TN50 #54, The Strength of the Wolf, 10 January 2022

Hi Team,

Happy Monday and welcome to The Next 50 #54.  For whatever reason Actually for a few very good reasons I have been pondering the following quote from Kipling a lot recently.

Or maybe you prefer this one

I can’t remember how many years/decades ago I first saw this quote but I probably gave it all of about 3 seconds thought before I thought something really deep like, “cool”.  A mental picture of Keanu Reeves in Point Break flashed in my head as I wrote this last sentence so maybe I first saw the quote in the early 1990’s.

Recently, as a person and a coach, I have been grinding on how to focus the mind, of myself and others, to personalize above average performance systems.  So right about now if you actually read that last sentence, you are probably saying, “huh”.  In Kipling-lingo, how to be an above average wolf for wolf’s sake.  This is one of those situations when it may be easier to explain what I mean by giving some examples of the opposite situation.

Example 1.  How many of you know someone who worked out like a fiend at their local gym and when the lock down hit and gyms closed, last year, this individual completely stopped working out?  This individual hasn’t figured out how to work out for their own sake without a group, they work out for the pack, their 0530 CROSSFIT class.

Example 2. How about someone who has spent an entire career in the military, law enforcement or even professional sports who consistently maintained their fitness only to retire and seemingly fall apart in a matter of months.  This person’s “fitness” identity was tied to that of their pack, their unit or their team.

In both of these examples I used a physical scenario because it’s easy to recognize but we all know that there are many more mental and emotional examples that we can reference.  He just wasn’t the same after he retired, she changed after she left the unit…  You get the idea and most of you have already pictured names and faces of examples you know as you are reading this sentence.

To refresh you on the question I am wanting to solve for:

How do you build and maintain high performance physical, mental and emotional capacity, as an individual with no team to motivate you or enhance your identity?

Consider this entry the first in a series on, The Strength of the Wolf topic and I will leave you with some smaller questions to grind on until we revisit this topic in a few weeks:

  1. How do we as individuals make sure that we are balancing internal and external identity, motivation and drive?
  2. Can you truly know which is which in your current life?
  3. Can you identify which common strengths you should focus on as an individual, that will support you well as an individual and as a member or leader of any “Pack”?

As always please share your thoughts and/or questions on this “Part 1” and share this with your team or anyone who might find it useful.

Have a good one, Alex

2022 Murph Count: 25 – Half Way!