Unique relevance of Unclear and Uncertain Areas in setting and netting your goals!

If Lionel Messi of Barcelona club, who has been rated as the best soccer player today in the world, knows exactly how to break defense of opposite teams and score a goal, he would no longer be the best nor would he have thrill to play. If his tactics are clear and definable, he can be beaten easily by his opponents. Worst would be spectators losing charm to watch him, because they would know how would he move and score! So, it is the unclear area or undefined move that Messi or any other player makes to break the defense and net the goal, and that is what keeps him and audience glued to game!

Another thing we don’t realize that to say “I have nothing to do” is meaningless! Your mind always does something. You get a feeling of nothing to do, only when you are searching for something and don’t pick one. You are, then, actually in an uncertain zone and eventually, come out of it when you start doing something, which no one but you resisted earlier.

Nearly everyone realizes that having goals, short and long terms, are critical for a meaningful life; but what is new here is that it is unclear and uncertain areas, which bring excitement and motivation! When things become black and white, curiosity dies, so also the drive!!

Paradox is we die to know things clearly; but our motivation to live comes from unknown. No sooner clarity and certainty come, life becomes lifeless!!

Here are interesting findings from my research that a good life revolves around:

60 % clear areas

These are ones, which you know or are able to perceive what to do and what can happen by not doing same. For example – to save your teeth, you need to brush; punctuality is demanded by your company (whether you follow that or not is a different matter) or you step on a ditch, no one but you would be hurt!

There is a threshold for how much you should know and follow, beyond which it is detrimental. I know of a multinational corporation, whose top boss was highly organized and disciplined. His sermons to whole organization were that be fully system oriented and every employee should know how to perform duties. Over a period of time, this organization rolled out processes for every activity, it could imagine. After a couple of years, when “employee opinion survey” was ordered by the boss, he was shocked at the outcome – motivation and excitement levels of employees were very low! Later, he also learned from his HR that there was alarming rise in spouses deserting the company employees. He could relate the reason later, when in a company party, an employee narrated to him proudly how he always plans his weekends on hour to hour basis in advance!!

So, to operate in areas where you have nearly 100% information or knowledge is really no brainer and hurts over time. Threshold appears around 60%.

30 to 33% undefined areas

Believe it or not; we have 30 to 33% areas, which we follow; but we don’t or are unable to define or understand the reality or rationale behind!

Boss of above company developed the trait of being highly organized and disciplined; but could not figure out whether it is good to impose that on employees.

A life size example is the faith you follow! Faith beckons when it is blind!! If you try to find rationale behind your faith, it would only fracture or even disappear.

Another important example is talent/s, which people have whether technocrats, singers, sportsmen or artists. They demonstrate their talents; but don’t know how and why! Perhaps this is where their secret lies. What exactly makes Beyoncé Knowles to mesmerize her audience? If she tries to know, she would risk losing that!

7 to 10% uncertain areas

Everyone has at least 7% of areas, which are completely uncertain or unknown; but at same time the most unique by opportunity!

These areas should be used to set your goal/s – you want to be CEO of a Billion Dollar Company or want to own asset worth 10 Million Dollars and you don’t know how to get there, set that as your goal! Direct your efforts and make continual correction in that direction, without getting desperate. You would have a chance to get there.

Moral of story

  • Knowing and following too much is troublesome!
  • Don’t tread on the path most traveled, as it is going to be chaotic and congested.
  • Be ritualistic but not more than 60% of your life and time.
  • Demonstrate your talent, creativity and/or beliefs to the extent of 30 to 33% in your space and time. If you do more, you would invite problem with your beloved or buddies! Seek to know what is it; but not why it is!!
  • Determine your goal/s from what you don’t know how to get! You have 7 to 10% of areas, which are uncertain for you and your success eventually comes from those!

If you do the above, your story would certainly be exquisite and excellent!

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9 Comments
  • Rudra
    Oct 15,2013 at 4:03 pm

    So do you suggest rather than being “jack of all trades”, we should take life/information as it comes?

    As I understood it, you’re pressing on the fact that we should not let ourselves out completely and recurrently, but in installments, correct?

    Hmmm… interesting!! 🙂

    • Oct 15,2013 at 5:21 pm

      Thanks for your views! Views in any case are valuable!!

      No; let me rephrase what you have stated and please advise me whether it makes better sense. A “jack of all trades” believes that he/she knows everything and that by itself is a problem! His/her life becomes mundane or miserable, because there is nothing more to discover or look forward to by his/her perception. As post suggests, a good life is when you believe you know only 60% and 30 to 33% is what you follow but don’t or can’t define (please see examples in post). 7 to 10% are those areas, you have no clue of and that should help you to target to work for!

      • Rudra
        Oct 16,2013 at 11:43 am

        Yepp… much clearer now!! 🙂

  • Murli Lohia
    Oct 12,2013 at 4:13 pm

    Transferred from LinkedIn

    Satish kumar Verma

    consultant at sarovar enterprise

    On 10/11/13 8:20 PM, Satish kumar Verma wrote:

    One has to operate beyond the”comfort zone” to achieve the set goals.Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome.

    • Oct 12,2013 at 4:16 pm

      Well said and true! Thanks a lot for sharing your views!!

  • Prasad Narayanan
    Oct 12,2013 at 10:35 am

    Can’t agree more, Mr Lohia. Food for thought for many large organisations. They have a tendency to come up with new processes every time there is a failure however small they may be, which eventually limits the entrepreneurial skills of the employees. This eventually affects the creativity and innovation culture of organisation.

    • Oct 12,2013 at 3:13 pm

      Thanks a lot for your candid views and sharing your experience and counsel!

      What you have stated is true!! Most organizations and their bosses do need to change their perceptions and approach.

  • Deelip Amolic
    Oct 11,2013 at 8:59 am

    So true Sir, especially the case study on the boss of an MNC.

    At times I doubt the definition of a ” perfectionist ” itself… I have and do come across company bosses who are so ( or over ) possessive of systems and perfection, yet the employee satisfaction index terribly low.

    Sincere thanks for this post !

    • Oct 11,2013 at 3:50 pm

      It is my pleasure! I indeed appreciate your feedback and views !!

      It is very nice to complement the post with your rich experience.

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