October 15, 2020

Blowing in the Rain

Josh Gentine

I’ve got a nut problem. Truly. My driveway is covered in nuts. The squirrels sit in the trees that tower over my property and they nibble away, tossing down the shells and debris. In the grand scheme of life, the nuts are not a major issue, but when my kids hop on their scooters and cruise full speed down the driveway, they hit the nuts and crash. So, while the nuts are not the issue themselves, they are catalysts for skinned knees, bruised legs, and tears. We go from happily scooting around the driveway to blood curdling cries and streams of tears followed by the drama of band aids, and their eventual removal days later. The squirrels don’t recognize that their beefing up for winter creates days of chaos around my house. Days.

Bear with me, I’ll get to my point.

My nut problem is exactly why I went out this weekend to blow off my driveway in the pouring rain. A couple cars passed as I was spraying water, leaves, and nuts all over my property, and admittedly I got some funny looks. I had my big ear protection and safety glasses on and with water dripping from my head to my toes, I’m sure I looked ridiculous. But, when I finished, no nuts.

While I was blowing off the driveway, I reflected on the fact that we all have nut problems in our life. They show up in different forms for each of us, but I assure you they litter your driveway and derail your success. A frustrating manager. Your family business partner. Your underperforming employee that you continue to ignore. Your personal habits that seem to have complete control over your life. Or even your failure to deliver your potential, over and over again. Your nuts are those things that show up every single day and need to be dealt with or you will have problems, both immediately and in the long run. I have nut problems. You have nut problems. Nut problems are a fact of life, the question is, how are you dealing with them?

In both my coaching work and my family business advisory work, I find nuts, and I often find that many clients are not dealing with them. One of my family business clients has a family member who is not fit to lead the organization despite being the heir apparent. The entire executive team recognizes the issue, but this nut is not being dealt with. While this acquiescence to the problem may avoid short-term conflict, the company and its employees will eventually suffer. In a different way, a coaching client is struggling with his own nut, a fear of failure. This fear is so pervasive (yet completely unfounded) that he is sabotaging his success at every turn.

None of us are immune to the nut debris in our lives, but my challenge to you and your team is this: can you identify the problem and then blow the driveway clean. I often hear that “now is not the best time”, but the reality is, there is never a good time to deal with the nut problems in our lives, but sometimes you need to go out in the rain, look a bit ridiculous, and start blowing.

If I can help you crack some nuts, please reach out, I’d love to talk.

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