Who are you at the core?
Are you a warrior? Are you teddy bear who wants everyone to be happy? Are you a shark who chomps through people? Who you are at your core creates your reality.
“He made me do it” – is a retort we hear often when we react or act out of character. “The circumstances were like this – what could I do”. “I really put in my everything into it – still I did not get the results, my luck was just bad”. “He was really brilliant – how could I guess he would turn out like this”.
While we may get temporary solace in externalizing our problems and our state of life, the reality is, it is just “us and only us” who create our own reality, happiness and success. It is our thinking and our own choices and actions that create the life around us and not some randomness of luck or destiny.
Overtime, I have realized that our overall happiness as individuals and as a human race depends on who we are at the core and how we choose our actions and relationships. In the quest to understand this I tried to figure out how to asses my actions as well as how to decide who do I want to relate to, be friends with, and do business with.
After much experience and thought I have distilled it to the basics of who we (and others) are at our core. Are we survivors, achievers, or creators?
Survivors do the base minimum needed in a situation and will fight to protect the status quo, whether it is a job or a relationship. They are averse to change and usually don’t ha ndle change easily. When threatened much they are likely to get into “passive resistance” mode. For more on passive resistance read – Passive resistance – how to spot and manage it. They can lead a calm steady life and be productive in routine tasks not needing much innovation, proactivity or initiative.
Achievers have specific goals in life and are extremely motivated to achieve the goals. They work hard, and promote themselves well. They appear impressive in many manners at the outset but with time the glitter fades in others eyes. These people carry the risk of losing balance in life and may end up compromising on other aspects of life such as health, relationships, peace of mind for meeting their goals. They are also prone to losing sight of “what means they are using for achieving their goals” and may not realize when they cross the line from ethical to unethical if not criminal means.
They are likely to burn out, be disenchanted once they reach their goal or even worse have big breakdowns if they do not achieve their goals.
Creators are driven by creating certain realities for themselves as well for others – an all around better world. They are very clear about what value they want to add, how the world should be. They share their vision freely, motivate other and are not afraid of taking initiative and taking a stance on any issue that affect them.
They are not as impressive as achievers in initial stages of knowing them. The strength is their vision and wherewithal. They do not get thrown off by challenges and are not afraid to be outcast. They are not driven by personal success and their definition of success is broader and encompasses the means by which success is achieved, the value delivered and broadly the overall good.
Overtime I have realized that if I apply this over-arching way of looking at individuals it serves me best. This has worked when I have hired people across many positions, it has applied to friends and even to clients I want to work with. I realized that once I chose to be around creators my life started having a magical quality in many ways, my stress reduced and even outward success started increasing.
For myself, it has helped get re-oriented anytime I fall into the mode of survivor or achiever. If I am stressed I realize that I am either afraid of change, or trying too hard to achieve / get something when all I need to do is channel my energies where I can create better and leave the rest alone.
Here’s a short and sweet summary of three types:
Survivors do the bare minimum to protect their position and themselves, achievers may obsess with self goals and miss the big picture of happiness, creators are the one who orchestrate beautifully to create better reality for self and others.
I leave you with a rather radical sounding quote by Howard Roarke from The Fountainhead (Author Ayn Rand).
Howard Roark: The creator stands on his own judgment. The parasite follows the opinions of others. The creator thinks, the parasite copies. The creator produces, the parasite loots. The creator’s concern is the conquest of nature – the parasite’s concern is the conquest of men. The creator requires independence, he neither serves nor rules. He deals with men by free exchange and voluntary choice. The parasite seeks power, he wants to bind all men together in common action and common slavery. He claims that man is only a tool for the use of others. That he must think as they think, act as they act, and live is selfless, joyless servitude to any need but his own. Look at history. Everything thing we have, every great achievement has come from the independent work of some independent mind. Every horror and destruction came from attempts to force men into a herd of brainless, soulless robots. Without personal rights, without personal ambition, without will, hope, or dignity. It is an ancient conflict. It has another name: the individual against the collective.