I needed some exercise and was tempted to cancel my Italian class. Instead, I suggested to my teacher that we went out for a walk during the lesson. So off we set for a 5 km walk and chat in Italian. When I got home and told my husband, he asked me if it was a Socratic walk.
I looked in the Internet and discovered that during Antiquity, masters and disciples walked a great deal. Socrates taught and pondered as he walked around the marketplace, and many of Plato’s dialogues began with a fortuitous encounter in the street. Even where teaching spaces like schools are available, people still go out for walks to think about things.
According to Nietzsche, the only trustworthy truths and statements are those that come to us when we’re walking. He believed that walking creates certain thoughts, making us more open to them, and that thoughts we have while walking are more real!
You can guess what I’m about to say. Who can you go for a walk with to test these philosophers’ theories?
The GTD method makes you more productive.
Meetings with your entrepreneur network help you develop your business.
Meditation, yoga and reiki bring you well-being and relaxation.
All these things work because you do them regularly. You repeat the same movements and methods time and again.
Practice makes perfect!
If you stop doing yoga, you become less supple. If you stop advertising your company, orders fall. It’s self-evident.
What particular thing do you do to ensure that you always achieve your objectives?
I was swimming in the Mediterranean and the water temperature was perfect when suddenly I spotted what looked like a little cluster of brown blobs floating towards me. I immediately thought that some unscrupulous hoteliers must have dumped their sewage into the sea. I ran out of the water and told the people on the sunbeds around me what had happened and what I thought it was.
They laughed and explained that it was just stones floating on the water. The lava from Stromboli’s volcano turns into small, lightweight stones that float on the surface of the sea. I picked one up and was surprised not only by its texture but also by my own initial judgement.
Without the knowledge of my fellow sunbed users, I would have remained ignorant. At the end of my holiday, I left with two important lessons – stones can float and when in doubt, ask.
What about you? Do you stick with your first impressions or do you ask for more information?
At networking events, I’ve always been very efficient. Glance at the badge, quick hello, introduce ourselves, brief question – answer session and then, system failure – how do you end the discussion to go and talk to other people?
It’s embarrassing for both parties. Do you say that you have another meeting? Do you laugh and say you really need a coffee?
And then one day I simply thanked the person for the conversation, shook their hand warmly and said that I hoped to meet them again.
It was unusual, that’s for sure! But was it difficult? No.
In fact, the other person was relieved and grateful that I took the initiative to end the conversation.
What about you? What could you think of as unusual rather than difficult?
Here is an exercise that we did at a conference:
On a board, write seven questions that you’ll then answer every day. For greater effect, arrange for someone to call you each day to ask you the seven questions. Here are the questions that you can adapt as required.
Have I done my best to:
-set clear objectives
-be a friend
-build positive relationships
-be completely committed?
Every day you simply answer yes or no and look at the trend at the end of each week.
Clever, eh? That’s the whole point of the outside call. The other person isn’t judging you, but just making sure all the questions are asked.
So, do you already think you know which issues need more attention?