Calibrate Always

Day 155 Week 23 Q2 Monday, June 3, 2024

Sometimes, when we experiment and explore a new creative idea, it doesn’t work. And if we do that before getting calibrated in the morning and ready for life, it can set us off on the wrong path for the day. This does not mean that we have to be inflexible and always calibrate first, although it could be a good idea. If you were a pilot and decide to skip the checklist and start flying first, this can be disastrous. on the other hand, launching into the day is more like getting into the plane and flying, and just because you did some experiments that did not work before you got calibrated does not mean you intend to launch into the day uncalibrated.

So remember, just because you get bummed out that an experiment did not work that you have the tools to get calibrated before you leave the house and enter into the day. This is just a reminder that you should always calibrate and always check the list before flying. But it doesn’t mean that if you have a picnic lunch before you fly, you are going to leave into the air without checking the checklist first. Do your experiments and take on your tangents; after all, you are a creative outlier, and this is what we do.

As an involuntary innovator, I can assure you that much of what I do was not what I was planning to do, and sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn’t. This is why it is critical to have the ability to reset yourself or recalibrate before launching for the rest of the day. Now the question can be asked: what if you had gotten calibrated first? Would the likelihood of the morning experiment succeeding be higher? Possibly, it would, but we all have to permit enough degrees of freedom in our lives to not do everything in the same order every day.

Just remember that when you are doing experiments, there is no such thing as failure, as you are learning something. However, it might make sense to avoid experimenting when you are trying to get a specific and timely outcome. I am unsure about this because very actively doing an experiment and failing as the first thing you do in the day and then recovering from it is not a bad way to start the day. This may be a rationalization or may be true, or maybe both.

In either case, it just supports the notion of always calibrating, whether it is the first thing or the second or third thing. It does not make sense to make it the last thing you do, though because your day will not likely have gone very well.

It sure feels great to have the tools, though, to be able to rescue yourself, so use them. After all, you invented them for a purpose, not to keep them on the shelf as a backup plan. Use your backup plan and make sure that you are comfortable playing it even when you don’t feel great. That is the entire purpose of having a life preserver because you know that you might capsize. You may not intend to capsize, but if it is not the worst thing in the world, unless, of course, you have a gigantic ship, creative outliers rarely captain.

This is why I like small boats like kayaks because you can capsize without much penalty.

By the way, this is why a kayak is like a start-up.  More on that at a different time, perhaps tomorrow.