June 22, 2011

going with the current

I am currently experiencing the amazing country of Italy for the first time.  Starting in Rome, then to Venice, now Florence. Otherwise known, in a non-anglicized fashion, as Roma, Venezia, and Firenze.

History, culture, colours, scents, flavours, language, passion collide in this place.

If I try to process it all, it overwhelms.  I am working to 'be' with the experience. And to sit back and observe. To seize moments when they arise, but not to force them. To not obsess with ticking the boxes from the guidebooks, and instead create my own experiences.

The approach - of not trying to control each moment, of observing and going with the flow and adapting - has relevance for our work as well.  What do we lose, by following our own agenda? When we have an idea of how we want things to go, we have a tendency to force them in that direction.  We get upset when things don't go according to 'the plan'.  That has us miss out on anything else that could be possible.  And sometimes, what else might be possible might be a better option than what we think needs to happen.

There are times when it works to go against the current.  Perhaps there is a time constraint, or what is supposed to happen has been decided by some other party.

But consider:  what if we are just open to whatever comes up?  For me, on this trip to Italy, I have focussed on being curious.  I have had the opportunity to be confused, taken aback, delighted. speechless.  I have a collection of rich experiences that would not have happened if I had followed a fixed plan.