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Human development is a key function in strengthening the world we live in. Leadership for instance is something that can be learned but is unlikely to be developed by reading books or studying in a classroom setting. Leadership is a skill that can be accelerated through interventions that cause one to pause and reflect on how one is showing up (or not showing up) to their own lives.
Our society has developed into one that relies heavily on science and the concept of cause and effect. However, modern physics tells us that the world that we know is a world that we create by observation. Each of us observes and interprets the world differently even though we all participate in the same events. It is the stories we create about how the world works that begin to confuse us, not when we recognize that they are only the stories that we make up to explain ‘the way it is’ but when we start to believe them to be true and necessary for our survival. It is then that we find ourselves interacting with others and the world through the fears and the selective blindness that our stories create for us.
In such a world, each individual, in order to ‘survive’, struggles to validate the ‘truth’ he or she believes is real and to try to overpower the seemingly conflicting ‘truths’ of others. Power struggles in relationships are often a function of such opposing stories at work in an organization or community. But suppose that there is another way to look at all this and to empower ourselves in the process. Suppose each of us understands that the story of ‘how it is around here’ is of our own creation, our way of explaining a vast and possibly unknowable world and we can choose any interpretation of the events we want. At that point we can create a world that works in a powerful way to achieve Impossible Things. This is a world in which our old disempowering stories no longer limit what is possible, and new powerful and inclusive visions create unprecedented possibilities for all concerned.
My life experiences as an Aboriginal man in Canada have enabled me to observe what really works in terms of human development. What is needed is for individuals and organizations to examine and challenge their ways of ‘being’ and to take full responsibility for the negative and debilitating “stories” that form the culture of both our communities and our workplaces. Leadership has the role and the responsibility of blazing new paths and creating new and inspiring stories (frequently called ‘visions) that strengthen and empower themselves and their people.
Supporting others in their journey to wellness and empowerment is my purpose in life. As I continue to push the envelope in my own life in areas of relationship, communications, self-expression, creativity, balance and responsibility, I am able to test these insights in my own personal and business practices and to demonstrate the results of this approach.
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