Blindfolded - My Strategy To Seeing The Light
When was the last time you did something that was against your will, but it was actually good for you? Was it related to work? Was it for personal reasons? Was it for your spouse? Was it for your children? A charity? How was your experience? I truly expect you to ponder, and possibly answer these questions before moving on. Really, HOW WAS YOUR EXPERIENCE? For me, the key questions here, that yet have not been unmasked are: (1) how did I position myself to be in that given situation and (2) could I achieve beyond my known strength? There are instances in life that get the best of us, and if we are not well positioned, we will crumble. An example of positioning oneself and encapsulating all that you’ve got to beat the disruption and friction against you is embodied from the movie Facing the Giants. The specific scene that comes to mind is known as The Death Crawl.
Sitting down on the school’s football field while resting from a hard practice session, one of the 40+ high school football players asks his coach, “So coach, how strong is West View this year?” Immediately his own teammate, Brock, interrupted with a smart comment, “A lot stronger than we are.” Taken by his comment, the coach asked his player,
“Have you already written Friday night as a lost, Brock?”
Politely, the coach asked Brock and Jeremy (the other player asking the first question) to come to the field and try to do the death crawl again, but he should try his absolute best. “You want me to go to the 30 yard-line?” Asked Brock. “Well, I think you can go to the 50,” contested the coach. Brushing it off, Brock said, “I can go to the 50, but with no one on my back.” Knowing Brock's potential, the coach insisted that Brock could go to the 50 with Jeremy on his back, but if he thought he wouldn’t be able to, he needed to promise that he would do his best. “Alright,” said Brock. “Your best? You are going to give me your best? Your very best?” Asked the coach. “Yes, I will do my very best!” Said Brock. “Okay, one more thing. I want you to do this blindfolded,” said the coach. “Why,” asked Brock. The coached simply replied:
“Because I do not want you to give up at a certain point when you can go further.”
Often, we will perform based on how we are being measured. Some people are fine with a 70%, a 83%, or even a 95%. However, if in certain situations we choose to not put a ceiling measure, but instead ask for 100% of our employees/colleagues' engagement, knowledge, and skills, they will gain a sense of decentralization from the average status-quo and will perform based on their own and unique potential.
Squatting down to a crawling position and blindfolded, Brock feels Jeremy’s weight on his back. “Let’s go, Brock. Keep your knees off the ground. Just your hands and feet,” elaborated the coach. Throughout the way, the coach is giving instructions for Brock to turn a bit to the left, to the right, to show good effort. Such is the role of a boss, a leader, a mentor.
As Brock slowly progresses, the camera catches glimpses of his teammates, who are seated on the turf, nodding their heads showing a lack of confidence that Brock is unable to succeed. “No way!” “No.” “He won’t do it," the players spitted their words out.
Feeling the pressure, exhaustion, and weight, Brock asks the coach if he is at the 20 yard line yet. “Forget about the 20! Just give me your best!” Said the coach. “Don’t stop, Brock! You gotta keep moving! Don’t quit until you got nothing left!” Continued the coach.
“Your very best! Your very best!” The coach kept encouraging Brock as he was walking alongside him.
As the dramatic background sound-effect started kicking in, one by one, the players started getting up off their butts in disbelief of Brock’s continuous progress. “It hurts!” Rightly so complains Brock as he keeps pushing. “He is heavy!” Continues Brock. Suddenly, ducking down to a crawling position as well, the coach affirms, “I know he is heavy. But negotiate with your body to find more strength. But don’t you give up on me!” In the midst of the back and forth screams of “it hurts” and “I know it hurts, but keep going,” the coach finally gives Brock a sense of the remained trajectory, “You got 30 more steps. Keep going.”
Down in the dirt with Brock, the coach tells him he has to push beyond the possible for he has 5 more steps to go. Collapsing to the ground in extreme pain and exhaustion, Brock vents his words out, “It’s gotta be 50. It’s gotta be 50. I can’t do it anymore.” Taking the blindfold off his eyes, the coach tells Brock to lookup. “You’re in the end-zone (a total of 90 yards),” said the coach.
The coach finally adds his last remark:
“You are the most influential player in this team. If you walk around defeated, so will they.“
At every given time and space, there will always be the work, the worker, the weight, the coach, and the unknown. With the right attitude, disposition, and awareness, we can take a shot at succeeding. We have so much potential; and giving our 100% is a must; and it also means to act intentionally and with a purpose. Face your giant.
Here's a video snippet of this fantastic scene.