Bercy Restaurant. Ardmore, PA. Cozied up at the bar, drinks in hand, shrimp cocktail on order. The ups and downs of life recalled, digging into the depths of our memories for sparks of our younger selves. Dreams and hopes for the next chapter explored with the half spoken knowingness that 2x our age isn't a milestone we will likely reach. What are we waiting for?
Hard working, driven dedicated - honors students to the end. Living good lives, even great ones...according to the plan. School, jobs, marriage, kids, houses, savings accounts, debt, joy, happiness, loss and pain. Now, with dreams of spaciousness, time, freedom, creativity, leadership, wisdom and peace we bask in the glow of the evening and our friendship.
“Let’s order another drink and dessert...”
“I think I’ll have a Grand Marnier.”
“What about French fries?”
“I think Grand Marnier goes better with creme brûlée, but French fries do sound good...You can’t drink Grand Marnier with French Fries, can you?”
“Who says you can’t?”
“Yeah, who says you can’t?”
“That sounds like the topic for your next blog post, and I get the credit for this one.”
Yes it is, and yes you do. This one’s for you, Cath!
In the days following this visit with my best friend of over 35 years, I attended the Leadership Circle Profile certification program. The Leadership Circle is a 360 degree feedback tool that provides leaders in organizations with comprehensive feedback that provides insight into their strengths and growth opportunities. It is a model that delivers rich data that shines a light on behaviors and competencies that can enhance organizational impact and ultimately help a leader become more of who they want to be. In this training we learn that what we do and how we show up is a function of the stories we tell ourselves about ourselves, other people and the way the world works. And when we change these stories we can change the/our world.
CAN’T is a powerful story platform. It influences what you do and don’t do, limits your options, makes you play small, keeps you from trying things you dream of doing, and may even turn you into someone you don’t admire. What’s at risk if you lean into the can’t and change the story? We explore this through coaching around the Leadership Circle. If I do this then… and then… and then… and you push on it enough that you realize it’s all just a spiral of story that takes you on a journey of negativity, fear and insecurity rather than one of possibility, inspiration and power.
I’m now leaning into my profile and into myself with the support of my coach, for my stories and to reframe them to find a way out of the spirals I no longer want to be in. What are you doing to explore your stories and kick them out of the driver’s seat so that the realness and fullness of you can take your life for a spin? You might find that you end up in faraway places that scare and you just might find that those places are delicious like Grand Marnier and French Fries.
photo by Lynne Harris Bernstein © 2019