Who wants to think of themselves as ordinary? Certainly not me. Believing that you are someone special is important for a balanced life. So imagine my delight when I discovered that, according to a commonly held definition, I am in fact a genius.
Apparently, genius is often defined as the ability to hold two contradictory opinions at the same time. The novelist F. Scott Fitzgerald even goes further by saying “… is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function”. In my line of work this ability is not a ‘nice to have’ but a necessity.
Let me give you an example: ‘I believe that my client should expand her business via franchising but under no circumstance should she franchise her business.’ Now if you think I have gone mad, it might be because there is very little difference between genius and madness. And if you think that my ultimate solution to my client’s problem is to do nothing, then you would be wrong.
The problem is that when most of us get an idea into our heads, it is not until someone else comes along and challenges it that we, with regret, either give it up or carry on regardless.
A genius in business is to be able to hold two, or more, contradictory opinions or ideas at once and to hold them with a passion. Because of this, when they finally make a decision, they have a fully objective and balanced view of their chosen direction. This enables them to understand both the pitfalls and opportunities of their chosen path and thereby have a suitable strategy in place to achieve their objective.
Relying on others to challenge your ideas is fine but one problem I have noticed is that the further you travel up the ladder of success, the less they are likely to do so and the less you are able to hear them.
Have a good week,