The PUSH/PULL Decision

I just spent a marvelous training week with a group of business colleagues in Chicago.

We always explore how we PUSH/PULL.

In my universe, this is code-talk about how we influence a conversation.

PUSH = I send energy to the other person.

PULL = I draw energy from the other person.

But today I invite you to think of how you summon your personal energy, whether there is someone else there or not.


How do you call on your energy when you are a bit stressed, perhaps? When you have traveled too much? When you have written one document after another and had one phone call too many?

Then PUSH/PULL becomes a personal decision.

When I PUSH, I feel mentally or physically tired but act as if I have energy. I call on energy that I do not actually feel in that moment but which I trust is there, somewhere. I act on faith in my hidden energy reservoirs.

I know from my years as a performer and acting coach that these reservoirs are vast. Performers who feel gravely ill are able to get on stage and give an inspired performance.

We have reservoirs of energy that we rarely put to the test.

When I PULL, I know I no longer have the energy to PUSH. I know I need to PULL within. I need to conserve energy. I need to take a break. I need to stop.

And I need to know HOW to stop so I can start again

If I don’t, the documents I create will no longer be crisp. The conversations I have will no longer be fruitful.

Do you know how for you can PUSH? Do you know when you have PUSHED too far? Do you know what to do when you need to PULL within?

This week, pay attention to those moments when you may feel tired.

Make your PUSH/PULL decision. Make it with conscious intent.

Delight yourself with how far you can PUSH. Reward yourself with a meaningful PULL.

With a PUSH/PULL decision, you discover your personal performance edge.

Know this edge. Know it well. And make it your friend.