A Picture of the Big Picture

In this blog I want to share a graphic that I put together a couple of months ago. My learning with Theory U inspired the graphic and I have been using it with my coaching clients as they embrace collaborative ways of operating. My 12-year-old daughter used her digital skills to bring my sketch to life.

At the core of the picture are two triangles, triangles being the mathematical symbol for change. As individuals we are part of society hence being inside the bigger triangle of society. One of Mahatma Ghandi’s famous quote says we must “be the change you want to see in the world.” Adam Kahane similarly says “we are the systems we want to change.”

As we navigate the ocean of life we can get weighed down by what Buddhists term the Three Poisons of Greed, Anger and Ignorance. In my graphic, I depict anger as Fear as I believe that underneath anger you will often find fear as a root cause. These toxins bring sickness and unhappiness and cause us to make unskillful decisions that affect our future. We may not be conscious of these toxins at play, yet if we honestly reflect on our own behaviours, we may see their fingerprints.

These toxins can be transformed for good however and the balloons lifting us above the surface of the ocean represent this in my picture.

blog-mocFear can be transformed by Courage.

Ignorance can be transformed by Inquiry.

Greed can be transformed by Compassion and love.

What has this got to do with collaboration I hear you ask? If we are aware of the poisons that can anchor our behaviours, we can bring about a transformation through our practice of collaboration. As we collaborate, we bring Courage, Compassion and the ever-important appreciative Inquiry to bear on our relationships and conversations.

Collaboration is a wonderful activity that enables us to realize our interdependence and our connectedness. Being aware of the three poisons and then choosing to give our energy to courage, inquiry and compassion will in the end lift us to a society that stays afloat for everyone.

Comments are closed.