Select Page

A Goal to observe…

by | Jan 7, 2021 | Goals, observe, Styx

I started this blog to explicitly keep me from writing and commenting about politics, and I don’t plan to start now… other than to point out the songs for this week, including yesterday’s and today’s were chosen last week.  I do see the irony in that, and will add that the theme for yesterday was manage and today’s is always observe… which I think is important to remember.  We see mostly what we want to see… our Brains look for confirmation of our opinion, and then discard the rest.  It is the hardest part about human communication – what is in your Brain and mine are completely different, and the notion of “truth” has already been described as “mine” or “yours” and that is more correct than we would like to believe.  So.. how do we set a Goal to observe

I find great consolation in music generally, and specifically in times that are difficult to understand and process.  And if you don’t notice, as you get older you start to look back more at history, and see that many of the patterns we are caught up in are … timeless.  Yesterday’s song was written as a lament at how America had lost its way … in 1976.  And probably it had, but I was just graduating from high school and was probably closer to the tune for today.  Not the Angry part, but more the Foolin’ Yourself part of the title. 

In my corporate story, I was for sure the Angry part… and had started to notice that the position I was now in was literally no-win.  If you have never been in Product Management, you may not get it, but anyone that is or has been – they know exactly what it is like.  And it is where I started to really recognize my stance – what I observed – made a transformational difference.  If I looked at the problem backlog from Customer Support it was terrible.  If I looked at the Engineering backlog as what we couldn’t do, it was horrible.  If I looked at the Marketing team demands, they of course were always saying we were WAY behind.  And then there was Sales… which in a PG blog I cannot say what they said to me… 

… and if I took a side, the other 6 would take me out.  I know I have written about this before, but I cannot emphasize enough how important it is to realize that observation is where this all begins.  Your stance, what you see, and how you handle that observation in your own Goals – personally and professionally – makes the difference.  I learned the hard way in this season to both understand what was possible… and how to balance that with the fact that each perspective is both right and wrong.  Compromise is a dirty word these days… and literally, every Product you are using has been Managed to be a compromise.  Engineering didn’t get what they could do, or Marketing, or Support… and most of all not, Sales 😉  Although salespeople are the best negotiators, they also know a deal when it is close… 

… Tommy Shaw joined the band as you heard when John left… and to this day thinks he got the job only because he could sing the high harmony on Lady that was now the go-to song in their setlist.  But he started to slowly bring songs to the band that he was seeing, and became the author of about half of their hits.  And, the biggest hits were still written by Dennis DeYoung – who inspired today’s track.  The band was touring a lot with triple-platinum albums – and Tommy noticed that it was not as much fun for Dennis.  He said that the song was written for Dennis but eventually saw that it applied to his own life as well… 

… and many others. Tom Petty said it about songs that he wrote – they needed to be 3 Dimensional.  They captured a moment in your own life, those around you, but also something that is universal … that speaks to everyone.  Songwriters talk about this – the great songs are mostly gifts they are given and channeled by them into the world.  Songwriters are simply conduits to deliver the song they write into our ears, but connecting to something universal we all identify with. Today’s song certainly taps into a universal experience that is sadly timeless… 

… an emotion I have noticed that is universal particularly these days:  Fear… followed quickly by Anger, and then… Rage.  And I don’t like to focus on it… but it is real…and present.  And only because I am old, and have experiences in both business and life that have provided me with a way to observe things differently, I offer this simple reflection: What are you seeing?  And is it real?  And more importantly, how can you actually affect it? These questions will put you back into your own driver’s seat, and not reacting to others’ agendas or motives, which are often directing your Goals… 

I caught up with an old friend today, and we talked about things of the day… and then moved into the space of what we can now do differently.  I watched another friend’s video today about … wait for it… Anger.  And how it is GOOD – it actually motivates you to take action.  I am not sure what to say today – other than, I know what I can control, and I focus on that.  I am not just observing… I am realizing that much of what we see is actually… in the name of today’s triple-platinum album: The Grand Illusion.  From 1977.  And that makes it easier to understand that I am … Fooling Myself.

You see the world through your cynical eyes
You’re a troubled young man I can tell
You’ve got it all in the palm of your hand
But your hand’s wet with sweat and your head needs a rest

And you’re fooling yourself if you don’t believe it
You’re kidding yourself if you don’t believe it
Why must you be such an angry young man
When your future looks quite bright to me
How can there be such a sinister plan
That could hide such a lamb, such a caring young man

You’re fooling yourself if you don’t believe it
You’re kidding yourself if you don’t believe it
Get up, get back on your feet
You’re the one they can’t beat and you know it
Come on, let’s see what you’ve got
Just take your best shot and don’t blow it

You’re fooling yourself if you don’t believe it
You’re killing yourself if you don’t believe it
Get up, get back on your feet
You’re the one they can’t beat and you know it
Come on, let’s see what you’ve got
Just take your best shot and don’t blow it

 

Share This