Calm is not the enemy of drive

Life & Work

I love it when my thinking is stretched.

It might sound odd, but experiencing conflicting ideas is exciting to me because I know that’s when a new, better idea is about to emerge that not only resolves the tension but creates a flurry of new thinking and possibilities.

I’m really nerding out on the work of Dan Sullivan lately. Dan’s company, Strategic Coach, has been around for over 40 years now. They are the premier high-performance coaching organization. They coach the coaches, if you will. They have 140 employees, which is massive for an organization like theirs.

Yet, they are what I’d call a “calm” organization. You don’t listen to anything of Dan’s and come away with the idea that unreasonable hours are being worked. In fact, most of his work is geared towards entrepreneurs spending less time working, and goal achievement in Dan’s programs happens over a 25-year time horizon!

This matters because I had a false belief that if I was going to build a calm organization, I couldn’t have drive, set goals, measure performance, or work to better myself as an entrepreneur. I had equated calm with boring and unmotivated—a dangerous place that leads to burnout.

What I’ve come to realize is that unbridled busyness is a choice, whether or not your company is “calm.” There’s a calm way to build a thriving company, become a better person every day, develop good habits, and more.

When you think about it, there’s no conflict at all. It even sounds silly to write.

What’s cool is that, with what I’m learning now, I now have bigger aspirations than ever for my company, and yet I’m setting more realistic expectations for myself, like attempting to get three things done every day instead of 10 or more.

So, calm and driven can coexist.

What can’t coexist is frenetic and calm. You can be frenetic and driven or calm and driven. The funny thing is, the “frenetic and driven” path is the road most choose, which is why most people don’t achieve their goals or burn out before they ever get the chance.

I choose to be driven. And I still choose calm.

Jan 30, 2024

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Hey, I'm Steve — a Christian, entrepreneur, thinker, and creator. Thanks for stopping by!

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