Archive for December, 2008

Reclaim Your Can-Do Power

Intention is an energy deposit. Agreement is an energy investment.

To reclaim and build your can-do power and energy levels apply the *KUA* criteria to intentions and agreements. KUA stands for Keep / Update / Absolve:
Keep it – act on the intention; deliver on the agreement.
Update it – realign/ adjust the intention; renegotiate the agreement.
Absolve it – let go / cancel the intention; forgive the agreement.

You are an energy system. Everything you do involves energy. You generate, absorb and use energy. The energy reservoir you are is made up of multiple energy levels. What diminishes your energy diminishes your capacity to do and enjoy. What enhances your energy builds your capacity to do, be and enjoy.

Intention realized creates energetic return. Agreements kept and implemented create energetic dividends.

Intention not realized wastes the deposit.  Agreement not kept and not fulfilled drains the energetic investment. Wasting energy deposits and draining energy investments diminish your charisma, weakens your immune system and depletes your can-do power. Stress is a symptom of energy depletion caused by intentions and agreements not acted on. You free up and renew your energy by applying the KUA process – Keep, Update, Absolve.

© Aviv Shahar

A Memorable Life

An A to Z reflections and strategies for living a memorable life:

A.  You are here to transform the world. To bring light to darkness.
B.  To be memorable you must live a memorable life.
C.  To create a memorable life, you have to apply wisely your most precious assets – your time, your energy, your focus and your talent.
D.  Make your purpose your growth trust-fund. Make daily and weekly deposits.
E.  Invest your Energy, Time and Focus (ETF) in your purpose trust-fund. You will be amazed at the ROI multiples.
F.  You transform the world by transforming you. By investing and growing your precious assets. By realizing the potential of this moment. By being at full in it.
G.  Create a legacy, invest time, energy and focus in the growth and development of others.
H.  Investing in others will bring the greatest rewards. It will also bring pain and grief. Yes, agony and ecstasy live side by side.
I.  Why would you put your energy, time and focus (ETF) into anything unless you intend for it to be transformed for the better – unless you wish it to be the best it can be?
J.  An action a day keeps debris away. Frustration is a symptom of unrealized energy or incomplete action. One action every day. A step forward every day. Such is the pace of great success.
K.  You grow at the edge of your envelope. At the point of meeting the unknown. Where you expand beyond to meet your unknown.
L.  If you are to transform, you cannot stop at the half point, at “trans”. You have to complete the journey to find the “form”. To trans-form.
M.  You cannot stop time. Time moves on its own accord. You can be present in it or not.
N.  Time in absentia is not yours. Your time is time you salvage from absentia by bringing focus and energy into it. By creating light in darkness.
O.  To be memorable you must first be present. The greatest gift you give another is “presencing” your time in theirs. It’s being present.
P.  Energy comes and goes; wanes and resurges. Your point of greatest impact is to master your energy triggers and cycles and apply this self-insight in your work to realize your goals and purpose.
Q.  Peak performance, peak focus and peak presence happens when you bring your multiple energies to a point of efficacy – when your action becomes the synchro-point of your physical, mental, emotional, relational and spiritual capacities and energies.
R.  When you feel guided, helped and supported, your call is answered. An extra something else is being added to you. Unseen. Spiritual.
S.  Curiosity, the love of adventure and learning keeps you fresh in the valleys, and in between the peak points.
T.  Wake up to discover the new music that wants to be played today. Find the problem you carry the solution for. Discover the mystery you are here to resolve.
U.  Make your conversations memorable. Elevate. Expand. Transform. Make new things possible.
V.  You are here once. You, in this form, at this time is a once in a galaxy collective experience event. Make it worthwhile for the galaxy. Make it worthwhile for you.
W.  Listen. Listen inside. Listen outside. Make connections. You are here to make meaning. To magnify meaning. To magnify meaningful connections.
X.  Live to love. Love to evolve. Evolve to be all that you can be.
Y.  You are not alone. Your Maker left you free to be what you choose to be.
Z.  It / He / She are nearby to watch and see.

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© Aviv Shahar

Found In The Crowd

Here is my reply to David Brooks “Lost In The Crowd” commentary on Gladwell’s “Outliers.”

Your results and success is an output of unique multiplication combination of the following elements:

Elements largely “not in your control”:
1. Your gene pool
2. Your family and upbringing
3. Your social environment
4. Important figures / influencers in early life (teacher, neighbors, relatives)
5. Pivotal events that left indelible impressions
6. Political and economical circumstances
7. Situational serendipity

Elements largely “in your control”:
8. How you use your time
9. How you direct your energy and apply your talent
10. What peak experiences you create to guide your efforts
11. The character you fashion through your choices and work
12. Your intentions, focus and concentration
13. Your self-insight
14. Key relationships you cultivate

Each one of us is a unique logarithmic configuration of the elements above (plus other elements we left out) with varying degrees of influence of controlled and less controlled elements. Personal growth and development experts focus on the elements you can control. Academia and policy experts seek solutions in what shapes your opportunity which you have no control over. We need both to fashion integral optimal approach.

© Aviv Shahar

Woodinville In White

The Lady Snow is visiting our town…

© Aviv Shahar

The Co-Creational Act – Releasing Hidden Light

A Solstice Post – an excerpt from the writing: God, The Universe Embryo.

When I look up at the night sky and see the bright stars engulfed by darkness it brings to mind the majestic human story down here on Earth.  This is a powerful contemplation that takes me from the here-and-now inside light itself… to then travel all the way back into the core of our humanness and the evolution that presses its way upon us now.

There is light and there is ‘hidden light’, which our scientists call dark matter or dark energy. Recent observations conclude that 95 to 96 percent of the universe – all the space in between the stars – is dark energy. Like the stars, so too the human is engulfed by darkness, the void that contains all that has not been lit yet. Our work is to claim the void, to fill it with presence and release its hidden purpose and light. This is how we participate in the co-creative act, inside ourselves and with all that surrounds us.

When you meet a stranger, the space between you is a void. Then you begin a conversation. You exchange references and views. You find areas of shared interest and commonality. You create streaks of light in the void between you. Then a new thought appears; an innovative idea shows up, and you get energized. Your conversation transports both of you to a different place and time.  You find yourselves on the edge of discovery, creating a new world of possibilities. Inside that space, inside such a conversation, hidden light gets released from its concealment as you become participant in the co-creational act.

(God, The Universe Embryo – Originally written on October 1998)

© Aviv Shahar

The Vitality Secret

“I Am Not Aware I Am 100 Years Old” says composer Elliot Carter in his conversation with Charlie Rose on his birthday.  Carter’s 100th birthday was celebrated with the NY Symphony playing his new work, Interventions for Piano and Orchestra.

What is the secret of extraordinary vitality and creativity?  What keeps him going at 100 years old?

Carter gets up every morning ready for the adventure of discovery. He gets up to discover the music inside him. He never feels like he has already reached the top of the mountain. He is still climbing. He is focused on his work and he enjoys it.

We can all learn from Elliot Carter the secrets of vitality and creativity. Try this for 10 days:
1. Get up ready for the adventure of discovery.
2. Create and develop the ideas and music you hear inside.
3. Focus on your work and enjoy it.

© Aviv Shahar

What Chris Can Teach Us About The Anatomy Of Compassion

Chris was a good engineer. He was one of a dozen engineers on his team to answer service calls. Methodical and thorough, Chris was well respected by his team members. Still, he was not the star type. Quiet, a little shy, never seeking center stage, Chris’s focus was on the task at hand. One day his team took ownership of a new service contract. JD was the chief contact on the client end. Within a couple of weeks it became clear that JD was a demanding and extremely high maintenance client.  Every Tuesday or Wednesday with no exception, the phone would ring and JD would be on the line, sometimes even twice a week. If that was not enough, JD did not make his calls easy on the team.  He was impatient, angry and thankless.  The team felt that his calls were abusive and obnoxious. JD was “burning” one engineer after another. Within a few weeks, there was absolutely no one prepared to take his calls. People learned to recognize his voice and when they heard it, he was immediately transferred to Chris. Chris was the only person on the team who was ready and willing to service JD’s calls. He would patiently reply, talk JD through the technical issues and resolve every problem presented. Chris never seemed to get offended or upset with JD’s demeanor. He serenely and compassionately solved the problem and moved on. It quickly became a legend that Chris was somehow able to handle the most difficult client the company had, and that slowly, gradually, JD began to change. Not that he was pleasant but he seemed to respect and like Chris, even when he remained difficult for anyone else to handle. One day someone asked: how can you be so understanding and patient with such an abusive client? Chris replied: Every time I take the call I remind myself that I have to deal with this man for twenty or thirty minutes, but he has to deal with himself all day long, seven days a week. This thought immediately fills me with compassion.

This week, when someone annoys you and you are about to lose your temper, think about Chris. Realize that most often frustration and anger is an expression of people’s own pain and struggle, which they are unable to contain or rebalance. Remember, they are not against you; they simply struggle to live with themselves. Have compassion for them. Remember they have to live with themselves all the time. If they behave this way with you, it must be very difficult for them to live with themselves. Be thankful you live with you. Understand that at times you have to deal with people in great pain, and you cannot always help, but you can have compassion for them. Live and let live.

© Aviv Shahar

From Breakdown To Breakthrough

Breakdowns herald breakthroughs. Breakdowns lead to breakthroughs.
What was is no more. Companies that were strong and stable are faltering and failing. Political, economic and social structures are collapsing. Every day brings new headlines. You wake up to find out that the world has changed.  In the darkness you begin to see the stars.

These are signs of transition; of big systemic transformation, an epoch change. Fear abounds. What was true yesterday is no more. Rapid changes bring confusion and uncertainty. Inside the chaos are the seeds of new opportunities. Wherever a door is shut, a new window opens up. Growth, hope and possibilities are found amid destruction. Breakdowns lead to breakthroughs. Stars shine in the dark.

  1. Get centered. Take a deep breath. Focus.
  2. Do not fight change. Relax into it. Ease into a new discovery. Move from looking backward to looking forward.
  3. Be confident. Trust yourself. You have overcome greater difficulties.
  4. This too shall pass. Know that all is well. Yes, all is well.
  5. Take time for yourself. To think. To reflect. To re-center. To plan. Re-discover you. Reconnect to purpose.
  6. Attend to your network. Give and find support. Go out of your way to help.
  7. Lead. Open new doors for yourself and for others. Dare to step up.
  8. Be gracious. Create a space. Make allowance. We all need our time. Some a little slower. Some a little faster.
  9. Count your blessings. Health. Companionship. Friendship. Beauty. Humor. Meaningful connections and conversations.
  10. Better days are coming. Greater opportunities for you are ahead.  To contribute. To be present. To find what you are here for. To Serve. To Lead.

© Aviv Shahar

Kaleidoscoping & Doing Your Shadow Work

Kaleidoscoping is a pattern recognition exercise. You seek to decipher the meta-process at play. You endeavor to discover the archetypal nature of what’s moving through the systems you are observing.

Here is a kaleidoscoping exercise (written originally during October 2008). The process zooms into one field and looks to identify a pattern and recognize its potential in other fields.

What is the significance of the great deleveraging of Wall Street?

The last two decades brought a rapid growth of financial derivatives.  Derivatives are side bets. You buy a bet on what a stock will do – will it go up or will it go down. A second degree bet is a bet about the bet. It is no different from gambling, only instead of Las Vegas it was centered on Wall Street. The pyramid of bets evolved into a 60 Trillion dollar mountain of bets. The pile of bets that people ‘bought’ was mostly purchased as a debt. This means that buyers paid a dollar to take a 20 or 50 or 100 dollar loan with which to bet on a bet that someone else made.  The game was given a free unregulated ride. It propagated a shadow banking system. There was no open transparent exchange. The bets were made between two parties, over the counter. It was shadow banking because the transactions were not made in the light of an open exchange – they were made in the shadow.

The great deleveraging is a process of unwinding the bets. The collapse of Leman Brothers triggered an irreversible process. It was a disaster waiting to happen as the mountain became overwhelming.  What started on September 15, 2008 was the clearing of this great shadow. A dramatic free fall dives in the stock market followed. The pattern suggested in this description is the shadow work needed to heal the system – the shadow in this case being derivative bets.

Metaphoric Kaleidoscope thinking then asks: What is the shadow work we need to do at a personal and organizational level?

Shadow work is the process of removing all that is not fundamental and core to the system. Clearing what has no intrinsic value. It is a process of coming back to basics. If this represents a bigger pattern at play, then people and organizations ready to adapt faster to this process will be in a stronger position.

You dare to ask “why?”; “Why is this needed?”; “What value does it add?” You help the system clear what is not essential. You do the “shadow work” to undo “weak bets”. You focus on basics. You support what is core. You communicate proactively. You lead.

© Aviv Shahar

How Do You Use Belief?

Here are some of the ways belief continues to evolve through the ages:

Ancient world: “I believe what I do not understand. I believe what frightens me.”
Post ancient world: “I believe my belief will save me from what frightens me.”
Modern world: “I believe only in what I see and touch.”
Post modern world: “I believe in nothing.”
New Age: “I believe in what I manifest. My beliefs create my future”

What’s post New Age? What’s beyond these ways of using belief?

I believe humanity is at a new threshold of convergence, beyond the integration of East and West. I believe pragmatism and idealism are not mutually exclusive – they are integral principles of enlightened behavior and response.

What do you believe in?

I believe in the creative process of life.
I believe in the developmental opportunities life affords us.
I believe life is purposeful.
I believe we can serve a greater good.
I believe the future is redemptive, and that tomorrow always brings a fresh start.
I believe in being thorough in your work and throughout in your development.
I believe in decency and fairness.
I believe that together we can do greater things than we can imagine.
I believe in the human spirit and its regenerative power.
I believe tomorrow will bring new learning and insight.
I believe you are never alone.
I believe that being present here and now is what matters.
And I believe in you.
That you can believe in you.

© Aviv Shahar

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