+ They were risks before they became rules.
I saw the film "Air" tonight.
It tells a true story that's complex on a human level. And yes, a deal that changed athlete rights, advertising, and sportswear globally.
Through having an undeniable feeling.
And the listening to that feeling resulting in tremendous risk taking.
Not just for one individual, though yes, one person started it off. That person's action had a domino effect of people around them listening and risk taking too.
There's a story in sacred text about the force of Life—of all that is beautiful and powerful, not being in the storm or the wind—but expressed in a still, peaceful, quiet, small voice.
When we push aside the noise, the clammer, the push-pull of pressures—what is there to hear? To listen to. What is the truly responsive, interesting action that can only come through that still, peaceful, quiet, small voice of Wisdom and Life force?
In the January 2019 RobCast, Live at Largo, with Rob Bell and Elizabeth Gilbert—Liz retells a story of female execs being interviewed about how they achieved so much success. In every single story, the woman would say—"can you close the door?" - "Can you turn off the recording?" - "I had a dream." - "I was "told" to move to Cleveland." - "I had an inkling."
Everyday, I work with individuals and organizations in that listening. I see the results everyday. I see the impact first hand.
Entrepreneurs listening to a dream and seeing it come to life. Like Biomei—offering change for the agricultural system at scale. Like Joybound Publications, the world's first comprehensive, peer-reviewed curriculum for speech-language pathologists.
Organizations starting a strategic listening process with a co-design team—discovering who they have been and exploring what the next stage in their evolution is truly. Taking those risks of listening. Like a media company. Like a 100 year old social justice nonprofit. Like a hospitality company.
Individuals sensing that they need to retire but not knowing how to relate to themselves and their world in a new way outside of work. Individuals sensing that there's a reason why they feel stuck and wanting to listen to themselves because the "to do lists" and the "shoulds" just aren't working. There's something more for them to listen to or discover. Seeing them quit their jobs. Having conversations they've never had with a partner in 50 years. Relating to their body in a completely new way.
Before risk, there must be something worth risking for.
That comes through listening. Being ok with the unknown. Being curious.
I invite you to take the opportunity to find your own story.