We are mid-way through 2022! (Isn't that freaky enough?)
I am checking in on my intentions for the year.
For the first 50 years of my life, I relied on my qualities of being supportive, diplomatic, and humble.
I value them.
I believed they were my unique value proposition.
I appreciated the feedback I got from exercising them.
I felt not holding them tightly would make me aggressive, insensitive, and arrogant - qualities I clearly want to stay far away from. But I started recognizing something freaky - holding them too tightly would sometimes show up as smothering, sentimental and weak.
My polarities coach, Nadezhda Belousova showed me that what I struggling with was managing paradoxes (two seemingly contradictory stances.)
I was leaning too far onto one polarity to avoid the negative sides of the other polarity and in the process, experienced the negative sides of the first one and ignored the positive sides of the other!
What came from the exercise was my intention for 2022.
How can I be ...
Supportive and Challenging?
Diplomatic and Candid?
Humble and Confident?
How can I fly with both wings?
So, six months later, how am I doing?
Here is some recent feedback I got from the recent Craft Conference where I presented with April Jefferson “Soul Craftswoman”
"As a conference MC, I am used to the speakers coming up on stage after I introduce them. You can imagine my surprise when Anjali and April didn't! They simply started their presentation from the floor, basically IN the audience.
It got weirder from there.
When the workshop started, I was mind-boggled when Anjali and April jumped into a card game just minutes after getting started. All the other presenters took the time to begin by listing their achievements and accomplishments first. Not these two. I was wondering: "Did they fly these ladies here just to play games?"
After the first card game was finished, Anjali and April changed the rules and they had a second round. Then, the same again - a quick rule change and then right back to playing. I was shocked! Where was the workshop?! Oddly, the audience didn't seem to care. In fact, there were smiling and laughing pretty much the whole time!
Then, after the third game, something happened. Anjali and April seemed to flip a switch. They started to ask questions about teamwork. They got every group to join the discussion. Then, they explained what was happening during the games from an agile perspective.
That's when the light came on and the puzzle pieces clicked into place - the start from the floor, the casual introduction, the games - all had a purpose! Get the audience to let down their guard, and have fun, and they would be primed to receive the message.
More people stayed to meet Anjali and April after their presentation than any of the other speakers I had on my stage for the two-day conference."
I think I am doing ok!