About a year ago, I did my “coming-out” of the Leading by Being program. That program led to the start of this blog in April 2009.
Leading by Being is in essence a deep search for yourself and how you function in groups and in the world in general. It’s trying to answer the question “Who am I ?”.
Read that again:
“Who am i REALLY ?”
A couple of weeks, i “lost” my right foot – luckily only temporarily. Reflecting a bit during my extra free time sitting in my sofa with my right leg in the air, i started doing the following thought experiment:
What if i would loose not only my foot but everything ?
My job, my lovely wife and daughter, my family, my friends,…
Would that change who i am ?
And more related to this blog:
Would i write about the same things
in my blog as today ?
And if about the same things,
would i write about them
with the same intensity ?
The answer for me is yes.
- Yes, i would write about different things
- Yes, i would write about the same things but with a different intensity
What different things ?
- Probably much much more about the realness of innovation.
- Probably more on the themes like “Sex, Money, Happiness, and Death”
- Probably more about ethics and ethical reboot
- Probably more about meaning
- Probably more about Love/Hate relationships
- Probably more about digital identity. Not so much as a technology, but more as a philosophical aspiration
- Probably more about soft things like poetry, romance, melancholy, more introspecting
- Probably about my daughter and my wife. Without compromising them.
- Probably about some nice sentences i read in novels.
- Probably some writing of my own. As in my very first post:
I want to be playful like the birds,
showing little tricks,
challenge and pursue
but not limited
by any form of danger
In essence, it’s about a free mind.
What different intensity ?
- I would be more radical on the innovation themes. Yes, even more radical 😉 I feel i still withhold, because of – real or imaginary ? – fear for reactions of my employer.
- I would set-up the Think Tank Long Term Future on my own. With less dependency on others. Going my own way. I would look at setting up a open innovation web-site with online fund raising.
All the above is basically struggling with the fear of
“how naked do i dare to go ?”
There seems to be an interesting book on this topic: “Getting Naked: A Business Fable About Shedding The Three Fears That Sabotage Client Loyalty” by by Patrick M. Lencioni (Author)
“Naked” is a term that refers to the idea of being vulnerable with clients, being completely open and honest with no sense of pretense or cover. The book looks at 3 basic and well-known fears:
1) Fear of Losing the Business – No service provider wants to lose clients or revenue. Interestingly, it is this very notion that prevents many service providers from having the difficult conversations that actually build greater loyalty and trust. Clients want to know that their service providers are more interested in helping succeed in business than protecting their revenue source.
2) Fear of Being Embarrassed – This fear is rooted in pride. No one likes to publicly make mistakes, endure scrutiny or be embarrassed. Naked service providers are willing to ask questions and make suggestions even if those questions and suggestions turn out to be laughably wrong. Clients trust naked service providers because they know that they will not hold back their ideas, hide their mistakes, or edit themselves to save face.
3) Fear of Being Inferior – Similar to the previous fear, this one is rooted in ego. Fear of being inferior is not about being intellectually wrong (as in Fear of being Embarrassed) it is about preserving social standing with the client. Naked service providers are able to overcome the need to feel important in the eyes of their client and basically do whatever a client needs to help the client improve – even if that calls for the service provider to be overlooked or temporarily looked down upon.
The last one is in my opinion also related to your relation with your employer and how prepared you are to stick out your neck, and to evangelize your ideas, because you have a genuine desire to make your employer succeed and improve.
The worst than could happen is when your employer gives you a negative appraisal for sticking out your neck, or pushing change too hard. Especially if you are part of the innovation team. Though everybody in the company has creative juices and is an innovator.
And what do you do when this happens ? What do you do when you discover that the innovation your company proclaims is not real ? What do you do when you find out or get confirmed it’s all a big illusion ?
How much do you once again want to compromise your own authenticity and just go on ? Or are you prepared to go through the resistance of big changes and boldly daring to pursue your own dreams as suggested in Seth Godin’s Linchpin ?
Or how long are you prepared to you hide in your own shadows and have your will broken ?
In Leading by Being, one of the exercises was to think about one of your “shadow”-sides, some negative something about yourself, something that you would not like others to identify you with, such as being arrogant or manipulative or … and then the do a play-role yourself “playing” / “acting” that shadow role for 3 hours. It’s pretty confrontational !
What if i would start blogging under an alias
to express those shadow thoughts ?
It’s an interesting thought experiment that helps you assess how Trapped or Free your are in your worldviews.
Yes, i am still trapped
But much less then a year ago
What would you like me to explore further ? What different things would you like most ? Where would you like to see a different intensity ?
Let me know. Give me clarifying, supportive and challenging feedback.