I think all of us would agree that we bring a lot of experience and skills to the table, that is without any dispute from me.
I have met over the years a lot of really smart, intelligent, crafty and innovative people from a lot of different industries and disciplines. I think that in this moment in history we have more information available to us than ever before.
That can make us feel a certain amount of power, but it can also be a detriment to our improvement. Particularly if we are focusing on personal development and improvement. The reason I think that is because it can create a certain amount of arrogance and as a result can become a blind spot.
Knowledge and experience are helpful, no question, but if we only rely on our past experiences and the information that we have to make decisions we are missing out on someone else’s experience and knowledge. I think that there is a better way to approach improvement activity.
Dokkōdō Principle #11: mono goto ni sukikonomu koto nashi (物事に好き好むことなし)
English interpretaion: In all things, do not have any preferences
Musashi is highlighting the importance of not having any preferences at all no matter what the topic or item in question is. I believe that there is another concept that is embedded in this principle even though it isn’t mentioned directly.
That concept is the concept of shoshin which can be interpreted from Zen Buddhism as “beginners mind”. It refers to having an attitude of openness, eagerness, and lack of preconceptions when studying a subject, even when studying at an advanced level, just as a beginner would.
This concept when applied to your thinking can help you really approach your personal development from a different perspective.
For example, I used to think that getting more certifications and acquiring more knowledge would make me a better practitioner of improvement. Although, I have more certs and knowledge it doesn’t actually make me better at the improvement piece.
Reason being is that I still need others to help me in my journey. I am always going to need to tap into someone else’s knowledge and expertise to achieve the next goal that I set for myself. If I try to go alone, then I will end up alone in a place that I never intended to go.
Thankfully, I have really begun to understand what shoshin really means to me and I am much more able to approach my own personal development in a new way on a regular basis. I believe that I can always learn something from someone and that if I learn to ask better questions that I will get to the root of that understanding.
This is how I approach my work with my clients. I regularly look to them for their ideas and their thoughts, knowledge & expertise. Then we blend all of our pooled understanding to create a path forward that is better than just one of us could have come up with.
You can apply this type of thinking to your discovery of your true authentic self, your professional pursuit and the means of how to make continual improvement along your journey. If you would like to learn more about what I am talking about here, please reach out I would be happy to schedule a call.
#kokorozashi #ikigai #shoshin #improvement #kaizen #flow