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  • Writer's pictureSandy Burgham

The People Have Spoken!

A huge thanks to the people who responded to our simple question last week i.e “What is the change you want to see in the world?” To have 58 people (and counting) reply to this was both humbling and inspiring – we had at least one or two people from almost every group we have worked with since Play CoLab started in August 2016. Thank you for continuing to be part of the conversation on contemporary leadership which is so needed in a world that is being disrupted in such a devastating way.

The commonality is staggering and also extremely encouraging given that most of you do not actually know each other!

So what are the changes you, as “one powerful, transformative, interconnected entity”, would like to see in the world? It would appear:

  • A shift toward “humanity” in leadership

  • A continued sense of collaboration for the collective good

  • A prioritising of a healthier planet

  • A greater sense of equity – closing the gap between the haves and the have nots  

  • A new definition of progress and success

  • A “less is more” approach to consumption

In other words, post-Lockdown, rather than simply rebooting for more of the same, there was an overwhelming sense that it was time to re-generate and re-imagine for the future.

We could sum it up with three values:

Empathy, Equity, and Earth 

So it would follow that our one question for you this week is this: if this collective vision was to be the eventual legacy of Covid-19 – how might you play as a leader? 

Maybe for some of you it has taken this experience to really “get” the work of Play CoLab and why we are so hellbent on raising the consciousness of leaders. And one of the dichotomies is this: it is clear that so many of you are wanting to create a different kind of world and yet, the previous or current regime is one in which you have also prospered. So, in enquiring how you might play, consider also how you might use your privilege to lead.

In essence, we are continuing the invitation for you to play in the “Purposeful and Visionary” space where, unencumbered by what you might frame up as the “realities of today” or the “current system”,  you use your imagination to create what the world might look like. And, importantly, you imagine who you might choose to BE in it.

Know that when we do move out of lockdown en masse, it will be easy to be pulled back into a fear-based framing of the world which will see people, perhaps yourself included, resorting to the reactive behaviours that you know so well. Holding a hopeful vision while attending to the less than hopeful matters of today, requires some practice.

It starts with being curious – curious about your own reactions as well as that of others. By continuing to do your own “work” and remaining curious, you will find any roadblocks become less torturous. Hence, a reminder of the simple question to ask yourself “in the moment” as you examine your response to a situation – am I being pulled by fear or inspired by purpose (love)?

Then it requires a bit more courage –  Practice “leaning in” to a conversation not so you are noticed (ego), but so the issues you stand for are noticed (purpose).

And then it takes a continual use of imagination – If you are to play at being part of a sustainable solution rather than someone who inadvertently reinstates an enduring problem, it will be your imagination that is needed. 

Consider this musing about the world 100 years ago from one of the most celebrated rational, scientific thinkers of the 20th century, Albert Einstein: 

At times I feel certain I am right while not knowing the reason. When the eclipse of 1919 confirmed my intuition, I was not in the least surprised. In fact, I would have been astonished had it turned out otherwise. Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited, whereas imagination embraces the entire world, stimulating progress, giving birth to evolution. It is, strictly speaking, a real factor in scientific research.

Finally, consider this – to be a leader in a world anchored by the tenets of Equity, Empathy and a deep reverence to Earth, it might initially feel like you are going out on a limb (you and your crazy imaginings!…..). Remember that most people operate from the Reactive space where they get their sense of identity from the existing external world, and have not yet fully experienced the liberation and sense of possibility that comes from being truly Self-authored. If you do feel like the lone wolf at times, go back and read the responses to our question below. You will see – we are all in this together.

Thank you again for being part of our Play CoLab community.

Here when you need us. Sandy, Jenny and all at Play CoLab

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