If we are all involved in a community, the economy and or a political group, as already discussed, how can we identify what group actions with which we are associated with?
Just as the age-old question asks, “What came first the chicken or the egg”, the same can be asked, “What came first the leader or the group”. It is commonly accepted that the egg came first because the egg came from an animal that evolved into a chicken. The same can be said about what came first with a group or a leader. Groups create leaders. It takes the influence of a group to create a leader. Where the egg or the group originated from is still a mystery with theoretical answers. More likely the first group is our membership to our species as humans.
Since our normal attributes are instincts, it is fair to say that when we first evolved to humans we had them. In order to measure expectations and therefore predict outcomes, we must understand who we really are. We are animals that live longer than most other animals in the world and therefore have longer, harder to identify cycles. When we look at a colony of ants we see that their actions are very deliberate and with purpose. Each action of an individual ant contributes to the colony. Size and life expectancy make ants actions more predictable, because their limits are easier to define. If we look at these ants under a microscope their actions look erratic and unorganized although when we step back they appear uniform and organized. Although ants seem to look the same as others in the colony the closer we look, the more we see slight differences from one to the other. We are those ants in our actions and we must be able to step back to see our purpose and direction and identify our natural limits. We must step back from a group and ignore the erratic behavior and determine the real possible outcome. This requires us to separate ourselves from the situation, which is easier said than done.
First we will discuss simplifying group actions. Step one in achieving this quest for the truth requires us to remove the complexities from the actions and situations around us. If we understand that the little things don’t matter, and it is the larger actions that matter, this will simplify spotting the real action. Unfortunately we live in a society that praises those who sound intelligent and over complicate simple problems and solutions. When we go to war, politicians cite a growing concern or complex environment, which leaves us no other choice. Typically war is the result of one person fighting another because of a difference of opinion. To truly take a step back from a situation, we must understand in simple terms what really is happening. If a first grader cannot understand it, than we are still under its influence and we must take another step back. We need to take the grey out of situations and actions. There is only yes or no answers, not maybe, and it is either two or three, not several, clarity is required. Nothing must be open to interpretation.
The second step requires us to dismiss those people who make declarative statements about the actions that we are studying. For example, when a financial group moves towards high expectations, these people will declare that the financial windfall will never end. This step is extremely important because in the face of a strong group influence, these people will make us question our measurements. We must trust our independent view over someone who is neck deep in the influence of the group. These people are attempting to be the momentary leaders, as discussed earlier. They are almost as delusional as the primary leader of the group. We see these people as visionaries if we are under the influence of the group. When we feel admiration towards another person and look to emulate them, more than likely we are under the influence of a group.
Lastly we must maintain our distance from the group and its actions. We cannot let the influence of this group cloud our simple outlook. Under the influence of a group we will give explanations for the unexplainable. Typically these groups are looking for a future event to justify their means. Most abnormal actions and situations that involve groups are obvious, as discussed earlier, “hind sight is twenty-twenty”.
Stepping back from our own personal lives involves more self control. Since the influence over us usually involves family, friends, peers or management; these situations and our actions are difficult to evaluate. Being able to take a step back from our lives and make a simple logical evaluation of our actions will create fewer regrettable moments.
The first step in removing ourselves from our actions long enough to really take a good measurement of our expectations, involves simplifying them. We must first understand what our expectations are and take a simpler evaluation of where we are. If we expect to become the CEO of the company we have been working for over the past five years, we need to look at this from a simple view and match our effort with our goals. If we just “punch in and punch out “every day, dread Mondays and start dreaming of Friday, Monday afternoon, then this expectation is simply unrealistic. We must take a cold hard look at who we are and what we are doing in comparison to our expectations. Honesty is the best policy especially when we evaluate our own expectations. We should write down our expectations and determine what we can do to meet them. If it is beyond our natural limits then our expectations need to be reevaluated. We are our own worst enemies, dare to try and don’t fear to fail. Our own natural limits should not be what we think we are capable of but rather what we are humanly capable of. Research, not personal feelings are how we determine our natural limits.
Next we need to beware of those individuals who attempt to alter our expectations. “One rotten egg spoils the bunch”, don’t be a part of the bunch. When we our expectations are building, we need to look out for those people who try to make us overshoot our expectations. Equally we need to look out for those people who want to “rain on our parade”. Remember that misery loves company. These individual’s whole desire in life is to cloud our judgment. Keep things simple, the second they become complex we have been infected by one of these distractions.
Lastly as with groups, we must remain objective. We must continue to be honest with ourselves. Are we trying hard enough? Is the situation really that dire? We should make a simple and logical evaluation of our expectations. The way to evaluate these expectations is alone without friends, family, peers, management, television, internet or any type of communication. Distractions add complexities to the normally simple actions and situations. We must not be influenced by any outside source while taking a step back and reviewing our expectations.
Today our influence and attention is viewed as a commodity. Someone is always biding for it. The groups that attempt to take possession of our influence result in more and more distractions every day. Being able to separate ourselves from these distractions will reveal a world that makes more sense than the one we are currently aware of. When historic events are occurring, this ability allows us to benefit from or avoid the results of the outcome.
Challenge every piece of bad news and look for the good and equally view all good news as potentially bad.