Why its important to understand the scales of selfishness and success
Social Media has certainly changed the game for me and my business and it’s something that I have been very good at using as both a consumer and creator.
Becoming what I like to call a “blue tick prick” on all the major platforms and amassing hundreds of thousands of followers in the process!
I rarely get bored of checking out Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat.
I love it!
I love to entertain, to inspire and to motivate people out of their funks, to encourage positive outlooks on their own lives and realize that with a bit of self awareness and self discipline you can really change the game on your brain, body and business.
But over the past month or so I’ve come to realize just how much my life has been consumed by it!
If ever you have messaged me or tagged me in a post the past few years you would no doubt have waited less than an hour to see me get back to you with a comment, retweet or like..
Pretty fucking awesome ey?
This is because I value the interaction of my audience and repay their awareness of what it is I do with gratitude and respect.
At the end of the day I would not be here today in a job that I love without your continued support
Last year was an incredibly successful year for me as you know and the reason for that was pretty simple..
I had an entire year of being immensely selfless to my customers, clients and co-workers putting their needs before my own.
This to me was incredibly rewarding.
Using my talents and skills to help others succeed equated to an immense amount of personal success for myself which was a big transformation from the incredibly selfish competition focused personality I had before I opened my gym facility.
As I pondered this I realized something..
When I was an incredibly selfish person I had a huge amount of success with my body.
Winning physique shows and building up my audience on social media with my brags of achievement and dedication to the extreme pursuit of body perfection.
Being selfish led to success!
There’s a quote and an analogy that spring to mind for me when it comes to selfishness..
“You cannot serve others from an empty vessel”
“If the plane is in trouble and oxygen masks are released put your mask on first before helping others. After all you can’t help others if you are dead!”
What these analogies suggest is that in order to serve others best you have to first serve yourself!
This is something I did very well about 18 months ago when I was a one man army in my business and didn’t have to answer to or support anyone around me that wasn’t paying me money.
I’d get up, sort my shit out, and spend the rest of the day sorting others shit out too before cutting off in the evenings for a bit of down time. This all changed when I opened my gym facility!
I was now a boss and a leader to a team of 8+ people and was on a mission to build and turn them into superstars in their own rights so I could eventually take my foot of the gas with my business.
The mission was spurred on from a podcast I listened to about my business and the current situation I was in..
My biggest asset in my business was also its biggest weakness…
If you took me out of the equation I wouldn’t have a business as the products and services that I offered was me.
This was the main reason for building GrenadeFIT! Share my vision with others so they can help me with it’s growth and I can remove myself from time to time without it grounding to a halt!
In doing this I had a “sliding of the scale” which I’m going to talk about later..
I moved from the selfish side of the scale and moved up to the selfless one.
Their needs were my needs and anything they needed I’d be there for them with support, suggestions and personal sacrifice of my time and relentless energy.
And it created an immense amount of success!
Putting others before myself created a fantastic first 6 months of business and we have really started to put Grenade FIT on the map in a very short space of time.
The reality is that being incredibly selfish equated to success and being incredibly selfless equated to success too!
So which one is the best? If any?
I spoke a lot about this in my article “Chicken, Broccoli and Brown Rice Business” which was the cost of these and here is what happened when I became immensely selfless..
- I no longer had my process of “putting my gas mask on” or “filling up my vessel” as from the minute I woke up I was responding to notifications, emails and messages.
- I am addicted to answering every message, question and concern that comes to me to show the world how much hustle I have when it comes to building a business, brand and legacy
- My heart sinks when I have 10% battery on my phone or if I lose it for a split second.
- Last year I accidentally left it in the car and the wife drove off! leaving me with no way of contacting anyone and feeling like Tom Hanks did in the movie Cast Away.
If you had been close to me and around me last year you might not have seen the real me.
Internet Jamie was much cooler than real life Jamie and if you spoke to real life Jamie you would probably just get a mutter or a nod as I glared into my phone.
The only time you would get Internet Jamie in real life is if you were paying me for my time.
Fans and Followers got Internet Jamie
Friends and Family got real life Jamie
and since friends and family weren’t paying for my time you can guess which one they got!
So how has it come to this? And what is this sliding scale I keep speaking of?
I’m going to refer you to a great book on Hermetic Philosophy called the Kybalion.
It’s a very cult like book which I advise you to take with a pinch of salt.
There was however a great principle in there called the “Principle of Polarity” which I talk about all the time in fitness, business and in life
“Everything is dual; everything has poles; everything has its pair of opposites; like and unlike are the same; opposites are identical in nature, but different in degree; extremes meet; all truths are but half-truths; all paradoxes may be reconciled.” — The Kybalion.
What you have to understand is that Selfishness and Selflessness are the same thing!
They are identical in nature but different in degree and if your degree of measurement is “success” you can achieve it with both of them.
Its also important to quote Newtons Third Law of Motion..
“For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction”
Selecting how you slide down the scale will depend on multiple actions for you to do. Those actions will create reactions and if you are prepared to deal and manage those reactions then you will win the game.
My selfish actions were successful! This reacted in a loss of a social life and sacrifice of the things I enjoyed doing in my spare time (drinking vodka and going out for food) I was prepared to take on those reactions to achieve my success goal
My selfless actions were successful also! This reacted in a loss of social life and the loss of me as a person to my family and friends. I was prepared to do this as we learn from our failures not from our successes and I would not be writing this blog post had I not gone through it.
So where do I go from here and what do I plan on doing to make sure that I don’t end up in this situation again?
My first action is an extreme one!
One that I hope resets my selfless nature with social media and that’s “going off the grid”
I’ve challenged myself to spend 3 solid days away from Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat
I’m currently writing this in another country and have been spending most of my days without my phone and without the internet
And do you know what?
It feels pretty fucking good!
I’m sliding that selfless scale down quickly by upping my level of selfishness
If you need my help this week? I don’t care
If I haven’t answered your email? I don’t care
Have you not been able to get through to me like you usually can do easily? I don’t care
I’m going to focus my energy strategically in future and value my free time more
I’m going to switch my phone off from time to time and not be compelled to document my entire life through social media!
Don’t worry if you follow me on Snapchat and Facebook! I’ll still be there documenting although the time that I do it will be more strategic
I will focus on the quality of my content rather than the quantity of it!
Yes you will get less from me but the content you do get will be much better!
I’m not going to be so easy to reach.
You can tag me and ask me questions and I will try to get back to you eventually…
But don’t get your knickers in a twist if I don’t!
I will be present in the company of others and make Internet Jamie and Real life Jamie the same cool human being that he really should be (and try my best to stop talking about myself in a third person perspective.. you douchebag!)
Throughout your life you will waver up and down the scale of Selfishness, Selflessness and Success and that’s perfectly fine to do!
Just remember from time to time you need to see where you are in life, at what degree of measurement you are using and make the necessary tweaks and changes to even it out a little.
Jamie Alderton is the Director of GrenadeFIT