Often it takes anger and confrontation to put on a new headset. After one of the worst down-days to date in our New Now, John and I met in the ring this morning. Each of us were backed by 24 hours of soul searching - which meant we approached one another with a fresh, pointed and undeniably individual line of thinking. And we were prepared to "share it with eachother". That is, if sharing means someone wins and someone... doesn't.
Understand, we are at a turning point, that place when a decision is not arrived at, it's forced. Hence the 24 hours we each spent figuring out how we felt about where we are. I woke up clamoring "Creativity" - let's liquidate and move to where we want to be -- good luck will surely follow and we'll be more fulfilled than ever. Peace Corps, Key West, the Riviera...
John, though, had steeped through the night, in "Conserve" - let's liquidate and head for the hills, move in with Mom & Dad, hide out and spend nothing until the storm passes.
Two very different corners, where shall the twain meet?
We parted having made our arguments, indeed, argument was the process. We are in this together on no common ground.
I turned to the New York Times looking for inspiration. Here's what I found.
Two entrepreneurs from Colorado sell their copier cartridge business to some Cistercian Monks in Wisconsin who've decided they want to be in the cartridge business. You see, monks are charged with making money, supporting their order, but this group had the big idea (cartridges?) but no head for business (rather make honey and sculpt), so after the deal was made, it becomes clear that the women from Colorado were at the Monastery - to stay - to run what's become a multi-million dollar enterprise, LaserMonks.
The irony of it is what makes is so inspirational. What monk wants to be in the cartridge business? What urban woman of a certain age dreams of her small-beans computer supply company being run to support a Cistercian Monastery? I'm thrilled by how UNpredictable it all is, and it made my morning.
How can you not feel the power of this: “Good morning, LaserMonks. Greetings and peace,” Victoria Bench answers the Monastery's phones. Apparently she's a zen-like presence but the humor doesn't seem to escape her. She says that more likely than not, what she hears on the other end of the phone is “You don’t sound like a monk.”
We're in a tight place in The New Now, and we don't know where we're headed. But I'm starting to realize that we'll likely end up in a place where "we don't sound like a monk".