I first read this story in a short book given to me by John Assaraf, titled “You2 “(squared) by Price Pritchett. It’s profoundly simple and powerful story to help you understand the Quantum Leap mindset. ..
“I’m sitting in a quiet room at the Milcroft Inn, a peaceful little place hidden back among the pine trees about an hour out of Toronto. It’s just past noon, late July, and I’m listening to the desperate sounds of a life-or-death struggle going on a few feet away.
There’s a small fly burning out the last of its short life’s energies in a futile attempt to fly through the glass of the windowpane. The whining wings tell the poignant story of the fly’s strategy: Try harder. But it’s not working.
The frenzied effort offers no hope for survival. Ironically, the struggle is part of the trap. It is impossible for the fly to try hard enough to succeed at breaking through the glass. Nevertheless, this little insect has staked its life on reaching its goal through raw effort and determination. This fly is doomed. It will die there on the windowsill.
Across the room, ten steps away, the door is open. Ten seconds of flying time and this small creature could reach the outside world it seeks. With only a fraction of the effort now being wasted, it could be free of this self-imposed trap. The breakthrough possibility is there. It would be so easy.Why doesn’t the fly try another approach, something dramatically different? How did it get so locked in on the idea that this particular route and determined effort offer the most promise for success? What logic is there in continuing until death to seek a breakthrough with more of the same? No doubt this approach makes sense to the fly. Regrettably, it’s an idea that will kill.
Trying harder isn’t necessarily the solution to achieving more. It may not offer any real promise for getting what you want out of life. Sometimes, in fact, it’s a big part of the problem. If you stake your hopes for a breakthrough on trying harder than ever, you may kill your chances for success.
What I took away from this story is that trying harder is rarely the answer, especially for women entrepreneurs. We have to stop trying and start BEing.
As R2D2 (?) in Star Wars said “Try? There is no ‘try’. There is only Do and Do Not”…;-).
I certainly used that one on my daughters as they were growing up. I use it on myself just about daily when I catch myself saying “I’ll try”.
To get yourself into a Quantum Leap mindset, stop beating your head against the proverbial window and visualize the perfect end result… think creatively about how you might accomplish it instead of just doing things the same way you’ve always done them.