Monday, March 30, 2009

It's Adaptive to be Vulnerable

Jack and Suzie Welch said it best when they wrote "Put Your Rage on the Back Burner" for this week's BusinessWeek Magazine.
"It's crazy to think the most profound economic and cultural upheaval of our times will end well if we let ourselves marinate in rage. Rage begets only rage: it often makes people do stupid, short-sighted things that invariably spawn unintended consequences. Rage isn't healing; it's polarizing.

We all have to fight to keep hope alive replacing our rage with renewed focus on the good that are all around us.

Right now there are thousands of geeky, brilliant engineering wonks sitting in their dorm rooms at MIT and Stanford and campuses around the world, oblivious to the weather as they pour their hearts into cool new ideas. Those kids and their ideas are the future of business if we just hang on tight and adapt.

Psychologist, author and artist Robert W. Firestone says that it's adaptive to be vulnerable - that we are more open to opportunity and willing to challenge ourselves and take risks when we're not hindered by rage and other defenses.

Certainly now is the time to stay focused and not get distracted with transitory issues. Ben Bernanke made the analogy of the current financial crisis to the story of the guy next door who smokes in bed. One day his house catches fire. While the house is on fire, it's not the time to place blame. Instead, it's the time to protect your home by pitching in to help fight the fire. When things are safe again there'll be plenty of time to assess blame and provide punishment where it's due. But right now the flames are challenging and it's time to take action.

The Welch article was uplifting to me. I hope you take the time to read it.