This skill, as a few others mentioned in this blog, is way underplayed in trainings.
And yet outstanding trainers make exquisite use of it.
This skill, once you master it, will add precision to your modeling of outstanding performers. But it will do even more for you. You can count on it to:
- wipe out overwhelm from your life;
- guarantee that you successfully complete projects fast and without stress;
- dominate ever single area of your life you must manage to be successful;
- get an adequate overview of a problem you wish to solve;
- improve your ability to explain complex concepts to others;
- add more sizzle to your storytelling
That’s just a little sample of what you can expect from mastering this disarmingly simple, yet powerful skill.
Curious? I thought so. Let’s get to it.
Introducing The Power Of Chunking
I’m not referring here to Campbell minestrone soup or Ragu tomato sauce.
Chunking is a way of thinking. You can chunk in three directions:
- Up: When you chunk up, you break information down into manageable parts to ensure they fit into the big picture. This means you focus on the details and the little parts of the overall situation or project you’re analyzing.
- Down: When you chunk down, you begin with a detail or a small piece of the overall picture and work your way up by asking questions to fill in the big picture in which that small piece fits.
- Lateral: When you chunk laterally, you look for additional pieces or details that are on the same level as the bit you’re working with at the time.
This is a cinch to understand using an example.
Suppose you want to write a book. Stop and think about it for a second. “I want to write a book…” What are you going to do today? “I’m going to write a book…” While a few authors have been known to write best-sellers in a single sitting (and you might be interested in modeling how they did that), this might be too big of a chunk for you to handle.
Stop and think about it. “Write a book today.” How do you feel when you consider spending your day on this?
Based on my training experience, I would hallucinate that this task might overwhelm you a bit.
That’s the first sign that you’re dealing with too big of a chunk.
So we have to chunk it into smaller pieces.
This could look like the following:
- Write an outline for a book.
- Write the introduction.
- Write the first chapter.
- and so forth and so on…
Here’s an example of how you might want to chunk up. Let’s say you’re thinking of buying a car because you want to get around more rapidly and public systems aren’t cutting it for you. But you discover that you don’t have enough money to buy a car.
What can you do? Chunk up. You thought you needed a car. What you need is transportation.
You see? You just accessed a broader, more inclusive category. What are your new options?
Bicycle, moped, motorcycle, Segway, etc.
Now you can chunk back down and laterally into various options that might be more affordable.
NOTE: You ALREADY do this unconsciously, by the way. That’s why this might seem obvious to you. All we’re doing here is bringing that skill into consciousness so that you can use at will.
How To Leverage Chunking To Model The Best
People who produce extraordinary results in any area have a specific way and level of chunking information they consider to make decisions and act. In whatever area you want to increase the level of results you produce, you must model how outstanding performers chunk information for that specific activity at which they excel.
Now go practice!