The Center for Transformational Presence http://transformationalpresence.org/alan-seale-blog Alan Seale's Personal Blog Mon, 23 Apr 2018 05:00:06 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.5 A Credo to Live By – Guidance for the Way Forward http://transformationalpresence.org/alan-seale-blog/a-credo-to-live-by/ Mon, 23 Apr 2018 05:00:06 +0000 http://transformationalpresence.org/alan-seale-blog/?p=2184 A credo is a statement of what you believe and, in alignment with your beliefs, how you strive to live your life. A credo expands upon your soul mission or life purpose. While your soul mission is a statement of who you are and why you are here, a credo is a statement of howyou […]

The post A Credo to Live By – Guidance for the Way Forward appeared first on The Center for Transformational Presence.

]]>
A credo is a statement of what you believe and, in alignment with your beliefs, how you strive to live your life. A credo expands upon your soul mission or life purpose. While your soul mission is a statement of who you are and why you are here, a credo is a statement of howyou will live your soul mission. You might even think of it as a high-level set of instructions – a guiding light on your path.    

While participating in the recent “Manifestation Wheel” workshop in the Netherlands, Jo Boniszewski wrote the words below. Perhaps it is better said that these words wrote themselves through her. In an inspired moment, all that she was experiencing during those days came together. She shared this statement with me and with our team of space holders and assistants. 

Jo’s statement resonated so powerfully for me as a credo that I could also live by. I am grateful that she has given me permission to share her inspiring words here.

Jo BoniszewskiStand tall in humility. Have a clear, heart-centred, long-term vision that you are totally committed to. Understand that your sacrifices set the rich and fertile foundation for expansion and abundance for all, at many levels.

You are called to have courage, to take considered risk and action  risk and action that will sometimes feel small and tedious, and at other times, bold and scary. Be grounded and centred in LOVE. Trust is your guide.

Relax into all of this, yet never compromise on your own deep belief in and commitment to this work.

Let’s look at Jo’s Credo line by line.

Stand tall in humility. Have a clear, heart-centred, long-term vision that you are totally committed to.

Such a powerful invitation to grow into humble confidence and a strong sense of self – of who you are called to be and what you are called to do.

We don’t become confident by just deciding to be confident. We grow into confidence through rich life experience – through both failure and success. Confidence emerges from within as we learn how to navigate enormous challenges as well as enormous opportunities. Humility and confidence must walk hand in hand. It is through the partnership of these two aspects of being that we make our greatest impact.

Understand that your sacrifices set the rich and fertile foundation for expansion and abundance for all, at many levels.

Living into your greatest potential will probably require some sacrifices along the way. However, sacrifice does not have to include suffering. Sacrifice can mean being so sure about your calling that there is no doubt within you about the choices you will make and why you are making them. You are willing to give up some things in order to live into the life you feel called to live, the gifts you feel called to share, the service you feel called to offer. You recognize that there are no guaranteed outcomes, yet by honoring your soul and living true to your values and calling, you stand a greater chance of a generous and fulfilling life.

You are called to have courage, to take considered risk and action  risk and action that will sometimes feel small and tedious, and at other times, bold and scary. Be grounded and centred in LOVE. Trust is your guide.

Indeed, courage. It can take enormous courage to live into your calling. Yet the more aligned you are with the life you are called to live, the less you feel the need to summon courage. Words of the American writer and civil rights activist Audre Lord come to mind: “When I dare to be powerful, to use my strength in the service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid.” As the Nike mantra goes, “Just do it.”

The risk and action of which Jo speaks is not reckless; instead, her words are considered risk and action. It’s about thinking things through when possible, being as informed as you can be about what you are getting into, and as prepared as you can be for what may lie ahead. It’s about planting seeds and seeing which seeds sprout, and letting that help you know which direction to go next. And it’s about refining your intuitive skills to the point that you trust that you will always find your way. Prepare in every way that you can, ground and center yourself in love, and take your next steps.

Relax into all of this, yet never compromise on your own deep belief in and commitment to this work.

This takes wisdom and experience – to know when to step back, take a breath, rest, and not take it all too seriously, and when to stand in fierce commitment to the life and work that you hold dear.

Perhaps Jo’s credo resonates for you. Or perhaps her words inspire you to create your own. Either way, get in touch with the core beliefs within you that are your guiding star. Trust them to guide and direct you. And then take your next steps.  

~ ~ ~

If you enjoyed this blog post and found it helpful or inspiring, please share it with your friends on social media by clicking on the icons below. You are also welcome to make a comment below. 

You may subscribe to our free weekly newsletter by clicking here.

Related Blog Posts:

 

 

The post A Credo to Live By – Guidance for the Way Forward appeared first on The Center for Transformational Presence.

]]>
Navigating Uncertainty, Doubt, and Fear – Choosing Where You Put Your Focus http://transformationalpresence.org/alan-seale-blog/navigating-uncertainty-doubt-and-fear-choosing-where-you-put-your-focus/ Mon, 16 Apr 2018 05:00:16 +0000 http://transformationalpresence.org/alan-seale-blog/?p=2179 In last week’s article, “Slow Dancing with the Dark,” I wrote about getting intimate with the uncomfortable feelings that often come to life in the darkness – uncertainty, doubt, fear, and hesitation. This week, we take that a step deeper with an experiential video to help you navigate the uncertainty and fear by being fully present […]

The post Navigating Uncertainty, Doubt, and Fear – Choosing Where You Put Your Focus appeared first on The Center for Transformational Presence.

]]>
In last week’s article, “Slow Dancing with the Dark,” I wrote about getting intimate with the uncomfortable feelings that often come to life in the darkness – uncertainty, doubt, fear, and hesitation. This week, we take that a step deeper with an experiential video to help you navigate the uncertainty and fear by being fully present with it – not trying to fix it or get rid of it, but rather to learn how to invite it to dance.

 

 

Related Blog Posts:

The post Navigating Uncertainty, Doubt, and Fear – Choosing Where You Put Your Focus appeared first on The Center for Transformational Presence.

]]>
Slow Dancing with the Dark http://transformationalpresence.org/alan-seale-blog/slow-dancing-with-the-dark/ Mon, 09 Apr 2018 05:00:38 +0000 http://transformationalpresence.org/alan-seale-blog/?p=2175 Growing up in a small town in Kentucky in the late 60s, we had to create our own entertainment and social life. In my early teens, hosting a dance party in your home for your friends and classmates helped insure that you were “cool.” And conscientious parents thought this was a great idea because they […]

The post Slow Dancing with the Dark appeared first on The Center for Transformational Presence.

]]>
Growing up in a small town in Kentucky in the late 60s, we had to create our own entertainment and social life. In my early teens, hosting a dance party in your home for your friends and classmates helped insure that you were “cool.” And conscientious parents thought this was a great idea because they could keep an eye on what their young teens were doing. Remembering those times also reminds me that I grew up in a different era!

There was a formula for our dance parties. Early in the evening, the music would be the up-tempo pop-rock and soul hits of the day. If your parents had money, they might have even hired the hot local high school group, the Soul Syndicate, to play.

As young teenagers can be, many of us were incredibly self-conscious, especially with the hosts’ parents popping in and out, so it always took a while before the dancing actually began. There were lots of awkward moments, occasional embarrassments, and all of the “stuff” that goes with being an adolescent. Yet after a while, someone would get up the nerve to get the party going. And soon, we would all be dancing and having a great time.  

As the evening progressed, the lights would gradually go down, and so would the tempo of the music. The Temptations’ hit single, “My Girl,” was at the top of the charts in those days, and that song seemed to be the unspoken signal that the party was transitioning from sock-hop style boogie to slow dance embrace in the now near-dark room. Though other songs would be in the mix, “My Girl” would play over and over again.

We were finding our way – sometimes shyly, sometimes boldly, yet almost always unsure. We were discovering who we were and how to navigate this whole new world of intimacy and relationship. We were learning what was OK and what wasn’t – where the boundaries were. In the days before a party, the anticipation of “slow dancing in the dark” conjured up both excitement and trepidation. In truth, I actually had no idea what romance was, but I was sure that it must be incredible. And the dark somehow made it safe from teasing and embarrassment.

However, now, nearly 50 years later, the “dark” has become a societal metaphor for anything that feels unclear, unknown, or uncertain – for fear, doubt, or hesitation; or any part of ourselves that we don’t think is OK; or simply anything that makes us uncomfortable.

These days, it seems that nearly everyone around me is wrestling with the dark in some way. Many of us are experiencing uncertainty, transition, and growth challenges. Such challenges also tend to spawn feelings of fear, doubt, and hesitation. There is a natural survival-self impulse to back away from the “dark” – to avoid it completely, or to try to get through it as quickly and painlessly as possible. Or we attempt to transform the “darkness” into “light.” Perhaps you can relate.

However, “pushing against” the dark or hurrying to “fix it” does not serve us. In fact, it actually delays the powerful growth and learning that is waiting for us.

What if these moments of uncertainty and transition are not about fixing anything? What if they are asking us to be fully present with whatever is going on – to get intimate with our fears and doubts – to find the invitations for our own next steps forward? In contrast to “slow dancing in the dark,” what if these moments are about “slow dancing with the dark?”  

When the darkness brings fear, resistance, doubt, or hesitation, what if you extend your hand and invite the darkness to dance? To slow dance. For me, slow dancing with the dark has become a powerful metaphor and practice. I’ve been getting up close and personal, metaphorically speaking, with the dark and all it represents. All of me touching all of it.

Sometimes it feels awkward. Just like my adolescent self at the dance party, I think I don’t know what I’m doing. I don’t know where the boundaries are – what’s safe and what isn’t. It feels vulnerable. It feels like new territory. And sometimes it’s scary.

Yet the interesting thing is, when I let go of the thought that I don’t know how and just do it – when I just start slow dancing with the dark– I discover that I do know how. I do know how to be with the “dark” just as much as I know how to be with the “light.” It’s really no different. It’s just about being present with what is happening in the moment without putting a label on it, and starting to dance. Together, we somehow find our way.

Yes, it’s vulnerable. Yet when I’m vulnerable, I’m also open. New thoughts and ideas can get in. When I allow myself to be vulnerable and get intimate with the dark, I sometimes even remember that I’ve been here before, and I made it through. It’s just that in the darkness, I had forgotten.

There is no big secret for how to find your way. There is no class to take or special technique. It’s so much simpler than we imagine. It’s just about acknowledging that whatever is in front us right now – light or dark, comfortable or uncomfortable, familiar or unfamiliar – is our next dance partner. The first step is to extend your hand and invite the dance. And then stay present moment-to-moment as things unfold. If you stay present to yourself, you won’t lose yourself in what is hiding in the dark. You are you, whole and complete. And the fear is the fear. And you are having a dialogue.

Slow dancing with the dark. It’s a practice. It’s simple, yet not necessarily easy. In fact, sometimes it’s really hard. Yet every time, as soon as I extend my hand, pull the dark in close and embrace it, somehow I know I’m going to be OK. I may not yet know how it’s going to be OK, but I know deep in the heart of my being that it will.

Living into your greatest potential, following the calling of your heart and soul, and living in service of something bigger than you, means that you will encounter periods of transition. You will meet situations that challenge you to learn, stretch, and grow. Those times are likely to be uncomfortable. On rare occasions, they may even feel terrifying or paralyzing. At best, they just feel awkward.

It’s OK. These feelings are normal. They come with the territory. You’ve been awkward and scared before, and you survived. And you will be again, and you’ll live through that, too.

So keep breathing. We don’t do big things in the world by staying in our comfort zones. Extend your hand into the darkness and invite it to dance.

~ ~ ~

If you enjoyed this blog post and found it helpful or inspiring, please share it with your friends on social media by clicking on the icons below. You are also welcome to make a comment below. 

You may subscribe to our free weekly newsletter by clicking here.

Related Blog Posts:

 

 

The post Slow Dancing with the Dark appeared first on The Center for Transformational Presence.

]]>
Book 2 of Alan Seale’s New 2-Book Set Now Available – Transformational Presence: The Tools, Skills, and Frameworks http://transformationalpresence.org/alan-seale-blog/transformational-presence-the-tools-skills-and-frameworks/ Wed, 04 Apr 2018 05:00:58 +0000 http://transformationalpresence.org/alan-seale-blog/?p=2163 Alan Seale provides hope and a big vision for a world that feels overwhelmingly divided and unjust. Drawing on ancient wisdom traditions, quantum physics, and complexity theory, Alan disrupts traditional leadership paradigms with a set of new and powerful tools that have the potential to bring us all closer together and give us the results […]

The post Book 2 of Alan Seale’s New 2-Book Set Now Available – Transformational Presence: The Tools, Skills, and Frameworks appeared first on The Center for Transformational Presence.

]]>
Transformational Presence book coverAlan Seale provides hope and a big vision for a world that feels overwhelmingly divided and unjust. Drawing on ancient wisdom traditions, quantum physics, and complexity theory, Alan disrupts traditional leadership paradigms with a set of new and powerful tools that have the potential to bring us all closer together and give us the results we need in times of uncertainty and complexity.
—Kathrin O’Sullivan, Executive Coach & Consultant
Former Head of Executive Development at Google

Transformational Presence gives me a simple and practical framework for conscious leadership. These tools are critical to how I create a safe and connected environment for self-directed teams – the core foundation for how I apply Design Thinking and Scrum Agile.
Jonathan Anderson, Vice-President Digital Integration Director
Citizens Financial Group

With enormous excitement, we announce the release of the second book in Alan Seale’s new Transformational Presence two-book set – The Tools, Skills, and Frameworks. The first book, How To Make a Difference In a Rapidly Changing World, was released in November. Now the companion book is available for purchase both in print and in digital format.

The “How-To” Book for Transformational Leadership and Coaching

Filled with the full scripts and instructions for more than forty tools and frameworks, this is the “how-to” book for transformational leaders, coaches, visionaries, teachers, policy-makers, and creators – an invaluable resource for navigating today’s complex and uncertain world. The rest of this article is adapted from the Introduction to the second book.

At every level of society and across many cultures, social structures, values systems, and ways of being with one another are breaking apart. No one is spared. No part of society, business, or government is left unchallenged. We are all affected in some way. Today as a collective society, we are experiencing every emotion – from shock and disbelief to anger and fear – from love and compassion to numbness, confusion, and despair.

As individuals, organizations, communities, and even nations, what do we do? Where do we go from here?

There is no simple answer. Our answers and informed choices from a year ago, a month ago, or sometimes, even last week, may no longer be relevant. And what is relevant today may not be relevant tomorrow or next month. Everything is fluid. Conditions are constantly changing. The “facts” are different today than they were last week. The ground underneath our feet keeps shifting.

Simple and Practical Tools and Frameworks, Yet Profound Results

The tools and frameworks in this book are simple and practical, yet they can bring profound results. They often shift and expand awareness and perception quite rapidly. As awareness and perception expand, how we think also opens to a much greater set of possibilities.

These books are not meant to provide “the answers.” Nor are the tools and frameworks meant to be “magic pills” or quick fixes to your situations and circumstances. Instead, they are meant to open perspectives and possibilities and to help you find your next steps – to uncover what is really going on at the core of your circumstances and situations, and then work from the inside out to transform what is happening in organic, impactful, and constructive ways.

Equally Power for Both Individuals and Groups

The tools and frameworks are equally powerful for both individuals and groups. The first book of the set, How To Make a Difference in a Rapidly Changing World, gives you the concepts and philosophies on which the second book, The Tools, Skills, and Frameworks, is based. Together, these two books can help you develop new skills and capacities that you need for navigating today’s complex and uncertain world.

Making a Difference Through Your Life and Work

You are here for a reason. Chances are you want to make a difference through your life and work. These two books will provide you with many concepts, tools, exercises, concepts, approaches, and frameworks to help you make the difference you are here to make. So are you ready? If so, let’s go. Together, we can create a world that works.

~ ~ ~

Special offers are available until April 18th – a bundle price for the print edition of both books in the two-book set, and an introductory price for the second book alone.

You can read sample chapters and see sample scripts and tools at TransformationalPresenceBook.com. The books are available in both print and digital versions.

~ ~ ~

If you enjoyed this blog post and found it helpful or inspiring, please share it with your friends on social media by clicking on the icons below. You are also welcome to make a comment below. 

You may subscribe to our free weekly newsletter by clicking here.

The post Book 2 of Alan Seale’s New 2-Book Set Now Available – Transformational Presence: The Tools, Skills, and Frameworks appeared first on The Center for Transformational Presence.

]]>
Discernment Before Criticism http://transformationalpresence.org/alan-seale-blog/discernment-before-criticism/ Mon, 02 Apr 2018 05:00:00 +0000 http://transformationalpresence.org/alan-seale-blog/?p=2171 In the March 31st New York Times op-ed section, columnist Bret Stephens published a courageous open letter to right-wing provocateur and journalist Kevin Williamson. The two writers often disagree politically and socially. Yet here, Stephens offers a bold invitation to us all to consider the whole body of someone’s work – indeed, the whole of […]

The post Discernment Before Criticism appeared first on The Center for Transformational Presence.

]]>
In the March 31st New York Times op-ed section, columnist Bret Stephens published a courageous open letter to right-wing provocateur and journalist Kevin Williamson. The two writers often disagree politically and socially. Yet here, Stephens offers a bold invitation to us all to consider the whole body of someone’s work – indeed, the whole of what they bring to the world – before judging them based on an isolated statement or opinion. It’s all about discernment before criticism and healing the societal divide.

I am not writing in support of Kevin Williamson or in criticism. I am not writing to rationalize or excuse anyone’s behaviors, actions, or opinions. I am writing in support of curiosity and discernment before jumping to judgment and attack.

From time to time throughout my life, I have made statements or held opinions that I then reconsidered later. I have learned, grown, and evolved in my 63 years, and so have my thoughts, opinions, choices, and actions. I would not like to be labeled or categorized by a single statement or act. I doubt that you would either.

Yet as a society, this has become the norm. It does not serve us. It only divides us, creating more polarization.

We can turn this around. It will take clear intention, focus, and diligent practice, yet it can be done. And it starts with each one of us individually. Here’s how we can begin.

We can practice looking at the whole of a person and the whole of a situation before drawing quick conclusions and issuing self-righteous moral condemnation.

We can practice restraint, reserve judgment, be curious, and open our hearts and minds to learn more about the whole of a person or situation before thoughtlessly jumping onto a particular political or moral thought bandwagon.

We can humbly consider our own past choices, opinions, and actions, and acknowledge the ways in which, in fact, our own opinions and understanding have evolved over time. We can recognize that we sometimes make different choices today than we might have made in the past because our perspective has shifted. And we can practice expanding our awareness and worldviews as life goes on.

Finally, we can offer these same considerations and possibilities to others, giving them the space to learn and grow just as we are.

Life is full of contradictions. We all have thoughts and opinions that sometimes conflict with one another. We all have moments that require choosing one value over another. Life is complex.

Towards the end of his letter, Stephens sums up his thoughts with this line: Let he who is without a bad tweet, a crap sentence or even a deplorable opinion cast the first stone.

Our society is fractured. Healing has to start somewhere. This could be one place to begin.

Read Bret Stephens’ letter to Kevin Williamson.

 

 

The post Discernment Before Criticism appeared first on The Center for Transformational Presence.

]]>
New Mentoring Program for Transformational Presence Leadership and Facilitation http://transformationalpresence.org/alan-seale-blog/new-mentoring-program-for-transformational-presence-leadership-and-facilitation/ Mon, 26 Mar 2018 19:39:25 +0000 http://transformationalpresence.org/alan-seale-blog/?p=2160 At the Center for Transformational Presence, we continue to develop discovery and learning programs to support you in your personal and professional development. Today, we announce a new mentoring program in leadership and facilitation for those who wish to further refine their skills and capacities as a leader, coach, facilitator or public servant bringing Transformational […]

The post New Mentoring Program for Transformational Presence Leadership and Facilitation appeared first on The Center for Transformational Presence.

]]>
At the Center for Transformational Presence, we continue to develop discovery and learning programs to support you in your personal and professional development. Today, we announce a new mentoring program in leadership and facilitation for those who wish to further refine their skills and capacities as a leader, coach, facilitator or public servant bringing Transformational Presence concepts, frameworks, and tools into organizational, business, group, societal, and/or workshop settings.

The Transformational Presence Leadership and Facilitation Mentoring Program (TPLM) is designed to support our graduates in further developing and expanding their work through their own programs and companies. Through their offerings and services, Transformational Presence can continue to ripple out through the world. The intention of this new mentoring program is not to expand the team of facilitators at the Center, but rather to encourage and empower our graduates to create and develop their own work based in Transformational Presence.

To create a context for this mentoring program, I’d like to share a bit about how we came to this new offering and how it fits into the bigger picture of who we are and why we are here. However, if you are eager to jump to the details of the program right away, you can bypass the article and go straight to the program webpage.

How We Started

Throughout my professional life, I have always found my next steps by listening to my inner calling and to what the world was asking me for. When I created the Center for Transformational Presence in 2010, it was clear to me that our focus was to be on teaching, mentoring, and supporting people and organizations to live into their greatest potential and create a world that works. It was my intention to create a small company with a lean operation that made a big difference in the world.

We have stayed true to that intention. By remaining small and forming alliances with our graduates and organizations around the world, I have had the privilege of leading our programs or being a keynote presenter at conferences in 16 countries on five continents.

Recent Expansion

Two years ago, the Center formed an alliance with Trace Hobson in Canada to support the further development of our work in the organizational and business world. It took some time to for us to find the form that our alliance wanted to take. However, in the last nine months, the form of our work together has become clearer. Trace created a new company, iConnectExpansion, with the express purpose of expanding the reach and impact of Transformational Presence. A significant part of his focus now is on supporting our graduates to further refine and develop their work in the world with Transformational Presence as a base.

Our alliance with Trace has allowed us to support members of our community on two critical levels: 1) in their development as Transformational Presence leaders, coaches, and facilitators; and 2) in expanding their impact in the world through a Transformational Presence approach. Again, this also supports the continued expansion and evolution of Transformational Presence through the work of others.  

The Birth of the Mentoring Program

Last year, I made a commitment to myself to lighten my travel schedule starting in 2019. I was also feeling called to share what I have learned and the artistry that I have developed as a coach and presenter over the last forty years.

I invited five Transformational Presence graduates from four countries to join me in a personal mentoring process that would prepare them to share the facilitation of some of our signature programs. My intention was, and still is, to continue teaching the signature programs in just a few locations, giving me more time and space for writing, coaching, speaking, and mentoring.

That original mentoring program became a pilot for a new program mentoring leaders, coaches, and public servants who are committed to Transformational Presence as a foundation of their own work in the world. Leading that first program also affirmed my passion and love for mentoring others in the art of Transformational Presence leadership and facilitation. From that pilot program, a new mentoring program has emerged.

The Transformational Presence Leadership and Facilitation Mentoring Program (TPLM)

The first offering of the TPLM will be a five-day mentoring retreat Sunday-Thursday, January 27-31, 2019 in Costa Rica. We will gather at Kantara, the home and retreat center of Karen Montealegre, a TPLC graduate and Certified Equine Facilitated Learning Practitioner. Near San José, Kantara rests on the edge of a canyon overlooking a powerful cascading waterfall.

Enrollment in this program is limited to eight Transformational Presence graduates to ensure a high level of personal attention and support.

A significant portion of each day will be spent in a combination of group and one-on-one mentoring with me to help participants further refine their presentation and facilitation skills, as well as continue to deepen their own personal Transformational Presence.

I have invited Karen and Trace to join me in leading this program, offering further one-on-one learning and development. Participants will work with Karen and the horses of Kantara to strengthen inner alignment, intention, and clarity as a leader and facilitator. With Trace, participants can take further steps in refining their message and expanding the reach of their work in the world.

I am incredibly excited about this new program, both personally and for what it offers to members of our Transformational Presence community. If this mentor program calls out to you, join us. And if January 2019 is not the right time or location for you, yet this program is calling you, please let us know of your interest. This will help us plan other offerings for later in 2019 and 2020.

Learn more about the Transformational Presence Leadership and Facilitation Mentoring Program.

 

The post New Mentoring Program for Transformational Presence Leadership and Facilitation appeared first on The Center for Transformational Presence.

]]>
Never Waste a Good Crisis – An Open Letter to Citizens, Leaders, and Policymakers Everywhere http://transformationalpresence.org/alan-seale-blog/never-waste-a-good-crisis/ Mon, 19 Mar 2018 05:00:40 +0000 http://transformationalpresence.org/alan-seale-blog/?p=2149 Greetings to all, We are living in challenging times. Challenges bring opportunities. So the good news is that since we are faced with so many challenges in the world right now, there are also many opportunities available to us if we choose to listen, sense, and feel beneath the surface. Words that have been attributed […]

The post Never Waste a Good Crisis – An Open Letter to Citizens, Leaders, and Policymakers Everywhere appeared first on The Center for Transformational Presence.

]]>
Greetings to all,

We are living in challenging times. Challenges bring opportunities. So the good news is that since we are faced with so many challenges in the world right now, there are also many opportunities available to us if we choose to listen, sense, and feel beneath the surface. Words that have been attributed to Winston Churchill come to mind: “Never let a good crisis go to waste.”

I’m not one to easily jump to crisis mode, nor do I feel that, at least in most places, we are in full-on crisis. However, some might argue that we are teetering on the edge socially, politically, and environmentally. We are facing critical choice points. What we create will, in turn, create us. Therefore who do we wish to become? And what is the legacy that our choices, actions, and policies are creating?

Not letting a crisis go to waste means paying attention to all the signals around us and within us – signals that are trying to show us a path forward and open new doors of possibility. Yet in order to notice the signals and perceive the messages, we must first open ourselves.

So I invite you to join me in a daily exercise from now until Earth Day, April 22nd. The length of time you choose to spend on the exercise each day is up to you. Some days you may be able to spend only five or ten minutes – other days you might choose to spend longer. 

I chose Earth Day because the Earth is our common home. If we have nothing else in common with one another, we do all share the same home planet. The intention of the exercise is not so much about taking care of the Earth. It’s about shifting our awareness and focus towards what really matters – to us as individuals, and to us as a collective.

The exercise has six steps. Some days, you might consider all of the questions just briefly, and then go on with your day. Other days, you might linger in one or two questions that ask for more attention. Let the exercise take you wherever it does. Each day, your experience may be different. Yet over time, you are likely to start finding some consistency.

Step 1 – As you prepare yourself for the day, look in the mirror. Look into your eyes. Look at yourself with gentleness and compassion. Who are you, underneath the clothes you wear, the public role you play or the public mask you wear, and the responsibilities you carry? Who are you really? Let the answer come in a few simple words or as a feeling. There’s no one here but you in this moment. No one to hide from, no one to impress, no one whose expectations you must meet. It’s just you with you. Who are you?

Step 2 – Find your heart. Is it easily accessible to you, or has it gotten buried under fears, doubts, resistance, anger, or something else? It’s OK if it is buried. Just uncover it. Touch your beating heart. Breathe in and out through your heart. What if you stayed in touch with your heart all day long?

Step 3 – Bring to your awareness three people that you will see or interact with today. Find some part of each of them in you. Who are they as individuals? What is important to them? What if you were to meet them as human to human rather than as role to role or two characters in a situation? What might be possible? Maybe interacting with them is easy, maybe it’s hard. It’s OK either way. Just step beyond “easy or hard” and meet them human to human. Meet them with compassion, and find some aspect of them that also shows up in you. And if animals or the natural world are included in today’s interactions, consider them as well.

Step 4 – As you look in the mirror and are in touch with your heart, what do you want more of in your life? What do you want less of?

Step 5 – What are you protecting or afraid of losing? On the other hand, what would you like to share even more generously?

Step 6 – What is important for you to remember today as you interact with others; as you fulfill your roles and responsibilities as a citizen, leader, or policymaker; and as you make choices and decisions that will impact others?

No matter what role we play in family, society, business, politics, or government, opening our hearts and being honest with ourselves about what really matters is critical. We can use our personal and societal challenges to help us find constructive and transformative paths forward. This simple exercise can increase our chances of making choices, decisions, and actions with greater awareness and compassion, and with a purer intention of creating a world that works for all.

For simplicity in daily use, you can download a pdf document summarizing the questions. You can print this single page or keep the document handy on your mobile device for ease of use.

Thank you for joining me in this exercise. I welcome your comments below. Please share your insights and experiences. Like it or not, because we all share this Earth home, we’re in this together. Our world can only transform as fast as a critical mass of the population transforms. It’s up to us.

With great hope,
Alan

~ ~ ~

If you enjoyed this blog post and found it helpful or inspiring, please share it with your friends on social media by clicking on the icons below. You are also welcome to make a comment below. 

You may subscribe to our free weekly newsletter by clicking here.

Related Blog Posts:

 

 

The post Never Waste a Good Crisis – An Open Letter to Citizens, Leaders, and Policymakers Everywhere appeared first on The Center for Transformational Presence.

]]>
The Power of a Do-Not- Kid-Yourself Day http://transformationalpresence.org/alan-seale-blog/the-power-of-a-do-not-kid-yourself-day/ Mon, 12 Mar 2018 05:00:19 +0000 http://transformationalpresence.org/alan-seale-blog/?p=2144 Many years ago, a presenter in a leadership development seminar I was attending made a statement that has stuck with me ever since: “At least once a month, we all need a do-not-kid-yourself day.” The audience responded with a nervous laugh. Coming from a fairly transactional approach, he was talking about being accountable for what […]

The post The Power of a Do-Not- Kid-Yourself Day appeared first on The Center for Transformational Presence.

]]>
Many years ago, a presenter in a leadership development seminar I was attending made a statement that has stuck with me ever since: “At least once a month, we all need a do-not-kid-yourself day.”

The audience responded with a nervous laugh. Coming from a fairly transactional approach, he was talking about being accountable for what you say you are going to do. Yet I sensed that there was a much bigger transformational concept here than he was speaking of. And I knew right then that this was going to be the nugget I would take from this seminar.

There can be a fine line between compassionately fierce honesty and destructively harsh criticism. Walking that line is a learned skill. Being straightforward and truthful with ourselves about what is working and what is not – about what habits and thought patterns support us and which ones are actually debilitating – requires sensitivity, awareness, generosity of spirit, and courage. It’s a simple concept, yet it’s not easy to do. It takes practice.

Are you up for a do-not-kid-yourself moment right now? If so, let’s begin. There are three steps to this self-reflective process.

Step 1 – Begin by going to stand in front of a mirror, and take the device on which you are reading this article with you. Look directly into the mirror – directly into your own eyes – and acknowledge the gifts you bring to the world. You don’t have to speak out loud – I usually don’t. Yet be very clear, specific, and honest with yourself about what you do really well. Be willing to name the positive difference that your presence makes for those around you. In humility, allow yourself to be proud of who you are and what you bring to the world. Own your gifts. Fully embody your most authentic and powerful presence.

Take a few moments for this first step. Then continue when you are ready.

Step 2 – Acknowledge with unwavering compassion and honesty where your learning or growth edge is – where you realize that your potential is bigger than what you are actually living – where life is asking you to stretch yourself into the next iteration of your best self. This might feel exciting, or it might feel scary or take you out of your comfort zone, or perhaps even both. Whatever you are feeling is OK. Let it be information. You don’t have to do anything about it right now. Just be willing to be with it.

Take a few moments here.

Step 3 – Accept whatever insight or awareness arises as an invitation to take a next step. Resist any temptation to criticize yourself for not being there already. Breathe in compassion and love and stand in the greatest authentic and humble strength you can muster. And then say “yes” to the invitation. Say “yes” to your potential and the next iteration of your best self that it is asking you to stretch into.

Take your time here.

This is a do-not-kid-yourself moment in its highest form. It goes far beyond transactional accountability. It opens the door to the calling from within that you cannot deny. It might even be transformational.

To take these three steps in one self-reflective exercise requires deep self-awareness. It brings new meaning to “getting comfortable in your own skin.” Because it’s about being comfortable with the power and strength of who you are and living into the purpose you are here to fulfill.

Most of us have not been taught how to be gently compassionate with ourselves – to hold ourselves lightly with enormous love, and at the same time, stretch ourselves to say “yes” to our next big learning edges. We haven’t been taught how to be OK with not being “there” yet, whatever “there” might mean at a particular time in our lives. We have to learn how to be in full-on commitment to the process or the journey.

I am blessed to spend time with many extraordinary people. We support one another and learn and grow together. Most of us can do many things very well. And many of us could easily fit into the “over-achiever” category – wanting to be the best that we can be on every level and never disappoint the people we serve. It’s not so much about looking for approval or wanting people to like us – it’s that we are incredibly committed to making this world a better place for all. We live and work to a high standard.

And yet here is the catch. As we progress through different chapters of our lives and work, and as we continue living into our own ever-evolving potential, our callings also evolve. What we have been very successful in doing in the past may no longer be as fulfilling as it once was. Or perhaps it is no longer the best use of who we are and the gifts we have to share. We won’t necessarily serve in the same ways for our whole lives. And as we mature in our capacities and awareness, new opportunities show up to stretch us even further.

At first, it can be really hard to say “no” when you are asked to do something that you can, in fact, do very well. Yet deep inside, you know that saying “yes” is no longer the right thing for you.

There is actually a simple way forward. Just say “yes” to what your heart and spirit are pointing you toward now. Commit your time and energy to that new direction. As you follow that path, there will soon be no more time for the things that are no longer yours to do. There will be a natural falling away of the old as the new takes form. And it is incredibly liberating.

From time to time, we all need a do-not-kid-yourself day – to look in the mirror and go through those three steps. And then to ask one more question: What is truly mine to do now, and what is no longer mine to do?

There have been at least five or six times in my life when I have walked away from stability and security and walked toward where my heart was calling me next. These were not naïve choices. I listened and paid attention. I didn’t take foolish risks. Instead, I put as many things in place as I could and prepared the new ground as much as I was able. There were many do-not-kid-yourself moments when I had to assess and reassess where I was, the choices I was making, and the ways I was thinking.

And then it was time to take the leap. Every single time, the payoff was enormous.

What about you?

~ ~ ~

If you enjoyed this blog post and found it helpful or inspiring, please share it with your friends on social media by clicking on the icons below. You are also welcome to make a comment below. 

You may subscribe to our free weekly newsletter by clicking here.

Related Blog Posts:

 

 

 

The post The Power of a Do-Not- Kid-Yourself Day appeared first on The Center for Transformational Presence.

]]>
Blaze Your Own Trail http://transformationalpresence.org/alan-seale-blog/blaze-your-own-trail/ Mon, 05 Mar 2018 06:00:09 +0000 http://transformationalpresence.org/alan-seale-blog/?p=2134 At some point in our lives, most of us have had to find our own path – our own way of doing something, our sense of who we are within a relationship, or a career path that made sense for us. Following the calling of your heart or the passion of your soul sometimes requires […]

The post Blaze Your Own Trail appeared first on The Center for Transformational Presence.

]]>
At some point in our lives, most of us have had to find our own path – our own way of doing something, our sense of who we are within a relationship, or a career path that made sense for us.

Following the calling of your heart or the passion of your soul sometimes requires going places you haven’t been before, doing things you don’t think you know how to do, and challenging the status quo. Sometimes we have to get in touch with our inner “rebel” in order to push boundaries, challenge assumptions, or buck the system. We have to blaze new trails. Often, others end up following those trails. And then the trail we blazed is serving others as well.

In this short video, I tell the story of a group of school children who, more than fifty years ago, literally blazed a new trail in my small Kentucky hometown. These children broke the rules, challenged authority, and ended up making a difference for generations to come.

Their story has a lot to teach us about how we blaze new trails in our lives and leadership. Enjoy the video!

 

 

 

If you enjoyed this blog post and found it helpful or inspiring, please share it with your friends on social media by clicking on the icons below. You are also welcome to make a comment below. 

You may subscribe to our free weekly newsletter by clicking here.

Related Blog Posts:

 

The post Blaze Your Own Trail appeared first on The Center for Transformational Presence.

]]>
Life and Work as a Pilgrimage http://transformationalpresence.org/alan-seale-blog/life-work-pilgrimage/ Mon, 26 Feb 2018 06:00:35 +0000 http://transformationalpresence.org/alan-seale-blog/?p=2128 Philosopher Martin Buber wrote: “All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware.” As I reflect on those words, I am taken back to a powerful moment in a coaching session several months ago – a moment that won’t let go of me. That moment has brought a shift in how I greet […]

The post Life and Work as a Pilgrimage appeared first on The Center for Transformational Presence.

]]>
Philosopher Martin Buber wrote: “All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware.” As I reflect on those words, I am taken back to a powerful moment in a coaching session several months ago – a moment that won’t let go of me. That moment has brought a shift in how I greet each day – seeing my life and work as a pilgrimage.

A “pilgrimage” can be defined as a long journey undertaken as a quest for a specific purpose. It might be or to pay homage to a place, a person, or a belief. It might also be an intentional journey to find oneself. We make a conscious choice to embark upon that journey. And what makes it a pilgrimage instead of just another journey is our intention and focus. We have chosen to walk this path. We have chosen to walk with awareness.

Many spiritual traditions embrace the idea of pilgrimage, and in some traditions, it is an integral part of the faith journey. One of the best-known pilgrimages that tends to attract people from many faith traditions is the Camino de Santiago de Compostela – a path of several hundred kilometers through France and Spain. In fact, several members of our Transformational Presence community have walked the Compostela path.

In my own journey, I have often felt like the path has chosen me. It was up to me to say “Yes” and follow the path as I was led. As Martin Buber said, there have been many “secret destinations” waiting for me along the way that I had no idea about when I embarked on the path. Life has been a series of both expected and unexpected destinations and discoveries.


What if we look at our lives as a pilgrimage? Not just a journey making our way through our days, or accomplishing a series of goals, or working through our challenges and opportunities. What if we consciously chose to embrace life as a pilgrimage to discover and live into who we are and what we are here to bring to the world?

In this short video, I share the profound moment of discovery in that coaching session and reflect further on what could be waiting for us when our life and work indeed becomes a pilgrimage.

 

 

 

If you enjoyed this blog post and found it helpful or inspiring, please share it with your friends on social media by clicking on the icons below. You are also welcome to make a comment below. 

You may subscribe to our free weekly newsletter by clicking here.

Related Blog Posts:

 

 

The post Life and Work as a Pilgrimage appeared first on The Center for Transformational Presence.

]]>