By Susan K. Furness, Edgewalker Senior Associate
If there is one thing I have long-since known, it is that you cannot know the future. So, when Dr. Judi Neal named “Sensing the Future” as one of the five Edgewalker Skills I was immediately drawn to the conversation.
The notion of Sensing the Future speaks to me in a number of ways.
- Sensing the Future speaks to both the creative and logical me, reminding you don’t know what you don’t know and you definitely don’t know the Future until it is has moved through being Present, to become the Past.
- Sensing the Future stirs my sixth sense of Intuition into play to power-up other ‘sense intelligences’ (hearing, seeing, touching, smelling, tasting. When I combo the embodied knowing of intuition with what I (perceive) I know, I notice how graceful ‘movement’ becomes.
- Sensing the Future offers me comfort as I give myself permission to stay present, to vision what could be next, but not labour on, or yearn for, what is next now.
I am nudged to consider the difference and/or relationship between Knowing and Sensing. The author Mark Nepo suggests its common to confuse plans with planning, dreams with dreaming and love with loving. Mark also shares that every book he has written has been discovered on the way to unplanned destinations.
This sparks a smile, as my legacy career has me ‘labelled’ Marketing Strategist. Indeed, my 30-year old company, Strategic Solutions bears the responsibility of its name in a (business) world I now know to be more fun, much more real and much less worrying in un-strategic surrender, especially as we navigate to AC (after corona).
I am not mooting the absence of the age-old stalwarts of the Strategic Plan – Mission, Vision, Objectives. Rather, I am appreciating the exchange of vocabulary to ignite a ‘different’ felt shift, or movement, in myself, the team, the client, the customer, the marketplace, the reader, the community …..and some.
Try these vocabulary exchanges on for size and shift :
- Mission becomes Purpose which becomes Reason which becomes…
- Vision becomes Reality which becomes New Reality…
- Objective becomes Intention which becomes Sense…
The best part is you get to choose the Vocabulary Energetic that works for you and for your Sense of the Future, or perhaps your Sense of a New Reality.
Here’s some to practise as we make ‘quantum leaps’, noticeable or not :
- Timeline becomes Pulse which becomes Rhythm
- Strategy becomes Method which becomes Recipe
- Tactics become Tasks which become Rituals
According to Dr Neal, the Edgewalker definition of Sensing the Future is ‘the ability to understand and embrace the future’.
Let’s take the last bit first.
Embracing the future is an ability we all have, as each breath we take carries us forward. However, it may not be an ability we recognise or enjoy.
I wonder, is this because the future is always just ahead of the point of arrival?
As I ponder, I am aware that understanding the future, especially one we don’t know, is where turmoil can kick right in. Enter the Edgewalker archetypes of change – Hearthtender and Guardian.
The Heathtender – or Heart-Tender – looks kindly at me and says, para-phrased from Anthony De Mello : ‘Find truth in observation, not opinion….’ I take this as embodied observation by listening to the intuitive heart first, before asking my head.
The Guardian or Doomsayer steps forth looks me squarely in my knowing eyes and states : ’It will be alright in the end, and if it is not alright, it’s not the end….’.
I chuckle. That appeals to my sense of play, as well as my feel for the future, as tomorrow shows up, right here and now. Please leave a comment below. I’d love to hear your thoughts.