Thursday, October 22, 2015

Lessons from Steve Jobs

I just saw the movie, Steve Jobs.  Before that, I saw the documentary about Steve Jobs.  Before that, I read the biography about Steve Jobs.  I'm reading it again now.

There are sooo many lessons.  My brain wants to explode.  I'm writing them down as a way of protecting my brain from total destruction.

Walking & Talking
"Taking a long walk was his preferred way to have a serious conversation" (Isaacson, 2011, p. xvii)
When friends want to talk about work or relationship problems, I invite them for a 3 mile walk around the Rose Bowl. I no longer agree to talk over lunch. At the end of the walk, we both feel better. It's like the trees and wind and earth have absorbed the energy they were dying to release. We both feel cleaner.

I provide clinical supervision to counselors and therapists at mental health and family agencies. This means we talk about the problems they are having in their work with clients, families and agency staff.  It can mean a lot of sitting and listening and absorbing problem energy.  So I take it outside and we walk around the neighborhood to talk.  Again, I find that we both feel better.  So much better that I encourage them to do the same on home visits with clients.  The literature supports the benefits of outdoor exercise for mood problems.  It makes sense but I can get you the references if needed.

Acceptance & Integrity

Job's official biographer, Walter Isaacson, points out that he agreed to write the book because Jobs ceded control over it saying:
"I've done a lot of things I'm not proud of...but I don't have any skeletons in my closet that can't be allowed out" (p. xix-xx). 
Isaacson confirms that Jobs "didn't seek any control over what I wrote, or even ask to read it in advance" (p. xx). Isaacson writes,
"[Jobs'] wife also did not request any restrictions or control, nor did she ask to see in advance what I would publish.  In fact she strongly encouraged me to be honest about his failings as well as his strengths. She is one of the smartest and most grounded people I have ever met.  'There are parts of his personality that are extremely messy, and that's the truth,' she told me early on.  'You shouldn't whitewash it.  He's good at spin, but he also has a remarkable story, and I'd like to see that it's all told truthfully'" (p. xx).
I am old enough not to do anything I'd be ashamed of other people knowing about. Also, I'm old enough to accept whatever I've done (no matter what it is) and not be ashamed. This is self-acceptance and protection from being manipulated.  No one can blackmail or shame you (emotionally, financially or otherwise) if you're not ashamed of the pictures, videos, text messages or other forms of evidence of your past behavior. :)

We are made up of shadow and light.  That's what makes us human.  Our ability to integrate the shadow and light is what makes us whole.  Amen.

I'm just getting started. I haven't even posted about the whole number pages from the book yet...

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