This Zen Concept Will Help You Stop Being a Slave to Old Beliefs

This Zen Concept Will Help You Stop Being a Slave to Old Beliefs
This Zen Concept Will Help You Stop Being a Slave to Old Beliefs


This Zen Concept Will Help You Stop Being a Slave to Old Beliefs


Table Of Content(toc)

1. Intro

I played baseball for 17 years of my life. During that time, I had many different coaches and I began to notice repeating patterns among them.

One of the most successful coaches I had was a guy named Mickey Rivers. He really believed in technique and being able to hit the ball out of the park. He was a former player himself who knew what it took to get there, how to do it and how not doing it was getting you beat.

He also taught tons of people how to hit the ball out of the park too, and whenever someone asked him about it in his presence, he would give them some vague advice about hitting the ball out of the park and then if they pressed for more detail or asked him why he thought they should or should not try this battering ram technique, he would just smile sweetly at them as if they were children who were asking him a long-winded question when they could have just pointed to a photo on his desk that clearly illustrated exactly what they were talking about (which is exactly what I did too!)

I’ve always been fascinated by this idea that people can be trained in any skill or art, yet we don’t teach people how to behave like children. We keep teaching them when they are already adults – we tell them what they already know (or have previously been coached) but we don’t give them exactly what they need (like Mickey Rivers did). We do look after their self-image so that no matter how badly things go wrong with their career (i.e., not hitting enough home runs) or with their marriage (i.e., having a sex life), our children always think only good things happened because “they didn’t do anything wrong!”

We want our employees to be great at their jobs because we believe that’s an important part of being great at your job too – you should never hold yourself back from doing more than you think you can (or even thinking you can) because that means you didn’t show enough potential when you started out your career, so now you have built up some reserves so you can use those reserves as well when things are going well and use your weaknesses when things go wrong. You cannot be “good enough” all the time though – if you are good enough at everything else outside your job but not at your job then eventually something will go wrong even with the most talented people –

2. Coaching Styles: Management vs. Leadership

When I came to a coach, I had to ask myself, “Who is this person?” If you have any idea what it means to be a good coach, or even just a good person in general, I think you’ll find that being open about who you are and what your strengths are will help you find the right match for your needs.

You don’t need to be the best at anything if all you want is a good match for your needs… You can focus on finding the right people who can help you grow as a person by helping you develop the skills and attributes that will allow you to succeed.

If there were two things that were most important to me as a player, they were:  the ability to tell a story and being able to adapt quickly when my team needed me. Both of those things are absolutely critical in order for me to thrive as an athlete, but they aren’t very important in my life outside of baseball. While I do have incredible success with both of these in other areas (they are extremely helpful), they aren’t very important in my life outside of baseball.

I believe this is true for many people too. If we want to win at anything, we need to focus on our connection with others — with our teams and our communities. We need coaches who understand how we work well together and how we can improve our abilities (which may mean focusing on different aspects of each individual skill). We need leaders who know how each team member works well with others within the group (and so on). If I didn’t have this philosophy about coaching styles, many years ago when I first started playing baseball I would have never found anyone who understood exactly what it meant for me personally when it came time for me to adapt during games or practice because there weren’t any coaches who specifically worked on those areas until much later in my career!

3. Coaching Styles: Aware vs. Unaware

Generally, the best coaching style for a particular person is one that allows that person to focus on the task at hand. There are several variations of this style, but here’s one that seems to work well for me:

I have been fortunate enough to have had many different coaches and groups of coaches in my life and I’ve noticed some recurring themes. I’ll share three of them with you. Whatever your original coach was, the key is to find someone else who shares your thoughts on coaching and share them with you.

1) The coach should be unobtrusive: The primary purpose of a coach is not to add value or provide motivation but simply to help you out of a jam.

The real value comes from what you learn from your coach, not how much time they put in, or how helpful they are. Ideally all coaches would be like this.

2) The coach shouldn’t tell you what to do: This can be a very helpful guide if you are putting together a project that requires significant iteration (like building a product). However, it can also be harmful if your coach tells you “You need to do X” or “This is what needs to happen at X time frame”. They should have an idea about what needs to happen in your particular situation, but generally be open about what lessons they will teach — and often only when necessary.

3) The coach understands human nature: A good trainer will consider the psychology behind why your mind works in certain ways as opposed to others; they won’t just make things go away like some other coaches will (and unfortunately often make things worse). They also understand their own biases and shortcomings and learn how best to use those against themselves (as opposed to using them against others). This probably sounds like common sense, but it is often forgotten by most people when it comes time for coaching.

The last point I want to share here with you is something I heard from my awesome father: “If there were no differences between us we wouldn’t need coaches! We would all know each other perfectly well!” If we all shared the same values there would be no need for any coaching at all — which takes us back up the path of Zen from #2 above… which brings us back around again… or does it? Yes! Yes it does!

4. Coaching Styles: Inspirational vs. Dictator

I’m a Japanese. I was raised in a culture where the word “master” is synonymous with “teacher”.

One day, my father, a professional baseball coach, gave me one of his notes to read. It said, in essence:

“Stop being a slave to old beliefs.”

I still think this is the most profound piece of advice I’ve ever read. We live in an age of technological innovation and change. We have new tools and technologies available to us. But are we using them? Are we applying them? I’ve seen many coaches who use rote techniques with their players that don’t lead to improvement or even growth. There are coaches who will say nothing useful at all.

Today, if you want to change the world for the better, you need to stop following old beliefs and start being inspired by new ones.

5. Managing a Team of All-Stars

There are certain concepts that I have come to believe are the most critical to success in any field. The most important one for me is “hikikomori”.

This is a Japanese term that means a person who has completely given up on life and everything else, living a life of total boredom. It is an extreme form of self-loathing that can be seen in many people who completely reject everything around them, including themselves.

Hikikomorism is the opposite of shoshin — which is to actively seek new experiences and challenges, develop new skills and apply them to the world around you. It is the pursuit of real happiness, not the pursuit of peace and perfection at work or at home.

Shoshin is a fundamental principle which drives each of us to do our best: it’s what makes us want to do anything at all. Hikikomorism comes from throwing away this basic drive and replacing it with the idea that nothing good will ever come from trying new things or doing things differently — we’ll always fail (unless we approach failure with the right mindset). We’re constantly told that we should “try as hard as you possibly can” because this will make your failures fewer, but I think this mindset is fundamentally wrong. We should never try harder than necessary; we should never try harder than our limitations allow. Trying harder doesn’t make failures less frequent; it makes them more severe.

Real happiness isn’t something we can expect from failure; it’s something that happens when we live our lives intentionally, engaging with experiences that push us outside our comfort zones and make us feel alive in unexpected ways (walking down an unfamiliar street feeling like you’re floating through space, for example). If you don’t experience these moments you will never truly know what it feels like to be alive (which would be pretty sad).

6. Conclusion

I found that the one thing that was consistently and strongly present was a spirit of Zen in every coach I had, from playing to coaching. This doesn’t mean they were Zen teachers in any sense of the word (though many were), but it does mean that the idea of Zen pervaded every aspect of their work and life.

This reminds me of the concept I like to call “The Triple Test”. It was introduced by Richard Bandler and John Grinder in a book called “Tapping Into Your Strengths” (and subsequently covered in many other places over the years). In short, you can test your strengths by testing your weaknesses — i.e., making sure you have strengths you want to be able to use, rather than weaknesses you don’t want to be able to use..

At its root is this simple statement: What are you really trying to do? What’s your big idea? And what do you really care about? Then ask yourself these questions: If I could choose only one thing right now, what would it be? This is because when we test our big ideas against our goals, we run into problems. We often set up goals around which we have no idea — goals so vague as to make them almost meaningless — and then test our big ideas against them trying to figure out if they’ll really address what we want. If they don’t, we realize that we need more data or something else needs changing. If they do, we realize there’s something wrong with one or more of our other big ideas — for example, maybe what we’re working on isn’t quite as important or relevant as it used to be (and maybe even no longer works for us).

All these tests tend — at least for me — towards discovering that something is wrong with “what I’m doing”. Mindfulness helps me deal with this by allowing me not just to see what’s wrong with my internal reflection at this moment but also allows me move through it and find new ways forward without having super-strictly focused on either side of the problem (the problem-side) or falling into some kind of magical thinking around fixing problems (the fix-side).

So, when I’m working on my next product launch I will go through my very own Triple Test: 1) How will people use this product? 2) What problems/desires will people have and how will they think about them? 3) What are their top

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