Published by John Terry - The Black Belt Leader in Leadership · 1 October 2020
Do You See What I See?
By: John Terry - The Black Belt Leader
Growing up, I had a cat named Sourdough Sam. As a young boy, I was fascinated to watch Sam as he would explore the back yard of our home. He loved to catch grasshoppers and crickets, and when his keen eyes would catch the slightest movement of an insect, his mannerism changed. His eyes fixated on the object of his attention, he slowly and methodically moved ever so quietly toward his target, and at the right moment, he would pounce. Up would come his head with a grasshopper or cricket in his mouth.
I often struggled to see what he was seeing, but I knew that Sam could see things I could not due to his keen eyesight, and the more I observed him, I learned to begin to be more consciously aware of the subtle movement of a blade of grass, the rustling of a leaf, or a shadow on a tree.
I learned to see what I could not see by being in the presence of one who could see more, and see before, I could.
I learned by observing, and following a leader.
In ancient China, the Shaolin monks observed the creatures of nature and how they would attack, or defend themselves from an attacker. By observing nature, opening their minds to a new and innovative way of thinking, they were able to see what they previously could not see, and adapted these fighting elements into a system of personal defense called Kung Fu.
One of the most important things we can do in the area of personal growth and development is to align ourselves with someone who is further down the success journey than we are. Someone who has experienced the things we have yet to experience, who can see more and see before we can, and who is willing to take us under their tutelage and pour their wisdom and insight into our lives.
Wallace D. Waddles authored the book, "The Science of Getting Rich" in 1910. The book is now in the public domain, and it is an interesting read. In the book, Waddles says the people who get rich "...are an average lot in all respects, having no great talents or abilities than other men. it is evident they do not get rich because they possess talents and abilities that other men do not have, but because they happen to do things in a Certain Way."
I am amazed at the number of people I talk with on a regular basis who are facing problems, find themselves stuck, unable to move forward, and can't seem to find an answer. What they don't realize is the answer is often right there in front of them, but they can't see it because they haven't trained themselves to see what they cannot yet see.
They have failed to develop themselves, to develop their thinking, to develop their sight.
The world around us is full of endless opportunities. The problems we face usually have more than one answer. But our limited thinking only allows us to see what we've always seen, The problem looms ever bigger before us, narrowing our focus and creating tunnel vision. All the while, the solution remains elusive and unseen - just outside our grasp.
The ability to experience a greater level of success in our lives is always before us, waiting to be seized upon. But until we start to think in a different way, act in a different way, we cannot see what successful people see, do what successful people do, and experience what successful people experience in their daily lives.
This is why learning from, and observing a leader, is so important. They challenge and stretch our thinking, our beliefs, our attitudes, and our habits. In doing so, they open our minds to a new way of thinking (and doing) that brings about a better outcome.
One of my coaches, Christian Simpson, recently shared with me that what we focus our attention on (see) is reinforced in our mind. If we focus our attention on the problem, this limits our ability to see the solution (the answer). Successful people routinely study how other successful people have solved the problems they've faced in life. They learn from the success and failures others have experienced, and add them to their own.
Successful people observe (and ask lots of questions of) the leaders who are mentoring them to learn from their experience how to see what can't currently be seen by changing how they think and how they act.
Successful leaders think and do things in a certain way - allowing them to see more than others see and see before others see.
This is why learning from, and observing a leader, is so important.
A leader will take you back to the problem you're facing and ask, "Do you see what I see?" From their wisdom, insight, and experience, they will teach you how to think in a certain way that changes what and how you see. And in the words of Wayne Dyer, "When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change."
Both wealth and success are choices. They don't happen by accident. But both require that you see and do things in a different way. Two of the most limiting phrases in our vocabulary are "I can't" and "I won't". The minute you've uttered those words, you've shut off your mind's ability to think into seeing or doing things in a different way to create a new and better outcome.
Insight, by definition, is the capacity to gain an accurate and deep intuitive understanding of a person or thing. It comes as a result of improving how we think and do things. Leaders are successful not because they have greater talents or abilities than other people. They are successful because they have committed to a lifetime of learning, to become a better version of themselves, and to constantly improve the quality of their thinking. This gives them the insight (and ability) to see and do things in a different way.
As I look back on my own personal growth journey, I am amazed at the things I see today that were always right there in front of me. There are always new and better ways of doing things and achieving better outcomes. But I was unable to see these things until I became a better version of myself.
I could not see all I was cable of seeing, or becoming.
Is that where you find yourself?
Here's the problem. Until you begin to daily develop yourself, hire a coach and a mentor, and commit to a lifetime of learning, you'll never begin the transformational success journey that up-levels your thinking, your ability to see more and see before, to learn to do things in a different way, and ultimately experience a better outcome in your life.
The most important investment you will ever make, and the greatest return on investment you'll ever experience, is the investment in yourself. It's the ONLY way you're going to learn to see and do things in a certain way that brings about success in your life.
If you want to see more than others see and see before others see, you've got to align yourself with a leader who will mentor you, coach you, and challenge you to improve the quality of your thinking. A mentor who will challenge the self-imposed limiting beliefs holding you back from your limitless potential.
You've got to go through a transformational process that will help you remove the blinders from your eyes to see the limitless potential within you and the endless opportunities to experience a greater level of success than you're enjoying right now.
These endless opportunities and greater success are already before you right now, at this very moment - but you're just not capable of seeing them yet. It's like the Sam seeing the subtle movements of the cricket or the grasshopper I couldn't see at first. You need to align yourself with successful leaders who can open your mind, and open your eyes, to a different way of thinking, seeing, and doing.
You can't see what you can't see until you learn to think and do things in a certain way.
Investing in yourself is the ONLY way you're going to learn to improve the quality of your thinking so you can see and do things that bring about a better outcome than you're experiencing right now.
Status quo is easy. It requires no new thinking, but your results never improve.
Nothing changes until something changes. That starts with you.
Who will be the Sourdough Sam in your life?
Who will be your mentor? Your success coach? The leader you're following?