February Reflections

February brings mid-winter in the northern climes, a time when many wonder if Spring will ever come! If the later sunsets don’t cheer you, there’s St. Valentine’s Day and in the US, a long President’s Day weekend. So,why do we still have a vague seasonal malaise? Perhaps because the feast of Candlemas, the original Ground Hog’s Day, marks an awkward phase in the year’s evolution and our own. Last month we invoked a vision for 2014. But as one New Age program put it: Once you definitively choose something new, up comes the same old argument: it can’t be done.

winter-trailTruth be told, resistance is a natural phase of growth. At this point in the annual cycle, we sense the first tender shoots of the year’s potential. That alone can make us profoundly uneasy. “What! I’m supposed to grow-AGAIN? Enough already.” Besides, since we do not yet know exactly what lies ahead, the Unknown tends to trigger fear, alongside resistance.

So in February and the first weeks of March, be tender with yourself, open to receive the soul’s quiet promptings, and grow inspiration by asking a few questions: “If I had a vision for 2104, what might it be?” To start a business? Marry my sweetheart? Stand my ground, gently but firmly, with a parent, spouse, or colleague? Answer a life-long calling to be an artist, writer, or healer? We can also ask: Which resources do I need to proceed? What new skills am I guided to develop now? Who’ll be my allies on the year’s journey? The challenge we now face is to accept our natural resistance, let go of old patterns, begin to envision the future, and move forward.

From now until Spring Equinox, there will be many, spacious weeks to engage the Unknown and nurture our vision. Notice the expanding daylight, as it slowly coaxes the snow-covered Earth-and rouses its Beings-to prepare for the Spring Renewal coming in March!

Trust Across America

Thank you Trust Across America for naming me a “Top 100 Thought Leader in Trustworthy Business” four years running. What an honor to appear with personal heroes like Bill George, the retired Medtronic CEO, now a Harvard Business School professor, futurist Hazel Henderson of Ethical Markets Media, Frances Hesselbein, retired CEO of the Girl Scouts, Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz and Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh.

Here’s the full list.

CONSCIOUS CAPITALISM AND CONSCIOUS MONEY

Purpose, Values, and the Stakeholder Model are the essence of Conscious Capitalism. But there’s at least one more crucial element: a positive, life-affirming corporate culture-grounded in the values a company stands for. Today there’s growing agreement that great business cultures are the secret sauce of success. People who work in a conscious culture feel more free “to speak frankly,” says Adam Bryant, a New York Times business columnist. Such a culture is built upon the value of trust. In times of change and uncertainty, says Bryant, people “need that extra level of trust.” It is essential that they believe what their leaders “are doing, saying and planning.”

John Duffy, CEO of 3Cinteractive, a mobile platform firm, recently put this question on an employee survey: “Do you trust John Duffy?” Bryant explains that Duffy was asking if people trust him, not so much as a CEO (although that is certainly important), but as a human being. Clearly, a lot more CEOs should be asking themselves-and their people-the same question.
Check out the full story: “How the right corporate culture can guarantee success

HAPPENINGS

Will I meet you Friday February 28th when I speak at the University of Colorado, Boulder’s annual gathering on “Conscious Capitalism”? There’s no charge to attend the morning event, but you must register in advance. My old friend Jim Autry starts the day off with his seminal work on human values. Later there’s a panel of leaders representing Boulder’s thriving outdoor industry. I speak at 12 noon. See you there!

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