21 i'd be a

You won’t be “on track” all the time.

Everyone loses their way; you’ll find yourself off course at some point – maybe now.

What matters most, though, is just how quickly you notice your misalignment, and how you achieve realignment.

For me, one of the big takes from a mindfulness course was the importance of kindness (and gentleness) towards oneself.  I’m saying this now so you don’t beat yourself up or give up because you get off course.

We each have daily practices or things we do which can be turned into kind practices.

Mine include the following questions to help identify my “position” – asked kindly of course:

When and how have I been proud?
When and how have I been greedy?
When and how have I been foolish?

My practices of realignment are kind ones too, exploring humility, gratitude, and faithfulness.  What are yours?  How can you develop these to be more powerful?

I hope these help me both be more Human and to reconnect with what is the purpose or art or element of my life, so I can again invest heart, soul, mind, and strength; to be fully present to the emerging future:

‘The value of horizon scanning is that is inspired by a readiness for change but motivated by an imagination filled with possibility.’*

(*From Alex McManus’s Makers of Fire.)


what now?

20 keep growing

Our protagonist crosses a threshold and the huge implications of the step he’s just taken is almost paralysing.

What now?

How he responds, the what now?, is the only thing he can control.

He can’t allow himself to be half-hearted or be distracted.  There’s something so important in what he’s wanting to do, enabling others be generative and regenerative people.

Peter Senge points to how Human enterprise is beginning to reflect nature once more.  Each of us has something to bring, to offer – part of a powerful whole of bringing creativity, generosity, and enjoyment into the lives of others:*

‘[N]ature loves variety, and variety is making a comeback, as evident in an explosion of diverse and influential new forms of enterprise, many of which are easy to overlook given the understandable focus on big business.’**

Keep going.  He moves away from the threshold he’s crossed.  There’s no going back.  Only forward:

‘Accept who you are, don’t be afraid of being the person your decisions have made you into.’^

(*The words in italics are my way of defining what it is to be Human.)
(**From Peter Senge’s The Necessary Revolution.)
(^From Albert Espinosa’s The Yellow World.)


19 people without gaps

What if the prime and most powerful relationship in the universe is friendship?

A wise friend is worth more than their weight in gold and amazing possibilities lie within a growing friendship.

Out of the discovery that to have a friend at work increased engagement sixfold, Gallup took a closer look at the research and identified eight kinds of vital friendship:* builders, champions, collaborators, companions, connectors, energisers, mind-openers, and navigators.

We’ll proffer friendship in two to three of these ways, and our circle of friends will contain all of these qualities.

Identifying the voices, or specialness, of those we extend friendship to could be one of the most fulfilling experiences in life.  Of the things which make us uniquely who we are, Albert Espinosa shares:

‘Enjoy keeping them hidden, but enjoy it more when you show them.’**

Finding our voice then creates a “field” in which others find theirs.

Every day we have opportunities to make the world a more friendly or less friendly place.

(*Called Vital Friends, because the term friend has been devalued more recently, I offer these as ways of expressing friendship rather than as friends – we’ll have a limited number of friends, but offering friendship is a limitless commodity.)
(**From Albert Espinosa’s The Yellow World.)

wise people

18 life is

Who are your wise people?

They’re not easy to find, being courageous and generous, refusing to tell us what we want to hear or what’s popular.  Connecting from their heart, they don’t so much tell as do.

If I don’t put into practice what I discover and know, I’m not wise.  If I give up when the going gets tough, this too means I’m not wise.

I’ve noticed how wise people do not set out to change me, but live true to who they are … creating a “field of possibilities” when they do.  They know who they are and what they have, and what they want to do.

They also know they haven’t got everything necessary for this, but they know someone else will bring what they are lacking, including what they need to learn:

‘It’s not the lack of resources but the lack of resourcefulness that most people suffer from.’*

And the wise keep searching until they find these people.

They know living better is not about huge leaps but turning up and honouring the small things, every day: the only place the past and the future meet.

Wise people don’t know, wise people do.

‘Remember – the secret isn’t in the knowing, the secret is in the doing.’*

(*From Michael Heppell’s How to Be Brilliant.)
(The cartoon developed from a line in Seth Godin’s blog for today.)



what’s your problem?

17 it's another


What do you care about?
How are you alive?

What if life is found where a noble problem is identified?  There are certainly plenty of them.

Beyond our personal problems, these are problems experienced by others – maybe others we’ll never meet:

‘Today’s ubiquitous web-based connections and social media support this longing for a personal identity that transcends the individual, the tribe, the nation, and religion.’*

Peter Senge argues, ‘It is crucial that you don’t frame your goal in the context of what you know today.  If you do, you will limit the reach of your aspiration.’**

This means new territory: ‘everyone will be innovating without anyone having a manual on how to do it.’**

This expression of innovation will be found in clouds of problem-solvers.

Which cloud is yours?

(*From Alex McManus’s Makers of Fire.)
(**From Peter Senge’s The Necessary Revolution.  Also, check out Otto Scharmer’s Theory U: presently in the UK, we’re experiencing a milk crisis.  With the over-production of milk worldwide, UK farmers are finding the cost of producing milk is higher than what they are being paid.  This morning I caught an interview on the radio involving someone from, I think, the Adam Smith Insitiute and a Northern Irish SDLP Member of Parliament: one was arguing for a free market and the other for government intervention.  In terms of Theory U** – something Senge has been involved in creating – the former is Business 2.0 and the latter Business 3.0, but what we need is Business 4.0.)



16 life happens

Everything because life is opening more and more to us.

Everything because we have so much we can bring from within.

The world is becoming complex to the degree we’re unable to make choices and sometimes even to function healthily:

‘But having too many choices does not produce liberation; it produces paralysis.’*

We no longer walk into a job which lasts for thirty to forty years.  Instead, a working life can follow many twists and turns.

At the same time, we’re discovering there are depths to plumb in each of us, making it possible to more than cope.

My friend Alex McManus sees three shifts taking place in our near future: from outsider to insider, from above to within, and from against to with.

These movements promise to make us more Human, and, perhaps, if ignored, leave us less Human.**

What do you have?

Bring everything.

(*From John Ortberg’s All the Places to Go.)
(**From Alex McManus’s Makers of Fire.)

wisdom where you are

15 as we become

Wisdom is for everyone:

‘Wisdom is the art of living well.’*

A wise move is to live wisdom where we are: being accurate about who we are and what we have an experimenting with these.  So much is about being present to who we are where we are.

I am astonished by what is inside people but perhaps they do not know.

When we identify our values and skills and put them to play where we are we become actors upon now.

(*From John Ortberg’s All the Places to Go.)

and there’s more

14 a more important

There’s always more.

Which means more choice, but choice doesn’t come from outside but from inside us and it involves a lot of curiosity.

Even choosing not to be curious is a choice.  We can’t make each other be curious; all we can do is awaken one another to what we don’t know we’re curious about.

‘Choosing comes from the core of who we are.  When we truly choose, we have no one to blame and nowhere to hide.’*

Choosing isn’t so much about this or that.  Ultimately it’s about a future we choose to shape, it’s about bringing our creativity to the party.

You are a maker of more.

What’s your more?

‘Answers cure you; answers help you.  Asking questions makes you feel alive.’**

(*From John Ortberg’s All the Places to Go.)
(**From Albert Espinosa’s The Yellow World.)


choose choice

in a world crammed with noise

Today, you’ll be able to make some profound choices.

The fragilista* believes they have little or no choice.

The resilient** believes they can maintain their amount of choice.

The antifragilista^ believes they can increase the amount of choice they have.

“[E]ven the saddest things can become, once we have made peace with them, a source of wisdom and strength for the journey that still lies ahead.”*

A life guarded against failure and pain is a life limited in choice.  But if I accept life will be hard, I’m not as special as I think, my life is not about me, I’m not in control, and, sooner or later, I will die, then I free myself to live in this and every moment?*^

Choice comprises foresight, intention, and love (i.e., imagining, deciding, and acting):

‘Five frogs were sitting on a log.  One decided to jump off; how many are left?  The answer is five.  Why?  Because the frog only decided to jump off.’^*

(*Someone who reacts to life.)
(**Someone who responds to life.)
(^Someone who uses life to initiate something more.)
(^^Frederick Buechner, quoted in John Ortberg’s All the Places to Go.)
(*^In Fire, Stephen Pyne tells of how trying to protect park and farmland from fire led to it being in greater danger.  Fires are vital.)
(^*From Michael Heppell’s How to Be Brilliant.)


rehearsing imagination

12 a world

‘We stand poised on the brink of the largest ever explosion of human mental power, a second Renaissance, more transformative, more far-reaching, and more inclusive than the first.’*

As our technology takes over more of what we used to do are we moving towards taking on the greatest challenges and issues preventing all fauna and flora from thriving?

There seems no bounds to what Humans are capable of imagining.  And imagining is not daydreaming.  It’s rehearsing the future:

”Research carried out at Edinburgh University discovered that the brain processes information in much the same way in mental rehearsal as it does during actual physical activity.’**

We’re the explorers of this potential of Human imagination – as Ramez Naam points out,* you’re included.

‘A world that works for everyone does not exist except in the imagination.  So we must feed the imagination.’^

(*From Ramez Naam’s The Infinite Resource.)
(**From Michael Heppell’s How to Be Brilliant.)
(^From Alex McManus’s Makers of Fire.)