Sunday, March 1, 2009

My Status as of March 2009

"What's next?" Enough people have asked me this lately that I feel compelled to summarize my current status, which is -- in a nutshell -- watching and waiting after having reinvented myself as a spiritual activist. Specifically, I have completed the work for a master's degree in Engaged Humanities, concentrating on the psychology of the unconscious and the power of narratives and images to touch the depths and connect with our most fervent aspirations and enduring wounds. I have been networking with others who advocate an interdisciplinary approach -- for example, injecting aesthetics into sustainability discussions or applying the mythological motif of the hero's journey to business scenarios. I expect eventually to find a place where my affinity for technology and my communications skills can bring reconciling, compassionate energy to bear on a key issue, perhaps related to the environment. (I also hold a certificate in Woody Landscape Plants – yes, trees and shrubs.)

So what did I learn in my two years' of study? I count these as the most important points:

  • How to teach, not just to train
  • That I am the only audience that my creativity needs
  • How to be a witness instead of a bystander
  • That the path of greatest growth may require moving toward the area of greatest resistance

Throw open the windows;
Let the breezes blow through.
I may stand with my feet in two realms,
But this house on the border is home.
Even if the wind lifts me,
It cannot carry me away
As I linger on the threshold.

Greetings from Seattle

I am currently in Seattle to attend the annual MVP Summit at Microsoft's headquarters. "MVP" here stands for Most Valuable Professional, an award given to people around the world who help others in online discussion forums and user groups. This year's gathering brings together 1500 people, half from North America, half from other continents for a unique opportunity to learn about -- and potentially influence -- the next round of Microsoft products. Hot topics on my list are social networking and collaboration, especially collaboration among people who work for different organizations.

I'm rooming with my friend and fellow Outlook goddess, Diane Poremsky. We got things off to a good start with a visit to the Seattle Art Museum and dinner at my very favorite restaurant, The Brooklyn. I ordered my usual: country salad and a baker's dozen oysters.