My intention in starting this blog was to create space – big space, safe space – within which to engage new thinking about leadership/leading/leaders, among other things. For some strange reason, I’ve been getting emails from folks saying that they can’t seem to post comments.
Hmmm… (she says, pondering her holodeck) isn’t that interesting! My intention is to invite others to engage with me and yet, it seems difficult for comments to be received!
So, with my limited knowledge in this learning-as-I-go process, it may be helpful to note that:
I have chosen to limit comments to those who are registered with blogger.com. What that means is that before you can post to this site, you must first create an account with Blogger.com and log in. Once you’ve done that, you should be able to comment to your heart’s content.
I’ve made this decision because I am seeking mindful and awakened engagement. I have no interest in spam (who does?!?!?!) and I have no interest in anonymous comments. I DO have an interest in engaging fully with those who are willing to be present, be visible and claim the truth of their own experience.
One of the emails that I got today was from Ray Landry, a person for whom I have much respect. Because I feel that his perspective is important, I’m choosing to enter his comments below until we can figure out how to make posting your comments an easier task.
Ray has a blog of his own (which I will post here when I get the details from him) and has written the following comments in his blog, of his read of these postings:
“As always, I am moved by your genius, and your willingness to step into your truth and share what becomes clear for you, through each moment you put your thoughts into these fonts on the “page”.
The conversation around “leadership” through the Choice Points newsletter and recent blog moves through me as a rumbling of possibility and truth. And, having the experience of being “male”, a man, I find myself fully immersed in the unsettling state (more rumblings) of knowing that my experience of leadership and leading as I have witnessed them so far in my life just don’t work for me at all, either! Yet, in the unfolding of my experience with most of the men and women I know, I have not yet been able to find a space comfortable enough for me to feel able to “let go” and flow out of the “competitive and controlling nature” of that “nominalization” that is “leadership”, and into something else.
The phrase “relax into a new way of being” (as it relates to men – Choice Points, 2006), definitely feels like the direction I must focus on to allow for something new, different, than what I am used to. There has never been an instant of “relaxing” in my experience of leading or demonstrating leadership. It seems to always be about holding on tightly and controlling all the parameters I can; and I trust that most men would have a similar experience.
There is a knowing, now, in the depth of my being, that holding on to what is, will almost never get me to what can be, and that change and possibility can only come from choosing, moment to moment, to stand in the truth of my experience, and choosing again, in those moments of clarity, to allow for the unfolding of that truth. Where my experience of leaders, leadership, and leading is one of seeing “men” in various positions, talk about “blazing a trail”, “punching through”, “capitalizing”, “winning”, “getting the edge”, I suspect that “relaxing into a new way of being” will be an unfamiliar place for many to stand, as it is for me; yet, I too, believe that the continued repetition of the habitual, will only give us more of what we’ve got or worse!
Although I am not sure how all this will unfold for me, I have a sense that it is only in my intention to create more space for myself that I can allow for others to see what becomes possible for them; and in so “being”, allowing for much more than was offered up to me in the first place!?
As I read Ray’s thoughts, I was very aware of the compassion that I carry for men. I have sons who are no longer boys and not quite men. As I watch them move through their world, I am mindful that the context that has already been laid down for them by the history of their culture – and I mean, the culture of being human which is global – my heart aches for the small box into which they are repeatedly and intensely encouraged to fold themselves into in order to ‘pass muster’. I bear witness to their daily determination to be themselves – whatever that happens to be in this moment – and ensure that the choice to choose remains a constant in their lives. Even in my deep love and admiration for them, I am not blind to their turmoil about it all, regardless of how unwilling they are to surrender the truth of who they are.
It is not easy to be a man. So much of who you are lives buried deep beneath a mix of expectations and bravado. Expectations you never wanted; and bravado that you rely on to cloak your disinterest and fatigue with it all. You fool no one – especially yourself.
I believe that ‘..the call to women to lead and co-create with men differently; and the invitation to men to relax into new ways of being” is a place to start. It is not an answer, it’s an invitation. It is not a command performance – for women or men – it is an opportunity to discover more about ourselves and each other, without the concrete of our histories getting in the way. I sincerely do believe that although history may be interesting, it has no place in the design and manifestation of our future by intention.
Thanks, Ray, for stepping up to the plate…and into the game.
Breathing is good……