The Andean condor is the largest flying creature in the world.
Andean condors have a maximum wingspan of 10 ft 10 in (3.3 m). And they have the heaviest average weight for any living flying bird.
They look like birds of prey but they’re actually vultures and they feed on the bodies of dead animals.
They only produce one egg every two years. But they rarely build a safe, protective nest for their egg. They simply lay it on a bare cliff edge. Which is why, unusually for a bird, both parents incubate and raise the chick together, giving it as much care and attention as possible. And baby condors live with their parents for two full years.
Andean Condors live up to 75 years. And they have been part of the religion, folklore, mythology and art of South American for 2,500 years. To this day, it’s a national symbol of 6 countries.
But none of this is what’s most fascinating about the Andean Condor…
A team of scientists have just published the results of a study where they strapped recording equipment to condors, in Patagonia. They recorded every single wingbeat over more than 250 hours of flight time.
What they discovered is incredible. The birds spent just 1% of their time aloft flapping their wings. One bird flew more than five hours, covering more than 100 miles (160km), without flapping its wings.
Experts can see the invisible – and it astonishes the people who are watching them.
A baseball player accurately hits a ball traveling toward them at 92 miles per hour. An emergency room physician slows down time, in the midst of chaos, to make life-saving decisions. A high-level coach accurately reads the silence of their client, to know what they really want, before the client does.
Gut intuition is actually high-level, complex, pattern recognition.
It’s equivalent to flapping your wings 1% of the time you’re in flight.
The Andean Condor doesn’t see the sky as empty. It sees an entire landscape of invisible features: wind gusts, currents of warm rising air and streams of air pushed upward by ground features such as mountains.
When you see condors circling, they are taking advantage of thermal uplifts – rising gusts of warm air that you can’t see. Riding these air currents allows these huge birds to travel huge distances while barely exerting the beating of their wings.
I’m an expert in high-level, complex coaching skills. And I’m an expert in coaching high-level leaders. When you watch me coach, you see me soaring on invisible gusts of wind.
I’m an expert in creating something from nothing. A book that sells as many copies a month, as the month it was first published, 7 years earlier. A program that can create a million dollars worth of value in a year. An article that’s read by 20,000 people. A video that’s watched by 100,000 people. A community of high-level leaders.
What you don’t see…
What you don’t see when you observe my successes is that I’ve spent over 10 years writing every day. What you don’t see is that I’ve spent 15 years creating – and much of it was never read, never watched, or never purchased. What you don’t see is that I’ve spent over 30 years studying and practicing leadership and coaching skills.
To be a successful coach requires a desire to never stop learning and a willingness to fail – again, and again and again. To be a thought leader requires a willingness to make small acts of courage a daily habit. Success requires a willingness to share your thoughts and to fail, screw-up and make mistakes. Long-term success requires a commitment to the long haul.
Once you’re successful, you get to soar on invisible currents. People talk about you. You build a word-of-mouth business.
But here’s the thing. You don’t need to wait. You’ve been there before…
- Think of a moment in your life or business where you soared. What was the invisible thermal uplift you used, that no one else could see?
- How could you leverage that invisible thermal uplift you used in the past, at this very moment?
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