What do you know? Quite a bit, I imagine.

I know a bit. I know how to swim. Although it wasn’t always that way.

At the age of 35 I got some lessons. I knew I didn’t know how to do freestyle, and wanted to learn from a professional coach.

I know I don’t know a lot. There’s huge lakes of information out there. Stuff I know I don’t know.

Like how to swim non-stop underwater for 30 minutes – I know I don’t know how to do this, or even where to start.

Then there’s the stuff that I don’t know, I don’t know.

Stay with me – I can see your mental lifeguard’s about to dive in, Baywatch style, to rescue this floundering statement flapping frantically in the vast ocean of stuff – spluttering, gasping for air, reaching out to be saved.

I’ll explain.

We’ll start with taking things slowly, armbands on.

We all have blind spots – The things we don’t know, we don’t know.

Consider this. We all view our daily reality through a lens, a pair of goggles, as we’re swimming around the oceans of stuff – call it life.

Unfortunately our goggles are steamed up, creating blind spots … we all process reality through our goggles, which have varying forms of unique steaminess inside them distorting our view.

Where does the smudged view from our goggles come from? In short, our life, our story.

What we believe to be true, past experiences, parental conditioning, attitudes, a collaboration of synchronised swimming experiences that have formed into varying degrees of steam, mist, and fog – inside our goggles.

Thoughts that we attach meaning to.

Still with me? Good, ok, now we’re going to try some freestyle, take the armbands off for a second – trust me – the water’s deeper, but it will be ok.

I’ll give you an example of how steam in goggles could impacting your business.
Let’s say that, for a reason you won’t be conscious of, the goggles you look through are distorted to such a degree that whenever someone challenges you about something you react by shutting down, not wanting to create ripples in the water.

When I say challenge, it could be something as little as someone offering a differing point of view to yours, maybe something at home, at work, or with friends.

If you have a distorted view of challenge – whenever this happens – you may feel like you’re drowning in emotional overwhelm and shut down to keep the water from being disturbed in your paddling pool.

This could be based on having someone in your formative years unknowingly suppress your own feelings by being overbearing, challenging, telling you to be a good boy, or good girl – to not challenge the norm or authority in your life, not splash around the water.

So anything, in adult life, that starts tentatively swimming around this area, can cause huge internal tidal waves, blowing everything out of proportion. Based on your distorted view of reality – not reality.

Get it?

OK… you’re probably swallowing some water now, spit it out, keep paddling, and kick your legs, it gets easier. It’s all practice.

Let’s say this distorted view of being challenged exists. What do you get out of that, specifically? Are there positives, negatives? Is it serving you in a healthy and nourishing way? Or is it keeping you small, safe, controlled?

Chances are it won’t be serving you in a healthy way, on some level, it’s habit, that’s all.

Now imagine this. What if the relationship you have with challenge wasn’t true?
What if you only thought it was true, attaching a huge amount of meaning to that thought?

That very attachment is now a 30kg weight around your ankles – stopping you from being able to swim freely in the vast oceans of wonderful stuff that’s out there? Healthy, nourishing experiences, growth. And this weight gets heavier, and heavier, whenever you paddle near challenge …

What if this was the very thing in the way of you living your life, and creating a business, in a way that truly nourishes you?

What would happen if you squeezed a finger into your goggles and wiped away that smudge?

Maybe the mist would disappear, and you’d be able to process reality freely, without a distorted view. What would that do to your life, your business?

The hard bit is being willing to look for the smudge in the first place, raising your awareness, ultimately being prepared to have doubt space to get out of your own way.

Want an example? OK, we’re now going to try some butterfly, 50m to be specific. Not easy, but you’re ready to dive in.

Imagine you’re in a meeting with a business partner. A strong character who enjoys challenge. Your partner states, with complete challenging conviction, something you fundamentally disagree with. You’ve heard this before. You find the courage to say no, explaining his suggestion won’t work this way – given what we know. He responds, challenging you. You shut down, literally.
In a few minutes the view through your goggles feels like the challenges have grown to be a huge tsunami of convincingness.

You abandon your original view, yourself, what you know is true, and get carried away on the strong current. Now you’re drowning, again. This is a pattern that’s been going on, for years. Unless you break it, learn to swim in the sea of challenge, the ending isn’t going to be good, or healthy, for anyone.This may resonate with you, it may not. Maybe it’s created some doubt space about something that you’re frustrated about?

Maybe that member of staff is annoying you, just won’t do it your way. Maybe you can’t get to grips with time management, or think need more sales.

How do you know?

Consider this.

What do your goggles look like, on the inside?

Are you prepared to question the way you process reality, or are you happy to swim with misty blind spots?

It, as all things, are a choice.

Having the courage to explore your own contribution to your frustrations in life and business is freeing, albeit initially uncomfortable, much like learning to swim. If you work on your internal goggle demystifier I promise you one thing, you’ll start to uncover the root cause of not having enough sales, or time, not being able to manage staff … and suddenly the frustrations you have will start to disappear, the mist will clear, and you’ll become a stronger swimmer, no matter how your sight is.

Thanks for taking a dip, hope the water wasn’t too cold.

Be authentic. You always have a choice. Lead.

David Foster

#‎leadership #‎businessdevelopment #‎life

Ps. If you’re an entrepreneur looking for help on how to create a business that gives you the life you want, join my free facebook group called meta. entrepreneurs, here’s the link https://www.facebook.com/groups/metaentrepreneurs