I considered going to RPI for undergrad to study engineering. I was a math geek. Had I done so, I might be in a better position to understand more of the complicated issues related to our oil dependence and energy needs.
But as a relatively unknowing and ignorant citizen, this TED video makes arguably the most compelling case I’ve heard that our energy problems are solvable – cleanly, globally, cheaply.
My favorite quote from the video:
“If we’re going to get this country out of its current energy situation, we can’t just conserve our way out. We can’t just drill our way out. We can’t bomb our way out. We’re gonna do it the old fashioned American way. We’re gonna invent our way out.”
Often times we have to hold people accountable. The buck needs to stop somewhere. But where does the buck really stop?
If you come down hard on someone for failing in some way, you are doing much more than establishing where the buck stops. You are taking that individual on an emotional ride – defensiveness, anger, shame, frustration, disappointment.
Unfortunately, those emotions don’t end there. They persist. That individual carries those emotions with her. So the next conversation is filled with that anger and shame. These emotions get passed along to the next person again and again.
The buck doesn’t really stop until someone shows the strength, the leadership, to take that emotion away.
If you need to hold someone accountable, even to punish, you can do that with caring and compassion. You can minimize the distance that buck travels. Or you can come down hard. But know, if you do, that the buck doesn’t really stop there.
What does it take for you to hit the wall, for exhaustion to overwhelm you? Are you naturally blessed with energy reserves? Or do you crash early and often?
What if there is nothing natural about it? What if it isn’t a blessing?
In fact, it is very much a choice.
Energy is a choice.
It is a lifestyle choice. Exercise. Eat well. Do work you enjoy. Practice gratitude. Be altruistic. All of these lifestyle choices contribute to your energy.
It is also a momentary choice. In sports this is called a second wind or an extra gear or a will to win or wanting it more. All of these terms describe a choice that players make to ignore or fight through the pain to increase their effort at the moment when most others begin to flail.
How about you? What choices are you making?
Jill Bolte Taylor’s book, My Stroke of Insight, is brilliant, fascinating, enthralling, and filled with insights to help anyone find greater peace and compassion in their lives. The next few blogs will share some of the insights I gained from this story about a brain scientist experiencing and recovering from a stroke.
Insight #2 – Energy matters.
We are all filled with it, positive and/or negative. We give to and feed off the energy of the people around us.
Every interaction is an opportunity to give people positive or negative energy.
Every person you invite into your life will energize or drain you. It’s important to choose wisely.
Who fills you up with energy? Whoever they are, surround yourself with those people.
At the very least, identify three people who give you energy anytime you interact with them. Then construct your work and life so that you come into regular contact with them.
Very few things will make you more positive, energized, and happier.
So who is your energy source?
My friend Mike recently attended a four day Tony Robbins seminar and said it was an amazing experience that everyone should have. One of his takeaways from the event (besides the exhilaration of walking on burning coals) was the three components of maintaining personal energy – physical, focus, and language.
Anyone who reads this blog regularly or has read my book, Be the Hero, knows that I talk a lot about focus and language. Just in my last few posts I’ve written about focusing on the present and attitude and using the language of being unbelievably lucky.
But I have to go back to August 6 to find my last post on physicality. I don’t think I am alone in too often taking the physical side for granted. Mike told me that for the entire four day seminar they never went more than 45 minutes without doing something physical – standing up, moving around, etc.
Thank you for the reminder. Now it’s time for me to go for a walk.