For the last two year or more I've been taking photographs on my daily walks: photographs of flowers, birds, trees, landscapes, sunrises, sunsets, you name it. Whatever catches my eye. What began as something to focus on during those early days of lockdown has evolved into a daily practice of noticing. This, in turn, has helped develop a much richer internal dialogue; I converse with myself about what is evoked in me through what I notice. Through this practice I'm coming to a greater appreciation that everything is transient, including or perhaps especially, my inner world of thoughts, feelings and emotions. Noticing this is encouraging me to stay open to different possibilities and outcomes.
In the LDI programme, a deeply creative personal leadership programme developed by Dr.John Scherer, we encourage leaders to 'notice what you notice' as well as, at times, to ask: 'what might I be missing?' Paradoxically, noticing what we're not noticing can be hugely insightful too. But more of that later.
Earlier this week, on one my daily walks, my eyes were drawn to the flowers captured in this collage.. As I reflected on the image, I noticed I was attracted to their 'lightness'; and the phrase 'lightness of being' surfaced with a strong resonance within me. I realised that the idea of 'lightness' stood in sharp contrast to the seriousness and heaviness of what was happening both in me and around me. The image felt like an invitation to 'lighten up', to engage and respond to the events and situations that confront me in a lighter way despite the gravity of the moment. It struck me that this lightness is precisely what is being called for in my leadership right now.
Do you have a practice of noticing? Do you notice what you notice? If so, how do you attend to what you notice?