“Look and you will find it – what is unsought will go undetected.”
—Sophocles, ancient Greek tragedian
COVID-19 moved our cheese. What was familiar and predictable months ago was suddenly no longer so, and we’ve all felt the loss.
Although these various forms of loss cause much pain, we can all take a lesson from the mouse in the classic business book, Who Moved My Cheese? Going through its maze one day, taking its traditional route, the mouse did not find the cheese he expected. Noticing this, the little guy fairly quickly changed his route to seek his reward elsewhere.
What are some of the new ways that you and others in your communities have adapted, adjusted, and expanded your cheese-finding efforts? What new opportunities and possibilities have you discovered and realized?
Feel free to reply to this post with some approaches that are working for you.
“Taking care of yourself is an essential part of taking care of others. The healthier the tree, the better the fruit it can offer.”
Image from Unsplash by Josh Hild
In his book, Give and Take, Adam Grant demonstrates that the Givers of the world are usually more successful and happier than Takers and Matchers.
He makes a critical distinction between the Selfless Giver and what he calls the Other-ish Giver.
His research proves that although very admirable, the Selfless Giver – who sacrifices themselves for others – comes up short on both success and life satisfaction.
It turns out that putting ones own mask on before assisting others is critical to supporting those we most wish to serve in our personal and professional communities.
Where in your life can and will you commit to taking far better care of yourself so that others you support can more abundantly share the sweet result of your generosity?
“Youth is a gift of nature, but age is a work of art.”
–Stanislaw Jerzy Lec, 20th Century Polish Aphorist and Poet
Image from Unsplash by Sven Mieke
Among my top priorities is my daily video chat with my 93-year-old father. Marvin lives in an assisted living facility in Florida.
Over the past few months, the residents have been quarantined to their rooms, with very limited interactions except for meal and medication deliveries.
Who are the seniors and super-seniors in your life? How and in what way can you honor and experience the work of art they are?
Please consider replying to this post regarding how you and your families celebrate this beauty.
“If we wait for tomorrow to be yesterday, we’ll wait forever.”
—Stephen St. Amant, Marketer, blogger, artist
Image from Unsplash by Aron Visuals
How does today compare to yesterday, last week, last month, or last year?
To what degree have you accepted that the past is history and the future a mystery?
What did the good old days look and feel like for you? To what extent is it possible to go back and actually recapture your happiest of yesterdays?
Where do and don’t you have control or considerable influence on what tomorrow may be?
What can and will you do today that will help realize the possibilities of many better tomorrows in your personal and professional communities?
What might it cost if you wait or hesitate?
“What is the part of yourself that you left behind to become the person you are today?”
—Deborah Anacona, Founder of the MIT Leadership Center
Image from Pinterest
Imagine that you are a lobster that is not on the menu of some local restaurant.
You are swimming in the ocean, doing what lobsters do.
To get to be a two pound or larger crustacean, you had to molt many times. Over the years, you broke out of your shell due to your continuous growth.
What constraining or limiting factors did you have to leave behind to reach this point?
What parts of yourself will need to grow – and what parts must be shed – to become the person you will be tomorrow?
“On the other side of the door of uncertainty is a room of wisdom.”
—Chip Conley, American hospitality entrepreneur, author, and speaker
I recently reviewed Humble Inquiry by Edgar Schein. The subtitle is: The Gentle Art of Asking instead of Telling, which as a coach, had a great deal of appeal to me. Some key take-aways include:
- Asking questions to which you do not already know the answer, and building a relationship on sincere interest in the other person.
- When we tell instead of ask, we can sometimes offend or demean others.
- Barriers to humble inquiry include status, rank, and the roles we play in our professional and personal communities.
We can all practice this important skill by slowing down, becoming more mindful and aware of our interactions and our surroundings.
Consider exploring Humble Inquiry – The Gentle Art of More Asking and Less Telling as a door to greater wisdom for yourself.
“A thermostat is far more valuable than a thermometer.”
—Seth Godin, American Author
Image from Unsplash by Dan LeFebvre
In his book, Tribes, Seth Godin indicates that two critical factors of a tribe are shared interest and a way to communicate.
In the past few months, Kinsa Health has sold or given away more than a million smart thermometers that can communicate through an internet connection, to examine potential hot spots associated with the Corona virus.
Going beyond single data points to large numbers and their trends is increasingly helpful to our leaders in their ability to assess, monitor, and optimize our shared interest in the health and well-being of all people.
As a global tribe of billions, our collective commitments and our connectivity is providing a much more comprehensive set of data points to proactively react and respond to many diverse factors in real time.
We become a global thermostat when we maintain our shared interests and when we communicate.
In what ways can you and other in your personal and professional tribes use and monitor your collective thermostat to make the necessary adjustments in your communities?
“There is nothing wrong with being wrong.”
—Mokokoma Mokhonoana, philosopher & social critic
In his classic work, Meditations, Marcus Aurelius said:
If anyone can prove and show to me that I think and act in error, I will gladly change it – for I seek the truth, by which no one has ever been harmed. The one who is harmed is the one who abides in deceit and ignorance.
To what degree are you and those around you seekers of truth? To what extent do you embrace the facts – or in current terms, embrace the science – to help you make better decisions in your personal and professional activities?
Holding our thoughts up to the light of day and greater wisdom beyond our current views can help all of us come together, improve our relationships, and perhaps solve many of the challenges facing our world.
What would happen if no one was ashamed or reluctant to change their mind in the light of new information? Where and with whom would admitting you were wrong and apologizing be the right thing to do?