I got an email that asked "How do you stay so calm in the crazy taxi rides?". And, that is a great question.
Those that know me well, know that I am not too easily excited and often have a large reserve of "patience". There are a few things that can really set me off but I try to keep those under control and have conditioned myself to laugh anytime I become frustrated and can feel my blood pressure rising. I learned this at a young age, mostly due to sports.
My dad and uncles often said that when I was fouled in basketball or someone was trying to make me mad on the basketball court, I just needed to laugh. The reason for this was because the person instigating me would often become angry or mad when they saw me laughing, and it usually worked out well for me.
Aside from conditioning myself for sports and keeping my cool, there is a scientific formula that explains it. If your name is Brian Kight and you live and breathe the "R Factor", you understand that every situation or event, has responses that ultimately impact your outcomes. That formula I spoke of is E+R=O, developed by Focus3 which was started by Brian's dad Tim. The formula is An Event (E) plus a Response (R) equals an Outcome (O). When I sit in my taxi rides each day, regardless if we take the wrong route, get stuck in traffic, or end up paying a little more than I probably should have, my end goal is always to make it to the office or to my hotel. In the U.S. I would have the ability to discuss any concerns I have with them as we would speak a common language. However in Sao Paulo, my life is essentially being entrusted to taxi drivers to take me to the proper spot and not to some place to get robbed or where I do not know where I am.
So back to the formula, the desired outcome or the "O" is that I want to make it to my destination. If the situation or the "E" is bad, I would essentially only make it worse by getting mad and upset. If I got mad and yelled at the taxi driver, it would have a couple of effects. He's likely to understand what I am saying in the first place, but it could make him mad and tell me to get out in an area where I am not familiar with. So I would be standing there, on a street corner, at night, with my computer, a long walk from the hotel. That is not the desired "O" or outcome that I am looking for so. How can I ensure that I am returned safely to my hotel or taken to the office building? By sitting there, following the route on a map, or jotting down a few notes for my blog about situation. If you remain calm, it also keeps you from creating undue stress which can lead to hypertension, heart attacks, headaches, and other health ailments, but those are somewhat secondary in my explanation. Without fail, the formula has worked time and time again, and although I have been frustrated a couple times, I've been able to laugh it off and ensure my safe arrival each morning and night.
For a more indepth analysis, lets welcome Brian Kight to the stage ladies and gentlemen.
And that my friends, is how I keep a calm head in the taxi rides and never ending traffic of Sao Paulo.