Crazy Good

By  Engr. Carlos V. Cornejo

Another admirable book from Steve Chandler is entitled “Crazy Good: A Book of Choices”.  It says that your life can be awesome good and not just good enough.  Being crazy good means you yourself would get surprised with what you have achieved as you look back at your life.  You don’t just get to say, “It was nice” but instead say, “Wow!”

The book offers a lot of tips.  I’m just mentioning here the four impactful ones (at least for me).

The 5% Solution

A great life is achieved with small changes in our attitude and habits.  Often times when we realize we have an ingrained bad habit of procrastinating for example, remember that you did not get into that undesirable habit in just one day.  You arrived into that situation by incremental and regular neglect of your duties such as delaying doing your school assignment or postponing that office report or task.  Acquiring a good habit (which we call virtue) is pretty much the same.  You don’t become punctual with your appointments and punctual in doing your tasks overnight.  It is acquired gradually by small regular changes.  The author suggests of having that 5% mindset in changing yourself.  Just focus on improving 5% weekly for example.  The beauty of this method is when you experience some failure in not being as punctual as you would like yourself to be for example, it won’t be a big deal to start again since the failure is just 5% too.

Dreams vs. Systems

The author says every system you have whether for a good result or a bad one will always be perfect.  It will be perfect because it will always deliver the result that you want or sometimes not want.  If you have a system of waking up on time and sleeping on time it will help you deliver the result of being more productive.  If you have a system of spending more than you can earn, you might not want the result, but it will surely drain your finances and go broke.  If you want a different result you will have to change your system.  I’ve written about having a regular system taken from the book of Scott Adam in another article of mine entitled Goals vs. Systems.  It is the same concept here.  Systems are all about improving your skills such as the skill of writing, leading, organizing and managing.  If you get to grow your skills steadily through a system, attaining your dreams and goals will almost automatically follow.

Game vs. Shame

Approach life as a game and not a shame.  A trained dolphin that does acrobatic stunts is able to do what it does because it gets rewarded during training with food by the trainer.  It also enjoys what it does because it is a game for him.  You don’t train a dolphin by shaming it like telling it, “Hey, moron fish!  You are missing the freaking hoop!” Or make it feel guilty by shouting, “Where’s your sense of honor and pride, you lazy animal!”  But unfortunately, that’s how we talk to ourselves when we fail.  This negative self-talk on failure should be replaced by a playful attitude towards life’s challenges.  When we lose a game, we don’t take it too seriously because that’s the nature of a game, i.e., you sometimes lose.  We should approach life as a game so as not to be too demoralized with our losses.  The author Steve Chandler says, “In my many years of coaching people (including coaching myself) games are the absolute best and most effective route to inspired action. They get me out of the stands and onto the field of play.”

Experiments Never Fail

A good attitude so as not be scared in trying out new things in life is to approach that new endeavor as an experiment.  The author says, “Experiments never fail because when you are experimenting you are just as eager to find out what doesn’t work as what does. Whatever you find out helps you grow. There is no failure in that.  Experiments give you a way to play with the universe. They allow you to interact with the real world and get some interesting answers. What works? What doesn’t? Let me try again. This is starting to kick in.”  If you are starting a new business, trying to learn a skill, or studying for a course look at it as experiments that even if you fail you still have learned something.