Wednesday, 11 July 2007

What the Romans Didn’t Know: Flip Flippen

personal constraints

Law 1. We all have personal constraints.
              And there are more than ten! Some are “hireable,” like employing a highly-efficient assistant to keep your disorganization from becoming fatal. But others are “owned constraints” such as low self-control and not being able to maintain effective relationships. You can’t hire someone to care about your employees on your behalf. One of my clients actually suggested this as a solution!

Law 2. You can’t rise above constraints that you don’t or won’t address.

We are blind to some of our biggest constraints. But we also tend to cling to some obvious constraints that stare back at us in the mirror—a common one being stubbornness. If you think, “I’m not stubborn!”, you probably are.

Law 3. Our personal constraints play themselves out in every area of our lives.

They are with us 24/7 (sort of like mosquitoes in a Texas summer). At work, at home, and anywhere in between. And they affect those around us.

Law 4. Personal constraints are role-specific.

Behaviors leak into every compartment of our lives but become constraints only when they get in the way of attaining specific goals. High aggression can be beneficial in competitive sports but disastrous in social interactions (or in a library!).

Law 5. Those with the least personal constraints…WIN!

It’s not necessarily the most talented or the hardest working that win but rather those who remove their most impacting constraints. Go, underdogs!

To be our best, we can—and must—learn how to minimize our behavioral constraints while maximizing our strengths because real success demands more than talent and ability.

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