I invite everyone to choose forgiveness rather than division, teamwork over personal ambition. – Jean-Francois Cope
One of my passions is fly-fishing, which I enjoy not so much for the fish, as for the experience. Truth be told, I rarely catch anything worth keeping. I enjoy fly-fishing because, most of the time, you see the fish and then use a combination of skill, equipment and luck to try to catch it. I say you see the fish, but that is only if you are wearing polarized glasses. With the political unrest we are facing and with what we have seen in the past few months, maybe it is time that we all put on our own polarized glasses and look at the real country, not the superficial one that seems to be the focal point of the nation’s pundits of negativism.
Do not get me wrong, some of the perceived negativism is indeed our reality. But, what I have a problem with is the constant barrage of people that are human thermometers; they just check the temperature and do nothing about it. What we really need are human thermostats, people that not only know the temperature but also take action to bring change.
With the clarity that is only gained with polarized shades, we see a country desperate for change. Before I hurt anyone’s feelings, please know that I admire commitment to one’s beliefs. But if our country is going to reach the point that we truly are reaching our full potential, we must begin to constructively talk about the path forward, not just our own opinions. Is this going to be easy or pretty? No. But will it be worth it? Absolutely.
One of my other passions is rugby, which I had the privilege of playing for many years. One of the great traditions of rugby is that following the match the home team hosts the visitors for food and beer following the match. Can you imagine competing with every fiber in your being against another team and then spending the evening socializing with them? Well that is what happens on any given weekend in rugby clubhouses all across the globe.
How hard would it have been for you to be on the 2007 Portugal World Cup team to spend time socializing with the New Zealand team that just beat you on the pitch (field) by a score of 108 to 7? Not very difficult if you embrace respect and admiration for those who choose to participate in the battle. We must embrace this same spirit if we are to regain prosperity and thrive in the future.
How much better would our country be if we decided to no longer just complain about politics? How much more vibrant would our culture be if we learned to listen to understand instead of react? How much stronger would our country be if all political discussions did not begin with references to political party, social media or re-election?After all, that is where we should be: working together. #AlwaysForward Click To Tweet
I am offering to buy the beer and cook the brats, how about we all agree to come together to passionately and openly discuss our ideas to go forward? After all, that is where we should be: working together.
Question: How can you as a leader begin to have critically important and open-minded conversations?