A flowering tree opens, expands and grows with simple encouragement – water, light, mulch. Keep it in the dark, or expect it to grow without attention and we get a weak spindly tree, bearing little fruit.
Like the tree, without mindful awareness, our wisdom languishes until it is nothing we can count on in tough times. We have an intuition of our inherent wholeness, yet we can so easily lose track of it. Angst, worry, insecurity follow until we forget who we really are.
Even when we are sick and tired of acting in unwise ways, we often repeat the same-old foolish choices, or delude ourselves that someone else has the answer that is right for us. A client once said, “my habitual patterns create grooves with walls so high it’s hard to remember another path exists!” She was sick of the repetitive results she created from deep inside the groove. It was too hard, the cost too great. Disconnected and only moderately effective as a leader, she was ready for change, she had some stuff she really wanted to get done and needed a big shift to do so.
She called these steps her on-ramp. Using these steps as a practice she discovered her wisdom, the Wise Self that is always there, waiting, responsive – available to be cultivated, ready to be used to show her a better way.
As she found, this works. Leaders and teams are consistently surprised by the results. The key is practice. 3-times a day this week will build you a set of stairs to climb out of your habitual grooves.
Notice when you are wise or when those around you are wise.
Name it. Appreciating wisdom adds life to any conversation. Speak up and acknowledge someone’s wisdom and you will see them smile. We all love to be seen as our best self.
Highlight wisdom and you will see it grow. Acknowledge wise choices in performance reviews or team meetings. Applaud your kids for the times when they are wise. Journal daily on Moments of Wisdom. Use appreciation to harvest, recognize, and amplify wisdom.
Distinguish wisdom as an essential part of effective leadership. Define wisdom as a team or company. Learn from unwise and wise decisions. Ask what makes the difference, assess the consequences, the ripple effects of both. Explore what conditions support or detract from wisdom and build structures and agreements that support a flourishing culture of wisdom.
Notice when you are wise. Point to all the ways those around you are wise. It’s a much more satisfying way to live.
Next Thursday, 8/29, at 4:00 PDT, I’ll interview another remarkable woman, a super natural mom who overcame a tremendous health challenge one room at a time.. Beth Greer is fascinating! I hope you’ll join us. Sign up to receive the call in number or to receive the recording.