Confront yourself daily to avoid crashing
How do you call yourself on your bullshit? How do you confront yourself? Do you rely on others to do it for you?
Let me tell you a story.
I’ve been reading a lot of non-fiction lately. Self-improvement, productivity, smarts,… all that stuff. I was enjoying the activity, but then I realized — I wasn’t applying the knowledge to my life.
If I’m reading a book on productivity, and every fifteen minutes pull up my phone to check something and don’t focus properly when working, what good is it?
The moment I realized I didn’t apply most of what I learned, I got angry at myself. I couldn’t believe myself. Such a simple, obvious fact, and yet it eluded me.
That moment was important, because it lead me to confront myself, and then to change.
Confrontation is something we instinctively avoid most of the time. The trouble it that it doesn’t go away. Life is a journey full of problems, some of which can only be solved by confronting them.
But if we don’t, we let the tiny problems grow in our subconsciousness. We let the easy confrontations grow into big ones, and if we avoid those, then we’re in for a disaster. This and more is also mentioned in a podcast with Stephen Mansfield, an expert on the phenomenon of leadership crash. I highly recommend it.
With this in mind, I try to confront myself daily. The practice takes various forms.
For instance, when I’m angry, I confront myself with a reflection exercise. I don’t let it slide, I ask myself: why are you angry? And list all the things on my mind. And then I try to figure out what to do about them.
Or I confront myself when there is a discrepancy between my intentions and actions. This can be the case with not following through on commitments or personal goals. Often, I then ask: why?
It could take form of me deciding to go for a run, no matter how I feel that day.
It could be a conversation with a parent or a friend.
Practice of daily confrontation is a way of avoiding the big crashes that slowly build up over time.
Do you have something that could be resolved through some form of confrontation? If so, don’t run away from it.