Home from a trip to Costa Rica, Suzy and I were invited into the Quebec heartland, to a beautiful lodge on a pristine lake, where I told a management team the story of the Jaguar-kings. Driving home after, we remarked on how lucky we are to stay at some of the finest resorts all over the world - for FREE - in the course of our work and, in fact, how we enjoy a life that we are consciously choosing.

We talked about our love of travel and, as professional circumstances have it, we are paid to stay at these great places, many times a year, for over 20 years. I remembered being quite young when I decided that I like to travel and wanted to see exotic places. I focused on that intent after I was amazed by a Boa skin my father had, and by the stories I was told about the goings-on in America's jungles.

Animating one of our multimedia presentations, we told our host a story about the ancient Olmec rulers of Mesoamerica and how their
forest of kings was organized around « altruistic self-interest » the management principle favoured in Nature.

3000 years ago in America, citizens were encouraged to contribute to a tribe's greater good and those who took this idea to heart were initiated to kingship. The initiates climbed a hierarchy as they learned how the jungle’s management law indeed spells out the secret of success:
Give and you shall receive.

An apprenticeship involved 10 years of training for which initiates traded 10 years of service. They would enter into 3 such cycles to become very powerful rulers. As
understanding must follow experience so real learning is largely trial and error.

5 steps to getting whatever you want:

  1. Know exactly what it is that you do want! It's very important to write it down - describing it as your "Most Ardent Intent". This M.A.I. can be whatever will get you moving.
  2. Write down what you have to offer that merits your M.A.I.
  3. Determine potential partners who might benefit from your offer, or contribute to it, and plan a strategy that connects you to them.
  4. Prepare a win-win-win scenario, offer it to a potential partner and see if your negotiating strategy gets your M.A.I. - or not. If you do not get the result you intend, learn from it and adjust - by changing your strategy, your partner or your M.A.I.
  5. Keep trying and adjusting - with unbending intent - until you are aligned with your Most Ardent Intent.

I translated my Jaguar-king story into modern business jargon and we taught the group how to provoke creative breakthroughs. Our client told us how much they appreciated the time we spent together and, driving home, I realized that telling stories in exchange for getting what I want is a magical way of living!