Does it make a difference if you care about what you do? If you are really passionate and committed to what you give energy, or if it is just something that you do, because there is nothing better to do? I observe that it makes a huge difference. When I am connected to the power of that passion and commitment, I experience far greater energy.
Does it matter how much you are connected to that passion and commitment? From not connected at all, to only connected briefly at times, to connected frequently, to connected much of the time. I experience that how much I carry the commitment and passion with me influences how much energy I give to that commitment. When it is high, I am a continuous ambassador for the passion. Like with my family.
In our fieldwork right now at the Institute for Strategic Clarity, we are developing measures of this continuity power–the power of being connected to the deeper shared purpose, the love of the future for which I give my will. In understanding the geometries of agreements fields, we are exploring how to assess continuity power as one of the key geometries. “Continuity power” relates to (1) the gap between the desired and actual states of the deeper shared purpose, (2) the utility one has for closing the gap, and (3) the time that one is connected to that deeper shared purpose, of closing the gap.
Using the analogy of power, which is the amount of work done in a unit of time, and where work is the force applied over a distance, we see that the distance is the gap, the force applied is the utility to close the gap, and the time is the time dedicated to closing the gap. Power = Work / time = (Force * distance) / time, or Continuity Power = Utility * gap / time. Graphing out this function in the three dimensions shows an interesting geometry, where not all ranges of each of the three variables is possible. We will be mapping this geometry and sharing the mapping of what we find in the world of human agreements fields over the next months.
This formulation also leads to some interesting initial insights, which we are now in the process of checking in the field. Let’s work through the three elements: utility; gap; and time. If the utility to close the gap is weak, maybe because of other priorities, then the work to close the gap will seem to be too great, which will lead to the need to reduce the gap. The easiest way to reduce the gap is to lower the desired state towards the actual state. This is a classic systems archetype, known as drifting goals. If you do not see or connect to the deeper shared purpose, then the time connected decreases significantly, requiring much more continuity power to get the work done. If the work to be done seems to be too much, this is probably a symptom of a low amount of time connected to the deeper shared purpose. If it seems to be just too much work to be done to shift the system towards the desired state, then the easiest solution is to reduce either the force or the distance, the utility to change the system by closing the gap or changing the gap.
Conversely, as the time increases that you are connected to closing the gap between the desired and actual states of the deeper shared purpose, the continuity power required to get the work done decreases. This suggests that it takes far more energy to move the system (to close the gap between the desired and actual states) when not connected to the deeper shared purpose. It is much more efficient to move the system when connected more continuously to the deeper shared purpose. It does seem to make a difference if you care about what you do, and how much of the time you are connected to that passion and commitment. We will be field-testing these insights into the geometry of continuity power in the agreements fields over the next months, sharing here what we are finding.