Structure and content

Life gets its meaning from structure and hence, unless we give it one structure or another, it will be unlivable- it simply will not make sense. Ironically, structure itself is a very fluid concept that becomes what we decide it is. This is comparable to water that assumes three different states depending on how we treat it. When frozen into solidity it is ice, when evaporated it is gas. Somehow I get a feeling that its most comfortable state is the liquid state but that is not up to me to decide. It is not my place to decide for you what water is even though its chemical composition is constant.
The life we live gets its meaning from us and so you will find life does not have the same meaning for everyone – yet we all have a meaning for it and that is what determines what we do with it. We are the most active force in the creation of our circumstances. Money is the most important thing in the world because we have decided it is.
Liquid gets its shape from its container which then becomes the structure and liquid itself the content. I find that people are the same- in fact I daresay that everything in life can be broken down into structure and content and it is the quality of the structure that determines the usefulness of the content as the liquid gets its shape from the container. Even when frozen into solid ice, water must assume a certain shape that will be based on a container in order to get its form. Your life is the way it is because of the structure you have given it.
People have physical structure in terms of the skeleton that gives our bodies the shape it has. Without the skeletons I am not sure what we will be reduced to- a bag of flesh perhaps that will have to roll around on the ground- see it is difficult to imagine how we will live without structure. Structure is therefore a crucial necessity that enables everything.
As humans we function on an infinite number of structures and, as I said before, it is what makes it possible for us to live as it is how we give meaning to life. We have cultures, religions, ceremonies, time etc. All these determine how we live our lives but most importantly it is who and what we are that makes all the difference and who and what we are comes from how we see ourselves and how we choose to be. While we may assume the same religion and life philosophy, we are still unique in structure no matter what. 
While foreigners may think of the Ghanaian one way and give all of us a character, they will be able to find individual difference between each person. While two people may come from the same family and attend the same schools till they both get a PhD, it is their structure that will make them different individuals. In this case formal education as we know it becomes the content that will get its shape and usefulness from structure- who and what we are.  This is why we can have a good accountant and a bad accountant, a good lawyer and a bad lawyer. The good and bad coming from how the technical intelligence of a lawyer is being applied and that is based on how he sees himself. For the lawyer and the doctor are in another sense containers of medical and legal information; and hence we must be more concerned about the structure of a person than his or her training.
It makes sense therefore to allow the structure to give the content its place and the content must function through the structure. When a person chooses a religion for example, he or she gets personal moral codes that he or she believes to be right from it and hence is provided with a structural system with which he or she must function as a person. A Christian doctor in this sense may not necessarily be the same as an atheist doctor or a worldly doctor although they have gone to the same medical school. The difference comes from their structure which is based on their religion.
In researching the idea, we have reached a conclusion at the CSD that people need two kinds of education and indeed they do get both in one way or the other. Except we tend to put the content ahead of the structure in a cart before the horse fashion. We seem to think that the cart is the more important of the two though it is the horse that provides energy for the cart to move as the cart is almost useless by itself. A horse, however, on its own can move without a cart.
 “I am a lawyer”, “I am an accountant”, means nothing until we have given it structure by the person we are. But if the structure does not influence the content, a conflict is created such as, perhaps, what you get from square pegs in round holes. Who and what we are is heavily influenced by our very nature- all the way down to our physical structure.
That UsainBolt must be a sprinter is a combination of content and structure that is working perfectly well. When this happens, the only possible result is the fastest man in the world. The very physical nature of Bolt is designed for speed.But how does he know what to do to get the most speed out of himself? He has to be provided with the right information based on years of research by others who probably never run a 100metres race in their lives. The same information in the wrong hands will turn out to be useless if that person’s structure does not enable it. Howard Gardner’s multiple intelligence system provides us with an idea of how different we can all be in terms of our cognitive make-up. That each one of us belongs to one of his eight categories of intelligence; and it is this that should determine our choice of vocation. He is indeed referring to natural talent and capability, which, in itself, is a component of structure.
I am in complete agreement to a large extent as I believe that this natural intelligence that we have is the way we are informed of what it is we are; perhaps to put it in a cart before the horse fashion what we should become. It gives us a hint of what purpose we must serve. To understand this is to magnify this hint by gaining the right content (formal education and training) and, by our very nature, making it more useful.
 Structural education therefore leads us to a good understanding of the self and its various components. For a person to reach the peak of their performancethey consequently need to develop their structure and allow it to influence and shape the content. They must ensure there is compatibility between the two as the absence of this will mean conflict. Conflict by its very nature works against progress and therefore is anti-peak performance. 
It appears many of us are walking around with this conflict between structure and content and trying very hard to be the best at what we do. Structurally, we have been taught that hard work is what will bring us success and because of that we are actually fighting a vocation in the name of hard work. In the midst of our war we have not noticed that those who are the best at it are actually relaxed in it and make it look easy. Peak performance is an effortless venture and those who seek it must seek it effortlessly. 
There are very specific elements that must be a part of a person in order for them to maximize their capability and all of these elements are components of structure. In fact, content itself must be compatible with the structure, or else the whole system will malfunction and underperform.
It is then of extreme importance to spend time understanding and developing one’s structure, i.e. the person you are, even more than content. Daniel Goleman, a renowned psychologist and researcher, proposes that one’s emotional intelligence, a key component of structure, makes success more predictable than their technical intelligence. What this means is that a person may have a great deal of talent and training but lack of emotional intelligence resulting in negative structure which will limit his or her success. In any case understanding what one must train in, or deciding on what vocation one must be involved in is to be based on a good understanding of structure. 
Allow your content to be based on the structure and enable your maximum power to manifest itself in an effortless matter! If you are going to drive a train, be sure to drive it on rail tracks. Do not let the fact that it can move on a road if you force it to fool you. You will never get the maximum speed out of it that way. 
See if you can explain your own structure. REV UP!

Structure and content is a component of the CSD® ultra-Performance® training system. The components of structure include Emotional Intelligence, Social Intelligence, Spiritual Intelligence, Financial Intelligence, and LoveLogic®. Check out our website for our concept of how to unlock these items among others.

About Markus Kennedy Katey

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