I’m confident that I know more than most about what creates and sustains high performance individuals, teams, and leaders. And, I am obsessed with deepening my understanding in this endeavor. It makes no “cents” to reread, rewrite, and invest endless hours mastering a craft that next to no one will ever notice. It makes no sense to most.
Makes perfect sense to me…
Masters gain mastery by falling in love with the mundane, the nuance, and getting comfortable on the long, barren plateau that gets ever longer the higher one climbs regardless the aim. The masses all enjoy the gig when it’s young and the dizzying heights are being scaled seemingly with an ever graduating stride. Few stick once the newness and excitement wanes. Masters keep working the problem. Masters practice and practice some more. Their practice looks boring to most. Their practice makes no sense to outsiders and casual observers. Makes perfect sense to the master. You see, masters believe that the mundane is not boring, it’s hard fun. Masters love the work and love the team. Masters don’t know whether they’re working or playing. Masters find flow in work and it fuels more moments of flow in life. Fact.
So, friend, why do we see so few masters in the business world?
Visibility over vision is at the root. Well intentioned professionals get sidetracked because they chase an external scorecard. We overvalue metrics and measurable progress. Vision over visibility requires an internal matrix that solves the problem, significantly, even when the external scoreboard sees nothing. Look back at the why behind your failed attempts to sustain something you know you wanted and you’ll see it. You, like so many I see every day, simply lost hope somewhere on the long plateau toward your performance ceiling. And, the sad truth is you can’t remain on your performance plateau for long. Overtime you slide, slowly, and skills erode. Energy wanes. You grow old and tired. Fact.
Masters are rare because masters marry the mundane. Their vision makes the mundane meaningful and most enjoyable. Vision over visibility is a great thought from Bono that I’ve extrapolated to our work. This discovery came to me in the mundane hours of studying the why behind the lyrics and the band. It was not some moment of freakin’ magic, it was hard opus in action. Make your opus your vision, leader. Choose to make it your own. And, once you do, don’t forget to expect the mundane. Embrace it. Actually, if you want to become a master, go a step further, friend – marry the mundane. What are you married to? Are you addicted to advancement, swiping, and quick chemical hits? Are you delaying gratification as you grind on the plateau with people you love toward a hard opus of your authoring? Slow down and think for awhile.
Live hard. Love harder (Thanks, Teeks)…