Two gems from Jerry Seinfeld below illustrate the importance of doing the work how to deal with failure and success.
Do your work, and you won't have to worry about anything else.
Keep your head up in failure and your head down in success.
The Boat, The Middle, & The Shoreline
Trudge through with 100% effort and grit as more success comes to you. But when you fail (you should be failing often and learning from each) keep your head up and view it as an opportunity to learn. Mentally strong individuals do this unconsciously. Practice the habit of looking for solutions instead of problems. Everyone can point out a problem with a situation. Few can offer actionable solutions.
Who wants to around an individual who points to problems the majority of the time? It spreads like the plague. Those people are vampires—energy suckers. But as a mentally strong individual and a solution finder you can flow with these people. Use their negativity as a source of positivity. It can serve as an opportunity to be steadfast in the mastery of yourself.
The way I see it there are 3 types of people when things are changing.
- On the boat
- In the middle
- On the shoreline
The people on the boat are ready to go and plunge into change. They are the leaders. They can also be followers who understand who the leaders are and are willing to put trust into these people.
The people on the shoreline may be new, scared, young, unsure, and/or all the above.
The people in the middle are the ones to be aware of. These people are the energy suckers. The vampires. Especially during a culture change. They will suck people from the boat AND the shoreline to legitimize their lack of courage. It takes courage to make a decision. And they want to be surrounded by people to feel better about their fears.
What is the solution?
We are solution finders right? You must squash the people in the middle. They must be broken. Either they will hop on the boat or go back to the shoreline. But no significant amount of people can remain in the middle if success culture change is your mission.
Why break them? They need to face their biggest fears. They need to be courageous. They are not living but simply existing. And it doesn’t just affect their own lives. It affects the people on the boat as they wonder if it really is worth all of the struggle. And it affects the people on the shore, inviting the idea that they made the right choice to stay on the shoreline.
Squash and break the people in the middle and it allows for the people on the shoreline to be more apt to hop on board and the leaders to re-focus on the task at hand.
Energy is contagious and if we don’t break the people in the middle our chance at change greatly diminishes.
Q: What if people don’t like us because of this harshness?
A: Going in the direction of change will cause a holding on to the past. People will hold onto the comfortable due to their fears and lack of courage. You know you are successfully affecting change when many people oppose you.