I’ve been getting a lot of attention on social media this week… here’s how I turn it into fuel.
Just to quietly toot my own horn a bit, back in the day, I was a bit of a gun at the penalty shoot-out.
To a lot of Aussie ball sports fans, the penalty shoot out in soccer is a disappointing way to decided a result.
I mean you have two teams slogging it out for 90 minutes, collective strategy against strategy, only to let it all come down to something that can deliver totally random results.
Penalty shoot outs are unpredictable. The better side doesn’t always win in a shoot out.
But personally, I love the drama of it.
Because the shoot out is a battle of the mind.
Mostly soccer is played on instinct. When you’ve got the ball, on a break down the flank, you’re totally in the moment. Time slows down and speeds up. You’re in ‘the zone’.
When you’re getting set to take a penalty shot though. Nothing is happening. The world has stopped. And it’s just you and your head.
In sport they talk about closed skills and open skills. In open skills you’re reacting to something. The cricket ball bouncing off the pitch towards you. The unpredictable bounce of a footy.
There’s no time to think.
Closed skills on the other hand occur in controlled environments. The gymnast’s dismount. The golfer’s putt. The shoot-out.
If things go wrong, you’ve got no one to blame but yourself.
Which is why there’s so much pressure.
Nailing a shot past the keeper at practice is one thing. Doing it at the end of a long game to decide who takes home the premiership flag is another.
And this pressure can make even the best players look stupid.
You don’t see it so much in the professional leagues. Professional sports people are paid to deal with pressure. They practice it. They develop strategies.
They learn techniques that help them work with the violent and explosive energies moving through their body.
But in the amateur leagues, you can get some pretty out-there results.
Either people can’t get a handle on all that energy. They throw too much at the ball and send it into the stratosphere.
Or they’re choking down too hard on that energy and they freeze up. There’s no fluidity in their movement, no power in their strike, and they end up plopping some lame piddle at the goalie.
Pressure gives you an unusual surge of energy. You have to learn to channel it effectively. You’ve got to strike that balance. You can’t let it run wild through you, but you can’t lock it down either.
Finding that balance is a skill.
And I would say, it’s an important life skill.
I’m thinking about all this because it’s been an unusual week. Regular readers would know I published a pretty substantial and hard-hitting take down of negative gearing last week.
I said it’s a scam. Not a scam ‘by’ the people using it, but ‘on’ the people using it. Check it out. It’s one of the best things I’ve done. I gave myself an A+.
Anyway, just for my own interest as much as anything, I decided to throw a bit of a facebook advertising spend at it. I was proud of it and wanted to share it round a bit.
I wasn’t really ready for what happened.
It got traction. A lot of traction.
In just a few days, it’s racked up over 753 shares, with a lot of people tagging their friends into the conversation in the comments.
You can see the post here: https://www.facebook.com/knowledgesource/posts/1267145150004552
I saw a huge surge in traffic to the site.
So I’m thinking, here we go. I knew I was walking into a lion’s den with such a hot button topic. I was ready for the insults, the slurs, the hatchet jobs.
In the end, the comments were actually pretty positive… most of them. It could have been a lot worse.
But I was ready, because one of the skills I’ve learnt in life is how to take negative energy and transmute it into drive. Eat hate and turn it into fuel.
It’s like the pressure of a penalty shoot out. You’ve got to work with it.
You can say, “oh this person’s an idiot, I’m not going to let it affect me.”
But you don’t really get a choice about it. You don’t get to choose your emotions. You only get to choose how you react to them.
Or you could try and block out the yucky feeling and “rise above it”. But that just locks you up.
The discipline is to accept the hate heading your way, allow it into your sphere, but then turn that energy into personal energy, and then direct it towards something productive.
Do you ever wonder how someone like Donald Trump does it? He’s obviously got enough awareness to know that half the world hates him. What’s it like when every comedian in the country is mocking your hair, your speech, your values, your grip on reality?
Could you do it? I don’t think I could hack it.
Of course, that starts with not being afraid of it. And that probably means having an ego that’s robust enough to deal with daily attack. That’s something that takes work.
Then its about not being afraid of your feelings. You’re having a reaction because someone’s called you a brainless toilet brush. That’s ok. That’s great.
Accept it. Transmute it. Drive it.
Straight into the back of the net.
How do you work with haters?