Last week, I had a nice conversation with a wiser friend where we were discussing education, use of intelligence and the like. It inspired me to write about our use of analytical intelligence by focusing on what is wrong with something rather than what is right.
And then, I had epiphany during the week. I was being cynical myself. I was easily lapping up the media portrayal of Jobs as the irrational angry negative guy and was dismissing him as someone who got marketing right.
From that moment, I began focusing on all the things that Steve did right. Every time I came across a theme that resembled a strength, I wrote it down.
This exercise has transformed me. It really has.
It is so easy to be cynical and judgmental. I’d slipped into that zone myself with relative ease. The zone is negative. It doesn’t celebrate wins. It only looks at the downside.
The moment I flipped it around, I could feel the rise in energy. I could see myself learning an incredible amount. Because, funnily enough, while it’s easy to point out someone else’s faults, those faults come with the person’s unique make up and hence, they are unlikely to be emulated.
However, when it comes to strengths or things people do right, there is actually a tremendous amount to learn. For example, it’s easy to rubbish Jobs’ management skills. He was a horrific people manager thanks to his inability to manage his emotions. However, in his 2nd coming at Apple, he made it a point to surround himself with people who complemented him. Persistent folk who managed him. Bloody insightful, this is.
(I will share the entire list once I’m finished with the book. Please remind me if I forget.)
And, to think I almost missed it!
I am amazed.
It’s all in my mind. Sivers shows the power of the very same thing in this wonderful 3 minute clip.
It’s easy to forget the good stuff.
Focusing on the positive is so damn hard. .
But, that’s what makes it worth it.