Thursday, April 13, 2006

Get Radical - Change the World

Although I can't physically see it, the last few days have been very interesting inside my head.

It all started on Saturday when I attended a sneak preview of the upcoming movie The Celestine Prophesy. One of the main messages in that movie (and in the book, if you read it back in the mid-90s) is: There are no coincidences. So keep that in mind.

If you read my post a couple of days ago, you know I'm supporting my friend Brad as he takes on the task of running for mayor. (If you didn't read it, scroll down for some background info.)

Since I wrote that post (I also wrote a letter to the editor of our local paper with some of the same ideas but not quite that passionate), weird things have been happening.

I met Jill Konrath yesterday afternoon - author of the book Selling to Big Companies (see previous post about that, too). Jill graciously spent about 10 minutes telling me a little bit about her book and her process and 80 minutes listening to me rail on about the dreams and ideas I have and the roadblocks I've put in my own way to prevent me from having to get involved in doing something about them ... in effect, she showed me, simply by being a mirror for me, how I'm not walking my talk in my own business.

She challenged me to get over the block I seem to have right now with stepping outside my own comfort zone and selling my own services through my business. She introduced me to some fabulous women at the Awesome Women event, at which the theme for the evening was "What do you know to be true for yourself right now? What are you not saying 'YES' to?"

During my 3-hour drive back to Fargo last night, Chris, a friend and business affiliate, called me and we talked about how I'm not stepping out there to let people know about my business and my speaking and my coaching. He provided me an audio mirror as I heard myself repeat pretty much the same things I was saying to Jill earlier.

As I was talking to Chris, it occurred to me that I had purchased a new book when I was in Minneapolis by Robert K. Cooper. I couldn't remember the title, but it was nagging at me, so I reached behind me to the back seat and pulled out the Barnes & Noble bag, pulled it out and turned on the maplight - the title was: Get Out Of Your Own Way. (Click on the link on the right side of this blog for more information)

I got home about 1:00 a.m. and as I dropped my bags, a book I had been reading the day before fell on the floor - Steve Farber's The Radical Edge: Stoke Your Business, Amp Your Life, and Change the World. (Click on the link for this one, too.) I picked it up and literally couldn't put it down until I finished it. I won't give away the ending, but it was a great thought to sleep on.

I met a friend for coffee today and since I was early, I pulled out Cooper's book and was blown away ... and validated. I got to page 43 before Kate got there, and she consequently was the recipient of my enthusiasm not only for Farber's book from the night before, but also Cooper's inspiration (and statistics!) about the way our brains work to keep us stuck - or to get us unstuck. We created all kinds of answers to all the problems of the world and it was a fabulous conversation.

From there I was driving back home when I heard on Minnesota Public Radio about a woman named Rachel Boynton who produced a documentary called "Our Brand is Crisis." I only heard the last part, but I heard Rachel say that although she wasn't involved in politics before this documentary, she realized that all politics involves two sides: those who support change and those who fear change and support the status quo. When it's broken down to those basics, it's really pretty clear.

When I heard that on the radio, I immediately called Brad and told him I wanted to know what more I could do to support him in being the side that supports change. We talked for 20 minutes or so (really I did most of the talking, based on my experiences over the past 24 hours) and he told me I was preaching to the choir. So we want to figure out how to create a group like the one Farber talks about at the end of the book (you'll have to read it to know what I'm talking about) and get the citizens of Fargo to get out of our own way.

Based on that conversation, I'm convinced that I can get out of my own way, and have that conversation with other prominent people in Fargo, which will help me grow my business and get over my own blocks to selling myself, which I'm learning how to do by reading Jill's book.

So, for me right now, it's about getting ideas from books and using that new information to change the world. And the next step is to get my own book published. I'll be telling you more about that process very soon.

How might we be able to take some of these ideas and create a virtual community? What have you read or noticed that has inspired you to change the world? How can we support each other in going beyond ideas to action??


At 9:32 PM, Blogger lja1228 said...

Trackback for you Jodee!

At 6:24 PM, Anonymous Michael Wagner said...

Patti Digh suggested I read your posting. Glad I did. I really appreciate your honesty - for selfish reasons I might add. Your story overlaps with my own. And because you dropped the mask, I could learn. Thank you for extending the conversation.

Keep creating, Mike

At 2:49 PM, Blogger Maria Palma said...

I've been having the same thoughts as you... I believe that asking the question is the only thing we need to do. The Universe will handle the rest. In fact, it's already in the making! Perhaps a blog network of people like you and me can definitely help spread the word....

At 3:54 AM, Anonymous Alexander Kjerulf said...

I would like to offer some thoughts that inspire my approach to changing the world.

Change that is deeply effective and positive presents a paradoxical challenge. On the one hand, there needs to be an appreciation and acceptance of how things are in the here and now. On the other hand, there needs to be an active intention to make things better. Nothing needs to change, and everything can improve. This is the way to avoid the two extremist traps of activist’s frustration or pessimistic complacency.
- Patch Adams

The radical, committed to human liberation, does not become the prisoner of a “circle of certainty” within which reality is also imprisoned. On the contrary, the more radical the person is, the more fully he or she enters into reality so that, knowing it better, he or she can better transform it. This individual is not afraid to confront, to listen, to see the world unveiled. This person is not afraid to meet the people or enter into dialogue with them. This person does not consider himself or herself the proprietor of history of all people, or the liberator of the oppressed; but he or she does commit … to fight at their side.
- Paolo Freire in Pedagogy of the oppressed

Change is a paradox, whether it's change inside ourselves or out there in the world.

The first paradox is of course, that these two types of change are intimately intertwined, there is no change out there without change in here.

Which is why the roadblocks we put in our own way often matter more than the ones outside of ourselves.

At 9:09 AM, Blogger Jodee said...

I am so happy to see such thoughtful posts here. I think Maria is on to something. Wouldn't it be great to start another blog for people who are ready to talk more about Universal laws and taking on the entire spectrum of possibilities?

I just picked up a new book (well, new for me) called "The Science of Success" and it talks about how we can use the universal laws to make things happen in our lives. I'd love to have others to bounce those ideas around with ... anyone in?

(By the way ... I do have another blog called Riskful Thinking, but don't ever post there ... should we resurrect that one for these conversations?)



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