busy lives, a wiser option may well be to first stop doing many of the old things.
The rub here though is that if somebody is an expert at something they are more likely to have a bias favourable to their old abilities and this is often why so many old industries get disrupted from out of nowhere; because many leaders won’t question themselves or their old ideas.
There can often be too much attachment to a methodology, an idea, or to an unconscious psychological pattern, whereas what is really needed is the opposite – a detachment.
The Japanese concept of Shoshin relates to the beginner’s mind.
As Suzuki wrote in Zen Mind:
In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, in the expert’s mind there are few. Always have a beginner’s mind.
If you were to sincerely consider the possibility that:
What has gotten you to where you are now, as fabulous as now may well be, is exactly what is stopping you from getting to your next level, you will reconnect with your beginner’s mind and enter a place of creativity and ideas.
I’m not making where you are now out to be wrong. I’m only offering up an idea that if you are stuck and are wanting something new, that this will certainly be relevant.
Einstein also spoke about how imagination was more important than knowledge. What could happen if you were to detach from your knowledge, to a degree, not necessarily completely?
Identify what you need to stop doing by writing down all that you currently and used to do and deciding what you really need to stop.
Then actually stop doing it, or stop doing how you used to do it, and you will see new possibilities. Do the stopping first though or the mind will be too full to handle the new ideas.
Create the space to create in the first instance, so you can have the ‘something’ you’ve never had before.
Instead of worrying about what to do, what if you invested your time in figuring out what to stop first?