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The all-powerful MAYBE

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Standing between over-confidence and over-caution, ‘maybe’ calls for openness, curiosity and humility

If you followed MasterChef Australia 2019 on television, you would have watched with awe, the youngest ever winner, Larissa Takchi, who bagged the quarter million dollar prize money and the coveted MasterChef Australia 2019 title. The two contestants who fought head-to-head till the last second of the three-round grand finale were equally resilient, talented, creative risk-takers throughout; yet some key aspects were fundamentally different on the day it mattered the most.

The difference was most apparent when, at the finish line, Larissa’s surprise at winning was as big as Tessa’s (her opponent) at her loss. Both contestants had come up through the long, gruelling stages of the contest on a trail of innovative, audacious and unpredictable flavours and combinations. That set them apart from the rest, as they beat professional chefs in the preliminary rounds, riding on their penchant for the unique. Yet, in the finale, Tessa’s hunger to seal her win seemed to dim her innovative streak, as she settled for safer, crowd pleasing, predictable recipes, while Larissa continued to back herself with a slew of audacious and intuitive flavour ideas. Yes, the possibility of it backfiring loomed right till the end of the four-hour contest. And yet, she won the game of high stakes for those very reasons.

Spirit of winning

A winner’s momentary surprise at winning steers me to what I call the attitude of ‘Maybe’ in success — an attitude that is unafraid to put everything on the line for creativity and excellence and by that very act is tentative of a win, because creativity is subjective. The winner in the above reference opts out of playing safe and follows her own wild and imaginative spirit; she honours the quality that had got her there and carries it through to the big win.

How does ‘maybe’ look on ground?

Standing between over-confidence and over-caution, ‘maybe’ calls for openness, curiosity and humility. It makes us learn to approach ‘knowing’ and ‘certainty’ in a tentative spirit, particularly in fluid environments. This is not the tentativeness of capability, but the smart wisdom to overlook the pressure of certainty that our brain demands in conclusive moments. A pressured mind poses roadblocks to conducive action and risk-taking. ‘Maybe’ gives space to the spirit of possibility and experimentation, reinforced by tons of patience and self-belief.

‘Maybe’ is non-linear

‘Maybe’ has the power to distil and distance us from our noisy, overstretched minds. Going into a challenge ready to excel, yet being open and relenting, is more forgiving than a constricted headspace. ‘Maybe’ is an open and unbound internal setting that potentially replaces the linear pressure points of the mind.

In linear settings, we tell ourselves story after story, believing we know how life should proceed for our success and well-being. Yet, how can there be just one way for us to win or manifest our goals?

This realisation guides one straight into the rewarding potential of ‘maybe’.

The writer is a life coach, blogger and writer who simplifies the patterns and archetypes she encounters at work and in life. nivedita@lifealigncoaching.com

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Printable version | Feb 25, 2020 11:20:24 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/education/the-all-powerful-maybe/article30477178.ece

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