As part of our morning family scripture studies, I felt like I wanted to encourage the children to not listen to their “monkey brains”, or their lower brains. Some of my children are very obedient to their monkey brains. (Sometimes I am, too…)
“Eat all the chocolates, right now!” “Okay!”
“Don’t do your job. That’s boring.” “Okay! You’re right!”
“Lie about your game time, so you won’t get in trouble.” “Okay! Great idea!”
“Watch YouTube instead of doing homework. It’s way more fun!” “Okay! I like the way you think!”
You get the picture. And there is a place for the monkey brain, right? But it needs to be managed by the pre-frontal cortex. The kids are familiar with this language.
So, this morning, I felt like it was important to re-discuss this with the children. Interestingly, Ella also had her own bit of inspiration that she wanted to share this morning, as well, in the form of a Ted Talk:
PRINCIPLES STUDIED THIS WEEK:
This week Bry and I were reading the book How Will You Measure Your Life? by Clayton Christensen. In the book, he shares the concept which he terms “the job to be done”. The idea is this:
“What causes us to buy a product or service is that we actually hire products to do jobs for us. We find that some job has arisen in our lives that we need to do, and we then find some way to get it done. If a company has developed a product or service to do the job well, we “hire” it, to do the job.”How Will You Measure Your Life
Clayton uses the example of a diner selling milkshakes. They discovered that most of their customers were coming in for milkshakes in the morning. When Clayton and and colleagues asked the customers what they were “hiring” the milkshake to do for them, they said that they needed the milkshake to feed them and keep them awake during their morning commutes. All of them. They “hired” the milkshake to feed them and keep them awake.
How does knowing that change the diner’s approach to marketing their milkshakes, or even creating milkshakes that can better meet their customers’ needs?
Do you see how important that question would be?
All week long, I have been considering that question in my life: What am I “hiring” that to do?
- When I bought that pint of ice cream, what was I hiring the ice cream to do?
- I was hiring the ice cream to entertain me.
- When I joined the gym, what was I hiring the gym to do for me?
- I was hiring the gym to help me strengthen my muscles.
- When I picked up that book, what was I “hiring” it to do?
- I was hiring the book to inspire me. If I wanted to hire a book to entertain me or comfort me, I would have hired a different book. And if the book hadn’t inspired me, I would have “fired” the book, essentially, and hired a different book.
It was interesting, over the breakfast table, we had the discussion: We read our scriptures every day. What are we hiring our scriptures to do for us? Ella said that she is hiring her morning scripture study to prepare her spiritually for the day. Liam says that he is hiring family scripture study to keep his parents content. Sometimes I hire my scripture study to check a checkbox on my to-do list, while other times to comfort me or instruct me. Sometimes I hire my scriptures to help me prepare a lesson, etc. And it’s okay, whatever we are hiring our scriptures to do for us, as long as we are cognizant of what we are hiring it to do, that we like our reason, and that whatever it is we hired is doing what we hired it to do.
Let’s look at this:
- I am eating Lucky Charms for breakfast
- Upon further thought, I see that I hired those Lucky Charms to give me energy all morning long
- I find that Lucky Charms does not give me energy all morning long
- I fire the Lucky Charms and hire something new for the job to be done
But, what if:
- I am eating Lucky Charms for breakfast
- Upon further thought, I see that I hired those Lucky Charms to help my family celebrate St Patrick’s Day
- I find that Lucky Charms really does excite us for the lucky holiday
- I continue to hire Lucky Charms each St Patrick’s Day, for the job to be done
Another example. If you’ve followed my blog you know that I used to have an affinity for People Magazine:
- I am looking through People Magazine every day
- Upon further thought, I see that I hired People Magazine to add some glamour to my stay-at-home-mom life
- I find that looking through People Magazine every day only makes me feel more keenly the drudgery of the stay-at-home-mom life
- I fire People Magazine and hire a mommy-me playgroup for the job to be done
Another example, from my closet:
- I bought a new pair of black jeans
- Upon further thought, I see that I hired those black jeans to help me feel tall and thin
- I find that when I wear those jeans, I do feel taller and thinner
- I keep those jeans for the job to be done
And we know that jeans or People Magazine can’t make us feel a certain way. Only our thoughts can do that. But we may allow those items to direct our thoughts one way or the other, right?
What other areas of my life can I consider?
Why did I buy the newest iPhone? What was the job to be done? Does it do that job well? If not, what would do the job better?
Why did I get on FaceBook this morning? What was the job to be done? Did it do the job for me this morning? If not, what did it do instead? What would do the original job better?
Let’s talk about emotions. Let’s look at an example of us “hiring” an emotion to get a job done:
- I don’t forgive Susan
- Upon further thought, I see that I hired “unforgiveness” to punish Susan for what she’s done, so I can feel better
- I find that whether or not Susan feels punished, I feel punished – I feel horrible!
- It’s an option to fire the emotion of “unforgiveness” and see if there is another emotion for hire, for the job of helping me feeling better
Does that make sense? Roll this around in your mind this week. Play with it. See if it doesn’t serve you in different ways.
So, is this a new model? No. Not really. Let me use my black jeans example to populate a model.
CIRCUMSTANCE: I bought a new pair of black jeans
THOUGHT: I look taller and thinner in this new pair of black jeans
ACTION: When I got out in the new pair of black jeans, I notice that I am confident, I reach out to others, etc.
RESULT: I feel good, and I help others feel good, too
Wow! That is an incredible pair of jeans, right?? With those results!
Now, because I am already feeling good, I likely wouldn’t take the time to write out that model. The model works for positive feelings as well as negative feelings, but without feeling the need to change something, we don’t usually sit and do a model. Except to make a point, I guess, like above.
Let’s try a different model.
CIRCUMSTANCE: I look at People Magazine every day.
THOUGHT: My life is so boring and their lives are so exciting.
ACTION: I keep buying it. I keep combing through it. I keep looking for a different feeling, doing the same thing. I don’t leave the apartment. I don’t want my husband to see how plain-jane I am.
RESULT: I am so lonely.
Job poorly done, People Magazine! The job I hired it for, anyway. If I’d hired People Magazine to show me some new fashion ideas, it’s possible the job would have been done, and well.