They say it's the punch you don’t see coming that knocks you out. In the real world, it’s the reality you overlook or deny that brings you to your knees.
Right now, in every country around the globe, even the strong are vulnerable. There are those who clearly lead, and those who unwittingly role model the type of person we’d like to be. They’re the strong.
And right now, even they are bleeding.
The high performance leader with zero certainty around company and career. Years of dedication to cause with a reliable roadmap stripped away in a month.
The athlete who was just informed, despite a lifetime of commitment and four years of extreme sacrifice, that he/she will not compete this summer. Their chance to be the best in the world has vanished.
The head of household who selflessly executes the multitude of tasks required to keep life in order, raise the kids, and put on a warm smile despite their exhaustion. She/he is concerned with survival.
Even the strong are vulnerable right now.
And it isn’t merely because times are hard. Hard times are what the strong feed on. What’s happening now is different.
We’re experiencing a violent challenge to purpose and identify. We’ve gone on about our lives with a sense of control. We think we’ve determined our fates, designed our circumstances, and made it to where we are because we get a few things about life.
And then, when freedoms are stripped, we learn its the other way around.
Our environments mold us. They define us. They give us purpose.
When the leader has no one to lead, the athlete no place to compete, and when the head of household feels powerless to provide or guarantee the most precious resource there is, health, for them and theirs, the strong take the biggest blow of their lives – a blind assault on their sense of strength and purpose.
And we return to the fighter.
A fight can be won by either fighter at any time, but they’re rarely won by the fighter who signals strength yet denies the punch that caught em. No, victory is determined by the fighter who acknowledges reality, and accepts his vulnerability.
The punch that lands clean and rocks you. The one that wakes you up but doesn’t take you out. The one you didn’t expect, but are forced to respect. The one that tells you you can in fact bleed in this game.
That’s the moment when winners are born. Not the winners of the day, necessarily, but the winners of tomorrow.
The delusional fighter will deny reality, and tell himself that the blow that caught him meant nothing – that he’s stronger, tougher, more skilled than his opponent. The other guy just got lucky, and now he’s gonna get it. This fighter refuses to grow, because he refuses to see the truth…
He’s vulnerable. He can bleed.
But the winner faces that reality with the felt realization – his vulnerability IS his strength. It’s his shield, his defense against future strikes that could do the very same. As painful as that hit may be to his ego, to his confidence, he can’t look away in denial, because remaining confident yet blind is a recipe for suicide. In that moment, he accepts his vulnerability with eyes wide open.
He may win that fight.
He may lose.
But rest assured, when he gets back home and reflects on his performance, he won’t be admiring his work. He’ll be studying the tapes, wondering how the hell he got caught. And he’ll begin tirelessly working on his gaps and weaknesses so that next time he’s fortified from hits like the one he just took… and much more.
It’s possible you’ve taken a hit over the last few months. I truly hope not. I hope that you and yours are safe and sound and riding out this evolving pandemic/economic collapse with ease. But whether you feel it or not…
Everyone is vulnerable right now.
In this precious window between the big hit and our unwritten futures we have two choices:
Relinquish responsibility for our plights, shrug, and say “Who could have seen that coming?” You can signal strength yet remain blind, and seal a fate with similar risk exposure to the current one. There’s nothing to be done, after all, it was a lucky punch, a black swan event, and when the dust settles all will be back to normal. I’ll carry on as I carry on, cock of the walk and all that jazz.
You review the tapes. You study the hit that got you. You train.
In real estate the amateur investor believes the three rules of successful investment are location, location, location. The old hands know better.
They know the three rules of investment are location, location, and… staying power. It’s not just about being in the right place, but about the ability to stay the course – to weather volatility long enough to see the payoff you’re after.
If you’re taking this time to broaden your horizons, good. If you’re taking this time to sharpen your vocational skills, great. But if you’re not dedicating a little time, a few hours a week, to deepening your mind-body capacity of grit – your staying power – then the winds of chance will always bring you to your knees.
The strong are vulnerable now, yes. But they’re using that vulnerability to inform next steps; to fortify their mind-bodies via mind-body training, to optimize their health and elevate their natural immunity, and to lay foundations that will grant them the power to stay, now and for years to come.
Review the tapes. Study the punch that got you. But address your staying power!
If you need a framework of self-regulation and performance to accomplish the latter now and forever, with masterful support and a tribe of like-minded fighters, The Weightlessness Process may be for you.
And until the next time, weightless clan, love those near to you. Never has the gift of physical proximity been so apparently valuable. Give them the gift of being your strongest. And as always…