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Matt's multisport musings...
Matt's multisport musings...

Geniuses don't have to be famous...

edwarmaby edwarmaMar 29th 2010
All of us I┬'m sure have an experience of thinking ┬"I wish I could do that┬" or ┬"I would like to be that clever/strong/fast/determined/committed/talented┬".

One might call this ┬'envy┬', though in the nicest possible way ┬- seeing someone execute something brilliantly and experiencing a wish to be able to do the same is partly how we motivate ourselves. We might also feel some pride on occasion that we┬'ve done something well, perhaps beaten someone in a race, and given ourselves a big metaphorical pat on the back. Again, a useful and positive thing.

I┬'d like to suggest a twist to this process, one that is a really useful way of achieving your own brilliant things, whatever that means to you.

The first step is a realisation that we are surrounded by people in everyday life who do brilliant things, even acts of genius, all the time. We might not describe them as ┬'geniuses┬' or say that they are ┬'better people┬' than we are, but still we notice that they act in a way that appears brilliant. This could be something apparently small ┬- someone who is always cheerful, for example. Is this not an act of brilliance? Or perhaps a person who gives their time to others without a thought for themselves. In triathlon, it might be an athlete who demonstrates such determination that they will never give up, no matter what the obstacle. These things are on show in world champions, and in people you already know (maybe you already know some world champions!).

The second step is to become fascinated not so much with what such a person does, but how they do it. What is it, precisely, about that cheerful or determined person that allows them to be so? What has to be true for that person to enable them to have such a mental state, and to act accordingly? My suggestion is that there is something in their mind that, whether they know it or not, helps them do great things.

In other words, what is the ┬'strategy┬' they have, consciously or not, that means they can act in a cheerful or determined way when everyone else is grumpy or thinking of giving up?

This fascination and curiousity, about people who act in ┬'genius┬' ways is one of the fundamentals of Neuro-Linguistic Programming, and it┬'s known as ┬'modelling┬'. The underlying idea is that by becoming curious about and fascinated by models of excellence or genius, we can start to bring some of that excellence to our own lives.

So, the next time you have an experience of ┬'I wish I was more like X┬' or ┬'I wish I could do Y┬', become curious and fascinated by it, and see what you can use for yourself from the acts of genius that are around us everyday.

Just don┬'t stare too hard or the men in white coats will get you!
RichGby member: RichG, Apr 1st 2010 15:50
Edward de Bono?
edwarmaby blog author: edwarma, Apr 1st 2010 15:52
'Edward De Bono?' - illucidate Mr Greaves, is that a question??
RichGby member: RichG, Apr 5th 2010 01:52
I was wondering if this musing was influenced by Edward de Bono. I fairly recently read something by him talking about envy where he said that you should feel envy but then look into that envy and record what it was about that person that made you envious because it was probably a characteristic that you actually admired or desired yourself - then once recorded you could work towards achieving that trait in a positive way.... or something like that. Your post reminded me of that.
edwarmaby blog author: edwarma, Apr 11th 2010 19:15
yup that's the idea. Become curious, become fascinated, see what it can give you.
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