討論逐字稿 A Radical Tactical Shift discussion transcript

We discussed Lewis Pugh's TED talk, A Radical Tactical Shift.

At the business magazine, we had this discussion all the time, but at the school, nobody likes change. That's why you can see lots of teachers teaching at the same levels, teaching the same level of kids for 10 years, and they don't even want to change it.
Why was the magazine always talking about change?
Because the world is changing so quickly, how you do things, the way you do things is no longer useful now. Just like, when the technology takes the place of humans, then there are lots of people who cannot, who lost their jobs. That's why you need to change. You should change your skills, that's why you need new skills, in order to put yourself into this market again.
Change, in recent years, there are many giant companies that failed, because of the new style of companies growing up, like Apple and Angry Birds, and a lot of applications providers. The make those giant like Nokia and Microsoft maybe become nothing, and that's because the whole environment changes, and people need to change their strategies, or they cannot survive.
Yeah, like a person I know, their company makes the buttons for cell phones, and they had a really good business going. But now everything is touch screen, and they're really hurting, so they made the decision to switch to cosmetics. It turns out the machines for cell phone buttons are the same machines for pressing powder. But which, imagine! Your whole contact list and way of doing things is electronics, and now you have to switch to dealing with cosmetics companies? A whole different culture, you're starting from scratch! But otherwise you have to throw out the whole company.

I think people didn't like change in themselves, but actually, some new things, some fantastic investment or somehting, it's interesting to have some change in our lives, but we always think if it's some habit or lifestyle, we don't like such things to be changed.
Culture.
Yeah, definitely. I don't know how to define that I like the change or not, but some change is good for me, and some changes are not, I think.
Why don't we like to change culture?
I like that question.
Mm!
Culture means most people agree, or people have behaved in this way for a very long time.
Yeah, thousands of years, just like, we always like to eat rice, although, we could eat some bread, but, in the end, we just like to eat rice.
And besides, I think of culture becomes an original part of ourselves. So if someone wants to change the culture, we will afraid that we will maybe lose our origin.
Origin?
Root!
Yes.
It's a part of you, and you might feel that you lost it.
Exactly, but I don't know why that is.

I liked the way he told the story and expressed the idea, because I was thinking, wow, what kind of story was he going to tell us, maybe protect the environment, or tell us to cheer up, but the conclusion is totally not what I expected.
Yeah, me too, I was just sitting there, thinking blah blah blah, but then I was like, oh really!

"There is nothing more powerful than the made-up mind."
I saw this phrase and thought, I need to be inspired by this person.
In most cases, I need someone else to push my back!
Like what?
Maybe I will wondering is decision is good or bad, but if someone says, it's good for you, then I'll think, oh, it's good for me, and do it.
Have you ever made up your mind to do something?
Hm, let me think about it.
Have you?
I think, several times, I made up my mind to go the States, to the US to study. I made up my mind to go to Canada, even though I was so scared.
Yeah, my mind was so made up to go to Hong Kong that when my boss at the time offered me a permanent job, it was a very good job actually, I couldn't even hear it, I was all, "Mmhm, that's nice, thanks."
But actually HK is too crowded and busy,
Yeah, that's why I didn't stay there. I like Taiwan better.
Also, we're more welcoming!
Have you ever made up your mind to do something?
For example?
Like, spend 6 years to get a Ph.D.. So many people asked me, how can I make this decision?
Was it hard?
Very hard.
You had to be patient.
Actually, I expected the time to be so long, but the duration is always full of challenge I think.
I don't know anyone who got a Ph.D. in less than six years.
Really? I have several collegues who got it in 5 years.
Yeah, okay 5, sure, but still.
How about you?
When I started in college, I made up my mind to join a club, it's a kind of, like a TsuJi or Red Cross orgainzation. We spent time to teach young children or orphans, and to teach them, or play with them.
Why did you have to make up your mind for this?
Because when I was in senior high school, one day our teacher took us to a nursing home for people in comas. And I found that some people need us to take care of them.
And that made up your mind to go and help people.
Yeah, because most people around me will choose like the music club or some kind of skill.
That's a brave choie i think, i wouldn't have done that, because I'd've been afraid of it.
Afraid of it?
Yeah, the responsibility of it.

So do you agree with him that the made-up mind is very powerful?
I don't know.
I think someone who can make up their mind firmly is a rare person in this world.
I think that the thing I did was because I was young and didn't realy understand the consequences, but now I can't really do that.
Why?
Because I think about the consequences!
You know, like someone said, it's better not to think too much, or you will not decide to get married.
I think that's true, when you think about conventional heterosexual marriage.
So I think this guy could make up his mind because he didn't know about the real challenge.
He didn't know how cold the water would be.

"And my team just gave it to me straight. They said, Lewis, you need to have a radical tactical shift if you want to do this swim. Every single thing which you have learned in the past 23 years of swimming, you must forget. Every single thing which you learned when you were serving in the British army, about speed and aggression, you put that to one side. Instead of swimming fast, swim as slowly as possible. Instead of swimming crawl, swim breaststroke. And remember, never ever swim with aggression. This is the time to swim with real humility."
Associations?
For me, I had a good performance at work, before, but now I changed to a new field, if I didn't change the way I worked, I could not have performed as well as before.
I was thinking about aggression, he used this word aggression a lot. Does that strike you in any way?
I think in the business world, they talk more about agression, being agressive. Yeah, they expect people to be aggressive.

I was thinking about competition, how it makes us expect to be aggressive with each other.
Is there any competition that doesn't involve aggression?
No...! I agree with you!
Totally agree.
So what I'm thinking about, is, when we're aggressive with each other, it breaks down community.
Do you think competition leads people to improve?
I think it can. But I'm not sure it's the best way. Competition is an external motivation. You can make it an internal motivation, but then what kind of person are you?
It can improve peoples capability, but it can't improve people's mind, or heart.
That's not an improvement, though, if your skill is upgraded, but your mind is downgraded?
But most people don't care! And our bosses don't care. They only care about performance, and productivity.
How much profit you bring to the companay.
And that, I have a problem with. And that's why I have a problem with competition.

That means?
A problem with the concept of it.
People always scold me, oh you're so competitive, but then people say, oh, he's so competetive in the marketplae.
So then is it a negative word.
No, but yes. For economics, no, but for personal relations, yes.
But we might describe someone's behavior is competive, but another, the person is competetive. So if we describe the person--
It's negative.
And look, he said, "Slow down means to swim with real humility.
Yeah, you know, he made a word pair of aggression and humility, normall these are not what get paired together, right? It would be aggression/passivity, and pride/humility. I find that really refreshing.
Maybe he describe the reaction, what you react to when you first contact the water, that's the humilty.
Humility is an attitude, right?
When you do something with agression, you think you are...
Competitive!
...yes, and you will succeed in everything, nothing can stop you. When you do something with aggression.
Yeah.
I have this feeling that, what he said, the humiltiy, I think he has swum a lot. And every time, he can beat himself, he can break his own records.
He's competing with himself.
Yes
Which means he thinks he can do anything. And he also said in the video, the power of nature is so much stronger than we expect. So I think he realized that to face nature, you need to be more humble. That's why he said that. And I have different opinions about what Maggie just said. When you say, your behavior is competitive, not your person, but I think, people's behavior comes out of this person.
So?
So, this person him or herself, must be a competetive person, so that they have competetive behavior. These two things are related, they are not separated.
So maybe a kind person can not have competeitive behavior.
I'm not sure aobut that, because people can have more than one kind of character at the same time.
You're competietive.
Yes, and I'm kind too.
But you really are competetive.
Yes, I was trained that way,
But I'm not, I assume i will lose
You're inverse competetive.
Well, I won't join the game. I agree with you, I was orginally a very competetive person, but now I turn into a laid back person.
But I'm not sure you're not just doing it to just avoid losing.
laid back?
It means you're easy going, don't put pressure on yourself or others, relaxed.
That's why I said I never have made up my mind to do something, I'm too laid back.
Is there ever anything you've wanted?
Actually, I have a lot that I think about doing, but it's hard for me to take action. For instance, i've wanted to buy a motorcycle, I've been thinking about it for three or four months, but I haven't really gone out to do it. I think, do I really need a motorcycle? It costs more than 50,000NT, too expensive. If I don't buy it, my father will still drive me to the station, and it doesn't cost me anything.
But think how independent you'd be with it!
I think that it might be because it's not something you really really want, or really really care about
I agree with you!!
You know, before, my educational process is different from the average person in Taiwan. After junior high school, I went to junior college, I didn't go to high school. I chose junior college. One thing I cared about so much at that time, was that I would only end up at junior college eventually. So I made up my mind to go to university no matter what. That was the most important thing. So I made up my mind. That's something you really needed, or it was really important, or cared about, then you'd do it. So if the motorcycle was that--
You know, I can't agree more, I observe this in my own behavior a lot.
Some people always ask me, do you regret getting the Ph.D.? Of course not! Why? Because they always think, you've spent six years to get it. And so what, they always say that, they think that to get the same position as my job, a master's degree is enough. But I always reply that I learned so much from the Ph.D.
Not just about science, but about yourself.
Yes, myself! I have some expereince in conferences, and I could write the manuscript of my thesis, so many things! So actually, it's okay for me, but some people are concerned about this.
Why don't you just ask them?
Well recently, some new colleague asked me, and I still have the same answer.
Yeah, I'm reminded by this that I decided to go for my masters, and the first year I didn't pass the exam, and in the end, I started to look for jobs. And I thought at the time that I wanted to do something different, something that I could do. So I decided to get the master's degree.

Do you think aggression comes naturally to women? Do you think women find it easy to be agressive?
I don't think so.
When they want to protect themselve or someone they care about, they weill become very agressive and competetive. More than men?
In that situation, yes.
Can you think of any example?
Well, for me, I get most competetive when I feel threatened. Especially like in a freelance situation, like if I think someone has better skills than me.
When I feel like I will lose something, I will change and become more agressive. Become somebody I hate.
Yeah, I agree with you!
That's why i said, when you change, you might feel afraid that you lose your origin, lose your root.

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