How can we adapt to the unexpected? How do we accept what we can’t control?
How do we change our thoughts instead of thinking more? How do we go about self-innovating?
These questions are strange to say the least, when in our daily lives we strive more to “elaborate improbable possibilities than to prepare ourselves for probable impossibilities”.
Personally, I was hyper-trained to “know”, to “master”, to “control”.
Yet, over the course of my career as a manager and then as an entrepreneur, when faced with uncertainty the hardest thing I’ve had to learn has been to let go of the illusion of control and unplug the “knowing mode”, but without “throwing the baby out with the bathwater”. I sought to give myself some space, to colour outside the lines, to think outside the box and create differently by cultivating this art of “letting things be” which is so difficult and yet so simple.
There is a goldmine of lessons in training ourselves “not to know” and it is a mindset that can be developed. From Jon Kabat-Zinn, an American doctor of molecular biology whom I was fortunate enough to train under in order to later become a teacher of the mindfulness-based stress management protocol, I learnt two fundamental lessons: “change is the only constant” and “everything is already here”. It’s the way we relate to all of it that makes the real difference.
Learning to live with uncertainty, to ride its wave, to be fuelled by it and find life in it, is a constant balancing act… Opening ourselves up to new possibilities – by letting all our protective barriers fall away, by setting aside all our beliefs, by agreeing to look at what we don’t want to see – is a source of both satisfaction and dissatisfaction. It’s a natural movement, rich in experimentations and discoveries and the CM agency can guide you through it.
Centrale Nantes, a top-ranking engineering school, is launching its first summer university next July with CWeekUp, on the theme of “Creating differently”, and will be focusing special attention on this mindset of improvising in the face of the unexpected; a mindset we can all cultivate, particularly if we use the Mindfulness approach. The latter enables numerous ideas to emerge and reduces cognitive rigidity, thus making it easier to find solutions to problems. I’m very pleased to be contributing to this impulse by taking part in this event during a workshop.
Drawing on my experience, my training, my convictions, my reading and my encounters, I created the CM Change & motion agency to assist managers, executives and entrepreneurs who are looking to alter their managerial approach to change and who are daring to innovate in this area!
I invite you to come and meet me at one of my upcoming morning sessions