Just about everybody owns or has owned a bucket of Legos in their time. There’s no denying the fun they provide for a child or even for an adult, which is why, many Lego collections are passed down from one generation to the next. These brightly colored blocks of joy serve to challenge our creativity and imaginations. They act as an empowering influence on our lives in that they almost beckon us to transform them into anything we want or can imagine.
Michelangelo was never short on imagination despite the fact he knew nothing of Legos. On completion of the Pietà [one of his greatest works of art] he was heard to have said, “The work of art was always in the block of marble. My job,” he went on, “was to chip away at the unneeded bits of stone to reveal the creativity and beauty within.”
It’s not a stretch to believe that if Michelangelo were alive today, he’d no doubt see similarities in a simple box of Legos. He may have pointed out; the art is always in the bricks… the challenge is to assemble them to reveal a thing of beauty.
How true – but where’s the relevance?
Lego Law #1: With Legos, There are No Restrictions!
Metaphorically speaking, Lego Law #1 in tandem with Michelangelo’s rationale, clearly demonstrate a similarity to human beings and the laws that govern life.
Each one of us – without exception – is blessed at birth with creativity and imagination. To be fair, we’re not all blessed equally but there are still no limits on what we can do with the gifts we’ve been given. Although I could wax on for days about this, simply put, humans, like Lego, possess the fundamental building blocks to accomplish almost anything we want or can envision. And from Michelangelo’s perspective, the beauty [we all have the power to create] is already within us. We just have to chip away at life to find it.
Lego Law #2: Legos need Sunlight!
No imagination, beauty or creative works of art will ever come to fruition if the Lego collection is under a bed or in the back of a darkened closet. That is to say, to create great works of Lego art, one must liberate them from the dark to the light so that then – and only then – steps can be taken to build structure from inspiration and imagination.
How sad it is that most people go through life keeping their creative building blocks in the darkness of their mind. Henry David Thoreau noted, “Most people live lives of quiet desperation.” Like hidden Legos waiting for new creative opportunities, human beings innately possess the fundamental building blocks for improvement that wait patiently for new marching orders to express themselves.
Lego Law #3: Don’t be Afraid to Tear Down and Start Again!
Parents are often taken aback to see children destroy a Lego creation they worked hours on to complete. Psychologists are quick to remind parents; the act of destruction is both developmental and healthy. In the end, children learn better and more innovative ways to construct their ‘Lego-ations’.
Not surprisingly, the most successful men and women from all walks of life will attest to the fact that success of any kind results from the act of teardown and rebuild. The psychological motivation for this is not rooted in ongoing feelings of dissatisfaction or lack of accomplishment but rather a positive belief in the vital need to improve through renewal.
On the other hand, whether it’s Legos or Life, a complete teardown and rebuild is not always essential. In Legos, the addition of two imaginary jet engines may be all that’s necessary to turn a plane into a JET – and the same is also true for life strategies. Sometimes a fine-tune is all that’s required. The trick is, recognize it and don’t be afraid!
Lego Law #4: Lego Art Becomes an Immediate Target!
Don’t ever expect your childhood siblings to share in your Lego vision. The fact is; little brothers and sisters are always ready to help you expedite the Lego Law #3 ritual – especially the ‘Teardown’ phase. Experienced Legoists learn quickly to protect their creations to ensure they continue to reap the rewards of their hard work.
So too in the laws of life! Those who toil upward attract uninvited scrutiny on all they do as a result of their undaunted dedication to success. To dare to stand apart from the crowd, to embark on an uncharted course, to risk everything by tearing down to rebuild – opens one up to green-eyed interpretation and unexceptional ridicule.
For the true Legoist, it is risk that fuels the fires that create the new and improved work of art. For high-achievers, risk fans the flames of passion, which, in the end, is what separates them from those who are destined to sit, uncomfortably, on the sidelines – having already put away their proverbial Legos!
Paul Shearstone MACP, NLP/CCP, is a recognized expert on Sales and Persuasion. International Speaker, Author, Psychotherapeutic Counsellor, Certified Coaching and NLP Practitioner. www.success150.com www.paulshearstone.com