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Tuesday, July 31 2012

Excerpt from Conversations for Power and Possibility

by Darlene Chrissley, MCC
(MMC guest Master Coach & blogger)

“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.” 
Anne Frank

As I write this book, the world is changing everywhere I look.  Old industries and institutions are disappearing and new ones are being born every minute. Look what the digital revolution has done to the music and book and newspaper industries, what the mobile revolution is doing to the way we work and shop and stay connected.  Change can result in feelings of fear, grief and confusion.  But as the old order passes away, dreams that seemed impossible in the past, may now be ripe for action.

Our times call out for leadership – the ability to see new possibilities and the determination to capitalize on them in order to realize a better future.

I love the word realize;  and I’m suspicious of those who caution us to be realistic.  Both words come from the same root verb, to be real.  To be realistic is to conform to what already exists.  To realize is to bring something from the realm of imagination and give it form in the physical world. Leaders respect the realistic, but understand that reality is a dynamic state, always in a state of flux.  What has seemed real enough in the past may pass away, to be replaced by a new reality that is just coming into existence.  The greatest gift of the leader is the ability to be able to realize a better world than the one they inherited.  We can all exercise this kind of leadership, in our families, workplaces, and communities.   When we do, we experience ourselves as powerful players rather than pawns in the game of life.

The most important decisions you will make in your life are about how you will choose to relate to the world.  Do you see yourself as powerful or powerless to impact it?  Do you see the course of history as something that just moves along, dictated by fate, or as something that responds to human choices and actions?   Do you believe it is possible to make a difference?  Is it possible, through your actions, to change or influence the world?

What if the world we live in, the social and economic world anyway, is born in our imaginations and created through the stories we tell and the conversations we have?

I imagine a world where people are confident in their own power to influence the world, committed to using that power to make a positive difference, and focused on the opportunities that exist to make it so.  I see a world where conversations are places where new ideas are born and nurtured, new possibilities explored, tested and developed.  I see a world where our conversations build us up and make us stronger, more powerful both individually and collectively that we would otherwise be.

Three morals in this story:

    The world is always in a state of flux.
    Change opens up new possibilities.
    You are more powerful than you know.

Yours with creativity and imagination,



Darlene Chrissley is a writer, speaker, and professional master coach. She works with individuals and organizations across North America and Europe, teaches at Adler International Learning, and writes a popular blog about living with creativity and imagination, one day at a time.
Posted by: Darlene Chrissley, MCC AT 09:40 am   |  Permalink   |  1 Comment  |  Email
Thursday, July 05 2012
Speak unto me

Do you find there are themes that run through your life? My rule of thumb is whenever something appears to me 3 times; I know that the universe is knocking at my door saying “hello pay special attention”. 
The message I’ve been receiving lately is around trust. This is not new; in fact it’s been a reoccurring theme throughout my life. But each time, it takes me to a deeper level of understanding and experience.
By the way, I think coaching is the perfect profession for earning a master's degree in self trust!
OK so my oddest coaching moment thus far occurred very recently and has produced one of my greatest teachings on trust.
Uhhhh….. Ahhhh…..
After a client responded to a question Id asked, all of a sudden my mind went blank. I could not for the life of me think of one thing to say in response, not one question to ask, one reflection to make… well you get the point. It was strange because I didn't feel stuck, I just felt thought-free. If I had been sitting for meditation it would have been perfect!
I remember taking a deep breath and as I exhaled I dropped further into the stillness. And so there we sat in the silence for who knows how long, maybe 20 or 30 seconds which of course is a long time when someone's waiting for your response. 

However, I felt absolutely fine with it. After all, I had no thoughts to tell me otherwise! But then at some point I heard my mind say “okay… it's time to say something”. 
It’s do or die time
The thing was, I still didn't have anything to say. But I knew it was time - so I simply watched in utter fascination as I opened my mouth and began to form words. I had not a clue as to what was going to be said until it was voiced.

Now my ego would love to tell you that what came forth were profound pearls of wisdom. But in truth, it was fairly simple and mundane and if I’d had the chance to monitor it, probably wouldn’t have chosen to say it. But out it came.
The judgement

And of course my mind immediately questioned whether it had been the “right” thing to say. But it was quickly assuaged when to my continued astonishment; it really “spoke” to the client. It provided a spring board for a major aha moment and her greatest take away of the session. Go figure!

I certainly have had the experience
of not being sure what to say or where to go in a session and just having to listen within, choose and trust.  As well as the experience of being so focused that everything just flowed. And after the session, looking back and feeling more like a vehicle that the coaching came through. Or having said something and immediately afterwards thinking wow where did that come from?
Bombs away!

But this was a first!  As I opened my mouth, I remember feeling both a sense fear and exhilaration- kinda like what I imagine it must feel like when the door of the plane opens and you step to the edge in preparation for the big jump.
Well this leap of faith has changed me. At the risk of sounding dramatic, I can honestly say I am not the same.
From the rubble a beautiful new sprout

I have a new sense of self confidence and freedom to mention just two of the benefits. Instead of fearing and dreading “not knowing” there’s now a part of me that actually looks forward to exploring that space and seeing what “allowing” will bring forth.
Now that I think about it, I don’t think there is a greater gift than that!
And who was that coaching session for???
OK so whats your oddest, funniest, most bizarre or transcendent coaching moment?
Posted by: Gail Moore AT 02:56 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email