I’m sure that most of you know the classic tale of the Tortoise and the Hare. One of Aesop’s famous fables, it not only compares two different animals, but also two fundamentally different philosophies on how to approach life and business.
As you may recall, the original version actually takes a position, and presents “slow and steady,” the way of the tortoise, as the better choice. After all, he in fact wins the race.
But for today, let’s operate as though both options are equally valuable, only different.
How are they different? Ultimately it’s their style — and the way they are being in the world. The hare is a bit more flashy and confident, while the tortoise keeps his head down and pursues his goals with consistency. The tortoise is constant while the hare surges ahead and falls behind.
We all have tendencies in one or the other of these camps. Some are tortoises — slow and meticulous, planners, predictable, and acutely aware of every square inch of terrain in the immediate vicinity. And others are hares — more visionary, more impulsive, bold, quicker to act, but less efficient and requiring higher maintenance.
Remember, today we’re relating to both animals as able to cross the finish line at the same time. Neither is inherently better than the other.
Both options have desirable traits. For example, the hare is fast and the tortoise is reliable.
It’s not a matter of figuring out which animal is better, so much as identifying which one each of us tends to resemble. Then, in order to expand our range, we can practice some of the traits of the other.
In other words, if you know yourself to be someone who gets mired in the details, try zooming out and looking at the big picture. If you’re someone who has amazing ideas but finds yourself getting stuck in the execution, consider slowing down and cultivating a more practical and systemic aspect of your approach. Even just bringing in another point of view can be supportive.
Remember, we humans can do something which other animals cannot — with motivation, we can rise above our instincts. We can become conscious of our behavior, and then choose something different.
Sometimes we can be too smart for our own good. But when we focus and harness our higher intelligence, we can create impact and opportunity.
Whether you identify as more of a tortoise or a hare, or even notice qualities of both, new awareness plus new action equals new results.
Here’s to another opportunity this morning to create possibility and of course business.
Have a great meeting. And as always, a powerful day!