Another reason for voting Leave: Big isn’t Better.

SnapnDrag108

 

In today’s world it is not size but flexibility that matters.

Big does not equal better. The greatest success stories in the animal kingdom are not huge elephants and rhinos, but ants. Billions and billions of them, in multiple self-sustaining colonies, underground, chattering away, getting on with the work of looking after each other and forming what is now believed to be a global network.

Today’s most successful wars are not won with nuclear bombs.  They are won with IEDs, Kalashnikovs, an empowering vision, and inspiring words. Small things. Lots and lots of them.

Big things are vulnerable and are easily crippled. “A bee can bite the bottom of the Pope in Rome” (Les Miserables”).  An easy target. Billions of small things are difficult to get rid of, as anyone who has had an infection knows only too well.

So how does this reflect on the Brexit campaign? 

The EU is focused on more and more centralisation and regulation, with fewer and fewer people making the crucial decisions. Common this, and common that. Fewer decision-makers mean slower decisions – and less time to make them so the quality becomes compromised. In today’s world that is bad news. The problem is not size in itself.  It is speed. Big things take a long time to get going, buy-in from all the parties takes close to eternity, and once they are on the move they are very difficult to stop – or even redirect.  And almost impossible to reverse.  Eventually they stop.  (See image above.)

In this world of exploding chaos and complexity, where centralised decision-making cripples progress, the world’s key decision-makers are those at the edge, ‘little people’ facing the immediate local situation who can switch twice in a day, adjusting to what they find.  And the best leaders are those who understand that principle, training those people, educating them, inspiring them … and then giving leadership-power away to them, empowering them to decide ‘there and then’ at the point of need, equipped with the knowledge they need. It is immediate connectivity and flexibility that are key in this context. The delivery driver on his mobile phone in his little white van phoning the customer, the school teacher in the classroom dealing immediately with the behaviour of a student, the bobby on the beat sorting an argument, the child deciding on what to have for breakfast.

SnapnDrag109

Think ant not articulated truck. When faced with a challenge, ants get into a little community group and sort out the problem, attacking, defending, and even dying when necessary. (They are typically called ‘worker’ ants.  I like that!) When the problem is solved, they go back to their work until needed again.  They will go to incredible lengths to support each other, sacrifice, and work.  The one in this pic is carrying a seed many times its weight and size.

And it all happens in seconds and minutes, not months and years. Quick, efficient, local decision-making by those affected by the decision sorting the problem out together. Collaboratively.  Without a formal structure.

So the predictions for the EU are speculated upon for the next 15 years. “It will be like this in 2030.”  One thing is sure.  Every prediction will be wrong, whoever makes it. Remember 15 years ago? It was the everyday people, filled with vision and purpose, who decided that for them there was no box to think out of. Like the bumble bee that is technically unable to fly because of it’s weight and wing area, they just get on and do it.

When I see the EU voting for the development of smaller government, disbanding important parts of itself (especially those that currently meddle uninvited in the detail of human community), distributing decision-making power to the edge, promoting freedom, encouraging diversity and speed by building connectivity (roads, airports, internet access), maybe it will get my vote.

I’m not holding my breath.  Today it seems to me to be more of a big overloaded truck stuck in a narrow lane, shouting at us about how we cannot do without it because it’s going places, yet blocking the way for the farmer, mother and deliveryman queued up behind, trying to get on with real life.

Meanwhile the flexible little ants quietly march past, over, under and round it, vote it off the job and get on with the work of living.

Those who want the EU are welcome to it. I’m voting ‘ant’.

 

Confident with the future? Try “Pre-retrospection”!

A year or so ago I developed a process for re-evaluating your whole life – even the life you haven’t lived yet!

Max is quick off the mark as usual.
Max is quick off the mark as usual.

I use it with clients who need reassurance of their decision-making processes, and people who are frightened to make a decision in case they miss something better (and as a result they make no decision and are stuck once more with the status quo.)  I used it last week when working with a business consultant in London and as usual it came up trumps.   I call it ‘Pre-retrospection’, and it is a way of looking back on your life from the end of it – as if it has been lived already – and noticing what you did, and how you did it.  It has a clever way of accessing what you think is true at a very deep level; it comes up with some hugely insightful information about the inner you – and is amazingly releasing.

Of course it is psychological tool and as such needs to be used wisely, preferably with someone who knows what they’re doing. It  has huge power and is a relaxing and enjoyable exercise.

I’m often with clients who come to me because they are stuck.  Fear is a normal part of life, but when fear starts to dominate, it reduces life to worse than a chore, with very little joy in it. Pre-retrospection is a great key to unlocking that fear, and clients enjoy life again, launching themselves into the future with confidence and assurance, just as my business consultant client did.  He sat in his chair after this exercise (it involves walking around and talking to yourself!) and told me how amazing he felt and what a good coach I was! (Nothing like a bit of praise for a good job done to make you feel good, eh?)?  Try “Pre-retrospection” – it’s all in the word> Retrospection: to look back.  Pre: before it has happened.  To look back before it as happened, but as if it HAS happened. (If I were a meercat I’d have a word for that: Simples.)

Want to try some?  You know what to do. (I’m sure my email address must be on this page somewhere!)