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Be still….there’s magic in this day!

Composite image of cheering female silhouette


by Mary Oliver

Every day

I see or I hear


that more or less

kills me

with delight,

that leaves me 

like a needle

in the haystack

of light.

It is what I was born for–

to look, to listen,

to lose myself

inside this soft world–

to instruct myself

over and over

in joy

and acclamation.

Nor am I talking

about the exceptional,

the fearful, the dreadful,

the very extravagant,

the fearful, the dreadful,

the very extravagant–

but of the ordinary,

the common, the very drab,

the daily presentations.

Oh, good scholars,

I say to myself,

how can you help

but grow wise

with such teachings

as these–

the untrimmable light

of the world,

the ocean’s shine,

the prayers that are made

out of grass?

As I step into this brand new year, I intend to “see or hear something that more or less kills me with delight,”  to be inspired by the magic of the each day, to be instructed by the ordinary daily encounters and experiences offered up for me when I pay attention.

Who better than Mary Oliver to remind me to “look, to listen,to lose myself inside this soft world–to instruct myself over and over in joy, and acclamation.”  “To pay attention…this is our right and proper work,” the poet instructs in another poem called “Yes!No!

Looking out my window as I write today, the bare trees are shrouded in a rainy mist and I delight in the stillness of this moment…may I “grow wise with such teachings as these.”

Have a beautiful day….a beautiful year!


21st Century Leadership: Would Google Hire You?


In last week’s blog, I shared Ben Franklin’s advice to the members of the Constitutional Convention to suspend the certainty of their positions and look forward toward the emerging future. Jackets insulated Don’t you think this is wise guidance for us today? 21st leadership calls us to be lovers of learning, to be curious and open to possibilities previously unseen….to suspend certainty and look to the emerging future. A couple of days after posting Ben Franklin’s advice, I read Tom Friedman’s piece in the NY Times on “How to Get a Job at Google.” Guess what…Google, one of the world’s most successful companies, hires people who are able to suspend certainty and look to the emerging future! Laszlo Bock, the senior VP of people operations at Google declares that “the least important attribute we look for is expertise. Certainly, if we’re looking to fill a technical role, people need math and computing and coding skills, but the company is looking for a lot more.” The number one thing looked for is general cognitive ability, which is not the same as IQ. It’s learning ability—the ability to process on the fly, to pull together disparate pieces of information. They seek people who love learning and re-learning. mu legend redzen for sale Secondly, Google looks for emergent leadership—a sense of responsibility to step in and try to solve any problem and the humility to step back and embrace better ideas of others. Innovation is a group endeavor requiring humility and ownership—a powerful combination. Without intellectual humility, you can’t learn. If you already think you “know” (or that you must act as if you know), you’ll be blind to new possibilities. Leadership in the 21st century is not the work of one great leader, it is a group endeavor requiring collaboration, adaptability, and curiosity that creates the spaciousness that allows new ideas to be born.

don’t establish the boundaries


the squares, triangles, boxes

or preconceived possibility,

and then


life into them, trimming

off left-over edges,

ending potential.


Suspend Certainty: Leadership Lessons from Benjamin Franklin

benfrank I discovered this inspiring true story retold by Alan Briskin in the chapter he wrote called Deep Dialogue which can be found in the timely and important book, The Transforming Leader: New Approaches to Leadership for the Twenty-First Century, edited by Carol Pearson. nike air max 2015 hombre Maglia Tracy McGrady Adidas NMD Dames beige Abercrombie Pas Cher When the representatives from the various states gathered to create the US Constitution, they could not agree on whether they were modifying the existing Articles of Confederation or creating a new constitution for the nation. Womens Air Jordan 13 Mens Nike Air Max 2016


Canotta Miami Heat They could not agree on the extent of power for the central government or how representation should be distributed. asics gel pulse 7 męskie Air Jordan 6 Joe Flacco Ravens Jerseys They couldn’t agree on much of anything. After a month or so, Benjamin Franklin, now in the last years of his life rose to speak. asics gel kinsei hombre Stanford Cardinal Jerseys He acknowledged their despair at ever finding a way forward and suggested they were looking for democracy in all the wrong places—backward in history and sideways to existing governments of Europe. New Balance 678 męskie Asics Pas Cher He encouraged them instead to pray together each morning and look forward to the emerging future. The group rebuffed his suggestion to begin each day with prayer but continued against all odds to carry on with their work. Canotte Detroit Pistons Minkah Fitzpatrick Alabama Jersey

Out of bitterness, partisanship, and fierce debate arose some measure of listening and agreement—miraculously a document that became the founding structure for a nation based on democratic principles. Asics Mexico męskie chaussures nike Nike France Central Michigan Chippewas Jerseys Then on the very last day of the convention, when it was necessary to ensure that as many representatives as possible signed the draft document, Franklin addressed the convention again, although this time he was too ill to speak for himself and his address was read by a fellow representative from Pennsylvania. Maglie Orlando Magic Maglie Orlando Magic He argued that democracy is born from our human capacity to suspend the certainty of our positions. And even though he believed the current document before him was flawed in significant ways, he noted he had learned in his life that his judgment could change over time. adidas Gloro homme Nike Free 5.0 Dames blauw

Womens Jordan Retro 13 Drawing upon his extraordinary wit, he argued that the Church in Rome was different than the Church in England only insofar as one believed it was infallible and the other that it was never wrong. Chris Jones Democracy depended, he insisted, on our capacity to suspend the inclination to be always in the right in order for something new to be born. Air Jordan 7 (VII) Asics Homme Pas Cher That something new became the U.S. Air Jordan Retro 3 Nike Air Max 2016 Goedkoop Cheap Nike Air Max 90

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Fjallraven Kanken 7L Yeezy 350 Boost Northern Iowa Panthers This is the legacy of our democratic institutions and the lesson we must continually learn and relearn, Suspending our personal certainty is the source of our transformation. Goedkoop Nike Schoenen Air Max 2013
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No great deeds are done by falterers who ask for certainty.

What Do You Plan to Do?

yellow field in serene scene

  The Summer Day by Mary Oliver

Who made the world?

Who made the swan, nike tn homme and the black bear?

Who made the grasshopper? This grasshopper, Tony Brown Jersey I mean–

the one who has flung herself out of the grass,

the one who is eating sugar out of my hand,

who is moving her jaws back and forth instead of up and down–

who is gazing around with her enormous and complicated eyes.

Now she lifts her pale forearms and thoroughly washes her face.

Now she shape her wings open, Solde adidas gazelle and floats away.

I don’t know exactly what a prayer is.

I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down

into the grass, New Balance 446 męskie how to kneel down in the grass,

how to be idle and blessed,how to stroll through the fields,

which is what I have been doing all day.

Tell me, what else should I have done?

Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon?

Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?

In my last blog I wrote about the spectacular Kingfisher, Adidas NMD Dames who flies, swoops and dives with grace and ease doing exactly what it is meant to do…as does the grasshopper in Mary Oliver’s poem. Adidas Nmd Uomo

Everything on earth expresses it’s inner essence, no questions asked–except for us! We human beings somehow have to search for who we are and what we are here to do.

Discovering what you are here to do may seem to be a daunting task, but I’ve learned from my own experience and that of my clients, fjallraven kanken uk that our purpose is often right in front of us. We simply must pause, reflect, get to know ourselves in order to see it. Mississippi State Bulldogs Jerseys Then we must do something with what we’ve learned! My own search led me to my work as a coach…work that I love and feel I was always meant to do. My work is a creative expression of who I am. What’s interesting is that I began using my gifts early on as a camp counselor, school teacher, parent, swimming instructor, then OD consultant, and finally leadership and life coaching. I’m not sure I recognized this way of being in the world as the expression of “my gifts,” but there’s no doubt that I was doing what I was drawn to do, GS Air Jordan 5 what felt right in some way. One of the great joys of my life now is that by bringing my gifts into the world, SCARPE NIKE HUARACHE

I am able to help others do the same!

Tell me,

Stay in the Middle of the River


Finding Our Place

Humans have a responsibility to their own time not as if they could seem to stand outside it and donate various spiritual and material benefits to it from a position of compassionate distance. James Develin Humans have a responsibility to find themselves where they are, in their own proper time and place in the history to which they belong and to which they must inevitably contribute either their response or their evasions, either truth and act, or mere slogan and gesture. Odell Beckham Jr Jersey air max homme pas cher Nike Tennis Classic Thomas Merton

It seems the Message from the Hopi Elders touched many of you. adidas zx flux damskie niebieskie nike tn noir This guidance was offered at the time of the millennium to show us a way to live in these uncertain times. Nike Air Max 2017 Dames I love the metaphor of the river—fierce and turbulent, filled with eddies, rocks and rapids. Adidas ZX 10000 Heren It sometimes flows a little more quietly pausing to gather up its full force to sweep us along…at least those of us who have let go of the shore! Why in the world would we let go of the shore and swim out to the middle? Perhaps because the Elders warn us that those who don’t will be torn apart and will suffer greatly. adidas messi astro New Balance 997.5 hombre And by the way… we’d better keep our heads above water so we can look around see who is riding these waves of change with us and celebrate for now is our time. San Antonio Spurs

We are the ones we have been waiting for. Adidas Nmd Donna Grigie

Here’s advice I’m giving myself. Nike Air Max 90 Heren Alabama T-Shirts Perhaps it will be useful to you.

From the Elders of the Hopi Nation

hopi               “TO MY FELLOW SWIMMERS” We have been telling the people that this is the Eleventh Hour Now you must go back and tell the people that this is the Hour And there are things to be considered. Where are you living? What are you doing? What are your relationships? Are you in the right relation? Where is your water? Know your garden. It is time to speak your truth. tn requin noir et bleu adidas neo uomo Create your community. Nike Flyknit Racer

Be good to each other. albion silver NIKE AIR JORDAN 11

And do not look outside yourself for the leader. Philadelphia 76ers Here is a river flowing now very fast. nike legging homme It is so great and swift that there are those Who will be afraid, who will try To hold on to the shore. Comprar Nike Air Max nike air max pas cher They are being torn apart and Will suffer greatly. Nike Marxman Know that the river has its destination. Air Max Flyknit Donna

The elders say we must let go of the shore. Air Max 90 Dames Push off into the middle of the river, And keep our heads above water. And I say see who is there with you And celebrate. adidas stan smith uomo At this time in history, We are to take nothing personally, Least of all ourselves, For the moment we do, Our spiritual growth and journey come to a halt. NIKE AIR ZOOM ELITE 9 Nike Air Max Thea Heren blauw

The time of the lone wolf is over. NIKE AIR MAX THEA ULTRA FLYKNIT Gather yourselves. new balance running homme soldes Banish the word struggle from our attitude And vocabulary. All that we do now must be done In a sacred manner and in celebration.


 tower black stone and hibiscus with bamboo on the water 

Everything comes to us that belongs to us if we create the capacity to see it.
~ Rabindranath Tagore ~

Last week I posted the poem Lost by David Wagoner and before that John O’Donohue’s For the Interim Time.  Clearly, I’m in the midst of one of those “in-between times” (AGAIN).  What’s interesting is that when I said a couple of weeks ago that I’d learned to trust this interim time…I spoke too soon!

Unplanned unfoldings have landed me in a place where nothing is certain. Let me tell you, that while I do know that in time I’ll sense and shape the future that’s emerging, the interim time is really uncomfortable!

Once again, I remember the advice of the Elders to young braves should they be lost in the forest—“Stand still. Wherever you are is called HERE. The forest knows where you are…you must let it find you.”

Standing still for me is a quiet time of meditating, yoga, nourishing my spirit with poetry and music. And it’s about listening. This time around, I’ve been inspired by Mark Nepo’s Seven Thousand Ways to Listen. “Whatever difficulty you face, there are time-tried ways you can listen your way through.  Because listening is the doorway to everything that matters.  We listen to awaken our heart.  We do this to stay vital and alive.”

In stillness, I listen deeply until I begin to feel reconnected to my Self…my Self with a capital S.  Otto Scharmer describes this as the capacity of our “I in-now” to link with our authentic or higher Self.  When we keep that connection to our deeper source of knowing, we’re able to tune into emerging future possibilities… a future that is in need of us and that only we can bring into reality.  (from Theory U)

If I can live with the uncertainty of feeling lost long enough, I am creating the capacity to sense the future emerge, often in completely unexpected ways.  As John O’Donohue reminds us “it is difficult and slow to become new.  The more faithfully you can endure here, the more refined your heart will become for your arrival in the new dawn.”  (from For The Interim Time)

 So HERE I am…Still Standing…Still!



An Invitation to Warriorship

Early last December, I and several hundred fellow alums of the Georgetown Leadership Coaching Program heard a clarion call from Margaret Wheatley, the keynote speaker of our alumni conference. Oregon State Beavers fjallraven kanken classic Nike Air Max Flyknit Dames Her powerful message to us was that in the midst of the uncertainty of these times, the world needs us to be Warriors of the Human Spirit. adidas superstar hombre Her invitation to warriorship asks us to engage with the world armed only with the “weapons” of compassion, insight and generosity yet anchored in the current reality of the world as it is.….at once full of hope and heartbreak. nike air max 2016 goedkoop Nike Air Max 2017 Homme

The audience listening to Wheatley that day was unaware that at the very moment we were hearing this call to “choose FOR the human spirit,” a massacre was occurring in Newtown, Connecticut. Nike Air Max 90 Heren Tom Brady Michigan Jerseys What a stunning juxtaposition of hope and despair. Adidas Zx 700 pas cher homme nike air max 2017 goedkoop California Golden Bears Jerseys How can facing this grim reality of the present moment inspire me to become warriors of compassion and bravery, I wondered?

I am by nature able see the positive in most situations. adidas messi astro Maglie Chicago Bulls adidas nmd r1 męskie That stance has served me well throughout my life but it is a difficult stance for me to maintain in these uncertain and troubling times. Virginia Tech Hokies Jerseys Soldes Nike Pour Femme Yet there was something in Wheatley’s counterintuitive teaching that made sense to me. Nike Air Max 2017 Heren groen Running Asics Sneakers Pour Femme Cheap Fjallraven Kanken Backpack “By opening to the world as it is, we may find that gentleness, decency, and bravery are available—not only to us but to all human beings.” Therefore a warrior is someone who believes that something worthwhile, wholesome and good exists in all of us…that people are worth the struggle. Nike Air Huarache Rose Femme Nike Free 5.0 Dames blauw

And so I have committed to be a warrior for the human spirit. Jordan CP3 My intention for 2013 is to be what Meg Wheatley calls an “island of sanity.” I know I can’t fix the world but I can try to mend the part of the world I can reach. New Balance 530 mujer NIKE TENNIS CLASSIC ULTRA FLYKNIT

I will continue to do my work as a leadership and life coach, work that is anchored in the belief that each of us is a bundle of potential with unique gifts to bring into this world. air max 1 femme

“As warriors of the human, we discover our right work, work that is ours to do no matter what. Jordan 12 Sale new balance 373 homme bordeaux Fjällräven Kånken Classic We engage wholeheartedly, embody values we cherish, let go of outcomes, and be vigilant with our relations.

Practicing Warriorship

Well….now that I’ve committed to be a warrior for the human spirit, how am I doing? My biggest challenge so far is to remember that loving kindness, an essential warrior skill, begins with me. Canotte Toronto Raptors Nike Roshe Run Motif Homme Maglie Oklahoma City Thunder Canotta Toronto Raptors Let me explain.

Each morning when I wake I set an intention about how I want to BE this day. new balance uomo trovaprezzi Maglie Houston Rockets nike air huarache dames rood

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Now I am starting my day by checking in with myself. Stanford Cardinal Jerseys Randall Cobb Packers Jerseys Nike SB Dunk Yadier Molina Jersey Demaryius Thomas Jerseys When I’m feeling energetic and strong, I might chose a particularly challenging behavior to practice, and if I’m really tired level, I choose a simpler one that seems easier to accomplish. NIKE LUNARGLIDE 8

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My reflection at the end of the day starts with my saying thanks to myself for making this commitment to develop these qualities in the first place! Then I assess how I’ve done by asking myself questions like:

  • Did I get triggered today and if so what were the triggers?
  • How present was I today? What pulled me away from being fully present?
  • Did I act aggressively in any way today? (swearing at a news commentator is one of moments of aggression!)
  • How well did I listen today? Did I interrupt or give instant advice?

I’m learning that a Warrior must take care of her own well-being not just the well-being of others. UAB Blazers Jerseys Air Jordan 6 Uomo

Womens Air Jordan 6 nike roshe run mesh nike air max 1 leopard solde One thing I’ve learned about myself over the years is that when I become cranky and critical, it means I need to rest, take a break. New Balance 678 damskie Nike Air Jordan Baratas Nike Air Jordan 4 Womens
Los Angeles Clippers With self-care I can be present, think clearly, and hopefully maintain a small “island of sanity” for myself and others. adidas zx flux mujer adidas store Canotte Washington Wizards air max 2017 nero donna

This is my commitment for 2013.

“As warriors of the human, we discover our right work, work that is ours to do no matter what. chaussure Asics Gel-Lyte III Air Jordan 1 Retro
Jordan Galaxy Nike Air Max Dames Goedkoop We engage wholeheartedly, embody values we cherish, let go of outcomes, and be vigilant with our relations.

Auld Lang Syne: Ringing Out 2012 and Welcoming In 2013

Several weeks ago Kate Ebner and I did our second radio show together on her VoiceAmerica program, Visionary Leader, Nike Air Max 1 Extraordinary Life. Adidas Yeezy 350 Heren We hope you’ll take the time to listen as we report back on how we did with our New Year’s intentions that we made for 2012, Nike Fútbol and offer you an approach to set yourself on the path for fulfillment and success in 2013. We feature David Whyte’s Three Marriages as a frame for considering not only our relationship with other, but also with our work, adidas Stan Smith scarpe and with our selves. air max 2017 rosa donna

The attempt to “balance” work and life is often an exercise in futility, while the three marriages is a rich metaphor that embraces the complexity, Landry Jones – Oklahoma Sooners multiple layers, and multiple people to whom we are committed. To close the show, Robert Griffin III – Baylor Bears I read one of my favorite poems, NIKE ZOOM KD 9 Sometimes by David Whyte. Here it is….and I do hope you take time to listen to our program as well!


Sometimes if you move carefully through the forest, breathing like the ones in the old stories, who could cross a shimmering bed of leaves without a sound, you come to a place whose only task is to trouble you with tiny but frightening requests, adidas neo donna conceived out of nowhere but in this place beginning to lead everywhere. Requests to stop what you are doing right now and to stop what you are becoming while you do it, questions that can make or unmake a life, questions that have patiently waited for you,