I saw this photo on social media and I immediately commented by saying that close to 84% of those who would ‘rate’ the Kenyan President’s performance have never in their lives rated themselves on anything, yet they were busy ‘allocating marks’ to their President. What a farce!
No body performs optimally all the time. There is always a curve in life, never a straight line. As long as we are the inhabitants on earth, whether with advancement in technology or otherwise, progress in life will always be a curve…or a series of downs and ups.
I am not only talking about companies: Big sized, Multi-Nationals, Mergers, SMEs and what have you, I am also talking about individual lives. They are all progressing through curves! Think about that for a minute. When is the last time a company (apart from Safaricom Kenya hahaha) operated optimally month in and out?
When is the last time an individual, athlete or ‘ordinary’ person operate optimally?
Look, if we all did operate optimally, then I can bet you that Physics, Statistics and Mathematics would never have come up with averages, moving averages and the like. Yet have you asked yourself why we all generally accept to be rated either as below average, average, above average and exemplary?
First of all, why would we want to rate ourselves? You got it! It is because we are not perfect. So why on earth would schools and parents expect sustained excellence bordering perfection from kids? Why would we expect absolute perfection of ourselves? I think that this can be self defeatist. The only way we can escape the downs of life is to get out of life itself!
But here is the thing: I am not in any way condoning mediocrity. What I am saying though is that ‘graphs’ are part and parcel of our lives. Without the down moments, we would not know what effort we need to expend to propel us to our next high. Again without rating ourselves, we might not be able to know how good or how bad we are doing!
The world has subconsciously accepted that we are creatures of limitations. We operate against opposition from the moment we are born. We inhabit a planet that has the force of gravity. Yet can you imagine a life without gravity? We would not be able to walk.
|This is how my monthly graph since January looks like…|
One of the most important things that you can do as an individual is to rate yourself. What progress have you made so far? Come on! It’s mid year already! Are you on a downward trend? Upward? Holding it steady? Average? Above average? What is your progress? I do this on a daily basis. Sometimes I have those down times…and of course I know exactly why they are there and what I need to do next time.
In summary, down times as well as up-times will most definitely characterize our Life Signatures. There is no question about that. Down times are never comfortable, they are never liked. Yet without them, there is no guarantee of growth. You want to grow? Face some down times. In fact, the most successful have faced as many down-times as they cannot remember. They keep track. How is your ‘track’ looking like so far?