Beach Walk 581 – Contain the Energy

At the beginning of a project, the world seems so full of potential.

Being able to sustain that potential is another job altogether. One of the biggest lessons I have learned from doing Beach Walks is to know when to shut up! When we started, we discussed at length, “How often should we do a show?” At the time, Rocketboom was the only show that was going “daily” – that is M-F or 5 days a week. Most others were doing a weekly show, or sporadically according to multiple factors.

Since it is my practice to go to the beach every day (it is my time to de-stress!) we just started doing it every day. But we did not announce it as a daily show. That allowed us to explore the possibilities without the pressure to deliver on a promise we had no idea if we could keep. Though trust me, my little #2 was saying, “Oh of COURSE you can do it every day and think of the advantage you will get by telling everyone!!”

As it turned out, we did an episode every day for 400 days, then finally wised up! (From exhaustion…) I don’t know how this stuff happened, I am just sharing what I have learned and I truly believe we have been able to sustain this not by promising that we will, but by NOT promising, and letting the energy feed us instead of the pressure draining us.

Check out our friend, Vu Goes Vegan and tell me how you manage your energy! By coincidence, I also tripped across this post from Phillip Banks about podfading while writing up these notes.

Hawaiian Word:
Hoʻokaomi: pressure

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  1. This reminds me of a story about the starfish. A starfish applies a very low-level force to the outside of a clam’s shell to get it to open. At first nothing happens – but over time the clam cannot resist the starfish’s pull and the shell opens. Slow consitent energy is often more powerful than a quick blow.


  2. You are so in my head Rox. I was a couple days behind on watching your podcast until you posted on my blog that this one had so much to do with what I was getting into with the network on my blog.

    My oldest son takes after me in this way. We told him that he couldn’t finish this plate of food when he was younger. We went away and came back and he was really sick that night but because he said he could do it, he did. (I’ll repost this on my blog for my readers too).

    Oh, and YES I’ll be at NME.

  3. @shawnotay – that is a great example of focused energy and patience; mahalo

    @Phillip – your son is one amazing guy! Certainly, there is an aspect to bravado that can infuse energy into a task – but in my experience, it is not very sustainable over the long haul. So to make a short term promise? Easier to pull off than a long term one.

  4. Aloha,
    I guess I am looking at this in a different way. I am always aware of the energy, mental and physical, and time you all put into this gift of Beachwalks, that you give to us daily. It is the first thing I do every morning, after I fix my coffee,Kona of course! Even though, you did not officially make a commitment of a daily encounter, you always gave us something to think about. Even if it was the sound of the ocean and our own thoughts, which worked to slow me down for even a few minutes to remember I could have my moment.Just know, if you could only do 1 espisode a week, I would feel something missing. However, you have already given me more, for free, than I could have purchased with any amount of money.So, thank you, I can only imagine the amount of energy it takes for only what I see you do and know that this energy feeds mine and helps me to fulfill my non-commitments to my own satisfaction.
    Mahalo and Aloha

  5. Susan and my dog Lexie says

    Glynda is so right — Beachwalks is a gift that is put out there and is impacting so many. Lexi is the dessert 🙂

  6. Talking about commitment and your #2…you even gave us Beach Walks when you were sick, you silly girl!!!

    I love your filtering concept! As a “rescuer”, I often find myself doing things to help others get their priorities done in the moment, then it’s “expected” that I’ll just continue doing that ad infinitum. By using the “where is my energy coming from” and being sure that’s what I’m communicating, I’ll bet there will be a lot less pressure in my life.

    @ Glynda – Right on…I have several of the non-verbal Beach Walks stashed as my favorites, so I can fill in for when Roxanne & Shane take some well-deserved time off!

    @ Susan: I echo your sentiments, as well!.

  7. Oh the sun and clouds are so beautiful in this video!

    What you’ve said is timely for me. I have definitely experienced this before. It’s a lesson I’ve had to learn more than once. Now, I tend to reign things in, and not put all kinds of pressure on myself.

    Great episode.

  8. …that’s what I like about the posting on The Reef in the blog section. It has the post-at-a-future-date feature which gave me lots of time to put something up (actually more than one post at a time), so if something came up, I didn’t have to worry about getting my post together and published wiki wiki, however I appeared to be posting on a consistant basis on to the reader/visitor…

  9. These comments so round out my initial thought. 5 minutes is an interesting limitation – I often have more to say, so how nice that each of you have identified more threads to this thread. Mahalo!

  10. I sometimes wonder if these grandiose pronouncements are meant more to help the announcer sustain their initial energy by sharing it with the audience, rather than a genuine desire to inform people of new developments. Certainly it’s possible for both to be true, but it’s often the case that I will announce on Twitter that I’m about to write and record a new audiocast, in the hope that by getting some positive interest I’ll actually persevere through the sometimes difficult process of finding something original to say.

    Speaking of which, hmm… I haven’t updated my Vox in a long time. I’d better Twitter about it!

  11. @Akela – yes I think the announcement itself can gather some energy to help one push through something initially. But I find this energy rapidly dissipates and is actually replaced by its opposite if progress is not seen by “the others.”

    In other words, to have people cheering you on at the start is wonderful and can help. But they are generally not there for the day to day slog, and when promises are not met, then can turn and become detractors instead of supporters, fairly easily. This is more applicable the less of a personal connection naturally – the adoring masses become the fist to pull down the statue!

    So I guess the subtle distinction is to consider how long out in the future are you promising and how big a thing are you promising. The farther out, the bigger the thing, I think the more to contain the energy – in general. Life “always” has exceptions.