Thursday, January 31, 2019

Finding Your Transformation

The recent post on awakening your talent cited Courtney's performance on the talent show as a beautiful example of how we "become a different person" when we are doing what we're meant to be doing.  We can be one person in day-to-day life and quite another when we enter our performance zone.

This is an important characteristic of great relationships and great careers:  they bring out the best in us and transform us.

It's important to note the opposing reality, however.  Just as we're trans-formed when we're activating our strengths and values, we are de-formed when those are chronically frustrated.  Consider a few examples:

*  Employees start their careers with enthusiasm, but quickly become caught up in office politics and playing the games that can move them up the ladder.  I have seen talented people become "yes-men", completely lacking in integrity--all in the name of protecting and advancing their positions.  For a while, they gain status, but in a more enduring way they lose their souls and become bitter, cynical, and unproductive.

*  Couples start their relationships with real feeling, but soon are caught up in a social whirlwind of impressing others and/or an indulgence of personal/material needs.  Meanwhile, the activities and values that brought them together are submerged and their relationships increasingly become ones of convenience and emptiness, with little empathy for or genuine connection to others.

*  Members join a social organization out of an initial desire to learn, grow, and connect to others, but eventually are drawn into ego battles for status and position, creating social rifts and alienation in the process.  I've met a number of people active in social organizations who know many people and yet have shockingly few genuine friends.  In the immersion in me, me, me, they never get to we.

*  Traders start out with eagerness and anticipation, but before long are drawn into the consensus chats online and on trading floors.  They trade the same ideas in the same ways as others, never truly adding original, creative elements to their trading.  As they achieve the same, undistinguished returns as others, they become increasingly frustrated and discouraged, losing their energy and wasting day after day doing more of what doesn't work.

Sometimes we find ourselves stuck in the hell of situations that are de-forming rather than trans-forming.  A beautiful outcome occurs when we use those deforming situations to transform us:  to become so revolted by emptiness and superficiality that we double down on what is most meaningful to us and that helps us find our voice.  

Consider:  role models are everywhere.  We can find positive role models who inspire us, or we can find negative role models that so fill us with disgust that we're able to do what Courtney does at the end of her song:  turn our backs, throw up our hands, give a little "mwah", and move in a different direction.  

There is a lot of positive that can be derived from negative role models.  Utilizing the deformation of negative role models as positive life motivation is the ultimate transformation. 

Further Reading: