8. Working Together
8. Working Together
Life is not about working alone, but doing together.
Miracles can be done alone, but together it is easier and more fun.
We need other people of all ages. No one gets through life without the help of others. We wouldn't even exist without each other. And I'm not talking about birth now, but the whole cycle of life.
Other people live not for us, we live by their side. We carry other people in our minds. Every person we meet is part of us. So are those we haven't met or will never meet.
The human mind is shared and it manifests in every individual of our species. We say that our mind is our own, but we did not create our mind. We have collected pieces from other people. Our brains are the result of a long evolution, and the way they process information is in no way individual.
Of course, as individuals, we are different: in size, colour, habits, and talent. We have qualities that we can use to our advantage. We have human rights that are respected to varying degrees in different countries.
However, we are not separate, but heavily interdependent. We share the world, our home.
All Heads Up!
Independent thinking is a threat to those in power, that is where all revolts start from. Therefore, they must be eradicated from people at all costs.
People who use their brains, do not bow down to power. They stick to the facts and take their stand. They dare to disagree with the common view and say it aloud.
All groups have rules. Even if they are not stated, people sense them and act on them. They know what is appropriate, and what is not.
Rewards and punishments are one way of expressing this. With the help of a stick and a carrot, donkeys can be made to act as desired, but people have a will of their own. It can be used to do miracles if people are treated as miracle workers, not just hands and heads.
Working together is about getting things done. It is the whole that matters, not the individuals.
Two Types of Groups
Perhaps the most difficult part of working together is communication between group members. Words play a rather small role here. People have a tendency to read between the lines and interpret the meaning. We hear what we think, and the rest we make up in our minds.
There are two types of groups: the strong and the stupid. In a stupid group, cooperation is stymied. Egos clash and bicker over trivial things. In a strong group, everyone plays their part and supports each other. The work is done in good spirits, and difficulties are faced together. In a stupid group, people blame others and circumstances. In a strong group, both joys and difficulties are shared by all. It seems clear which one people want to belong to.
What matters is the charge in working together: how much and what kind of energy do people use? It is due to a combination of three things: purpose, people and systems.
Everything starts from the purpose: what is there to be accomplished? If people disagree on that, conflicts are inevitable.
A common mistake is to try to impose a purpose on people "from above". Then they have to be enticed or forced to act according to the will of another. A much better result is obtained when people internalise the purpose and want to achieve it voluntarily.
This creates a magical uplift, and miracles are produced. When something particularly wonderful is born, people are said to have "surpassed themselves". That is not what actually happens. When people exercise their own will, they get much more out of their system than by being forced.
When people put their wise heads together and start working genuinely together, more is created than is expected. We are talking about excellence now.
The Very Best Work Differently
Many people say that good enough is enough. Not for me. If we can get the best, why should we be satisfied with good? Fortunately for all of us, there are people who are ready to be excellent in what they do. They are top of their league and we find them in all professions and fields. They achieve things that others can't even imagine. They create miracles.
We can only work at the top level by doing things differently than mediocre folks do. Old patterns produce the same old stuff, new ones are created by breaking the bad habits. First, the ideas change, then the actions.
Another condition for the creation of something new is not to be afraid of making mistakes. Ego fears them because it seeks approval and is unsure of itself. Fear prevents learning.
The way out of fear is to face it. That is, by being afraid. When we do what we fear, we face life head on. If we don't run, fear transforms into power. This is worth a try.
There are many things that need to be done. When we do them, even though we are afraid, we find that fear does not stop us from acting. On the contrary, under pressure, the mind finds powers it didn't know it had.
Fear Must Not Be Feared
In living directly, we face all our feelings from moment to moment. Fear must not be feared. It must be followed with curiosity and humility, let it tell its story.
If we can follow the movement of fear straight on, without ego, fear no longer prevents us from doing what is right.
There are two types of fear: real and ego-generated. There is a very good reason to fear real dangers. Such fear prevents us from harming ourselves. Ego's fears are imaginary. They are based on assumptions, most of which are false.
The ego, in particular, fears exposure. We are afraid of public humiliation, and that's why we don't dare to take risks. There is no doubt, that doing something challenging enough is a good thing. Then we put our mind completely on doing something. There is only that, nothing else in our mind. The thrill of doing comes, when we have to push a little to get it done.
This is also true at the collective level. Successful companies easily fall asleep and forget development. The same is true for institutions that carry out a narrow mission assigned from outside.
Challenges are needed to revive our own vitality. The best would be, if they came from within, from our own will, and not from external compulsion. One is born of joy, the other born of fear.
There is a big
difference to have to do something and being allowed to do it.
That brings us to our second last thesis.