Calamity strikes and the best laid plans fall and fray. If we believe that we can strategically plan our way to success, we need not be hyper ware of the moment by moment circumstance changes. The world is shifting on sand and as each grain moves the landscape changes. We don’t usually notice until the castle crumbles. Stand in the sand along the shore and let the wave wash over your fed. As the wave goes out you can feel unsteady as your once solid ground is becoming eroded. Over and over the waves crash and move our creations and our position until any semblance of certainty is gone. Planning for a solid future or a strategy to remain standing when the foundation is changing isn’t futile but we need to be aware that the further away from the genesis of the plan, the more likely it isn’t working. Relying on a strategy for the long haul worked in the early 20th C and before but as the decades tripped away and a new century arrived our world began to change more quickly. Two hours is now a long timeline. Our horizons and outlooks are different daily and need a nimbleness that isn’t easy. The days of resting on our laurels and staying dizzying and the rate of significant change is exponential.
This means that we plan and then adapt, evolve and then revolve, execute and then evaluate. For folks with a tendency to status quo and who have difficulty in transition these times are tough. Get over it, the clock isn’t turning back anytime soon and when it does the new destination won’t look anything like home. In the whirlwind lies opportunity and requires courage, compassion, cleverness and care.
It means that stepping into the unknown isn’t a once in a lifetime adventure but a daily occurrence. It means learning models and collecting credentials that were important yesterday may not have the cache or value they had 5 years ago. It means learning continues with the recognition of each shift and requires courage to trust the next iteration and a confidence that today’s adaptation could be wrong but we have tomorrow.
We are all in the same boat. The stuff you are going through, the confusion you feel, the craziness that tests you is like the stuff, confusion and craziness of your neighbour and colleague. We all face exponential interruptions and disruptions and none of us over 35 have the required natural comfort to swim well in that pool. Knowing that the person beside you is struggling like you should provide you with motivation to keep moving and empathy to encourage and on rare occasions commiserate.
As I age, I struggle more with change but if I hope to have influence I need to act generatively, collaboratively and quickly. I need the courage to trust the next off the wall session and embrace the daily challenges. In the moments of tension and urgency I trust that today will bring an answer and as I come to understand the process and the inspiration better something remarkable will arise , that I can celebrate for a couple of days.