Read this to discover why that may be a good thing...
The summer has come to an end, and I'm thankful for that! As much as I love being out in the sun, I’m ready for some cooler temperatures. Here in Tennessee, it can get hotter than a two-dollar pistol during the summer months.
Did you feel the heat this summer? Maybe you were able to stay cool regarding the temperature, but did you feel the heat of life and business?
If you did, I feel for you. In my life, the pressure to perform has made me hot under the collar for a time or two. After replaying those times over and over again, I finally learned something.
Feeling the heat is actually a very good thing!
Now, wait just a minute. How can this be?
Let me paint a picture. Since I run the mastermind “Iron Sharpens Iron,” I think the best way to visualize this is to recall how a sword is made. Unlike the production of other objects, this isn’t a quick, painless, or automated process.
The blacksmith starts with an unformed block of iron. To make the block malleable, guess what he has to do?
He applies intense heat to the iron until it finally reaches its melting point. This allows the iron to be molded into its intended shape. A very useful shape at that! You could even say it’s the shape it was always meant to be.
But hang on, the journey isn’t finished quite yet. After the sword is molded into the correct shape, the blacksmith pulls it from the fire and pounds on it with a hammer. Is this because he’s angry at the sword and wants to teach it a lesson? Far from it!
The blacksmith pounds on the sword to get any impurities out and ensure that it’s as strong as can be. A sword is only as good as its integrity. Sounds a lot like us humans, doesn’t it?
This process of plunging the sword into the fire and removing any impurities happens several times. Only after those trials is it ready to carry out its grand purpose.
Do you feel prepared to carry out your purpose? A mastermind group can be highly valuable on that journey. Visit our website and apply to join one of our mastermind groups online.
Why is feeling heat and pressure a good thing?
You may be fired up (no pun intended) from the analogy of the sword. But in case you’re not, let me share a few more reasons heat and pressure are good for you.
- They raise your limitation of what’s possible. Before you go through fire, you’re not certain if you can handle the heat of greater things. We live in very comfortable and controlled environments these days. Because of that, we don’t face as many challenges as we used to.
Like it or not, challenges help us grow! They make us see things from a better perspective. After navigating change, we know we can get through tough times successfully. This gives us the confidence to face bigger and better situations.
- Heat and pressure call you to ask for help. Sometimes it’s just too much. We need to learn that it’s ok to be vulnerable. Asking for help does not mean you’re weak. It means you’re aware. If you’re dealing with too much pressure, going to a trusted friend or group shows you that you’re not alone. As we always say, it’s better to have several brains working on a problem instead of just one!
- Lastly, times of pressure never last. That is nice in and of itself. But the greater gift here is that you don’t have to constantly experience them. After a time of immense pressure, you get time to reflect on it. This reflection lets you solidify the lessons you learned and recognize any patterns that landed you there in the first place.
Do you want even more healthy challenges and chances to reflect? Do you think these would be more empowering if done in a group? If you said, “Yes” to both of these questions, visit our website and apply to join one of our mastermind groups.
How can I stop trying to beat the heat and start to embrace it?
By now, I hope that’s the question you’re asking yourself.
Over the years, I’ve found some simple steps that help me get unstuck.
1. Be still and know it will pass.
This can be difficult, especially at the beginning. Pressure sets off all sorts of emotions in our bodies. All of them try to get us back to a place of safety. The issue is a lot of our challenges are purely mental. We’re in no real danger, yet our mind and body can’t help but react as if we’re being chased by a sabertooth tiger! Take a deep breath, realize that a phone call or series of struggles can’t physically harm you, and keep moving forward.
2. Look for growth instead of comfort.
A quote I come back to time after time is, “A ship in harbor is safe, but that is not what ships are built for.” We often forget we were made for exploration and progress. Don’t become stagnant, or worse yet, afraid of change. You were built to see and do great things. Those great things rarely come while you’re standing in your comfort zone.
3. Frame the challenge differently.
I love watching athletes after a big game. Each time, the reporter asks them if they were nervous. Most athletes respond quickly with, “I was excited!” Did you know our bodies actually can’t tell the difference between nervousness and excitement? The only thing that differentiates the two is what we think! Work to frame times of pressure as exciting opportunities for growth instead of times of nervous doubt. You’ll be amazed at how you feel and what you accomplish!
As the temperatures cool off, make sure your success levels do the opposite. Visit our website and apply to join one of our mastermind groups online. Get fired up about your future around people who are building their own towering infernos of success!