A few years ago, while talking with someone I was mentoring and counseling, she said to me a common phrase, “I just want to go up to the next level.”
I understand her intentions were good, but misdirected. She was very ego driven, and she regularly strived to “get better and better”, and the more she did, the more entrenched she was in “herself”, never getting past where she was… in fact, she was going backwards, or “down”, giving her a perception that she would need to go “up”, to get better… to the “next level”.
So, knowing her quite well, and that she was struggling with her ego, and it was ruling her, I said, well, in order to go to the next level, you’ll first need to go down a level or two, maybe three. She asked what I meant, and I told her that all her striving to go “up”, was like the rungs of a ladder snapping under her feet as she tried to climb that ladder, keeping her from her intended goal. That in order to get to that next level, she would have to go down. But what does that mean?
In her relationship she was failing, she needed to lay her life down. In business, she was egotistical and using people, she needed to adopt a new paradigm in which she would serve and love the people she was leading, not use them to serve her own purposes. Instead of always expecting and demanding to be first, she needed to willingly take last place so that others could rise up. Instead of “acting” like the “best version of herself”, she needed to discover who that was, through humbling herself, instead of acting out of her pride and ego.
The truth is, she was very insecure, and all the ego, pride related behaviors were survival techniques that were employed to hide and protect that reality. She needed to “do the work” to find that genuine self, instead she circumvented the work by striving, living out of her false self, and doubling down on what just didn’t work in order to survive, and present to the public a persona that reflected “success”.
In a real sense, this is what it looks like to be a “poser, faker, and wannabe.” It doesn’t mean she’s a bad person, but one in need of humility to receive leadership in her life at her core. She needed to go “down” a few levels, to get to the next level, not “up.” This is an all too common scenario in the business, and particularly, the entrepreneurial world.
There is an account of a highly skilled and qualified nurse that was revered in her field, so much so that she was asked to run an entire hospital. But in her spare time she was volunteering in a clinic that served dying patients. When asked, she declined and said, “thank you, but I believe I will continue to work with the dying ones who don’t have anyone else.” The article goes on to say that “she made her unassuming descent into greatness.” She went on to establish one of the largest networks of clinics serving in her field.”
This is what true mentorship will do for you. It will help you understand the true, genuine “you”, effectively deal with your brokenness that keeps your ego out front, and in the process, discover your “why and purpose”. In that order. Downward motion (humbling yourself), brings you to the “next level”. Pride comes before a fall… in this case if you keep trying to “climb (up) that ladder, you’ll likely keep falling off with the rungs breaking under your feet… on purpose. Hopefully you’ll stop doubling down on what doesn’t work, submit yourself to the “next level” of mentorship, the kind EIS provides, so that you can “descend into greatness”, and become all you are intended to be… starting with the genuine, authentic you.
Be sure to join the entire EIS staff tomorrow for an Open Forum on EIS LIVE! We will all be there to answer questions live and you can also go to @bill_hoffman_ now on Instagram and post your questions so you have a better chance of your question being answered during the broadcast. See you there! Monday 6PM EST