How to Overcome Dingbat Ideas
Our grandchildren love hearing mimi and poppi say, “Ya Dingbat.” I call myself dingbat. I say, “Ya dingbat,” to mimi and she calls me dingbat.
I enjoy calling the grandchildren dingbats. Someone has to do it.
Don’t let a day go by without calling yourself and others dingbat.
How to overcome dingbat ideas:
Everyone is smart occasionally and frequently stupid.
(The above sentence especially applies to bosses.)
Dingbat idea #1: Seek to have fun. Reject hard work.
Smart idea #1: Fun is beautiful in small doses, but not the standard for success.
My wife and I spent a day, years ago, with friends at an amusement park. It was perfect. We laughed, ate, and rode rides until our faces hurt.
You can’t plan an experience like we had. We might have another experience like that, but probably not.
If you judge yourself by an amusement-park-day, you’re going to be sad most of the time.
Smart idea #2: Don’t judge yourself by your successes.
Smart idea #3: Enjoy painful work.
It’s 4:11 a.m. right now. A few minutes ago a friend of mine got up and headed to the gym. He used to be a dough boy. Now he meticulously plans his meals and works out most everyday.
His belly isn’t sticking out beyond his belt like mine.
You have to enjoy painful work if you want a six pack.
When I ask, “How’s your workout going?” he doesn’t look at his shoes in shame. He describes his sore quads.
Smart idea #4: Forget about rewards. Enjoy painful work.
Rewards are nice but not satisfying. As soon as you get one reward, you start thinking about future rewards. When you start thinking about future rewards, the one you just received is less satisfying.
Stop being a dingbat and get to work.
What stupid ideas are sucking the life out of you and your team?
What stupid ideas are sucking the life out of you and your team? If we “work hard today, we won’t have to work hard tomorrow”, reality hard work is there everyday, the lesson is we have to work smarter! What one person sees as hard another see as a piece of cake, we are all molded differently for various events.
As you know tomorrow is not guaranteed so work your best today!
Hey Tim. Perfect! The only thing that hard work earns is the privilege of doing more hard work. A life without work isn’t worth living.
Hard work doesn’t earn us the right to be entitled.
Your comment made me smile. Cheers
The painful work is seldom fun but it is very satisfying to see the result. Keeping the end in mind helps as long as the end is not too distant. I love the statement “Everyone is smart occasionally and frequently stupid.”
Thanks McSteve. You put it so well. painful work is seldom fun but it’s very satisfying….
Regarding “frequently stupid.” … now all we have to do is figure out when we’re being stupid and do less of that. 🙂
I believe that putting hard work and fun at the opposite ends of the spectrum is a sucker’s bet. You know, either, or. I can tell you have a great sense of humor and would bet that you use it especially during hard times or hard work. The trick perhaps, is redefining what is rewarding, not being focused on a reward. What if hard work could also be fun and rewarding? Maybe not amusement park fun but lightening the moment in the heat of battle can be a game changer. Keep up your great work on these messages. I truly enjoy reading them.
Thanks Brian. I think you’re getting the point!
The other day Jon Acuff said that there’s a difference between having fun and making work fun.
I once read “Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional.” So do the painful work and find the joy in it!
Thanks Ruud. Well put. Love the distinction between pain and suffering. I do things that others might think of as suffering and I bet you do things that I think are suffering. 🙂
Keep in mind pain is also designed to tell you something is wrong. I carried on working/training on the pain of an injury. Ultimately it took a major operation, five months on crutches and a year of rehab to get back to being able to actually start training again. That pain was neither fun nor satisfying. There’s a description for people who “enjoy” pain all the time: masochists.
Thanks Mitch. Good word! Just because it’s painful doesn’t mean it’s good. Even working out has it’s limits. It seems that good pain says, “You’re stretching yourself.” Bad pain says, “You broke yourself.”
Dan, another thing is when the working/stretching yourself pain becomes chronic: builders/joiners/plumbers spend their lives chiselling walls and gradually the pain of doing the job can become arthritic joint damage that impacts every aspect of their lives. Whether that damage is physical, mental or emotional, by the time you know it’s chronic, even if you stop it’s too late
For those who speak of pain in jobs and how it becomes chronic, the question is, would they do it differently? I raced motocross in my youth, kickboxed, played rugby, snowboarded, skateboarded and literally took my chess player physique to levels it didn’t belong. I have to oil my joints like the tin man in the morning or if I sit for an hour; but I wouldn’t trade the experience if I had it to do over again. I would add surfing though.
A quote from the Navy Seals:
1. “The Only Easy Day Was Yesterday.”
Meaning: Every day you will need to work harder than the last. But when you work hard every day and see what you’re now capable of — yesterday seems easy
Love it Brandon. It’s so true. The things that were hard last year are easy now. We should be aware that what is easy for us, may be very useful for others. We shouldn’t minimize the things that have become easy for us. But, a little sweat is a good thing. 🙂
Seals view “hard” as a challenge to be won. If it were easy, everyone would be doing it and rest assured, no one is doing what they do! To them, pain is weakness leaving their body…I love that line. I’m not a Seal so pain just hurts to me, but I appreciate the idea of seeing “hard” as a challenge to be won by those with the spirit to do so.
Thanks Brian. Yes! Do hard stuff. Accept the challenge of doing hard work. Best to you.
When Navy SEALS come up, I get uneasy. I don’t know any SEALS, but I have met UK Special Forces members. All the “Only easy day was yesterday/pain is weakness leaving the body” stuff works for them because they are highly driven to succeed because they believe 100% passionately in the importance of their mission. The average (or even above average) widget maker, burger flipper or toilet cleaner doesn’t even HAVE a mission in their job, never mind passionate belief in it. SEALS, or members of SAS/SBS or other elite SF members are exactly that: a super-elite: what they are prepared to do accomplish their ends simply does not map onto the general population.
Thanks for jumping in Mitch. Hats off to you for sharing your thoughts. I’ll suggest that NOT working hard seldom gets anyone where they hope to go, regardless of their role.
Slightly different take on your “Dingbat Idea” theme. I once had an employee that was a master at coming up with Dingbat Ideas, which at first I thought warranted consideration. Over time, this behavior became so routine that a second look at what he was doing showed that he was doing it on purpose to divert attention, critical thinking, resources, etc. from the overall direction of the team he was on resulting in considerable pain being inflicted on his fellow teammates. Interestingly, the team figured it out and took him to task for what he was doing, which he did not accept to well. Eventually, he resigned from the company.
I agree that most don’t have the drive of a Navy Seal to do their day job. But in my training I ask them why they shouldn’t train to be elite vs mediocre. Elite is so much cooler. Not that many take the bait, but I guess that’s what separates elite from also rans.
If you have a laugh with your boss, your now best friends and you are exempted from boundaries and respect for your boss.
I respectfully disagree that you can’t laugh with your boss. I also disavow the term worklife balance as I have long said, “It is all life.” What kind of life is it when you can’t have a laugh once in a while. A boss who can laugh at themselves once in a while is a humble boss and one that is greatly respected. It is the boss who thinks they can’t show any weakness or have any fun that gets talked about behind their back. I think you are confusing fear with respect.