Ok, so lets clarify right away that it was not a major crash in any way, some cuts and bruises only (and slightly momentarily battered self-confidence), but it provided some major lessons upon reflection.
I realize that I am probably a bit of a learning (and teaching) nerd, but my first thought after the crash, after checking that all bones and joints were still in their right places, was to ask myself: "What happened here?", "What can I learn from it?" and finally "How can I use that in the future?".
As my teacher Jim Rohn said as a succesful life philosophy; Study, Practice and Teach. I was in the midst of a pavement affected process of practicing and studying.
Anyhow, so upon reflection, without further ado, here are my main lessons on things I failed to do prior to my ruined pair of jeans:
- Plan ahead
In getting a bit over-confident on my rollerblades I did not look ahead and see the intersection which required two sharp turns on my parts.
In our life and leadership I think we need to lift our eyes and plan for the short and long term future. Again from Jim Rohn; "If you don't create a plan for your life, you will end up being part of somebody else's plan. And guess what they have planned for you, not much".
- Have fear, do not let the fear have you
Once I approached the intersection and in addition saw a bicycle coming from the other direction I thought something along the lines of "oh, crap..." and for a moment I got scared, scared to the point where I let fear control my actions (or lack there of). Courage as somebody said is not the absence of fear, but having fear and doing it anyway. So to be a courageous leader, acknowledge your fear, have fears, do not let them have you.
- Stay relaxed so you can be flexible if circumstances change
This goes hand in hand with the fear mentioned above and with the fact that we can make the best intended plans but sometimes circumstances change or new opportunities arise. If we are to rigid about our plan we will miss some of the goodies in life, some of the greatest opportunities. As another teacher of mine, Wayne Dyer, said: "Created a crystal clear image of your desired outcome, then let go of your emotional attachment to the result". By allowing fear to grab me, to have me, I got tense for a short moment and was not able to manouever my rollerblades as well as I could have. I am confident that had I staid relaxed I could either have the two sharp turns just fine (I ended up making the first one, but hitting the ground on the second one) or have seen another solution that occured to me afterwards, I could just have continued straight after my first turn and taken off in the "wrong" direction for about 10 seconds so I could slow down gently and then return unscathed to the intersection, but being to tense and stuck in my plan I failed to see that solution.
- Visualize your way through a challenge, and keep seeing it, have faith
In the midst of challenge (my high speed, two sharp and quick turns, plus the unexpected bicycle), tension and fear, I stopped believing. I stopped believing that I could make it (about the same time as the "oh, crap..." thought). My friend Ola Wallström who works with success strategies and mindsets, once told me he found two things his most successful clients had in common. It was not that they had the world's best goalsetting formula, it was that they believed what they wanted to acheive was possible for them to achieve, they had faith, and they had fun doing it. That day I had neither faith or fun on my rollerblades in those short seconds prior to my crash.
So I am happy to report I am back up on the horse, enjoying my rollerblades, and continue to be commited to a life long learning and giving :-)