February 2017

Since a few days it seems like spring is in the air. My daily walk with Django is no longer an assignment, but pure enjoyment. Cherishing the sun on my face, the blue sky with sheep clouds, birds chirping merrily and a dog walking happily ahead of me, confidently turning around every now and then to check if I’m still following.

During that hour I can do nothing but surrender myself to the moment, I feel my blood rushing while walking uphill, I am aware of my breathing, my one walking shoe where my sock is not quite right, feeling too warm in my heavy wintercoat, smelling the farm up ahead, squinting when facing the sun, suddenly noticing the beautiful shadows cast by me and my dog on the road in front of me…

During moments like these I experience more sensory feelings than thoughts. ‘Clearing my head’ comes naturally. I had woken up exhausted and grumpy because of a too short and interrupted night and no matter how I brooded and thought about a topic for my bi-weekly blog, nothing came, the source seemed to have run dry. The walk made the creative juices flow again and without any effort I am typing the words and sentences on my laptop’s keyboard while Django is dozing contentedly at my feet.

Or how being ‘in my body’, feeling with all my senses, is making connections to other, more creative and even more productive circuits in my brain.

Bad weather or ‘no time’ are no valid excuses anymore to stay inside my head. What is your excuse and what do you do about it?

This morning I suddenly wondered: “What if Donald Trump was actually a cheerful househusband?”. It was meant as an attempt to stop my own negative train of thought – generously fed by news and social media – and take a different perspective.

It could be a suggestion for the producers of ‘What if?’, an internationally awarded and hilarious sketch show on one of our Flemish channels. Every sketch is the answer to a hypothetical question that starts with ‘What if’ – ‘What if men were dogs?’, ‘What if Barbie was a real woman?’, ‘What if the grumpy Flemish were right?’, … The sketches show you a new reality, life that is slightly off. Sometimes the sketches are completely absurd, sometimes eerily realistic.

What if you would use a different perspective to look at what you have always assumed to be the objective reality? Does objective reality as such even exist? The media are anything but objective, though they (and we) sometimes assume they are. Objective news reporting is not possible if you stop and think about it. As a news channel, a paper or a journalist you are somehow always driven by your own values, by your judgment of what is right or wrong – not to mention commercial motives. All of this has an influence on the choice of news facts that you bring, and the way you bring them.

We in turn are equally selective – driven by our own values – about which news papers, books, posts, … we read and who our Facebook friends are. And before you know it, you are completely stuck in your familiar, self-confirming but therefore not always comfortable perspective – an uncomfortable comfort zone.

It then becomes very difficult to think creatively and out of the box, to make different choices than those you would go for automatically. This can feel restrictive, as if you have no choice, as if you are lived.

During a coaching session we can work on this. I will ask you similar ‘What if’ questions to look from different angles where you’re stuck . Then we see if other choices can be made that better tie in with what gives you true satisfaction.

What if you would reverse your familiar perspective on life and work? I will be glad to help – contact me for a free sample session and who knows it might even change your perspective on Donald Trump.