I found an unexpected inspiration while listening aimlessly to my favorite radio station (GOLF on XM) as I made the hour long drive home after attending my six year old grandson’s first swim meet 🙂. Just to be clear, I love playing sports of all sorts and enjoy playing golf – but it just takes so much time that I normally just savor it vicariously on XM radio when I can. This time I was listening to Michael Breed, one of the Golf Channel’s premier golf (and life) coaches, and he is talking with a women’s golf professional whose focus for improving her game is … getting comfortable with being uncomfortable. BOOM – it hits me between the eyes as a profound statement and she was just talking about her golf game.
Isn’t what she said REALLY the important message for today? We must all learn to get comfortable with being uncomfortable. Everyday, we are seeing things in our world that do not fit our preferred paradigm for what we would like to see happen … in business, in politics, in our media and in everyday life. Our world is changing everyday … not always in the ways we would have it. Whether it involves some of the frightening new technologies, or the constant density of social media, or maybe coping with the dynamics of how to deal with four generations at work or the incredibly daunting and exhausting amount of work/life imbalance that saps the energy from most of my clients … all of this and more just isn’t comfortable. With many of these factors, we just need to suck it up and learn to adapt and change. With some of these factors, we must figure out how to pivot and re-balance in our desperate search for joy, peace and happiness in our lives. Still the most important life goals.
As key leaders and influencers in our organizations, the important lesson here comes down to how to create and extend personal and organizational energy .. for yourselves and for the rest of the team. This includes making the “well-being” of the team a stated priority. Boston Consulting Group recently published an article on this subject which has some very practical and useful suggestions for any CEO or business leader trying to figure out how to manage your own issues AND shape the future of your organizations … filled with other humans often struggling with the same issues you face.
It begins with the realization that we must BECOME COMFORTABLE WITH BEING UNCOMFORTABLE. That is the new normal … it is not going back to the slower pace in early TV shows like Mayberry or The Little Home on the Prairie anytime in the future. The training regimen for the future is about getting AGILE and building those capabilities that will enable you and your team to sense and respond better and faster at all levels in your organization. Hopefully, you will be able to do this in an organizational context that has a set of core values and belief system that recognizes PEOPLE MATTER MOST. If so, there is hope.