During our first day, Seth gave me a history lesson. In the context of business and work, he wanted me to understand where we are and how we got here. He showed me the nature of left-brain jobs and why they’re now going to the lowest bidder. He showed me an old building, where clothing was once manufactured, but no more. We visited unemployed workers who’s jobs were now being performed by workers in other countries. He continued by emphasizing the importance of creativity to a Linchpin. With each lesson, I felt a sincere desire from him to help me (and you) to break free of the binding chains that prevent us from becoming a Linchpin and reaching levels of success we desire. This day was fun, enlightening and encouraging.
Rising early the next day, I wanted to absorb more of Seth’s teachings. We began by visiting an art gallery. Confused, I asked: “What does art have to do with being successful?” “What is art to you, Ed?” he asked. My lizard brain wouldn’t allow me to answer. Stepping back outside the gallery, Seth directed my attention to different types of art. For example, a blog post, conversation, smile, the way an employee interacts with a customer, etc. “All those are forms of art, Ed.” My mind was broadening, as I was beginning to understand. Art wasn’t just a painting or a sculpture. Art can be almost anything. I could barely sleep this night, eager to learn more the next day.
We started day three at the zoo, where the lizards live. “You see these lizards?”, asked Seth. “Would you want one of these little guys to stand between you and success?”. “Certainly not!”, I replied. “It happens every day, even to me”, he said. Seth wanted me to understand that our lizard brain is that part of us that doesn’t want to feel rejection or failure. The lizard brain is all about fear, generally irrational fear. Your lizard brain wants to keep you like everyone else. It wants to spare you the pain and anguish of defeat. Unfortunately, your lizard brain isn’t interested in your success, but only your survival. Each day we must be wary of our lizard brain as it will keep us from stepping out and taking those chances necessary to achieve success. Linchpins have lizard brains just like everyone else, it’s just that their lizard brains are under better control. Wrapping up day three and learning about my lizard brain was very hard on me. In fact, my lizard brain didn’t want me to write this review. It was trying to convince me the review would sound stupid. Or that Seth would read the review and think it was stupid. Certainly, my lizard brain was more alive and more active than ever. Taming this lizard would be a big challenge for Ed - a daily challenge.
Appropriately, I arrived on time, meeting Seth at UPS to start day four. “How many gifts do you think are shipped by UPS each day, Ed?”, Seth asked. My lizard brain wouldn’t allow me to guess, as I was afraid to sound silly. Seth went on to explain the history and importance of gifts. Gifts are powerful and the artists who freely give gifts to the world are those people who earn our attention. For example, most of the information found in Seth’s books is also found in his blog and it’s free! What does he receive in return for giving the gift of a great, daily blog post? He receives a good feeling, many satisfied readers, the satisfaction of helping many people, and many potential book purchasers. But the key to the power of gift giving is to not give the gift expecting anything in return. If you do that, the gift isn’t a gift anymore - it’s a transaction.
To finish our four day adventure, Seth taught me about shipping. Essentially, shipping is the act of setting a time to ship, a goal of what you will be shipping, and putting aside perfectionism and resistance to actually ship. For example, I could edit this blog post for two months. I could tinker with it, change a few things here and there, and write it over and over again. What would that accomplish? Not much. Indeed, it’s important to do quality work, but don’t allow yourself to be hindered because you can’t ship. In all honesty, my lizard brain has been fighting with me about this blog post for months. It’s not a good place to be so don’t allow it to happen. Linchpin will help you overcome your lizard brain.