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The Examined Life (or Career, or Business, or Sports Team or…)

September 30, 2010

Socrates said many amazing things. None of which really needs to be improved upon. However, let’s look at the comment, “The unexamined life is not worth living.” It’s a very interesting statement that is making a certain commentary which has a bit of truth to it. If one were to live without any examination of their life, that would be a shame and likely a wasted opportunity. But, in truth, most people examine their lives a little. The key (and the real truth in the statement) is that most people do not examine their life (or career, or business, etc.) enough!

This relates back to a model that I created called the Performance Shift Model. To create real change or forward momentum, we need to follow the cycle of 1. Observe, 2. Understand and 3. Capitalize (or Compensate). Without getting to much into the model, one of the keys is that we need to be able to objectively observe our environments. This is what Socrates was talking about when he was talking about the unexamined life.

So, perhaps a new way to look at the wise statement is, “The examined life is well worth living.” It’s a subtle but important shift in perspective.

When was the last time you examined your life, your career, your business, your family, your association… you name it.

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