There have been a number of events recently that I’ve labeled “learning opportunities.” At first, such nomenclature can be a euphemism to take the edge off of upsets and disappointments. As I have had time to sit with some of the happenings, it is clear that there is a lot of genuine learning available in each case.

This weekend, I had the opportunity to present to the Alberta Congress Board about perspectives. I showed many examples of how the way you look at things could change your mood, your sense of possibilities, and your actions. One perspective I held was that my presentation must have been sufficiently interesting as they were looking at me when this was the alternative available if they turned around (photo is of view from Jasper Park Lodge).

Thursday night, Paula and I were sitting in our den and we heard an unusual sound. Our puzzle began to be solved as we saw water coming out of one of the lights in our kitchen. Perspective shift #1: This was a good thing as if the water didn’t have an escape outlet, it would have been a lot worse. We turned off the water to the house and I got a great tip from my friend Jason McKinnon to open taps on different levels of the house to let the water out. Even with the water off, quite a bit of water was drained. This certainly minimized the damage and taught me a few important things about plumbing. In looking at how we got to this point, Paula and I made several realizations about who we hired to do some work that led to the problem and about trusting our instincts and intuition when we suspected that something wasn’t right. We got some great timely help from a friend in the plumbing business, Dave Ritz, and the problem was solved with very minor damage and at very reasonable expense.

Friday morning: I began working with a colleague in the speaking profession to have her coach me toward my “fanatical focus.” I’ll leave more about her and the results for a future entry. The good news is that I got some real clarity about my value, passion, and expertise. The “learning opportunity” was in seeing that some of my past work and considerable financial investment did not produce the differentiation and goals that I thought I had achieved. Part of what I’m seeing in this more evidence to trust my intuition and also in the battle of the head and the heart, the heart is a more useful guidance system. It’s also the case that my prior labors are not for naught and are part of what truly is a learning journey.

I’ve been told that if one is bold enough to preach messages of laughter and humour (and/or transformation), one will be tested. So in telling others that there is always a lighter side and there are always multiple other perspectives from which to view anything, I have been presented some challenges. I’m feeling very good about the places where what I’m practicing is lining up. What’s one occasion for you that looked bad at the time that can be seen from another perspective as a learning opportunity? I’d love to hear about it. Be psyched for Monday.

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