Struggles, success and punching from the hip

An original article by author


When the going gets tough (in business it's most of the time), every now and then I hear "we're gonna push hard and execute like mad" or similar notion to that effect from managers-in-disguise-as-leaders, mostly during pep-talk attempts.

It gets worse if the 'leader' is entirely inexperienced; which by itself is not a crime, but being inauthentic is. However that's another topic.

The implicit assumption is, to get results we have to work harder. If you can't find the bug, squint harder to see it. If customer's ain't responding, find more customers. Across the board, when 8-hour work day is not producing enough, let's push for 10.

If there's no result, you must not be working hard enough ain't it?

It is way too easy to draw the correlation between struggles with success. After all, every successful person worked hard at some point to get there.

The Candle Drill

If you haven't done it or seen it done before, let me tell you about candle drill.

I've been doing this close to a decade by now. Now let's see this kid do it...

Now replay it and see how much he struggled.

He didn't struggle one bit.

Get your friends to do it, I get guarantee you he'll throw punches so hard his hand hurts the next day, and candle stay burning.

So how is it done? It's in what I call the click in the last inch.

It doesn't matter how fast your hand travel from your body to the candle. Your brute strength in swinging your hand doesn't contribute to anything.

The trick is to relax up till the last inch, apply energy from your entire body to your hand and punch with explosive energy.

But wait, what does "apply energy from your body" mean?

You can't see it in the video, but it's about moving your hip in that split second to coincide with the punch that's so fast it make a wind strong enough to blow out a candle.

That my friend, is punching from the hip.

Sometimes I'm good enough to do it without moving my hips; my hand alone is fast enough to blow out the candle when I'm sufficiently coordinated to execute the last inch explosion.

Punching from the hip

When you do struggle, not only do you hand hurt the next few days, the candle stays lit.

When you do it right, there's no struggling. In my experience, this truth can be traced back to debugging, marketing, or even company culture.

The secret is in knowing what are the equivalent of your hips. Mostly likely they are not visible, unspoken and need to be discovered on your own.

If there's any struggling, it's should be the practice of honing timing of different body parts to come together and produce that one click. In the business world, that's called tweaking the system.

So the next time you feel like pulling your hair out, quit pushing and ask why you're not punching from the hip.

Do you even know what your hip is?