Maslow, emergency, up to your arse in alligators – do you have the skills to be successful?

feeding frenzy of alligatorsI have a friend. We've just recently created an alliance: we support each other in our goal to build a new business. He builds one for himself, I build one for myself. For fun and profit.

We talk on Skype. He teaches me more about people and about what might be the reason people are underachievers than anyone before... not because he is especially screwed up, but because of the context: we talk to build... different from my normal calls, which are coaching calls... got it?

Here are the things I am learning about what is missing to be a winner, to successfully build something new:

  1. You don't know you have skills. What you don't know you have you can't cultivate!

    I have realized that I have skills that are rare, and I didn't realize I had them.

    You never realize what skills you have unless

    1. you are asked to pick skills you use from a list... prepared to be surprised, I was when it first happened back in 1988
    2. you see how clueless other are, how limited others are... you take your skills for granted.

    up-to-my-ass-in-alligatorsI spent, between 1986 and 2000, approximately 30~40 hours a week building skills. I am still building skills, but they are not coming to me organized as they used to: I was assisting in Landmark all those hours... participating in leadership trainings, being a leader, coaching and training leaders, etc.

    Here are some of the skills my friend needs that I have learned, and have forgotten that I used to suffer because of the lack of them:

    1. Powerfully handle overwhelm
    2. Negotiate
    3. Prioritize my commitment
    4. Not be phased with interruptions
    5. Never get into a tizzy over too much on my plate
    6. Be able to say to difficult questions: I don't know... I'll let my mind work the solution out
    7. Have anger, but not be jerked by this anger
    8. Get things done, without hurry, without anxiety, without trepidation
    9. Be calm under pressure: time, money, etc.
    10. Clear my mind
    11. Be able to set a context of a conversation so the other person knows where I am coming from
    12. Declare something, like "I can handle it" and experience my whole state of being obey to the declaration
    13. etc. etc. etc.

    It takes a lot of skills to be a winner in life, and none of them is taught in school, or by most parents.

  2. Make sure you get to smooth sailing first

    I am learning that you can't build a new project, a new skill, etc. if you are in survival mode. Survival mode is when you feel like you are up to your arse in alligators.

    Protecting your arse, whether it is about money, about getting things done, or pleasing your spouse will effectively prevent you from learning anything new, building anything new.

    You are barely making it...

    Your most important job is to get out of the alligator infested waters, on high ground. Or alternatively "drain the swamps".

Most skills I haven't realized were rare started as an insight... and became skills through consistent and conscious practice.

Mixed race businesswoman practicing yoga in busy urban crosswalkAll of my skills depend on my ability to control my attention, instead of my attention being jerked by the outside (including my petulant mind!)

If you don't wrestle back your the controls, the levers and the dials over your attention, you will never amount to much.

This, the skill to control your attention, is the most fundamental skill and probably the most invisible to the person who has it... so all the rich people never share it.

Napoleon Hill's famous bs. book, Think and Grow Rich is a sham... teaching people who don't have the basic skills, i.e. they are in kindergarten level in their skills, skills that are on a phd level... useless for a kindergartner.

PS: how and where you can get the insight that can lead to skills? If enough people ask for it, I can schedule a class, once a month... your job would be to practice the new skill for a month... Insights are a dime a dozen. Without practice you won't develop a skill... including spiritual skills.

Author: Sophie Benshitta Maven

award winning architect, magazine publisher, transformational and spiritual coach and teacher, self declared Avatar

4 thoughts on “Maslow, emergency, up to your arse in alligators – do you have the skills to be successful?”

  1. I thought that getting insight and building skills is what we are doing on the happiness calls… that’s what I’m doing, anyway 🙂

    In this article, are you saying that you work with people in other ways, to build these skills into life?

    I find what we are doing (the live calls and then taking the week to reflect, write, making small actionable steps and then taking them) a successful way to make change happen, in increments.

  2. C, not everybody is like you. Most people come to the calls for intellectual knowledge and don’t turn it into skills.

    Some of the skills I mention in the article are definitely success/business skills, communication skills, and I don’t necessarily teach them on a call, unless something comes up and that is exactly what’s missing. But learning something when you need it is like digging a well when you are already thirsty.

    I was meaning to ask if people want a skill course, skills only.

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