Posted: 22 Nov 2010 12:15 AM PST
I have never been very clear on where my personal limits are. I have quite a history of overstepping them, although I am better at knowing the edge these days. In younger days I crashed a few cars trying to work out where the line was drawn. I still find it difficult not to overtrain when cycling.
I am talking about all environments here – creative, leadership, communication, sporting, emotional, physical. We have limits in every aspect of life, it is only through exploring those limits that we get to know them.
It is tempting to believe that we are normal and that diversity spans out equally on either side. Most of us have to accept that, in some areas of our life at least, we are not in the middle. We are extreme.
It is our extremes that make us interesting, not our normality.
Understanding where the boundary between extreme and impossible is, is a mysteriously fine and imprecise line. It is defined by feeling and emotion as much as by physics.
That line is not visible from a distance. It can only be detected up close. Anyone who has not been near that line does not know their limits. It is only through spending time near the limit that we get to know it and of course the better we know it the more we can move it.
I have a rule I try to hold myself to: “Never pass up an opportunity to go out of your comfort zone.”
The reality is we do not know what we are capable of until we try. As soon as we try we realise that the more we practice and the more we try the more we can push the limit.
This goes for tough negotiations at work, for leadership, for technical challenges, for how we use our computers, for being loving, for sports and fitness, just about anything.
To be a great leader, creative, team member, partner, parent or lover you have to be prepared to explore your own potential to it’s fullest extent. If you are not overstepping it occasionally you are not getting close enough to it.
Sugata Mitra has a way. It is cheap, it is scalable and it is totally doable. Watch his TED talk, put it on your web site, link to it and talk about it to everyone you meet. I have put it on www.neilcrofts.com
For help in finding the authentic path for your business or your life, give me a call.
Join us on our Authentic Business Radio show every Thursday at 5pm UK, 6pm Euro or 12.00 EST. This week we will be discussing “Where is the limit?”.
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