What do we mean by Self-aware? Let me explain! Energy cannot be destroyed, it merely changes from one form to another. I remember being taught that at school. In the same way, when we start out on a new journey, we use energy. Energy to plan, energy to prepare, energy to move.
All along the journey there are obstacles to cross and alternate routes to consider. What if one of these alternate routes actually offers a better destination? Do we plow on regardless or do we switch en-route? We need to plan thoroughly in order to reach our destination but at the same time stay flexible enough to alter our course. This can be hard to do if we have expended a lot of energy selecting the goal and as such become emotionally invested, but surely it is better to reach the correct destination late than the wrong destination on time. In the military we called this ‘Mission Command’.
The overall commander would give a mission, an intent and a concept of operations, but how the destination was reached would be down to the commander on the ground. A plan may be devised to do one thing but if a better opportunity presented itself, then it was to be seized.
If you think about this in a business context, an example mission may be to become the no. 1 on-line dating service in the UK. You therefore plan on the intelligence available to you at that point, ie we must dominate the competition on social media, outbid them on Google and create a more intuitive app which links into Snap-Chat. Great, smash, you’ve reached the destination but it’s last years destination because you missed the release of an affordable 3rd Generation Virtual Reality (VR) head-set, didn’t buy any domain names for VR dating and didn’t appreciate how quickly everything would switch over to this new capability.
Random example I know actually quite likely. So how do we deal with this? How do we plan and execute whilst being prepared to switch direction in a heartbeat? Well we use contingencies but we also need to become self-aware. We need to know who we are, what we’re good at, what we’re passionate about and what we need help with. If you are a great sales person but not to hot on tech, you need to get help because sure as hell,there’ll be someone out there who lives and breathes that stuff and will either work with you or against you.
Create a vision and then build a team, be the driving force.If that’s not your strength, then partner up with someone who can. If you’re the hottest tech guy in the country but have no people skills, don’t try and lead,it’ll go wrong. Find a partner. If you’re great with big picture but terrible with the detail, find a partner. We are lucky today that we can outsource most things so as long as we are self-aware, we can recognise what we can do and what we can’t.
So it’s time to remove the ego and the pride and be brutally honest with ourselves. Do a SWOT analysis but not just on our business skills but all areas from relationships,health and fitness, finances,career and spirituality. If you’re unfit, will you manage the long nights when starting a new journey?
If you have no money, how will you pay your bills? If you’re relationship is strained,will a new project push it over the edge? Be ruthlessin answering these questions and become truly self-aware. Then you can pick a destination and plan to reach it. However if along the way you see a better opportunity, you can have the confidence and agility to switch.With this you will ensure that all the energy you expend will propel you towards your true goal!!
If you want 12 Self-awareness exercises that breed success, click here
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