How did Fleming accidentally invent Penicillin, how did the Kellogg brothers accidentally invent corn flakes? How did Isaac Newton discover the concept of gravity just when that apple fell, after all, apples have always fallen from the tree? How did the name of my firm Hexavia! come about? How did the famous Carnegie daringly get the first steel bridge right which eventually crossed the Mississippi River and paved the way for today’s bridge construction model. How do the likes of Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos and co seem to break new grounds around private space tourism, or with linking our brains to the computer with Virtual Reality, Artificial Intelligence and other seemingly mission impossible ideas? Some religions call it discernment. The circular system calls it intuition. Everyone thinks. But when the few deep minds do, you realize why the world doesn’t have so much of them.
I have read about and hung around too many successful people, and I see a trend worth sharing. Real high flyers, inventors, disruptors and successful entrepreneurs can look aggressive and noisy, but they have a secret chamber, and in it, a voice comes, cutting in at times without their permission, it sends sometimes, “go”, or “stop”, or “peace be still’’ message during the storm. But on the outside, it manifests as what we call gut feelings. It’s that eureka mindset. It’s that point when logic is defiled by something deeper they can’t explain. Possibilities are just drawn to them. It’s from the same place that faith is drawn from too. They just obey.Sometimes we are just at the right place just at the right time, same as our decisions. Like copied mathematics assignment, you can’t explain, but we are right. We know we are. We don’t know how we know, but we just know. You can call it grace, but it’s a part of how great people got there. And today’s writing attempts to explore, how to continually get and even stay there with it under control by us.
Beyond business knowledge, most people are not deep enough. They don’t even know themselves and how the universe works deep enough to ride with it to its favor. In all that we do and know, there is a level of depth that makes success easy to achieve, and only a few get there or stay there. The working man is made up of a soul, mind and body in interdependence through intentional actions, routines and habits, they shouldn’t go against themselves. The more in sync they are, the more progressive we become. In what is called the Triad of Manifestation, which defines what there is to Be, Do and Have, the soul and spirit holds our destiny to what we can be, the mind what we must do and the body things to have. Be in sync, Be mindful, bear in mind that the mind is the master, for it is from its chambers that ideas come from. Ideas are never fully formed. It’s their nature. They are just dropped into our mind from a spiritual realm. That’s why it’s important to be in sync with it.There is a level of spiritual awareness and knowing that brings calm and faith. That faith is needed even in business, and the trust to positively use adversity because you trust the process. All great leaders are known to have faith. They first develop faith in themselves, which means they connect their body, mind and intellect with their soul. They also connect their soul with the Universal Soul where all souls of the world are connected with each other. Leadership is thus a spiritual quality that comes from faith, Knowing and having access to how it works is key. Whatever religion or spirituality you associate with, the truth is that the human manifestation of the spirit will always be delivered through ideas, insights and concepts. The place of delivery is the mind. There’s a mental place, with a high level of depth and internal silence and faith that great minds invoke to deliver disruption.
In today’s noisy world that can’t stop talking, that can’t stop thinking too many thoughts without focus; for an entrepreneur an idle mind isn’t always a devil’s workshop, a foolish and unguided one is. To become deep enough to invoke from your spirit great ideas, we must all learn to at intervals stay still. Its most popular method of achieving this is through meditation. I believe everyone should master how to voyage through it. The secret formula is stillness and meditation. Meditation is the art of staying still. Let me try to break it down. Your mind houses a series of infinite thoughts all over the place, each like a drunk jumping monkey. Imagine keeping all of them still. That’s the goal so you can eventually focus on one thing. Restlessness has its pro and cons but more cons in thinking. Don’t be a busy bee. The phrase “Be still” is perhaps one of the most powerful instructions in our holy books. The greatest insights and ideas comes when you’re doing nothing. And that’s what most people forget.
Sometimes all it takes, is to take a deep breath, just relax in a soul and personal epiphany, and attempt dwelling fully and only in the present. The Buddhists and the writer Eckhart Tolle in his meditative book of spiritual enlightenment calls it The Power of Now. Today’s world comes with so much challenges, its worse when you run a business or manage systems. Our unease, anxiety, tension, stress, worries — all forms of fear — are caused by TOO MUCH EMPHASIS IN THE FUTURE and not enough PRESENCE in the PRESENT. And on the other hand, guilt, regret, resentment, grievances, sadness, bitterness, and all forms of non-forgiveness are caused by TOO MUCH PAST, AND NOT ENOUGH PRESENT. It doesn’t matter what happens in the past or what will happen in the future, what should matter to you is that you can change a lot of things now. This is the power of now.
Most times as businessmen, we mumble up Our Circle of Concern with our Circle of Influence. In the book, Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, Stephen Covey gives a good illustration of this in terms of the Circle of Concern and Circle of influence. Our Circle of Concern are things or areas in life where we tend to worry about but have ‘no real control’ over e.g when we are in ill health or we lose someone; while those things or areas we can work on (habits) are in our Circle of Influence. Worry overwhelms us when we channel our time and energy to things in our Circle of Concern instead of things in our Circle of Influence.
Worrying in a Circle of Concern is useless. When there’s really nothing you can do about a situation, Rest!
In the words of Joyce Meyer, when your body and spirit is resting, your emotions are okay, your mind is okay, and your will is at peace and in sync with all three triads of your manifestation, not resisting the forces that be to your favour. Not foolishly trying to undo what you have no control over. Most times, those concerns are already done. Anything we try to do at that point most times is tension and long as we are in tension, we lose the power to control the mind and spirit, from where the right ideas can come from. It’s called confusion. The concept of the mind is like all medicine, and even the universe, they all work better while we are at rest. Be still. Enjoy the lonely boulevards of your mind at times.
Just mind the present, dwell in it, enjoy it, it’s a gift and that’s why it is called “present. The way to master it is by starting each day with it. You can start by allocating 20 minutes daily to it, till it forms a new neuropath on your prefrontal cortex, the part of your brain and the mental space and point where a new habit is formed and an old one broken. The old habit to be broken is anxiety and the new one to be formed is calm, positive dispositions, affirmations, organizations and resolutions.
Once you have over time mastered meditation. You can now meditate on the word or your affirmations, prayers or mantra. Your prayer becomes more in connection.
Meditation creates depth, by letting the outer noise off without drowning that inner voice.
At this point, I’d love to suggest a book, it’s a New York Times bestseller titled QUIET by Susan Cain: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking. The book reveals a lifestyle secret shared by most public figures and even extroverts (it is on how after all the noise we make, we value our “me’ time for retrospect. After all the openness and interactions with the limelight, we always find a cave to recharge our expended energy). Now that’s an altar. Research has shown that there’s zero correlation between being the best talker and having the best ideas. It’s really from retrospect and solitude that the best ones emerge. To every successful witty, high-octane public speaker you see, comes a practice where he draws back alone and recharges in solitude after his talks. To every record-breaking salesman, comes a point of reflection where he quietly taps into the power of questions and feedback he got. Don’t be fooled. As far as everyone has a spirit, mind and body, there must be a nourishment for it. Everyone must have a circle, an altar where they find creative energy and solitude to be on top of their game with great ideas. Solitude creates creativity, and a powerful tool for entrepreneurs. The world is full of noise, which is the cause of conflicts and battles. However, some of the greatest battles will be fought and won in the chambers of your soul, mind and heart. Keep them in sync.
In summary, life and business follows the same principle as an egg. If an egg is broken by outside force, Life ends. If broken by inside force, Life begins. Great things always begin from inside. Find that inner solitude of connection between your spirit, mind and body. Build an altar. And then a fortress of routines to protect it. As a practice, learn to revisit it as often as you need to. This is the deeper, non-academic yet important side of corporate level strategy and business.
Strategy. Business StartUps and Corporate Restructuring Consulting
Uwaoma Eizu is the lead strategist at Hexavia! He is a graduate of Mathematics with two MBAs and over a decade of experience working with startups and big businesses. His core is in building startups and in corporate restructuring. He is also a certified member of the Nigerian Institute of Management, Institute of Strategic Management of Nigeria and the Project Management Institute, USA. By the side, he writes weekly for the BusinessDay newspaper.