It is interesting how the dominoes fall once the first one is pushed. Even more interesting is how often the person doing the pushing has no idea there are other dominoes behind the object on which they are exerting force.
Completely oblivious to the chain reaction ahead, they take what appears to be a relatively insignificant step. Sometimes that domino is a physical action, but sometimes it is more of a concept piece.
When a core belief is shaken, it can completely break a person. At the very least it tends to send them down a voyage of self discovery that is both dark and painful. Rarely do people know how much of their lives are built around these foundational beliefs until the perceived security they provide comes tumbling down.
Youâ€™ve heard stories about this before, athletes that assume all of their self worth is tied up in their ability to hit a baseball, shoot a basketball or throw a football. Then their path to success is cut short, either by injury, or the simple fact that they overestimated their own abilities. At this point many of these people break. They do not renew their efforts in a new field, they simply quit.
You see the same thing in business, and love. Often this breakage is so severe that it leads to suicide. A person takes their own life because the life they have constructed around a particular belief (either in themselves or something else) has proven itself to be folly.
It is easy to do, I know because I am familiar with disappointment, both in people and in situations. I built my life around the basic premise that people are good and given the option, do good things. Over and over again, I was let down; and over and over again, I convinced myself that these were the exceptions that made the rule.
Finally, I accepted that fact that the majority of the people out there are not good, at least not in the way I am defining it here. For this conversation what I mean by good is that they are more selfless than selfish. Sadly, on that benchmark, the human race has failed me, and my core belief system.
On a positive note, however, this is a foundational crack I was able to roll with fairly easily (sort of like Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny). I have adapted my approach to life and am moving ahead with a greater sense of purpose than I had before. You see I view this as a fixable crack, and Iâ€™m out to be part of the fixing process.
I have experienced other cracks recently that have not been so easy to accommodate. Nothing devastating on a suicidal scale, but certainly a 9.5 on the wow-now-I-have-to-question-everything-about-this-o-meter. I have had to reevaluate my opinions of myself and the value I add to those around me. I have had to reevaluate my choices in friends, partners and alliances (yes, in this case those are all very different things).
I have had to assess my strategic advantages and weaknesses as well as my barriers to competition and my overall value proposition. I have balanced my personal budget (monetarily as well as emotionally, etc.) and I have made plans to eliminate redundancies and take advantage of economies of scale. In short, I have had to rebuild my personal business plan.
In the days to come those around me will see a leaner more efficient me. One more grounded with a new or refined sense of fundamental values. Itâ€™s a little sad that sometimes it takes a rather significant event to refocus your efforts; however, there is a phrase that goes â€œwhat doesnâ€™t kill you makes you stronger.â€
Right nowâ€¦ Iâ€™m feeling very, very strongâ€¦