Wow.....hearing 6th gear sounds astounding. Doesn't it make you feel fast, high on adrenaline, on top of the world. I feel great about the feeling even at the thought of being in 6th gear. My car doesn't have it, my bike doesn't have it. But at times when I am riding or driving on the ring road (goes around the city) I miss the 6th gear big time. Drawing the analogy in life, I feel that life is fast, but at times I miss the 6th gear here as well. Imagine, you have 3 days off from your hectic city life and you want to cover virtually 5 days in these 3 days. What do you need? Its the 6th gear.
Few days back I was in my office, going through a professional contact website. I have not too many but, about 200 friends in 1st level contact. I saw many folks who were my peers or subordinates. It feels really good to see old pals, growing in their careers. Most of them are at good levels in their organisations. Someone is a regional manager, someone is a senior manager, someone is on the path to become a entrepreneur. People are carving their own future. I wonder, who is on 6th gear in their life? Can both personal and professional life be in the 6th gear, together? Think about it. How much practice it would take to make it happen. It wouldn't be easy at all. I am sure that everyone in life reaches the 6th gear at some point of time. Some reach earlier some reach little late, depending upon their throttle capability. Sounds, more of automotive stuff right? But, no it isn't. Think of throttle as your first career move, your first job. That would be the 1st gear. Then, your interdepartmental change, job change, competence development would be the 2nd, 3rd and 4th gears. When you feel that yes you are almost at the peak, settling down well in life, have married and have one or two kids, you earned some respect among your colleagues, your parents are happy, that is 5th gear.
Now what? What's next? What do you want to achieve next in your life both personally and professionally? Are you satisfied where you are or you want something more from yourself, from life? The concept of Maslow's Hierarchy of needs states that, top needs of a man would be Physiological, Safety and Love/Belonging where man seeks basic life supporting needs to be fulfilled like food, shelter, clothes, then safety of him and his near and dear ones, on top of it feeling of love and belonging with whom he can share each and every thing about his life. Once, man achieves this, he starts working on his esteem needs where he is highly concerned about his esteem, respect. This becomes one of the most precious things in his life. This must be the 5th gear. 6th gear is Self actualization. Once this 5th gear is reached and life starts sailing smooth, one gets a feeling of what next. This feeling is a result of achieving something more from life which is above basics of life. One wants to reach state of satisfaction by contributing to other's life.
In the same way, I feel the need of 6th gear in my life when, I am not satisfied with the things how they are moving. I feel, if I have that 6th gear, I can fly past the time of dissatisfaction and get in to what and how I want life to be. Might not be practically possible, but then I ask myself, WHY NOT? I read a quote which motivates me a lot. It says " Its better to give self reasons about why you can than why you can't". I want to do so many things in life, but sometimes my own thoughts stop me, saying life is short, but then again I ask myself WHY NOT give it a try? Come on I can do it. So, why can't you? You can do it.
I am working on shifting my life from 5th gear to 6th gear. Are you doing it? If not, then DO IT NOW....Shift to the 6th Gear.
Good Luck !!!