Self Improvement

Tomorrow’s Breakfast

I heard Suzanne West from Imagena Energy speak yesterday at an event called #BecauseCalgary. She was part of a panel on business innovation and the changing landscape ahead of us. They all had a lesson to share and as always Suzanne was passionate and inspirational. She said that ” we shouldn’t back down. In fact we should joyfully eat problems for breakfast because that is how we move the needle.” I have written about tackling something big first thing in the day and agree that we need to embrace the opportunity that challenges bring. There is something exciting and frightening (in a good way) about facing a new problem with my Cheerios.

I have been reading a lot of spiritual practice writing and there is some suggestion that if we spend ten minutes at the end of the day reflecting on the day that was and imagining the day to come that in sleep, a new possibility arises. When you awake, before you dive into the day, take another ten minutes and reflect on how the shape of the problem has changed and record your ideas for change and the newly imagined path to a solution.

Keep the solution in view all day, either as a post-it or a screen grab. When you have another ten minutes begin a reflect and refine process. Keeping the solution on the proximate periphery allows you to use it as part of your day and use your day to improve the solution.

Try the ten minute routine tonight and tomorrow morning and at least once throughout tomorrow and then rinse and repeat.

Make Tomorrow Remarkable, by eating a problem for breakfast,



Move the Bar (part 1)

“If we continue to manage social issues, social issues manage to continue.” ~ Bob McInnis

Managing a problem isn’t solving a problem. Helping people live better in their poverty isn’t lifting them out of poverty. Feeding children once a week isn’t the same as ensuring that their parents can feed them. Recycling plastic packaging doesn’t compare with eliminating it.

If we only look for bandaids, the fester wound will continue to seep and become infected. How can we boost the immune system so the cut will heal and never need another bandage? I know one of you is looking for the exception right now and asking “What about … there will always be … we can’t …” I may even agree with you that there are exceptions but we can’t/shouldn’t create action that is structured around the exception. Let’s move forward, learn, adapt and move again.

The make it your problem (MiYP) philosophy and practice expects each of us to do something. The first shift is in our own heads – we are all more capable, resourceful, resilient, passionate and willing than authorities give us credit for. I am, you are, the guy on the bus, the single mom, the senior, …, all of us are more capable. WE all bring assets to the table, to our lives, to our families, to our community. In order to restore we need to restory. Not fabricated, pie in the sky, rainbows and unicorns restorying but rather reframing, reflecting and restarting ┬ánew stories. Acknowledge where we are, how we got here, how we are culpable and what we could do differently, today. Get turned in a positive direction. If heading north isn’t bringing results, turn northeast or northwest. It might not take a complete change (maybe it will) but you can soon evaluate the course correction and adapt again.

Understand that you are capable of remarkable things, you have remarkable gifts, and then use your gifts to strengthen others.

Take 10 minutes today, (right now)(only ten minutes) and write 2 gifts that you bring and one action that you can take using either gift to change something that is bothering you. Make it your problem and do it. It can be as simple as saying something, moving something, giving something. You will get better at this. Watch what happens and learn. Take the weekend off (just this weekend) and repeat the 10 minute exercise and action on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday next week. On Thursday ask “Am I slapping on bandaids or healing the wound?” Adjust, try something else, talk with a friend.

Get your head aligned with your remarkable gifts, take action, observe, reflect, adapt.

I would love to hear your stories of remarkable changes and remarkable adaptation.