The other day, I spent some time online doing research. The reason for doing the research was that there is a question that has been troubling me for a long time now. That question is:
Why are businesses and individual lives, in the United States and around the world, facing so many challenges?
As I dwelt on this question, all kinds of thoughts and potential reasons flooded my mind:
- Lack of real leadership in both the U.S. and abroad
- Overseas competition, especially from China and other countries on the Pacific Rim
- Devaluation of the dollar and other world currencies
- Obamacare (The Affordable Care Act)
- High unemployment
- Cities, states, and countries facing bankruptcy
The list could go on for several pages, and I’m sure that you could contribute many ideas.
After I made my own list, I asked myself a couple of really critical questions: What do all of these things have in common? Is there anything that links them all together?
That is when I began doing some research. I wanted to see what I could discover that might help me better, and more deeply, understand these, and other, critical issues facing our world.
One of the searches I did brought up a series of perhaps a dozen pictures of The Wheel of Life. The Wheel of Life is a circle with a number of spokes radiating out from the center to the outside. Each spoke is labeled with a critical life area, (things like Professional, Financial, Family, Physical, etc.). The idea is to rate each area of your life, with 1 (located at the center of the wheel) being the lowest score and 10 being the highest. After you have rated each area and put a dot corresponding to the number you selected on each spoke, you connect the dots and look at the wheel to see how lopsided and out of balance it is. Based on the picture you have created, you know what areas of your life require work. It’s a simple, yet powerful concept.
At any rate, as I looked at each of the Wheels of Life displayed on my internet search, one key thing literally jumped off the screen at me, and that was:
On eleven of the twelve wheels, there was no mention of the word spiritual.
In other words, the vast majority (91.6%) of the wheels that had been created and displayed gave no credence to the importance of the spiritual aspect of our lives. It was then that I realized that many of the challenges facing businesses and individuals in the world today are symptoms of a much larger problem. That problem is that we have lost our spiritual and moral compasses.
Let me ask you a few questions:
- What is it that foundationally defines you as a human being?
- What guiding principles define your business?
- How do you go about making ethical judgments in both your business and personal life?
- How do you know what you want your life to ultimately count for?
It is my stance, proven over many years of successfully helping businesses and individuals attain unusual levels of success, that none of these questions can be adequately answered without first having some kind of moral and spiritual compass that points us to True North. As a side note, True North is the title of my twice-monthly newsletter that will be published and emailed out to our clients starting in September. Shortly, you will be able to sign up at optechs.com to receive your copy.
The key word in the last paragraph is the word TRUE. This links us to the word TRUTH. TRUTH implies that we require a set of absolutes to guide our daily thoughts and actions. This stands in stark contrast to many of the personal and business development philosophies being taught around the globe today.
Many business owners and individuals believe in relative truth. In other words, what is true for me may not be true for you – and that is OK because each of us gets to define his or her own truth.
Again, my experience over the past 30 plus years has shown that relative truth is nothing short of a recipe for disaster. Believing in relative truth is like standing on top of The Empire State Building, declaring to the world that you do not believe in gravity, and then jumping off the pinnacle of the building to prove it. The absolute truth of gravity will take over as soon as you jump – and you will become nothing more than a splat on the pavement below.
We all need the guiding principles that are absolute to define us and guide our lives if we are to be truly successful – and more importantly – if we wish to positively influence the lives of others.
Take a few minutes – maybe even a bit longer – and ponder what absolute truths are guiding you….if you need help navigating those waters, give me a call at 203.599.1467 or write to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.