Taken by Dancers Ways
After forty-five minute drive to the mountains, I follow Gerard Marsal’s car to the venue. The road to the place was not found by the GPS. I feel a mix of excitement and familiarity. Excitement to get to know this unique tribe of teachers, dancers, musicians and free souls that have coalesced at Dancers Ways. Familiarity as my grandmother was born in Alcover, right at the bottom of the mountain where we are.
As I step down of the car a big dog greets me as if we were old friends. I feel welcomed. The air is moist and the forest that surrounds us has a grounding effect on me. As I’m guided around by Gerard, I notice an air of gravity around the work that’s happening. Patricia García, teacher and one of the Dancer’s Ways founders as well as Alhazar, further elaborates on it, as we sit down to drink a cup of hot tea. The retreat just started today, and she guided the group on a meditation to see their whole life path up to this moment. She said, its an amazing group. They opened up, right on. They are doing the work, just as it’s meant to be: to find yourself through dance.
The group, composed by mostly women from ages 18 to 50 from all over the world, has gathered in this retreat center for four days. Their intention: to explore and grow through dance.
The first thing that impresses me is the number of people holding the container. What I mean by this is all the visible and invisible organizing and preparation so that participants can do the work they’ve come to do. Starting by the place, following by the live music led by Gerard, to the lightning, sound, photography, recording, translation, and a myriad of small details that ensure this experience will be unique.
I share with Patricia my idea for the after dinner workshop, and we go to the yurt where the last coreography-improvisation workshop of the day is happening. We enter the room, and all the sudden I’m left without words. I see a man. I see dancers. Then a group. The consciousness of the group starts speaking as a man whispers, listens and dances: Illan Riviere is teaching.
His sharp playful presence fills the room. I get a sense that he’s working with clay. His body are his hands, and the dancers, the group are the clay. The hands are prompting clay: Change the state! Change again, what’s your quality now? Change! He is massing it, shaping it, molding it. Clay gets more and more elastic, and free-forming. Now listen to the space, listen to the inner space, listen to the space in between, listen to the space of the group…Illan circles the members of the group, encourages them, challenges them. Let yourself be changed! Find a new quality! Change the space, be changed! The hands, Ilan’s body, shows what he wants clay to do, and clay gets inspired, playful, fluid. It answers back.
The first time I saw Illan dance, it was eight years ago I was struck by how gifted he was. That time he was on stage. Now in his teacher role, many years later, I feel privileged to see him transmitting his “One move” method. Now his hands shift from working with clay to sculpting stone. As a master at sculpting, his body-soul sculpts the space with his movements, with dance. Just as Michelangelo moves when he sculpting David, Illan’s moves are precise, elegant and grounded. With his moves, the group continues to evolve. It takes one shape, and another, and another. I sense pleasure, pain, efforting, flowing…a delicious dance of opposites, that participants seem to rejoice too. We are going to dance forever he utters, and they do embrace the challenge…
Why are you here?
After dinner I head back to the yurt to prepare the space and ground myself. I sit in a circle with cushions for every participant. The first participant arrives, we connect and start sharing. Then the next one until a full circle is completed. I lead a meditation about our unique purpose and how to evoke it through our intention, again and again. We travel, we come back. After it I invite shares and a rich inquiry is ignited. Insights emerge like the fact that sometimes our unique purpose is tied to healing our past. At other times, what may seem obstacles to our purpose they are our best allies. Often we don’t have articulate answers to why are we here, but we know it when it feels right. Our body knows, and so does our soul.
Anything can happen
As Illan said when teaching just try,…nothing can happen….it’s just dancing. And yet, because of that, by giving your body and soul to yourself through dance, anything can happen: you may heal, you may discover unknown aspects of yourself, or even if you are ready you might have the most fierce dialogue with life on your unique purpose.
We close and I find myself changed forever. My soul elevated, deeply inspired by this group of courageous souls that have boldly joined together these four days to deepen their aliveness and uniqueness.
This article was posted on Dancers Ways blog on the 8th of February of 2018.
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Webinar recording: D&I as catalyst for the evolution of organizations
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Free webinar: Diversity and Inclusion, a catalyst for the evolution of organizations
Celebrating with Pluribus
On the occasion of the 10 years of Pluribus, consultant of which I am part of, its founder Isabelle Pujol promoted the celebration of this milestone through the publication of the book “Inclusion Around the Clock”. As a writer of the chapter “Diversity and Inclusion key catalysts for the evolution of the organizations” I will facilitate the next May 26 from 14:30 to 15:30 CET, a webinar on this topic.
Come, join me in this exploration!
For more details about the webinar visit this link.
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Can you listen to the whispers before they turn into screams?
I started this year in quite good physical shape. That was what I thought, until I started coughing. A dry cough I didn’t know where it was coming from. Days passed, I did’t pay much attention to it. Then weakness. And a cold followed. Then sinusitis. After that, extreme exhaustion. What was going on, I asked myself? I’ve never had a coughing attacks. I’ve never had sinusitis before. I felt somehow outraged. Almost as if something was being delivered to me that was not in the contract I had signed. Hey life, that’s not what we had agreed! see. Our contract was about keeping me healthy,…Really? Then feelings of surrender came. Alright,…. I’m supposed to get ill, let’s do this.
Before you continue reading, I would like to share with you that I don’t convey the idea that illnesses have a reason for existing. I’ve had much experience in my family of no-sense illnesses, and I think this view can be very damaging to people suffering them as it might create guilt. And yet, I believe that we can learn something when illness visits us, goes away or stays with us. As we can learn from anything that we encounter in life.
So I tried to ease into it, and decided I would not take any easy route such as antibiotics or pills that would clear the condition quickly and unconsciously. As I did it, I took the opportunity to examine some of my relationships. Among others, my relationship to food. I realized that during the time of not feeling well, I had been eating without appetite. I was simply eating food out of habit. But if I listened to my body, it was not hungry at all. Another nuance about my way of eating was a presence of a low level compulsivity in how I ate, not paying attention to what I was ingesting. Inside this realization, there was the special chocolate chapter. My relationship to chocolate has always been an intense one, but since I became a mum a little more than a year ago, chocolate became something I couldn’t pass by. Yes, like an addiction. Not that I would eat huge amounts of it, but it was more about how I ate it. I would eat it in a compulsive way, trying to fill an anxiety, a void within me.
What was I afraid of? Everything and nothing. The answer I found closest to truth, is that while some of the fears had some reason to exist, with time, my body had grown accustomed to this way of eating and to a certain amount of cocoa and sugar, and not having it, was triggering what it seemed deeply engrained pattern.
Listening to whispers
Listen to the whispers before they become screams said my beloved teachers Joel and Michelle from Wisdom at Work while in a recent retreat with them. This resonated with me so deeply. In a way, it had been in the back of my consciousness for a while, “this way of eating is not right”. Now I could clearly see, that I was not taking the time to see the food I ate. Let alone express any sense of gratitude towards it.
So I started to listen to my body. And my gut needed to rest. I fasted for almost two days, with no signs of hunger, until the end of the second day. During this time, I got the felt sense, that something bigger and more powerful than food was holding me. It felt liberating.
Point of despair
After the fast, and starting to eat more consciously as well as taking herbal medicines, I assumed I would immediately feel better. Well, I didn’t. My condition persisted and even seemed to worsen. I connected with the mental construct of “I’m doing all the right things and I still will not heal”. Well, that’s the nature of things, I realized. We don’t have control, and life was showing it to me once again. I felt sad, frustrated and a bit desperate. Not easy to be around.
The moment I was about to throw the towel and take the pill route, I realized I felt slightly better. I got a little relief. I thought that some biological processes are slow. And decided to give myself some time. I’m currently still recovering. Grateful for how this mundane journey has given me an opportunity to learn about myself and transform some of my usual ways of being and relating. Now I’ve recommitted to listen to my body for what it needs. I’m considering food as a part of the earth that’s becoming part of us- what a sacred process! – and I commit I do it in a mindful way, feeling grateful for it. I’m also determined to continue to look anxiety in the eye as it emerges, and let it be as it dissolves away.
With this, here’s my invitation to a self-reflection for a whole week:
- What whispers (things you know but you don’t wan to hear) do you hear?
- How could you listen to them before they become screams?
- Where are the whispers pointing at that might benefit from more balance (your body, relationships, your work, family,…)? How can you take action to make this happen?
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From Cinderella to Dakini, the story we live by
It was one of these weeks, where things went downhill. Or so it seemed. My partner was away for work. Puca, my dog, got diarrea. My daughter got the flu. My network of support was away…. and so on. I could see myself looking outside trying to identify the perpetrator of such a lousy plan. And I looked in all directions but me.
Looking at the projector
When I decided to look at the projector, me, I realized that if there was a perpetrator, the story I was telling myself was that I was the victim. There we go. Pulling this slippery thread I got deeper into the story. It was something like “hard work was kind of unfair, and that at some point this had to end as I deserved something better”. The more I got in touch with it, the question I asked myself was, where the hell did I get this…crap?! So the usual places. Culture, society, family….I immediately could spot some similar patterns in my family of origin, let alone in mainstream culture. Indeed, it was Cinderella’s tale, not surprising it was so familiar!
One painful thing about noticing this, is that I have consciously been inspired by the idea of dying feeling fully used by my community, having fully contributed to it. But unconscious stories play a stronger effect until… they become conscious.
Including and transcending our stories
And yet, knowing my story did not allow me to get rid of that story completely. I’m still working on it. Stories, as a form of mental patterns or personal complexes are attached to our bodies, bones and skins as sticky coats with a particular shape. Gaining awareness of them, allows us to disidentify from them by starting to relate to it. But how can we include and transcend them?
There are two ways we use at Integral Coaching to achieve this. The first one by inviting a new narrative. What narrative could I tell myself. Here’s one that served me well. The story of a Dakini, an empowering Buddhist feminine archetype.
The second way to transcend and include our stories is by bringing awareness to our bodies. Our bodies become the repositories of our unconscious, and by bringing awareness and letting go of tensions that hold these patterns we loosen the power of them and create space for something new. For this, Hatha yoga has been the path that has opened me the most, as well as embodied meditation from the Shambhala tradition.
To end this article, I would like to offer you a daily self-reflection for a whole week.
At the end of your day ask yourself: What narrative have I lived by today? How could I tell? How did it feel? What did this narrative create? Is there a different story I could live by? What could this make possible?
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Can you be in moment without an agenda?
The more I embrace being in the present moment, the more I realize when I am not.
The nature of the mind is subtle and tricky. After years of meditation in community and on my own, my biggest step in this practice happened when learning intersubjective meditation or circling. This is meditation in relationship. For me it has always been easy to quiet my mind when I am alone or I can surround myself with the right environment. What was challenging was to hold a similar quality of being, while being in relationship, let alone groups.
The other day, as I was putting my daughter to sleep, she started crying for no obvious reason. Holding her in my arms, I noticed how I was closing to the experience, as my desire for her to stop crying was growing more and more stronger. As I realized what was going on in myself, I noticed, the subtly aggressive quality of my attitude with what was happening. I wanted to change it. And while doing it, I simply was blocking the unfoldment of the moment as it was, by trying to avoid my discomfort. As I realized that, I could relax and I started noticing other aspects of my experience: the smell of her hair, the touch of her skin in contact with my neck, the tenderness of her whole being, an awareness of the fleeting nature of that very moment. With this, my whole perception changed, and I could ease and melt in the moment without projecting any desire in it. And in a short while she stopped crying. And fell asleep.
I gained a new perspective to an embodied knowing to what it is to be mindful every moment. And it meant to me, to care for every moment in its full rawness, without projecting any desire in it. To became intimate with the present moment, so it can melt and transform in the next moment, and the next. And the next.
The next time you find yourself in a stressful relationship situation, ask yourself: What is my agenda being right now? Can I suspend it? What do I notice when I suspend it? What happens when I do it? How do I feel? How do others react?
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Diversity & Inclusion, a catalyst for the evolution of organizations
As associate consultant of Pluribus Europe, last year I was given the opportunity to write a chapter of the book “Diversity Around the Clock”, available here.
This coming week I will be participating in the Pluribus’ annual global gathering with consultants from all over the world. I so much look forward to reconnecting with colleagues and exploring together what our shared purpose will be for the time to come.
Here’s a reproduction of the article “Diversity & Inclusion, a catalyst for the evolution of organizations”, linking the framework of Reinventing Organizations and the work of Diversity and Inclusion.
Diversity & Inclusion, a catalyst for the evolution of organizations
by Magda Barceló
Diversity & Inclusion (D&I) strategic interventions are known for being good for business. And yet, there is a less obvious but more important reason for engaging in D&I, beyond the mentioned one: this is the fact that diversity and inclusion fosters the evolution of the organization and its individuals.
In this chapter by using the work of Frederic Laloux on the evolution of organizations, we consider the different stages from where organizations operate and explain how D&I enhances the breakthroughs that are found in most evolved organizations, therefore enhancing evolution in organizations from every stage.
What characterizes the Pluribus approach is the grounded beingness of the network of facilitators, and the organization itself, with high levels of self-organization, wholeness while being driven by its evolutionary purpose. From that stance, the different interventions advance specific dimensions of the evolution of organizations, specifically: culture, wholeness and evolutionary purpose.
With this awareness, leaders have the capacity to be more intentional and holding a wider framework as they engage with D&I strategic interventions in the increasing complexity of our times. This will likely result in a stronger impact at all levels: at the evolution of the organization, its individuals and the organization’s contribution to the world.
1. Organizational stages of evolution
The evolution of human consciousness as studied and documented by a great number of people – from historians, to anthropologists, philosophers, mystics, psychologists and neuroscientists – has been found to develop in stages. Organizations, as an expression of the same human consciousness, have evolved over time too and correlate with each stage of consciousness. Using Ken Wilber and Jenny Wade’s work, Frederic Laloux describes different stages of organizations, all co-existing in the present moment.
Gaining familiarity with the different stages of evolution of organizations is helpful to understand the main drives behind every type of organization, the culture and the type of consciousness of its leaders. But more strongly, I found Laloux’s work ground breaking, because from his research with current companies, he has come to discern three breakthroughs that underpin the companies that are most evolved, and wildly successful too. What this implies is that evolution can be orchestrated by creating the right structure, and given the necessary conditions: leadership at the highest developmental stage (Teal) and ownership support.
But before going into organizational stages, what do we mean when we talk about development? In Nick Petrie’s words: “There is nothing inherently better about being at a higher level of development, just as an adolescent is not better than a toddler. However, the fact remains that an adolescent is able to do more, because he or she can think in more sophisticated ways than a toddler. Any level of development is okay; the question is whether that level of development is a good fit for the task at hand.” So the question is, what is the task at hand? What is our task at hand as humans? What is the task of our organizations at this particular moment in history? How much complexity is asked of us to handle?
Depending on our stage of development, on the stage of development of the leaders of the company, these questions will be answered differently.
Organizations arising from this stage of consciousness are dominated by an impulsiveness drive. They first appeared in the form of small conquering armies, and today they can be found in the form of street gangs and mafias. The metaphor for these organizations is the “wolf pack,” and they function by a continuous use of power in their interpersonal relationships. In these organizations the “alpha wolf” uses the power to maintain his status within the pack. Fear is the glue that rules the organization. They are highly reactive and have a short-term focus. This type of organization thrives in chaotic environments.
The breakthroughs of this type of organization are creating a certain division of labor and implementing the command by authority. They are inherently fragile given the impulsive nature of the people running them, which can render them very unstable: the minute the power is in doubt, someone will attempt to topple it. Other weaknesses of Red organizations are they are poor at planning and strategizing.
Organizations at this stage are characterized by highly formal roles within a hierarchical pyramid. Top-down command and control is how they operate. In these organizations, stability is valued above all through rigorous processes, and the future is seen as a repetition from the past.
The military and the public school systems are archetypes of Amber organizations. Key breakthroughs of this stage are formal roles, with stable and scalable hierarchies, and processes that enable having a long-term perspective.
One of the limitations of Amber organizations is its hierarchical stratification where moving up the hierarchy can be a non-straightforward thing. The other is the “us” versus “them” where people inside the organizations relate or rather enter conflict with each other with suspicion; it’s the “silos” culture. The same rationale operates with the company and the outside world, where it’s seen as “another planet” since social life revolves around corporate life and employment is still considered life-long.
In the Orange worldview, life can be understood as complex clockwork whose workings can be investigated. The organization is seen as a machine. Modern global corporations are the embodiment of Orange organizations. With them three distinctive breakthroughs were brought: innovation, accountability and meritocracy.
The shadow parts of Orange organizations are growth for the sake of growth, making it environmentally unsustainable with planet depletion as a direct result; success measured just in terms of money and recognition; inequality and corruption.
Within the classic pyramid structure, Green organizations focus on culture and empowerment to achieve extraordinary employee motivation. Some successful examples of this approach are Southwest Airlines and Ben & Jerry’s. Their key breakthroughs are employees’ empowerment, a values-driven culture and a stakeholder model that takes into account social concerns beyond pure profit. The guiding metaphor for this stage is the organization as a family.
The limitations of Green organizations come from the post-modern world view and stem from its unease with power, rules and hierarchy. When it insists that all perspectives are equal and deserve equal respect in the face of others abusing this stance by putting forward intolerant ideas. Unsuccessful Green approaches are often a result of the failure of consensus in decision making and the rigidity of bottom-up processes. In summary, this paradigm has been great at deconstructing, breaking down old structures, but has proven less effective at formulating practical alternatives.
2. Teal organizations
The metaphor used for Teal organizations is one of a living organism or system. Life in its evolutionary wisdom manages ecosystems ever evolving toward more wholeness, complexity and consciousness. In this case, it is life itself that fuels the organization. Laloux research encompassing companies from different sizes, cultures and industries, describes three distinctive features they share in common:
– Wholeness: In stark contrast to business cultures that only allow for the “professional” self at work, which tends to be highly masculine, rational and cold, Teal organizations, through a set of practices and conducive cultures, invite people they work with to reclaim our inner wholeness and bring all who we are at work.
– Self-management: Teal organizations have created systems that transcend and include hierarchy and consensus. These systems allow it to operate efficiently and at a large scale with a system of peer relationships.
– Evolutionary purpose: These organizations see themselves as having a life and a sense of direction of their own. Instead of trying to predict the future, members are invited to listen in and understand what the organization wants to become. Connecting the personal purpose with the organizational purpose is sought and encouraged. Profit making becomes a result from following the purpose of the company, instead of the primary goal.
And these three breakthroughs are supported by the key role of particular cultural traits as recognized by the leaders of the researched organizations.
Nothing such as a “pure” Teal organization exists, but most of the researched ones are a blend, having innovated in some areas with practices and processes and having more Green or Orange practices in others. And yet, the similarities show that there is consistency and enough correlation to consider these organizations to be part of a different evolutionary stage.
Another thing to consider is that Wholeness, Self-management and Evolutionary purpose reinforce each other. This is because the more self-organized an organization is, the easier it is to be whole and show up as who you really are. The greater freedom to express your vocation or purpose at work, the easier it gets to self-manage in groups that share a common passion connected to the company’s purpose. The more accustomed people are to listening to who they are and relating to each other in an authentic and non-ego-based way, the easier it gets to listen collectively to the evolutionary purpose of the organization.
After reading this, you might be asking yourself what’s the point of all that if my organization is not at Teal level? Some organizations I have worked with have found it misleading to take Teal as a destination instead of an inspiration, a process worthwhile in itself. By considering the latter, this framework marks the key dimensions necessary to support organizational and personal evolution, and these dimensions are directly connected with the work of diversity and inclusion we do.
3. How it works in practice
Most of the organizations we support are in Orange stage. Some have Green traits. A few have Amber pasts. And others have Teal intentions. They all have in common to be formed by people with a desire to evolve along with the organization. Leaders know that there is more, and that they have blind spots they are not seeing, and invite us to support their efforts.
As Parker J. Palmer beautifully proposes, in any training or teaching program, more important than the what (contents), or the how (way of delivering them) is the who. Who are the individuals that facilitate trainings, in our case workshops, experiential learnings, strategic interventions? And for the case being, and since we’re considering organizations, what kind of organization is Pluribus?
This is fundamental, because in any intervention there is something that speaks louder than any presentation, any word that’s uttered, any email, any question asked or answered. And this is our way of being as facilitators, as humans. We all share a deep passion for this work which has us continually engaged in learning, a commitment to our continuous personal evolution and showing up with high levels of authenticity and vulnerability.
So our beingness gets to the places that need our presence and skills. But how does it get there? How is the organization behind it orchestrating it? How Teal is this organization? Well, the answer that comes is: a great deal. Pluribus does not work with strategic goals or targets. We are an expanding web of freelance consultants who are connected with each other by personal bonds, projects and interests; many of us are friends after having collaborated in many projects. One might find a project and act as project manager for it. This means that after speaking to procurement (part of the minimalist central office) then she will create her adhoc team for the project. Consulting rates are transparent according to the role. Associates join the projects that appeal to them the most. I recently was offered a collaboration for a company that I didn’t feel my values aligned with; I refused the collaboration and my decision was totally respected, having other offers for other projects shortly after. Information and materials are available in a shared drive. And adhoc mentors take up their roles from their initiative on a volunteer basis, as new projects emerge, to coach facilitators that need support in terms of content, understanding the client or designing an approach.
So having Wholeness and Self-organization, how do we collectively listen to the Evolutionary purpose? While economic sustainability is pursued, it has never been the driving force for Isabelle Pujol, the founder and CEO. In her words: “Our purpose is to bring the work of D&I into the corporate world. We’re fulfilling a need that impacts thousands of people as we support organizations shift their culture toward a more human one. If one day this is no longer needed, it will be great news. All companies will be getting it right. And I have no doubt that we will find other ways to contribute to the world.”
The founder Isabelle Pujol and a core team of facilitators meet once a year in a two-day gathering. This is a time of celebrating successes, sharing our lives and our dreams as we collectively listen to where the organization wants to evolve. And then we come back to our respective lives, staying connected and with stronger bonds that allow for continuous collaboration, learning and inspiration.
4. Enhancing Teal breakthroughs
In concrete terms, this is the what we do offer to organizations to advance each of the aforementioned breakthroughs. In each of the dimensions, our approaches combine challenge with support. We fully embrace the place where the organization and its individuals find themselves, and challenge them to move beyond.
A shift in the culture of the organization is a common result of our interventions. Teal leaders recognize the key role of culture in the functioning of the organizations as the invisible water we all swim in. For example, our workshops in Unconscious Bias unearth people’s beliefs and mindsets, and how they are linked to their behaviors and the interplay with organizational systems and the organizational culture. The experiential learning nature of the workshop invites high levels of self-discovery, intimacy, and authenticity that when noticing our shared humanity connects people from a level where there is no way back to relate to others as just “colleagues.”
In order to support organizations’ Wholeness our interventions have several components. All of our workshops create safe and open learning environments, through ground rules and facilitated discussions. This is often taken on board by employees participating, especially if they are participating in a Train the Trainer, one of our favorite modalities, where we build internal D&I expertise in the organization that then continues to operate internally once we’ve left. Authentic relating skills are built through workshops about conversational stances, non-violent communication and conflict resolution. The creation of reflective practices is achieved facilitating with tools like journaling, silence, large group reflections (Open Space, World Café). One-on-one coaching is available to work with leaders at any level, to support their inner wholeness through development. And collective learning is hosted and held through the creation and support of Communities of Practice of individuals that decide to take on this challenge.
In the words of Brian Robertson, the founder of Holacracy, talking about Evolutionary purpose: “It’s us humans that can tune into the organization’s evolutionary purpose; but the key is about separating identity and figuring out ‘What is this organization’s calling?’ not ‘What do we want to use this organization to do, as property?’ but rather ‘What is this life, this living system’s creative potential?’ That’s what we mean by evolutionary purpose: the deepest creative potential to bring something new to life, to contribute something energetically, valuably to the world… It’s that creative impulse or potential that we want to tune into, independent of what we want ourselves.”
Some of the main tools we use are within what’s considered large group processes, like World Café, Open Space, Appreciative Inquiry and Theory U. These are offered to support organizations connect to their evolutionary purpose, by listening to the whole system. And as life itself, once identified, the evolutionary purpose will keep evolving and evolving, and needs to be listened to again and again.
And our work in supporting companies Self-manage is yet to start… perhaps you might be interested in starting this line of work?
5. Can you be more intentional as a leader?
Whether you are familiar with D&I work or if you are considering embarking on such, now you have a wider lens through which to consider the scope of these efforts, by asking yourself some of these questions: What is the lens through which I see the world? What is the stage of development of my organization? What would it mean to evolve? What would this make possible at an individual and collective level? What would it make possible for the world?
In practice, if you decide to go for it, be ready to walk the talk, role-modeling all that is learned, as well as to hold space and create and sustain structures for evolution. Both D&I and evolution take practice and commitment. Successful companies take it on as on-boarding workshops as they build internal capacities to deliver it, and periodically offer it to existing employees to keep growing, keep deepening in the knowledge of our biases, of the lenses we see the world through, and the impact this has in our work, in the business, in our lives.
These are exciting times to live in, high complexity, huge challenges, with increasing awareness and loads of support. From my experience, I cannot but encourage you in this ride.
More and more business leaders are engaging in D&I efforts. By considering the big picture of organizational evolution, as a leader you can engage in a deeper way why this matters and support it more intentionally. Yes, it’s the right thing to do, yes it’s good for the business, and more importantly, it has the potential to support the organization and its individuals to evolve, and as a result equip it to handle higher levels of complexity and positive impact in the world.
Laloux, Frederic. Reinventing Organizations. Nelson Parker (2014)
Reinventing Organizations Wiki http://www.reinventingorganizationswiki.com/ (2016)
Palmer, Parker J.The Courage to Teach: Exploring the Inner Landscape of a Teacher’s Life (2007)
This article was originally published in the book: Inclusion Around the Clock, celebrating Diversity & Inclusion with Pluribus, by Isabel Pujol et al. Panoma Press, 2016
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Hearing your unique dharma…
“For each of us, you’ve got to be very quiet to hear your unique dharma, your unique way of expression. Somebody comes along and their major thing in life is to regain the rights of indigenous peoples. Someone else comes along and their major thing is to awaken people to environmental degradation. Someone else comes along and their major thing is to clean up the incredible oppression of women.
It isn’t a question of which thing is worse, or which is more worthwhile. Each person has to hear what is their part in the whole process of how their compassion expresses itself. I am doing this gig. This is my part. It’s no better than your part, it’s just my part. I’m not under some illusion that I have a different part and I honor everybody else’s part, I just have to constantly keep listening to hear what my part is anew.” Ram Dass
I’ve noticed that sometimes our major sources of frustration have the potential to orient our purpose. That’s my experience at least. When I just graduated and I entered the world of work, what I saw there inspired me deeply. So almost a decade later- I would work to transform it as a consultant and coach. I continue to listen to my purpose. And it continues to evolve.
So….What is your part right now? What are the major sources of frustration in your life? How might they be linked to your purpose in this world?
If you feel curious about how Integral Coaching can support you in this journey contact me for a 20 min. free session.
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Winter is here.
Leaves keep on falling. In the northern hemisphere, the nature rests.
This awareness invites me to look inside. Not too engage in too much action. To pause. To listen carefully. To consider.
In order to do so, I hear the calls for action from the world. And to some I say, it’s not time yet. I promise to listen to my internal rhythms. So I can discern when the time has come.
My soul rests in silence. Nourished deeply, getting ready for what’s to come. I do not know what will be, nor do I need to.
For now I embrace stillness. Looking inside. Not knowing. Just being.
And in doing so, I invite you to connect with the part of you that yearns to stop and listen. What message does this part have for your? How can you honor it? ¿Which practices, spaces or activities can you nourish it?
by Mary Oliver
Today I’m flying low and I’m
not saying a word.
I’m letting all the voodoos of ambition sleep.
The world goes on as it must,
the bees in the garden rumbling a little,
the fish leaping, the gnats getting eaten.
And so forth.
But I’m taking the day off.
Quiet as a feather.
I hardly move though really I’m traveling
a terrific distance.
Stillness. One of the doors
into the temple.
For a concrete practice on Stillness, the 10 points practice by Dharma Ocean is a simple and powerful. You can access it here.
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Who’s going to hold you in your efforts this year?
In this post, and as new year’s purposes ask for some serious attention, I’d like to bring your attention to the containers in your life. Here’s an excerpt of my book Gatherings – available at the Contact section of this site – about this topic:
“Container is the context, physical and psychological, that offers the required conditions for our intentions and the group’s to flourish and become real. It is an energetic field where we can experiment all possibilities safely. It is a supportive space.
A container can take different shapes:
– People: could be our team, family, life partner, a friend or a mentor. A wider group of people such as a social movement. The author of a book that resonates with us, a world leader or a relative that passed away and we still feel connected to.
– Places: museums, a childhood home, mountains, the sea, airplanes or our car, old buildings… any place that makes us feel safe, calm, serene.
– Practices: prayer, physical practice or an intense hobby.
– Virtual spaces: our culture, our spirituality, our country’s history… “
Now, as you consider your containers for your intentions of this year, you can ask yourself:
What containers do you already have to hold you in this effort?
What containers do you need to create to be successful? Of what type? What conversations do you need to have to activate them?
How are you going to nurture them?
In the same vein, I also invite you to ask yourself, who are you going to hold this year? What projects, what initiatives? How?
“Having a lover/friend who regards you as a living growing criatura, being, just as much as the tree from the ground, or a ficus in the house, or a rose garden out in the side yard… having a lover and friends who look at you as a true living breathing entity, one that is human but made of very fine and moist and magical things as well… a lover and friends who support the ciatura in you… these are the people you are looking for. They will be the friends of your soul for life. Mindful choosing of friends and lovers, not to mention teachers, is critical to remaining conscious, remaining intuitive, remaining in charge of the fiery light that sees and knows.” ― Clarissa Pinkola Estés, Women Who Run With the Wolves: Myths and Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype
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