“Regardless of what you’re talking about, you do need elements of stability”
Lee Belbin and I crossed paths through the Find Your Feet Podcast. One day I received a compassionately crafted email from Lee, sharing his thoughts and feedback on the podcast so far. We started exchanging emails where Lee opened up more and more about his background as an ecologist, his theories on performance and how by combining these two things he had managed to avoid any sporting injury for his entire life. Now 69, I thought this was quite a remarkable feat and knew we needed to sit down for our own conversation.
Lee has a very humble and unique approach to athleticism, which he calls ‘punctuated equilibrium.’ It actually stems from an ecological theory of evolution. In a very basic summary, species will experience a period of stability until along comes an external situation that throws them out of equilibrium and forces them to either adapt or die. Apply that to a human and obviously the everyday circumstances or deep-set internal drivers that knock us off balance will not be life or death, but it does force us to grow and adapt, or suffer.
Lee is very passionate about striving for balance in our lives. However, he utilises ‘punctuation marks’ to challenge himself and grow physically and intellectually. I found our conversation around this topic and so many more, incredibly fascinating. I hope you enjoy this one!
Punctuated Equilibrium - internal and external ‘punctuation marks’
‘Home Points’ and ‘Rocks’- the importance of having these places, people, or circumstances that offer stability to our lives, from which we can recharge again.
Growing doesn’t mean ‘up and up!’
Defining success and its malleability with age
How we remain grounded and aware, whilst simultaneously striving and growing
Lastly I would also love to share this powerful passage from Michael Gervais’ blog, a top-class American psychologist whom I love to follow on his own ‘Finding Mastery Podcast’. In this blog piece, he speaks to the topics of balance and internal growth:
“It is not the external world that needs to change. Transformational shifts happen from upgrading the internal world – your patterns of both thoughts and actions. These pattern shifts might just begin with moving beyond the drive for high performance; beyond the search for peak experiences; beyond being able to do more in your life. While the peaks are important and wonderful, the transformation of living more fully daily begins with a fundamental commitment to organize your life to be you at your best more often; to be more present, more grounded, more joyful, more playful, more focused — more “switched-on”. That way of living requires an investment in recovery: proper sleep, proper hydration and food intake, plenty of movement and an optimal way of thinking.”
Thank you so much for joining me in the podcast Lee and I hope you enjoy listening to this one too! :)
“We have to be careful of not all heading for the middle ground. I think we need to pick up on our strengths”