The next crisis is just around the corner. Are you prepared? How will you face it? In a constructive or destructive manner? What rituals, patterns, habits and models do you fall back to when crisis hits?
Things in business and life in general don’t go in a straight line. You will seldom meet anyone that managed to get from A to B without hitting walls, adjusting the road map, acquiring new skills to be able to move forward, double down on actions and continuously working on strengthening mental stamina.
It’s impossible to walk through life without facing hardships. However, the way you perceive and more importantly, approach and tackle these difficult times speak volumes about you as a person. If you want to see the true character and personality of an individual, watch how they behave in an extreme situation. The actions they deploy will reveal everything you need to know about them in terms of integrity, loyalty, respect and reliability.
What Do You Do When Crisis Hits?
We all have a different toolbox that helps us navigate crisis. Some of us rely on a set of constructive rituals and habits to address the toughest topics head on, others prefer to wing it or “delegate” these unpopular issues withdrawing to an all too familiar state of victim-hood while complaining and blaming everybody and everything including the universe for whatever happened to them.
Here are two fundamental tools I cherish, polish and “keep” in my precious toolbox to help me navigate the cyclical storms that are part of this amazing adventure we call life.
I consider myself a mentally strong and emotionally stable person. However, there are times like for example the death of a loved one, a serious health condition of a dear friend, a relationship that breaks apart, when my mental and emotional stamina is tested to its core.
This is when my discipline kicks in. Over the course of my life as a sports person, entrepreneur and high performer, I’ve created a set of constructive habits and rituals to help me pull myself out of crisis quickly.
My discipline tool is made up of the following components (an excerpt):
- Reading about new discoveries in the fields of quantum physics and the connection between energy, mind and matter.
- Listening to high performers in business, sports (especially extreme sports such as insights from high-rank NAVY Seals), physics and medicine.
- Going to the gym 2-3 times a week to strengthen my muscles and tissues.
- Family first. Spending quality time each day with my family.
- Nourishing my friendships, business partners and clients.
- Creating aka writing every single day, whether that’s a business article, a fiction story or a poem as part of my newly found passions.
- Healthy nutrition. I eat high-frequency vegetables and fruits straight from my garden during the summer and autumn. Add to that a portion of dark berries and dark chocolate (85% cocoa and above) for the brain to function properly.
- Water. Water. Water.
- Walking every single day, whether that’s barefoot in the garden while performing different tasks or in a nearby park or along the river bank while I’m in the city.
- Quick 20 min meditations to recalibrate my energy centers.
- 8 hours of sleep.
I use discipline to ground myself, quiet my mind and thus be able to stay laser focused on the tasks at hand.
Observing my own thoughts as well as my behavior and trying not to judge has become an essential part of my daily routine. I also like to watch how people behave in cities, at airports, on vacation and while interacting with others. This helps me identify patterns and behavioral clusters that impact our collective consciousness and are intertwined and correlated with my own set of belief systems and behavioral clusters.
Unless you work consistently on the basics aka fundamentals in life (and business) with a clear aim to become a master of these, I don’t see how you can keep your boat afloat when a tornado hits your comfort zone.
Yes, a positive mindset is important.
Yes, it has been scientifically proven that those with a positive mindset have on average, an 11-15% longer lifespan than those with a negative one.
Lewina O. Lee, Peter James, Emily S. Zevon, Eric S. Kim, Claudia Trudel-Fitzgerald, Avron Spiro III, Francine Grodstein, and Laura D. Kubzansky.: “Optimism is associated with exceptional longevity in 2 epidemiologic cohorts of men and women.” PNAS, 2019 DOI:10.1073/pnas.1900712116
However, what nobody likes to talk about is how you can acquire and more importantly, how to quickly readjust your nervous system (among other systems you possess) to regain power over your life when something we perceive as bad happens.
I find two simple tools such as discipline and observation to be essential on our quest to living a joyful and blissful life.
Prepare or Suffer
Being prepared helps you tackle crisis from a strong base thus allowing you among other things to recover faster mentally and emotionally.
The Buddhist say that “Pain is inevitable, but suffering is optional”.
Isn’t it interesting, how quickly we like to throw around with these quotes and consider them universal truths? However, we rarely pull back the curtains and try to ponder as to what that sentence is really trying to convey to us on a deeper level.
Several years ago my business mentor instructed me to prepare in advance to first, be able to recognize when the train of opportunities arrives and second, to be able to ride the waves of opportunities and maximize my outcomes.
Dear friends, this is true not only in life but more so in business. If you’re not prepared, you won’t recognize that grand deal no matter how motivated and inspired you are. Invest in yourself. Perfect your saw to be ready to reap when the time comes. Be prepared when crisis hits. Prepare to win.