YES, I am Ready!

So how DO we know if we are ready for the next big step in life? I think it boils down to two things: Am I competent in the things I KNOW I will face, just not when – the “known unknowns” as Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld used to say? And maybe more importantly, am I agile enough to confront and deal with those challenges that are totally unexpected – the “unknown unknowns”? In the former, you can literally sit down and list the things you are sure you will need to be capable of doing, check off those you have already done to your satisfaction, set a course to learn those you feel less confident on, and earn your way to this next level of competence. The latter case is more difficult, as I learned multiple times in life, most memorably in Afghanistan, as I point out in an earlier blog post. What to do about the unknown and unexpected? Practice your mental agility: read stuff outside of your normal interests; meet and really talk with people not of your “tribe”; try hard to imagine alternative “realities”. And when life (or the competition, or the enemy) serves up the unexpected, LEARN!

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