One of my passions is reading great books on leadership and peak performance. I love to learn about how individuals and organizations are able to overcome challenges and produce extraordinary results. My new favorite book is by Steve Zaffron and Dave Logan titled, The Three Laws of Performance: Rewriting the Future of Your Organization and Your Life (J-B Warren Bennis Series) The book is inspiring and well – just awesome. Here’s why. What makes this book unique is that it does not give you steps, strategies, or secret tips about success. It is a hands-on practical approach to living an extraordinary life with real life examples.
A key insight in the book is that it is so easy to get caught up in the game of trying to fix the things that are not working in your life and the more that you try to fix them the more concrete and fixed they become. This pattern becomes a “probable predictable future” that leaves you frustrated and operating at a performance level way below your potential.
In my keynote presentations one of the messages I share is how important it is to focus on the positive and what’s possible. That what we think about, we become. Whether you call it the “law of attraction”, “manifesting your destiny”, or “the secret” it is a universal principle about focus and energy. What this book does a great job of doing is taking this point to a higher level of understanding and a deeper meaning. In the book the authors talk about how what you “resist in life persists” meaning the more you avoid or suppress something the more energy and attention you give to it. Thus, leading to more of what you don’t want.
Another great insight in the book is that our access to power, freedom, and true self expression lies in creating a new future that is filled with possibility. This possibility is created through understanding and having compassion for how the world “occurs” to the people around us. It is this compassion along with using “generative language” that leads to us creating a new future at a level of performance that may have never before seemed possible.
How do you create that compassion? I believe that compassion comes from remembering that we don’t know everything about anyone. Real compassion comes from listening, understanding, and respecting what makes us different. It is at the heart of not only a new level performance but an extraordinary life.