17 minutes | Oct 15, 2019

S3 EP1: Prologue: The Beauty of an Excellent Life

Have you spent years building your one business or brand, honing your craft, refining your core skill set to build out a set of services around your distinct expertise? Or do you experiment with multiple fields, crossing boundaries to pursue excellence with your diverse background? Fearlessly shifting shapes and testing your versatility in new spaces? Is your motivation to excel at your work born from a need to be the best? Or are you driven by something deeper? Today, Jeffrey introduces us to the focus of Season 3, an exploration of the beauty of pursuing a life of excellence. He shares two different approaches to excellence, comparing the song of a wood thrush with that of a lyrebird and offering examples of legendary creatives who fit into each category. Jeffrey also reflects on what motivates us to excel, challenging the idea that we’re driven solely by the desire to compete and survive. Listen in for insight around how we’re motivated by our admiration for others and learn how the beauty and sorrow of the human condition inspires us to “sing” —and create exceptional experiences for each other. Are you a wood thrush or a lyrebird? Key Takeaways [1:38] Season 3’s focus on the beauty of an excellent life Transcend cultural ideals of success Excel at what we do AND how we do it [3:43] The wood thrush’s approach to the pursuit of excellence Learns core phrase, builds out three-part song Create variations to develop 50 distinct pieces [5:18] What drives the lyrebird’s pursuit of excellence Biological need to outdo rivals and protect legacy Beauty of yearning + sorrow of human condition (Legend of Three Sisters) [9:22] Examples of celebrated wood thrushes and lyrebirds Lyrebirds Lady Gaga, David Bowie, Pharrell Williams Wood thrushes Frank Sinatra and Billie Holiday [11:24] What motivates us to excel Desire to compete and survive Ability to admire other people Capacity to appreciate beauty [15:40] What to expect in upcoming episodes Dialogue with Charlie Gilkey on Start Finishing Excel at finishing best work despite challenges Connect with Jeffrey Tracking Wonder Tracking Wonder on Facebook Jeffrey on Twitter Jeffrey on Instagram Jeffrey on LinkedIn Resources Little Drummer Boy with David Bowie & Bing Crosby, produced by David Bowie Lady Gaga’s Tribute to David Bowie Simone Biles at 2016 Olympics Haidt & Keltner Motivation Study Productive Flourishing Start Finishing: How to Go from Idea to Done by Charlie Gilkey
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