In the story of “Repairing The Colorful Mat”, Ito, who is in her 80s, found her original style in her embroidery work which was about to be thrown away.
Then, we came to conclude that confidence might mean an attitude of believing in a person’s natural feeling.
While Hachi was writing the article, she also listened to her inner voice like this:
Well, I am writing an article, as if I have confidence all the time and it has been natural for me to support people to find their own natural feelings.
But I did not have confidence at all for a long time.
I wondered a lot how it was like to have confidence.
I cannot skip the story to go further.
An article is reviewed again and again.
Therefore, it shows the best version of a writer.
Beelationship often tries to follow what is happening among people who relate to it.
That’s why Hachi slightly feels uncomfortable to write about herself here.
However, if she could verbalize something about her past difficult days and find something common between us, that might mean something as inner work in public.
Therefore, she encouraged herself to write about her difficult days when she tried to find her natural feeling and her confidence.
School days when individuality cannot be found
Hachi has heard that the meaning of confidence in Japanese(自信) is consisted of two parts: “believing(信)” “in yourself(自)”.
She did remember the phrase because she had no idea what exactly confidence meant and it was thought-provoking to hear that.
Advice from a friend of hers
Hachi enjoyed her life in a high school so much, but she often worried about variety of matters.
One day, Hachi asked a close friend for her advice.
Then, the friend answered like this:
“You’d better not to hear any advices. Find your own answer by yourself.”
The friend said that she got the answer while she was wondering what to say to Hachi during the class(!), so that she asked Hachi to come out to the corridor in fifteen minutes break between the classes, and talked about her idea, watching courtyard together from the window.
The friend’s advice really got the point.
Hachi was obedient, yet was easily absorbed in other people’s opinions at that time.
She experimented every advice she got, but she could not find something stable.
How can she find her own answer by picking each advice which emerged at a given moment?
Thanks to the friend’s advice, Hachi’s journey of finding her natural feelings began.
The friend’s advice and her attitude really encouraged Hachi, making Hachi feel that she was not alone even when she needed to be alone to find herself.
Cooperativeness, Diligence and a Sense of Security of Belonging
When children start to learn social life, they come across many programs.
School education is one of them.
In 1990s education system in Japan, children learned things uniformly.
They were required to understand questions and to find correct answer properly in order to get good grades.
Also, there was an atmosphere that it was more important to have friends to spend lunch time or recess.
It is important to learn solidarity.
Children can learn a sense of solidarity and what to do as they observe other friends, and stimulate each other.
However, in Japan, solidarity seems to have been included in Japanese nature already, so that it seems to be more important to find and work on their own themes or projects(finding individuality), yet it was rarely focused.
Summer research assignment or school events could be great occasions for developing individuality, but those events were momentary events (like fireworks) in school life.
Hachi did some assignments, looking around her friends, feeling a sense of security and belonging.
Hachi became a grown-up with the influential habit in the educational system and started working for a company as a group member.
She sometimes felt slight emptiness on the way home after work, watching sunset, yet it disappeared soon if she did not pay attention to it carefully.
Training for Believing in Oneself
Since Hachi spent her childhood and early adolescence like that, it always came first to think about others.
She did not hate the aspect of her nature.
She also got a hunch that she liked listening to other people and supporting them to find out their own solutions.
However, the attitude was on the unstable characteristic foundation and easily affected by others.
In early adolescence, she tried to fit herself for an advocated image of a therapist, and put aside her feelings.
Slump and Tasks
In Hachi’s late 20s, possible doors to the worlds of where she vaguely dreamt, were closed one by one, and only a possible lifelong theme was left in front of her.
It is said that life is reconstructed around 30, 60 or perhaps 90 years old, remaining only strictly-selected lifelong themes.
So was it for Hachi.
(The same thing can be said to Ito, who found her originality of embroidery works in her late 80s, yet she needed to take care of her health as well.)
A common phenomenon between Ito (in her late 80’s) and Hachi (in her late 20’s) might be a feeling of getting lost, waking up in the morning with anxiety and groping in the darkness every single moment.
Ito’s old identity (doing embroidery for someone else, not for herself) was broken and she needed to do it just for her joy.
Hachi’s old identity (listening to people and helping others, putting her needs or will aside) was totally broken at that time.
Improving Hachi’s English Skills
In those circumstances, she needed to work on improving actual skills, not inner matters.
For example, one of them was English skills.
She needed to ask herself these questions first:
What exactly do you want to do in English?
What is your weak points?
What are the suitable materials?
She needed to find out and create her own program, not following what everyone supposed to do.
Eventually and gradually, she started improving her English in the natural way like a child did.
Aha! moment sometimes occurred in the process, which made Hachi excited
However, she spent most of the time struggling with inner critic.
One day, she got teary-eyed and was unable to read a textbook because she became so anxious about progress and wondered a lot whether improving English actually shaped her future.
If Hachi could meet herself in the past, she would advice herself not to listen to inner critic all the time, and just focus on keeping improving skills.
Repetitive training itself become not only the way to acquire skills but also the way to resolve the inner critic later.
After finishing the textbook, Hachi did feel that there was the best timing for learning; It was when someone eager to learn.
And she wished to experience the learning process in her school days.
Her desire led her to think of educational system again.
Writing Inner Work in the Morning
Another thing she worked on everyday at that time was writing down natural feelings in the morning.
The aim was to discover which direction she really wanted to go: She often found the difference between what her head said and what her heart felt.
The deepest feeling was expressed again and again on a notebook.
Then, the question “when do you start?” was naturally popped up, so that a next task was emerged, which was sometimes unexpected one.
Hachi is now sure that the work is effective, but, at that time, she was uncertain about it and was totally lonely in the negative way, working on it alone sitting at her desk.
In order to endure loneliness, she read the book about a positive meaning of loneliness(solitude), then got back to work.
Things did not formulated in reality at all at that time.
However, mental energy got deepened, which became a key in the future (now).
What she found in struggling time
Even though Hachi never wants to go back to the struggling moments, she found the meaning of the phase now.
It was the time for changing “each cell in her body” in order to get used to her quest.
After she got used to the feeling of the quest, she began to distinguish when was the right timing or wrong timing to do things so that less mental energy was required.
Also the process of deepening mental energies gave her a habit of taking herself by herself to a ‘balcony’ to see an overview when she was stuck.
If Hachi could meet herself in the past, she hopes to talk about what will happen later, having a cup of tea, and encourage her to keep doing that.
The Power of Introverts
Most of things were hard for her at that time, yet there was a thing which shifted her assemblage point: She happened to watch a video of “The Power of Introverts” by Susan Cain.
Cain, S. (2012, February). Susan Cain: The power of introverts ［Video file］. Retrieved from https://www.ted.com/talks/susan_cain_the_power_of_introverts
When I was nine years old, I went off to summer camp for the first time. And my mother packed me a suitcase full of books, which to me seemed like a perfectly natural thing to do. Because in my family, reading was the primary group activity. And this might sound antisocial to you, but for us it was really just a different way of being social. You have the animal warmth of your family sitting right next to you, but you are also free to go roaming around the adventureland inside your own mind. And I had this idea that camp was going to be just like this, but better.
I had a vision of 10 girls sitting in a cabin cozily reading books in their matching nightgowns.
Camp was more like a keg party without any alcohol. And on the very first day, our counselor gathered us all together and she taught us a cheer that she said we would be doing every day for the rest of the summer to instill camp spirit. And it went like this: “R-O-W-D-I-E, that’s the way we spell rowdie. Rowdie, rowdie, let’s get rowdie.”
Yeah. So I couldn’t figure out for the life of me why we were supposed to be so rowdy, or why we had to spell this word incorrectly.
But I recited a cheer. I recited a cheer along with everybody else. I did my best. And I just waited for the time that I could go off and read my books.
But the first time that I took my book out of my suitcase, the coolest girl in the bunk came up to me and she asked me, “Why are you being so mellow?” — mellow, of course, being the exact opposite of R-O-W-D-I-E. And then the second time I tried it, the counselor came up to me with a concerned expression on her face and she repeated the point about camp spirit and said we should all work very hard to be outgoing.
And so I put my books away, back in their suitcase, and I put them under my bed, and there they stayed for the rest of the summer. And I felt kind of guilty about this. I felt as if the books needed me somehow, and they were calling out to me and I was forsaking them. But I did forsake them and I didn’t open that suitcase again until I was back home with my family at the end of the summer.
Now, I tell you this story about summer camp. I could have told you 50 others just like it — all the times that I got the message that somehow my quiet and introverted style of being was not necessarily the right way to go, that I should be trying to pass as more of an extrovert. And I always sensed deep down that this was wrong and that introverts were pretty excellent just as they were. But for years I denied this intuition, and so I became a Wall Street lawyer, of all things, instead of the writer that I had always longed to be — partly because I needed to prove to myself that I could be bold and assertive too. And I was always going off to crowded bars when I really would have preferred to just have a nice dinner with friends. And I made these self-negating choices so reflexively, that I wasn’t even aware that I was making them.
Now this is what many introverts do, and it’s our loss for sure, but it is also our colleagues’ loss and our communities’ loss. And at the risk of sounding grandiose, it is the world’s loss. Because when it comes to creativity and to leadership, we need introverts doing what they do best. A third to a half of the population are introverts — a third to a half. So that’s one out of every two or three people you know. So even if you’re an extrovert yourself, I’m talking about your coworkers and your spouses and your children and the person sitting next to you right now — all of them subject to this bias that is pretty deep and real in our society. We all internalize it from a very early age without even having a language for what we’re doing.
Now, to see the bias clearly, you need to understand what introversion is. It’s different from being shy. Shyness is about fear of social judgment. Introversion is more about, how do you respond to stimulation, including social stimulation. So extroverts really crave large amounts of stimulation, whereas introverts feel at their most alive and their most switched-on and their most capable when they’re in quieter, more low-key environments. Not all the time — these things aren’t absolute — but a lot of the time. So the key then to maximizing our talents is for us all to put ourselves in the zone of stimulation that is right for us.
But now here’s where the bias comes in. Our most important institutions, our schools and our workplaces, they are designed mostly for extroverts and for extroverts’ need for lots of stimulation. And also we have this belief system right now that I call the new groupthink, which holds that all creativity and all productivity comes from a very oddly gregarious place.
So if you picture the typical classroom nowadays: When I was going to school, we sat in rows. We sat in rows of desks like this, and we did most of our work pretty autonomously. But nowadays, your typical classroom has pods of desks — four or five or six or seven kids all facing each other. And kids are working in countless group assignments. Even in subjects like math and creative writing, which you think would depend on solo flights of thought, kids are now expected to act as committee members. And for the kids who prefer to go off by themselves or just to work alone, those kids are seen as outliers often or, worse, as problem cases. And the vast majority of teachers reports believing that the ideal student is an extrovert as opposed to an introvert, even though introverts actually get better grades and are more knowledgeable, according to research.
Okay, same thing is true in our workplaces. Now, most of us work in open plan offices, without walls, where we are subject to the constant noise and gaze of our coworkers. And when it comes to leadership, introverts are routinely passed over for leadership positions, even though introverts tend to be very careful, much less likely to take outsize risks — which is something we might all favor nowadays. And interesting research by Adam Grant at the Wharton School has found that introverted leaders often deliver better outcomes than extroverts do, because when they are managing proactive employees, they’re much more likely to let those employees run with their ideas, whereas an extrovert can, quite unwittingly, get so excited about things that they’re putting their own stamp on things, and other people’s ideas might not as easily then bubble up to the surface.
Now in fact, some of our transformative leaders in history have been introverts. I’ll give you some examples. Eleanor Roosevelt, Rosa Parks, Gandhi — all these people described themselves as quiet and soft-spoken and even shy. And they all took the spotlight, even though every bone in their bodies was telling them not to. And this turns out to have a special power all its own, because people could feel that these leaders were at the helm not because they enjoyed directing others and not out of the pleasure of being looked at; they were there because they had no choice, because they were driven to do what they thought was right.
Now I think at this point it’s important for me to say that I actually love extroverts. I always like to say some of my best friends are extroverts, including my beloved husband. And we all fall at different points, of course, along the introvert/extrovert spectrum. Even Carl Jung, the psychologist who first popularized these terms, said that there’s no such thing as a pure introvert or a pure extrovert. He said that such a man would be in a lunatic asylum, if he existed at all. And some people fall smack in the middle of the introvert/extrovert spectrum, and we call these people ambiverts. And I often think that they have the best of all worlds. But many of us do recognize ourselves as one type or the other.
And what I’m saying is that culturally, we need a much better balance. We need more of a yin and yang between these two types. This is especially important when it comes to creativity and to productivity, because when psychologists look at the lives of the most creative people, what they find are people who are very good at exchanging ideas and advancing ideas, but who also have a serious streak of introversion in them.
And this is because solitude is a crucial ingredient often to creativity. So Darwin, he took long walks alone in the woods and emphatically turned down dinner-party invitations. Theodor Geisel, better known as Dr. Seuss, he dreamed up many of his amazing creations in a lonely bell tower office that he had in the back of his house in La Jolla, California. And he was actually afraid to meet the young children who read his books for fear that they were expecting him this kind of jolly Santa Claus-like figure and would be disappointed with his more reserved persona. Steve Wozniak invented the first Apple computer sitting alone in his cubicle in Hewlett-Packard where he was working at the time. And he says that he never would have become such an expert in the first place had he not been too introverted to leave the house when he was growing up.
Now, of course, this does not mean that we should all stop collaborating — and case in point, is Steve Wozniak famously coming together with Steve Jobs to start Apple Computer — but it does mean that solitude matters and that for some people it is the air that they breathe. And in fact, we have known for centuries about the transcendent power of solitude. It’s only recently that we’ve strangely begun to forget it. If you look at most of the world’s major religions, you will find seekers — Moses, Jesus, Buddha, Muhammad — seekers who are going off by themselves alone to the wilderness, where they then have profound epiphanies and revelations that they then bring back to the rest of the community. So, no wilderness, no revelations.
This is no surprise, though, if you look at the insights of contemporary psychology. It turns out that we can’t even be in a group of people without instinctively mirroring, mimicking their opinions. Even about seemingly personal and visceral things like who you’re attracted to, you will start aping the beliefs of the people around you without even realizing that that’s what you’re doing.
And groups famously follow the opinions of the most dominant or charismatic person in the room, even though there’s zero correlation between being the best talker and having the best ideas — I mean zero. So —
You might be following the person with the best ideas, but you might not. And do you really want to leave it up to chance? Much better for everybody to go off by themselves, generate their own ideas freed from the distortions of group dynamics, and then come together as a team to talk them through in a well-managed environment and take it from there.
Now if all this is true, then why are we getting it so wrong? Why are we setting up our schools this way, and our workplaces? And why are we making these introverts feel so guilty about wanting to just go off by themselves some of the time? One answer lies deep in our cultural history. Western societies, and in particular the U.S., have always favored the man of action over the “man” of contemplation. But in America’s early days, we lived in what historians call a culture of character, where we still, at that point, valued people for their inner selves and their moral rectitude. And if you look at the self-help books from this era, they all had titles with things like “Character, the Grandest Thing in the World.” And they featured role models like Abraham Lincoln, who was praised for being modest and unassuming. Ralph Waldo Emerson called him “A man who does not offend by superiority.”
But then we hit the 20th century, and we entered a new culture that historians call the culture of personality. What happened is we had evolved an agricultural economy to a world of big business. And so suddenly people are moving from small towns to the cities. And instead of working alongside people they’ve known all their lives, now they are having to prove themselves in a crowd of strangers. So, quite understandably, qualities like magnetism and charisma suddenly come to seem really important. And sure enough, the self-help books change to meet these new needs and they start to have names like “How to Win Friends and Influence People.” And they feature as their role models really great salesmen. So that’s the world we’re living in today. That’s our cultural inheritance.
Now none of this is to say that social skills are unimportant, and I’m also not calling for the abolishing of teamwork at all. The same religions who send their sages off to lonely mountain tops also teach us love and trust. And the problems that we are facing today in fields like science and in economics are so vast and so complex that we are going to need armies of people coming together to solve them working together. But I am saying that the more freedom that we give introverts to be themselves, the more likely that they are to come up with their own unique solutions to these problems.
So now I’d like to share with you what’s in my suitcase today. Guess what? Books. I have a suitcase full of books. Here’s Margaret Atwood, “Cat’s Eye.” Here’s a novel by Milan Kundera. And here’s “The Guide for the Perplexed” by Maimonides. But these are not exactly my books. I brought these books with me because they were written by my grandfather’s favorite authors.
My grandfather was a rabbi and he was a widower who lived alone in a small apartment in Brooklyn that was my favorite place in the world when I was growing up, partly because it was filled with his very gentle, very courtly presence and partly because it was filled with books. I mean literally every table, every chair in this apartment had yielded its original function to now serve as a surface for swaying stacks of books. Just like the rest of my family, my grandfather’s favorite thing to do in the whole world was to read.
But he also loved his congregation, and you could feel this love in the sermons that he gave every week for the 62 years that he was a rabbi. He would takes the fruits of each week’s reading and he would weave these intricate tapestries of ancient and humanist thought. And people would come from all over to hear him speak.
But here’s the thing about my grandfather. Underneath this ceremonial role, he was really modest and really introverted — so much so that when he delivered these sermons, he had trouble making eye contact with the very same congregation that he had been speaking to for 62 years. And even away from the podium, when you called him to say hello, he would often end the conversation prematurely for fear that he was taking up too much of your time. But when he died at the age of 94, the police had to close down the streets of his neighborhood to accommodate the crowd of people who came out to mourn him. And so these days I try to learn from my grandfather’s example in my own way.
So I just published a book about introversion, and it took me about seven years to write. And for me, that seven years was like total bliss, because I was reading, I was writing, I was thinking, I was researching. It was my version of my grandfather’s hours of the day alone in his library. But now all of a sudden my job is very different, and my job is to be out here talking about it, talking about introversion.
And that’s a lot harder for me, because as honored as I am to be here with all of you right now, this is not my natural milieu.
So I prepared for moments like these as best I could. I spent the last year practicing public speaking every chance I could get. And I call this my “year of speaking dangerously.”
And that actually helped a lot. But I’ll tell you, what helps even more is my sense, my belief, my hope that when it comes to our attitudes to introversion and to quiet and to solitude, we truly are poised on the brink on dramatic change. I mean, we are. And so I am going to leave you now with three calls for action for those who share this vision.
Number one: Stop the madness for constant group work. Just stop it.
And I want to be clear about what I’m saying, because I deeply believe our offices should be encouraging casual, chatty cafe-style types of interactions — you know, the kind where people come together and serendipitously have an exchange of ideas. That is great. It’s great for introverts and it’s great for extroverts. But we need much more privacy and much more freedom and much more autonomy at work. School, same thing. We need to be teaching kids to work together, for sure, but we also need to be teaching them how to work on their own. This is especially important for extroverted children too. They need to work on their own because that is where deep thought comes from in part.
Okay, number two: Go to the wilderness. Be like Buddha, have your own revelations. I’m not saying that we all have to now go off and build our own cabins in the woods and never talk to each other again, but I am saying that we could all stand to unplug and get inside our own heads a little more often.
Number three: Take a good look at what’s inside your own suitcase and why you put it there. So extroverts, maybe your suitcases are also full of books. Or maybe they’re full of champagne glasses or skydiving equipment. Whatever it is, I hope you take these things out every chance you get and grace us with your energy and your joy. But introverts, you being you, you probably have the impulse to guard very carefully what’s inside your own suitcase. And that’s okay. But occasionally, just occasionally, I hope you will open up your suitcases for other people to see, because the world needs you and it needs the things you carry.
So I wish you the best of all possible journeys and the courage to speak softly.
Thank you very much.
Thank you. Thank you.
The TED talk was a real eye-opener for her.
In the beginning of the talk, Susan Cain introduced the episode of a summer camp in her childhood, which made Hachi surprised because she had a similar experience.
Introverted part of nature, which Hachi hated
As soon as she watched the presentation, she felt why she could not have confidence.
She hated an introverted part of her nature.
Thinking too much
For example, Hachi tried not to express what she was thinking.
It was because she was often laughed at by her friends, being said “you think about things too much!”
Therefore, she learned to protect herself by hiding what she was thinking, and who she was, especially her introverted nature, and played with her friends.
That was fun, but she sometimes felt empty, and her confidence (believing in herself) was not built at all.
She did not learn how to express herself nor why she often got tired after she spent time with her friends (perhaps, average amount of stimulation was too much for her).
Not Good at Talking
In the TED talk, Susan Cain talked about her “dangerously speaking year after she published the book” jokingly.
The part made Hachi so happy to hear that because she is not good at talking as well even in Japanese; Hachi prefers writing and listening.
She does not talk too much because she worries about taking other person’s time.
Therefore, sometimes people recognize her thinking nothing.
Hachi did not know that the behavioral pattern was a part of introverted nature, so that she tried to change herself for a long time to be a good talker (which doesn’t work..!).
Changing negative mindset into best output as a introverted person
The presentation introduced the following introvert’s preference:
Introverts prefer less stimulation, and are comfortable to work alone while they are feeling other person’s “animal warmth”.
It is important to create an environment not only of group work but also of working alone.
There is also a style of leadership in an introverted way.
Introverts might have an impulse to protect what is inside of their “suitcase”, yet what they have might be helpful for a society.
So sometimes “speaking softly” is a good way for introverted people as a next step.
Those were what impressed and influenced on Hachi so much, enough to change her mindset for best output as an (mainly) introverted person.
Cherishing Time in Solitude
Now Hachi describes herself as a solitude-time lover to be cleared out, yet spend time and work in solitude was one of the most fearful things at that time and the hardest task which she got used to.
(A feeling of being alone was the same as the feeling of her repetitive dream, in which she was fallen into the darkest place.)
Also many inner critics were living in her mind:
“Never being alone”
“Do you want to be fallen to the darkest place?”
“What would you do outside of sense of belonging?”
When inner critic was screaming in her mind like that, she was not alone in a true meaning: many “monsters” lived in her mind.
Even when she was traveling and watching a blue sky, she watched a grey sky with uncomfortable feelings at that time.
Path is created by going back and forth
After some difficult years, slowly but surely inner critic sometimes disappeared momentarily.
Then, the image of a path emerged in Hachi’s mind; a path was made by going back and forth many times.
The image helped her to concentrate on what she needed to do for the future.
Ingenuity with sentient feelings becomes originality
Then, a voice emerged in her mind.
I got it!
What I want to do is to work on untested ideas.
Many of introverts might be so sensitive. They got stimulated more than extroverts under the same amount of stimulation.
Stimulation includes body languages, facial expressions, tone of voice, silence between conversations or an atmosphere around a person or in a group, which make introverts need more time to be cleared out when they are affected by those stuffs.
Hachi got slight ideas during group work in her school days, but those ideas were so subtle that those ideas were not expressed.
When she spent time in solitude, those ideas screamed loudly in her mind so that she had to (and was finally able to) try to unfold them.
Sometimes she failed, other times she succeeded in finding a sequence of ingenuity.
It might be one of the luckiest moments for her to have chances to test her popped-up ideas.
Hachi is not still good at speaking fluently both in English and in Japanese(!).
However, after being nudged by the phrase of “speak softly” in the TED talk, she tries to speak up instantaneously when she feels something deeply and needs to talk; that is her challenge, trying not to chance to speak.
Three natural repetitive sensations
How can it be possible to make use of introverted nature?
What is the best way for introverts to express what they found during the inner journey in quest of something?
How can they find a best timing to talk to?
How can they tell someone accurately and instantaneously about what is inside of their minds when they hope to do so?
Hachi was trying to solve those questions and practicing her own answers again and again in order to get used to new habits and build her foundation.
Finally she found her three natural repetitive sensations(her answers):
“cherishing time in solitude”, “making a path by going back and forth with own ingenuity” and “speaking softly when needed”
Putting Three Sensations (answers) in right Order
What matters the most about three repetitive sensation seems to put them in the right order and make them a cycle of energy.
The cycle allows her to keep moving on with less energy sustainably.
Each person has his/her own energy cycle which includes energy he/she likes and does not like.
It is said that a person can live a better life sustainably when both energies are connected in his/her life.
Tweaking the order of repetitive sensations
Hachi feels that a person often notice his/her repetitive sensations.
However, the order of sensations in his/her energy cycle might sometimes be in a wrong order so that a person might feel being stuck.
For example, Hachi often skipped time in solitude and moved around, so that she felt emptiness or slightly depressed, wandering the same place.
When she tweaked the order, she could keep moving on sustainably.
The energy cycle is once found, that can be a lifelong treasure.
The TED talk by Susan Cain is one of Hachi’s impressive stories even though seven years have passed since she listened to it for the first time.
When she listened to it again for writing this article, she found other interesting suggestions in the talk; the change of the image of leadership, and the importance of unplugging your mind from continuous social stimulation.
Perseverance to make a seamless integration
Hachi remember that business books often said that one of the difficult business skills to learn was to know oneself, which made her surprised.
Business skills and knowing oneself.
Both seemed to be disconnected, yet there is a common keyword; Leadership.
When it comes to the bottom-up process and the top-down process, both processes can be happen in an organization and in an individual.
Hachi worked on finding who she was in a bottom-up way first, then she needed to understand herself and create an inner consistent foundation in a top-down way later.
In an organization, a leader needs to listen to employees and customers, and also make decisions to move on with a consistent organization policy.
It is not easy to create a seamless integration because a leader needs to understand each element well and find hooks to be superimposed.
So is an artisan.
In order to create a seamless craft, a highly organized design skill and craftsmanship are required.
Nowadays tendencies of seeking attention or charisma become more and more popular, and projection of inner confusion or ambition onto outer events seem to appear socially more often.
However, Hachi thinks that those attitude cannot make a seamless integration happen.
Seamless integration is continuous work without attention, and requires perseverance to find small elements or an emerging change to nudge.
That might be the moment for an introverted leader to make an appearance.
Hero Inside You
“Hero” sung by Mariah Carey was a song Hachi repeated again and again during her difficult time.
Perhaps, she tried to encourage herself by listening to the song.
Before writing this article, she listened to it again.
Then, she realized that the song of “hero” might be about individuality or finding both inner strength and natural feelings on a way of making own path.
When it comes to a hero, we often imagine a superman who comes from somewhere and saves the world.
However, what would be like if it means an inner hero?
An inner hero would be your guide who leads you to the world and helps you to meet people you need.
With keeping training yourself, an inner hero would take you to the deeper themes (universal ones at the same time).
You might meet people beyond the field.
Before you meet your inner hero, you might face the inner critic which says like this:
“Do you think you are smart enough to do that?”
“Do you think your interest would shape the future of yourself?” etc.
You might be scared of the screaming voice of the inner critic.
If you are facing the inner critic now, be careful, listening to the voice all the time could be killer stress for any generations.
Hachi recommends you to make a list of your favorite relaxations and just relax now.
You can try, for example, an aromatherapy oil, singing a song while you tidy up your room, practicing yoga or whatever you like.
After you released your tension in your body, you might say to the inner critic like this:
”Who knows what will happen in the future?”
Then, you might start training yourself or improving your skill which you need, again.
The progress might give you a hunch of the existence of your inner hero.
It is not selfish to start what you are interested in, because, if you really hope to master something, you cannot avoid what you do not like to do nor are not good at.
You need to work on whatever you need harder to accomplish your dream.
Therefore, no matter what other people say to you, no matter what inner critic says to you, Hachi hopes you to put yourself into what you are interested in at least temporarily because your natural feeling will be found on the journey.
Your natural feeling will not be against someone’s individuality.
If you find your individuality, you can accept others, help others to unfold their nature and relate to each other.
Hachi was thinking like that while she was writing the article of Repairing The Colorful Mat.
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