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Leading Change: Be Willing to Let Go

"Don't be afraid of change.

Beautiful things grow when you are willing to let go."

At the recent #agile2022 conference, I was invited to the TeamCatapult event celebrating past and future alumni and Marsha Acker's new book Building Your Model for Leading Change.

We engaged in an activity on creating and sharing a metaphor for change.

My metaphor was a 🌷 garden.

I shared with my partner how I saw change as a germinating and growing ​seed.

🌱 Where some seeds were ready to germinate and others needed to be dormant a little bit longer.

🌱 Where the germinating seeds needed watering, fertilizer, and pruning.

🌱 I shared how amazingly the plants naturally turned to seek light, and sunk and spread their roots towards the water and each other in order to thrive.

My partner loved 💓​ my metaphor.

He related it to the intentional garden built on an abandoned 🛤️​ railroad track (Highline NY Park) that had grown into a beautiful wildflower 🌸 garden that managed itself - no gardening, no tending, no fertilizer. The plants took care of themselves and delighted the people who enjoyed the park.

What he said hit me like a ton of bricks 🧱.

You see, as I was sharing my metaphor with a big smile on my face, I was also sensing a growing weight on my shoulders. And what he said helped me realize why.

My metaphor was an 'English Garden' (read it with the Queen's English accent).

My role as a coach was that of the 👩🏾‍🌾​ gardener.

Tending to this garden was draining my energy.

I felt the weight of it's dependence on me to keep it prim and proper.

When I reframed my metaphor to a wildflower 🌸 garden,

I felt immediate relief 🫶​.

I realized 🤔 that all I had to do was plant an intentional garden -

one that had a purpose and

be willing to let go for the beautiful things to grow.

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