Zoom Call 5/4/2020

Today the Perimeter had their second Zoom conference call. The topic of the discussion was opportunity, led by Austin Tayles. There were 7 of us in attendance. In this post you’ll find key discussion points and takeaways from this talk, and an audio recording from the conference call.

Opportunity is something that presents itself in all parts of our lives. Even though it’s often used in a professional context, we are presented with opportunities to get to know people, to let loose and have fun, to experience life. We are presented with the possibility -no, the probability- of self-actualization. The moment strikes when it’s our turn to get up and dance, sing, and otherwise express ourselves.

So, why do we sit and lay idle?

Many of us do not jump on this opportunity because of some illegitimate fear that the world will not accept us for who we are. It’s completely irrational. As difficult as it may be, taking the leap and saying yes is seldom regretted. After all, this expression of selves is part of our self-actualization, the pinnacle of human fulfillment.

Opportunity can come in lots of forms. There are many doors that open up to us when we cross paths with people; one would be wise to not discount what anyone has to offer without a fair listen. In the workplace, this can look like people who have questionable pasts yet are super knowledgeable in their field, or people who don’t quite fit in with the rest of the team, but offer some other kind of eye-opening perspective.

We talked about The Alchemist, a novel by Paulo Coelho, which Austin finished reading not too long ago. When the main character leaves his home and his life as a shepherd in Spain to go on an amazing journey, he learns that this life will always be there, and to not be afraid to give it up for his dreams. When he pursues this dream of a destiny that he treasures, he is living out his ‘personal legend’, and because he is doing so, the ‘universe conspires in his favor’ to present him with many diverse opportunities. Along this journey he finds success, love, passion, community, mysticism, and more, and that’s all before he gets to the treasure. When we look at our own lives, it seems to be a similar case, where it’s often that during our pursuit of our passions or dreams that we end up achieving great success in our personal and professional lives.

We explored a couple of different strategies to hold ourselves accountable for the things that we aspire to do in our lives. One of these is a note-card strategy mentioned by Doctor of Medicine Peter Attia around 6 minutes into this podcast. It involves breaking down your long term goals into monthly, weekly, and daily tasks, and using them as action items in your day. We also asked when is it appropriate to say ‘no’ to an opportunity. One thing that is mentioned in the conference call notes is Regret Minimization Framework: ask yourself, ” what would I regret more: doing something and having a bad experience, or not giving it a try?” and then doing your best to minimize this regret.

Sometimes, this can be a really good filter. It can help you say ‘yes’ to social experiences, making the most out of traveling on your own, opportunities in the workplace, and more. It can also help you say no to other things. Example: I have no interest in heroin so I would regret not doing it less than I would regret doing it and experiencing dire consequences. This heuristic is good at eliminating the distraction of opportunities that seem attractive just because they are another option.

Action items resulting from the call:

  • Accountability buddies were established

  • Next meeting, set a group excursion/experience

~ Popular ideas are camping and a cold exposure experience

The audio recording for the Zoom meeting can be found here