Reflections on a Year: Our Top Five Posts on Wisdom and Excellence
When we launched our blog a year ago, we set out to share observations while offering tools for the daily work and perspectives on the bigger picture. Topics ranged from executive coaching and excellence to mindfulness and strategic capacity.
Since then, we’ve written about what matters to us…and what matters to you.
In celebrating a year, we’re sharing our most popular posts.
5. Limits Ltd
I observed a pattern: a recurring dialogue with myself, sometimes taking a few seconds, other times months or even years.
This isn’t working…Acknowledge I’m not particularly good at this…Own But it needs to be done, and done well…Face Reality Might there be another way?…Expand Who else might I partner with?…Collaborate Holy cow, why didn’t I think of this years ago?…Perform
4. The Juggling Act
Clowns make it look easy. I have a long-standing metaphor for maintaining equilibrium in my life. I’m continually juggling bowling balls. Each of these balls represents something very important to me: family, work, health, friends and community to name the biggies. These are weighty commitments with serious consequences if I drop them. Trouble is, I can’t keep all of them up in the air all of the time. I’ve learned—the hard way—to let the balls down gently as gravity insists on taking over. I also try to make sure the same balls aren’t always rolling around underfoot.
3. The Last Time for the First Time
Blanchard’s Situational Leadership model primarily addresses how we as leaders can diagnose and then meet the needs of our people on a situation-specific basis. What I love most about the model is when we turn it around and use it on ourselves. It gives us permission to be lifelong learners. It makes it okay to experience the frustration that is a natural part of the cycle. It is also a great tool for self-coaching and self-advocacy on a new task: Where am I in the learning process? At this stage what do I need (or not need) from my boss, my peers, my direct reports?
2. The Possibility Factor
Louisville, Kentucky. We are in the third and final day of a national junior high chess tournament. It’s a multicultural scene with students from across the country and all ethnic backgrounds. Kids, coaches and parents live, breath and sleep chess for 72 hours. Even in their downtime, teams are challenging other teams to impromptu blitz matches, which is chess on caffeine and steroids…fast and furious.
1. Philosopher Kings, Naturally
I also reflect back on my own training as a teacher. David Kolb’s research into learning has withstood the test of time. We learn best by having a tangible experience, reflecting on that experience, drawing conclusions and then testing those conclusions. This is an iterative process. If we get bogged down in one or two parts of the cycle we don’t fully integrate the learning, and most importantly, we don’t see behavioral change. Plato, Aristotle, St. Augustine, Kant and others wrote about Praxis, the concept of putting ideas into practice. My mentor teachers spoke about being a “reflective practitioner”. The role of “philosopher king” would in and of itself demand constant interplay between the worlds of thought and action.
The Adventure Continues...
As with any endeavor, it's important to pause and take stock. Blogging has been both harder and easier than expected. It was difficult to overcome the initial shyness of putting a thought-piece out there into the ethernet. Of course that lessened over time, but even a blogging hiatus of a few weeks made the water feel a lot colder. On the other hand, finding a rhythm for reflecting, revising and publishing has been relatively painless thanks to Beehive Development for providing the technical support, social media savvy, and collegial accountability every step of the way.
Over the next year we will be featuring guest bloggers, including members of the SeaChange team whose innovative work has informed the design of our Quest programs. There will also be some co-blogging with collaborative clients who are at the forefront of accelerating wisdom in their own organizations.
Thank you for your feedback and input--keep it coming. Here's to the next 365 days of adventure!
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