“Reject your sense of injury and the injury itself disappears.” ― Marcus Aurelius
Lincoln Stoller, PhD, 2020. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International license (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) www.mindstrengthbalance.com
On the world’s stage are performances of failed leadership, inequitable management, poor science, and bad advice. It’s not just the failure of centralized supply and distributed manufacturing, it’s also the failure of centralized thinking. A failure that arises when our information and expertise is distributed by and filtered through specialists who become information bottlenecks.
The media has an average understanding of established information, but there is no established information about the virus, and the average of what’s available keeps changing. Like the broken supply and manufacturing chains, the media spews questionable information like a run-away fire truck.
A critical publication on the anti-malarial drug Hydroxychloroquine reported that its use in COVID-19 patients created twice as many fatalities as no treatments at all. This was widely reported by the major media and trumpeted by politicians and public health officials.
Conservative economist Chris Martinson returned to the original research and showed, using the information in the publication, that the work was thrown together without skill or accuracy. As a result, the analysis amounted to worthless science from which no conclusions can be drawn. (See “Coronavirus: Debunking The Hydroxychloroquine ‘Controversy’ (Dr. Chris Martenson)” at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dLSYRqcg0wo)
A better analysis of the data leads to a result almost contrary to what was stated and rebroadcast by the media. The study did not contradict the increasing amount of anecdotal medical literature that shows a proper administration of Hydroxychloroquine has reduced serious complications from COVID-19 by almost half. In spite of this truth, the fallout effect of this fallacious report continues to mislead administrators and politicians.
When situations spin outside the norm, normal channels report information inaccurately. You must gather information yourself, and the information you need is available. To become informed, first recognize that being informed is not your right, it’s your responsibility.
Do not rely on the major media, politicians, or public health officials who are, by definition, answerable to vested interests. For these people the balance of power is primary and truth is secondary. Instead, follow individual doctors and scientists who are accurate observers. Here are three sources of accurate medical information that post regular YouTube videos.
The mainstream media is a narcotic cocktail of an irrelevant spectator sport, palliative social bonding, and damaging misinformation. Listening to mainstream media is like huddling on the Titanic and listening to clueless leadership while select elements of the corporate infrastructure lower financial bailout lifeboats where you can’t see them. We must take responsibility for being informed using both original sources and our bodies’ own wisdom.
Successful planning is not built solely on an intellectual understanding of the situation. If we take that approach, then our course is optimized by learning all the facts, and it only changes when the facts change. This strategy works when the facts are known, the goal is fixed, the path evident, and our intentions are clear. In business, this static approach is called “the waterfall approach” because once we begin, we’re inexorably swept over the consequences like a series of waterfalls.
The requirements of this approach are rarely met. In a changing world, it does not make sense to fix a method for a creative process. Every ingredient of the waterfall approach is subject to change and the larger, longer, or more complex the project, the more each of its elements may change with time or context. We’re in the middle of a complex project now: the pandemic.
In organizations, the waterfall approach fails more than 75% of the time. It fails because organizations are dissociated personalities that rely on numbers. They lack a connection with their own subconscious and have no intuition to guide them. They are the organizational equivalent of insane people.
People don’t organize their lives using the waterfall approach, though they give it lip service. It sounds good to say we’ve got it figured out, but, in fact, the more well-balanced we are, the less structure we need.
Well-balanced people intuit the stability and solidity of their environment. At the same time, the more our environment loses its stability and solidity, the less well-balanced we become. Figuring our way forward through uncertain times requires greater personal flexibility, stability, and insight than normal.
The insight we need is both insight into external events and insight into the needs and motivations of people, including ourselves. Our own needs become difficult to manage when the needs in our environment lose form: we are the stories we tell.
These are times to find and hold our center, both individually and collectively. Community cohesion is both a social and personal need. Politicians and administrators who fail to create unity are either personally dysregulated or are looking for personal profit.
Simply arguing for personal balance does not make it happen. It may turn your attention inward, but it’s not clear that you’ll know what to do with what you see. This is a circumstance where what we call management morphs into what we call therapy. Management was always more than just arranging the pieces, and therapy is more than fixing what’s broken.
I suggest a session with your subconscious. Your subconscious is your silent partner, except it’s not so silent when your personality cracks. Then, the sea of emotional perception and emotional expression inundates your landscape.
There are three situations in which you’re in deeper touch with your subconscious: in your feelings, in your dreams, and at some fundamental level all the rest of the time.
In the last of these—during “all the rest of the time”—your subconscious streams behind you. You’re looking forward into the “real world” like a person running a race, focusing on the image of progress. Considering your subconscious in these situations takes finesse lest it causes you to stumble. This is why the subconscious is ignored in business: it’s too amorphous and complex.
Your dreams have been reminding you of your subconscious’s presence in your daily life. Dreams inject fertile chaos: the uncertainty of unconsidered possibilities. Dreams are disruptive elements from your subconscious, more disruptive than what’s already on your radar.
Dreams emerge to have disruptive effects if you have the mental resources they require. You’ll have dreams even if you lack these resources, but you won’t remember them. In this case, their operation will remain in your subconscious, lost from recollection.
Your feelings are invitations to consciously engage the currents of your subconscious. The feelings of others are opportunities for building consensus. Feeling are the dumplings in the stew of your emotions. Moods are the perceptual gloss these emotions caste on the world around you. Urges are the ideas that bubble up.
To invite your subconscious, sink into your feelings. Explore your moods and let your urges speak to you. Engage your emotions like a wobbly landlubber boarding a sailboat, fumbling to cast-off, and let the wind carry you.
I’ve written the guided visualization called The Voyage to trace these steps from the conscious to the subconscious. The Voyage builds a cross-dimensional bridge between the apparently definitive conscious world and the soft, multi-layered subconscious world from which we create our conscious perception.
The goal is to navigate in the current, chaotic environment: lowering the keel of emotional balance and raising the sail of intuition to move with direction through our fluid situation. The visualization uses a land-ocean-boat metaphor. It doesn’t require that you have boating experience, in fact, it’s better if you don’t. That way, what you imagine will be your mind’s real territory, not one from memory. Join me in The Voyage.