This week’s thoughts are brought to you by The Blue Angels.
As I write, I feel like Air Boss Johnson in Top Gun having said, “The pattern is full…” only to have Maverick buzz the tower. In this case, the tower is our house!
The Jax Beach Air Show is this weekend, and the pilots are in full prep mode and where we live IS the pattern.
The sonic booms and flybys have me thinking about the diligence, the precision, the dedication it takes to be a Blue Angel. I’m thinking about it, almost because I can’t imagine it.
The years of training and practice, the knowledge and studying to get there. As they fly by, I can’t help but think with all that as a foundation, the most important skill is for them to be present. Dialed in to what they are doing at that exact moment. No distractions. No other thoughts. Straight presence. Complete awareness.
A few weeks ago, while delivering a keynote, MID-PRESENTATION, these thoughts popped into my head: “They don’t care what you’re saying. This message isn’t right for them.”
Imagine if a Blue Angel had that thought. “They don’t care about this formation. They think this is lame.”
Chances are those sweet donuts, in perfect formation, they are pulling outside my window right now would look more like twisted-up croissants, not the ideal flying formation look.
Now, I am no Blue Angel, nor did I mean to insinuate that delivering a keynote is the same as flying a plane at Mack 10.
What do I have in common with a Blue Angel? We’re human. What do all humans have? The voices in our heads. There’s not just one voice, but “There’s a whole boardroom full of assholes in your head,” (to borrow a line from my favorite show Shrinking.)
The head of my BoA in my head likes to quote the above: “They don’t care. They think it’s lame.”
At this point, just like the dude at the office who says the same exact thing at every meeting to which you respond “got it” but are mostly tuned out because you know what he’s saying is inconsequential, has no purpose, and is just said to make noise, that’s how I treat the head of my BoA in my head.
“Got it.” I noted to myself, up on stage. Then I get out of my head and into my gut, my core, that inner space, and remind myself, “You care about them. You’ve crafted this message with them in mind. You’ve got a talent for speaking; use it.”
That’s the voice that gets my attention, the one I believe. The one that shifts from it being about me to being about them. The one that takes me out of my thinking head and taps into the gifts and talents within me. Logic kicks in again to remind me of the hours and hours and hours of preparation and the years and years of experience, my foundation that grounds me.
Imagine if we could apply the hyper-awareness a Blue Angel applies to their flying technique to our thoughts. The second that BoA pipes up, we become aware, we say, “Got it,” and we shift immediately.
We shift from the outside thinking, “They don’t like it…they think this…” To what we have to offer on the inside pouring out for them. I am here for them. I am creating an impact for them. I am leading them.
We ground into our experience. We tap into our inner knowledge. We think about all of the preparation we’ve done. We get back into that perfectly aligned formation within OURSELVES, and we buckle in and enjoy the ride.
Become aware of that BoA. Know that your instinct, your experience, your inward-out approach is all the wingman you’ll need to create the impact you’re trying to create.