The Bitch Slap: The Inherent Value of an Ass Kicking

I won’t tell you why I’m in Los Angeles this week. What I will tell you is that it involves much ass kicking (and my ass is the recipient of the business end of the boot). I signed up for this and while I wasn’t previously sure how much I was going to like it, I can currently say the following without hesitation:

Bring on the boot.

We all go about our days, embroiled in routine and  administering ass kickings. But when’s the last time we willingly signed-up for one? As professionals, our livelihood thrives on the opportunity to share our knowledge base with those in need of what we know. People pay us to whip them and their businesses into shape. We pay for what we cannot provide for ourselves: dental cleanings, medical diagnosis, automotive repair. I say we add regularly scheduled ass kickings to that list.

There’s something delicious in the entirely tawdry, “Yes, Mistress! May I have another!!?!!?” As humans, however, we’ve developed an aversion to pain, and pain rears its head in many fashions. Dawning recognition, dissolution of a relationship, loss, failure. But why can’t we start seeing ass kickings as paths to opportunity instead of beat-downs from failure?

Here are five things I’ve learned about getting my ass kicked since my arrival in Los Angeles on Friday morning last week:

  • When you think you can’t do it again, do it twice. Rarely have I ever thought about what I’m capable of achieving and by hiring someone to kick my ass, I remove my preconceived notions from the equation. If I think I have no more good ideas, nothing left in me, there’s so much left and it’s hiding in places I never imagined. That’s why you do it twice.
  • You’re rarely a good judge of your potential, but you can get better. When you sign up for an ass kicking, they’re approaching YOU without emotion and with pure function. WHAT can they make you do? HOW can they push you? They could really give a shit if you’re tired or haven’t eaten enough today or you skipped your morning coffee. They’re there to push, and when they push without regard for your assumed comfort zones, you’re left with a great gift: a new realization of what you can achieve. That’s friggin’ priceless (and it means endless potential for your NEXT ass kicking).
  • You do exactly what you’re thinking. If you’re thinking about lunch when you’re supposed to be doing something for a client, your client is getting the ass end of the deal. Similarly, when you need to execute something and you don’t plan your process, you’re screwing yourself. Take a moment and THINK about what you’re doing. We spend so much of our days just DOING that by taking a moment to THINK, we can vastly improve how we DO.
  • You can DO better. Maybe you’re damn skippy at what you do. A freakin’ savant and force to be reckoned with. When you bring in outside eyes to have a gander at HOW you DO, you’re getting two things: someone to watch the process who has no attachment to how you FEEL about it and the ability to improve something that may be pretty great (or even not so pretty). By opening yourself up to the ass kicking, you’re saying “I want to DO better” and separating yourself from the attachment you might have to how you’ve BEEN doing. It’s a pretty cool feeling when you realize that yes, you can DO better and there’s nothing wrong with what you’ve BEEN doing. It’s the potential inherent in the future. That’s what I think is damn skippy.
  • Comfort, schmomfort. Many of you know I’ve become quite the cycling nut. A gentlemen down in Colorado Springs is reported to say, “It’s cycling: if it were easy, they’d call it beer.” If you want to be comfortable, get a sofa or a Tempur-Pedic mattress. If you want to move forward, apply some pressure and I think a foot to the ass is the ideal means of pressure. Stop being so wrapped-up in FEELING. Start concerning yourself with DOING, PUSHING, CHANGING. We’re fairly hesitant to get out of our comfort zones, and this past week, I’ve enjoyed paying for the pleasure of having someone’s foot up my ass. Improving isn’t about being comfy – it’s about acquiring skills so that you build a foundation for improving even more down the line. When you stop searching for the “push point” and how that affects everything else you do, you may as well be a bag of Cheetos. Crunchy, orange, lumpy…static. Bleh.
21 comments
Kat Jaibur
Kat Jaibur

When you can find someone who will tell it like it is, who sees the best in you and eggs you on to be more of that... well, that's pure gold. It involves trust, too, because you want to know that it's coming from a desire to help you, not to puff up their own ego. Personally, I've had enough harshness in my time, so I'm more motivated by honesty mixed with encouragement. I also think it's important for coaches to have a coach, so we don't start thinking we're the great and wonderful Oz. Works for me. :-)

The Redhead
The Redhead

It's good to seek out the foot-in-ass approach to changing things up, methinks :)

The Redhead
The Redhead

I wish we'd met as well! Isn't it amazing that with 100-150 people in one room we still can't meet everyone on our list? :) Glad I said something that inspired you and thanks for stopping by to say so. Hit me up on Twitter, m'kay?

rseth8
rseth8

First, I wish we could have met at SOBCon, I was there and started following you then since I liked what you had to say and the way you say it! I agree that a good Kick in the Ass is needed every now and then, how else do you grow? I'm enjoying your blog and can't wait to see what else you write about!

The Redhead
The Redhead

I wish I could say I'm uncomfortable with this line of questioning...but I'm not.

The Redhead
The Redhead

Always happy to slap you, Shelly...Wait a minute...that...Nevermind.

The Redhead
The Redhead

Indeed - if you're TOO hard on yourself, you don't have any room to operate. That's something else I've learned this week - you've gotta have ROOM TO OPERATE!

ShellyKramer
ShellyKramer

This is terrific, E. And a reminder that most of us need. Anytime we get complacent, it's time for an ass-kicking. If we're smart that is. That's part of the reason I'm so looking forward to SOBCon2010 -- there will be plenty of that - and I'm psyched.Great Bitch Slapping - as usual.Your Groupie,Shelly Kramer@shellykramerhttp://v3im.com

The Redhead
The Redhead

I wish I could say I'm uncomfortable with this line of questioning...but I'm not.

The Redhead
The Redhead

Always happy to slap you, Shelly...Wait a minute...that...Nevermind.

The Redhead
The Redhead

Indeed - if you're TOO hard on yourself, you don't have any room to operate. That's something else I've learned this week - you've gotta have ROOM TO OPERATE!

ShellyKramer
ShellyKramer

This is terrific, E. And a reminder that most of us need. Anytime we get complacent, it's time for an ass-kicking. If we're smart that is. That's part of the reason I'm so looking forward to SOBCon2010 -- there will be plenty of that - and I'm psyched.Great Bitch Slapping - as usual.Your Groupie,Shelly Kramer@shellykramerhttp://v3im.com

WickedShawn
WickedShawn

I often think I need a good ass kicking. Then again, somtimes I have to remind myself not to be so hard on my own ass, There is a balance at times.

The Redhead
The Redhead

Much of my work is done solo as well. This venture into "hired help" is invaluable for me, too!

The Redhead
The Redhead

Thanks for stopping by today and I'm glad my ass kicking is driving yours :)

Cherry Woodburn
Cherry Woodburn

This is a good reminder. Since most of my work is done alone I don't get much feedback. I may say I'm critical of myself but that's not the valuable kind of ass-kicking that's needed.Good for you for doing it Reds.

libbyspears
libbyspears

Thanks for the bitch slap today! We have been working tirelessly on a new workshop series for women for the last 60 days and it is taking a lot of my reserve will power to not abandon the idea for lack of response. But I know know know in my heart of hearts that there is a legit need for this series to well....bitch slap the women in my community! Love the new site BTW