“Be not the slave of your own past. Plunge into the sublime seas, dive deep and swim far, so you shall come back with self-respect, with new power, with an advanced experience that shall explain and overlook the old.”—Ralph Waldo Emerson (via imfantasyparade)
It just takes that one moment to realize how much life is truly a blessing. All the emotions, all the wins, all the trials, and everything in between. It seems that there is a constant overcoming of what defines our personal dramas which creates this vision of what it means to be successful. One…
Without regular reflection and renewed directions, surprisingly common traps in organizations we work within become sinkhole killers of novelty.
1. Mentoring practices encourage seasoned advisors to replicate outmodedpractices. Have you seen old boys prevent new approaches better suited to rapidly changing horizons? Innovation requires a radical shift for mutual tutoring. An exchange that reflects more balanced coaching, means guidance that fosters innovation. It’s based on mutual brainpower potential and shared experiences, rather than on entitlement, age or seniority.Mindguiding, in contrast to mentoring, offers reciprocal novel opportunities. Rather than replicate old practices, mindguides lead to winning ideas – along new neural pathways of discovery.
2. Ego crazed leaders live in denial of emotions required for ethical workplace renewal. If you crave inspired talents in others, more value from teams, or care and curiosity cultivated, your leaders may be in sinkholes. Innovation takes leadership with ethics at the helm and emotional intelligence for a risk-taking culture. The opposite of ego-crazed is renaissance leaders, who encourage and reward innovators. In contrast to out-of-control egos, who plant barriers that diminish change and stomp on growth, renewed leaders avoid traps of the me-me-demanders.
3.Bullies and cynics douse fires and drench courage for risk taking and innovation. New studies from UCLA, San Diego, give a sharper image of what goes on in the brains of bullies or cynics who respond with anger and aggression to perceived threats of change. Studies suggest that such behavior is associated with a hyperactive amygdala, an area of the brain that processes information regarding threats and fear. With less activity in the frontal lobe, a brain region linked to decision-making and impulse control, bullies see situations more from their own needs and act to get what they want, regardless of negative consequences to growth at work.
4. When toxins replace play at work, then doldrums likely substitute for discovery. Fewer than 30% of corporate workers care less about their jobs and 20% want to undermine co-workers. No wonder the US is headed down slippery slopes of brokenness. We constantly hear calls for more jobs, as if the solution equalled more of the same. Fun and discovery meld through cultivating job satisfaction, not in creating more jobs at toxic workplaces. As economic pressures increase, so do complaints about lack of character building and toxic workplaces. Where does your workplace fit? Rate your job satisfaction in 22 items and receive back a wellness score. Discover what kills innovation, as well as how to inject fun and discovery into your organization.
5. Meetings are ghost gatherings, where it’s easier to move a graveyard than grow new ideas. We’ve discovered that most workplace meetings are more brain draining than empowering, more time wasting than productive. It doesn’t have to be that way. Take this survey to determine your last meeting’s innovative IQ. More importantly, add life-changing items into your next meeting agenda and watch innovation transforms work.
How many innovations land in sinkhole traps in your organization? Why not dip instead into the vast pool of brainpowered strategies and transform ruts and routines into innovation opportunities for the coming week?
There’s this ethnocentric assumption that because we are born in the supposed “Land of the Free” that we automatically operate under democratic assumptions and ideals but that’s really nottrue. These are things that we have to be taught and we have to learn how to execute. And with textbook reforms and muddled lessons in civics because of necessary budget cuts to education - we might never have the opportunity to learn how to do that.
We also assume that because we live in a “democratic society” that we are the world leaders and the teachers of democracy. But let’s be honest, how many people in this country are well-versed and have experience in starting a democratic society? None. Because WE didn’t start this democratic society. It was started 250ish years ago by people who WEREN’T politicians and who WERE humble. They probably wouldn’t have accepted $100,000 (or the equivalent at that time) while their military and the rest of the country couldn’t pay rent and buy groceries because their pay has been frozen.
They probably also wouldn’t have placed the federal budget into an ideological stalemate. Because you know what the founders of this country were good at? (Hint: it’s not Christianity) - They were really good at compromise. And real compromise…not that one party folds. Remember when we had people like the “Great Compromiser” - Henry Clay who fought hard to ensure that everyone got a little bit of what they wanted? Who is that guy now? Oh right. He doesn’t exist.
So perhaps we need to understand that we fail stuff, too. Let’s lay off the gays for supposedly ruining marriage and the Muslims for practicing religion freely in a country where freedom of/from religion/religious persecution was the founding principle and acknowledge that, oh hey, sometimes the white straight male folks (and some white straight females) ain’t so great, huh? Because the white. straight, male/female folks are giving themselves a pay check while preventing those women from protecting themselves, preventing clean air from even having a chance to exist in our beloved country, and preventing free thought from being thunk, and if that’s democracy…it sucks. A lot.
I’m grateful for the freedoms I have. I’m grateful that I can say these things without fear of persecution. I’m grateful I’m a woman who has had the opportunity to go to school (heavily relying on Federal loans, yes). But just because I’m grateful for my state of being, that doesn’t mean I’m happy and complacent with the state of being for others. Because that’s what being a social worker means: acknowledging the privilege that you possess but not being content with that privilege because SOMEONE ELSE didn’t have that opportunity. AND THAT’S NOT FAIR. THAT’S NOT JUSTICE. THAT’S NOT FREEDOM. It is my responsibility to create fairness, justice, and freedom in every way I can[…]