How Can They Do That…?!

By Jim Selman | Bio

I got another shot of what has been a curiosity to me for a long time: the growing practice of ‘texting’. This practice was highlighted for me when I read that Barack Obama has to kick his Blackberry habit in his new job and again when I was at the theater earlier this week with an audience of mostly 20 and 30-year-olds. Both before the curtain and at the intermission, I counted about 30 folks fixated on their ‘mobile communication devices’. Several were even covertly ‘peeking’ during the performance.

I don’t think I am a Luddite, yet somehow this seemed to me to be not only rude, but also a bit ludicrous. I watched myself falling into a kind of judgmental ‘old person’s’ conversation along the lines of “Don’t these kids know that they are missing the point of going out for a pleasant evening…blah blah blah.” I clearly had a point of view based on my experience of growing up and was looking down my nose at this new practice in much the same way my father probably

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Multi-Generational Collaboration: Shaping Tomorrow, Together II

By Juanita Brown, David Isaacs and Samantha Tan | World Cafe website

Reprinted with kind permission from "Changing the World Together", Spring/Summer 2008 Kosmos Journal
PO Box 2102
Lenox, MA 01240.  Subscriptions

Juanita
Brown and David Isaacs are co-founders of the World Café, an innovative
approach to large group dialogue being used across sectors on six
continents. Their award-winning book, The World Café: Shaping our
Futures Through Conversations

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Understanding

By Jim Selman | Bio

One of the aphorisms we were given at the end of the est training in the 1970s was the statement, “Understanding is the booby prize.” It has taken me most of my life to really appreciate and mostly live day-to-day with this trueism. In our culture, understanding is assumed to be more or less synonymous with ‘knowledge’. It’s the point to most communication and a prerequisite for most commitment.

If I have acquired any wisdom over the past six decades, it is this: the purpose of learning is action and understanding is a by-product of accomplishment (not a prerequisite). When I speak to groups of people, it usually takes me a few hours for them to ‘get’ that I am not communicating so they understand me, but communicating in a way that I hope will provide them with some new possibility or opening for action. As a coach, I am very clear that

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Multi-Generational Collaboration: Shaping Tomorrow, Together

By Juanita Brown, David Isaacs and Samantha Tan | World Cafe website

Reprinted with kind permission from "Changing the World Together", Spring/Summer 2008 Kosmos Journal
PO Box 2102
Lenox, MA 01240.  Subscriptions

Juanita Brown and David Isaacs are co-founders of the World Café, an innovative approach to large group dialogue being used across sectors on six continents. Their award-winning book, The World Café: Shaping our Futures Through Conversations that Matter,

read more

Springtime Awakening

By Jim Selman | Bio

I went to the Broadway musical Springtime Awakening this evening. The last musical I cried in before tonight was Les Miserables. Springtime Awakening is an exceptionally intense, well produced and acted story about youth coming of age in Germany at some time in what would seem to be the early or mid-1900s. It is a story that has plenty of parallels today, including confronting hormone-driven questions about our sexuality, about friendship, teen suicide, parental sex abuse, back ally abortions and somehow dealing with the wounds of growing up. read more

Alternative and Complementary Healthcare

By Shae Hadden | Bio

I got a rude awakening today while visiting my family doctor. As I was being guided to the examination room, the medical assistant handed me a brochure explaining that the clinic I go to was now going to offer extended healthcare ‘packages’ to their ‘clients’. The brochure outlined numerous different options to access ‘enhanced’ healthcare services and diagnostics, all for varying annual fees depending upon the complexity and estimated amount of ‘contact’ I could have with medical professionals. What bothered me more than this evidence of the two-tiered nature of the Canadian universal healthcare system was that none of the programs they offered included access to alternative or complementary healthcare. Unfortunately, conventional medicine doesn’t always treat all of our illnesses or alleviate all of our suffering. Unconventional approaches and treatments have their place in a well-rounded, healthy healthcare system.

Decisions about my health and well-being are the most important choices I have had to make in the past few years. Fortunately, I have a close network of trusted friends who help me see possibilities that I am blind to…and who remind me to stay with my inquiry into “Who am I?” in relationship to my body, mind and spirit. My experience these past few months has been that when you’re dealing with a situation in which it is difficult to diagnose (let alone treat) symptoms,

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Elder, Elderly and Eldering

By Jim Selman | Bio

I read a nice piece called Welcoming the Approach of the Golden Years by Gary Westover talking about his growing awareness that he has a choice about how he grows older. He can follow the path of his parents and others and deteriorate each year until finally succumbing to dementia or worse. Or he realizes he can see that it is his attitudes and expectations that create the future he is living into and he can look forward to a continually expanding and rewarding experience of living. How we age is a choice and a commitment, it is not a given. He is realizing the difference between being an elder and becoming elderly.

We have added a third distinction called ‘eldering’. Some people love the term and others say it reminds them of the fact that they are getting ‘old’ and with that thought comes the fear of being elderly. This is why there is so much resistance to growing old and people trying to hang onto their youth just a little longer. Eldering is our term for the question of ‘how to’ live to the fullest after retirement and as we enter the last third of life. Eldering is wisdom

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Longevity

By Jim Selman | Bio

I never thought longevity was the point to living, although as I grow older I am a lot more interested in the subject that when I was young. I haven’t met Dan Buettner but would like to. He’s written an article in the November issue of the AARP magazine called “Find Purpose, Live Longer”. He has done research in 4 areas of the world called ‘Blue Zones’ that have a large

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Passion and Purpose II

By Jim Selman | Bio

I’ve been thinking about why I’m not generating the kind of passion and purpose that I have had in the past. What occurred to me is that when I was younger, my ‘work’ or the cause I was working for was something that I was attached to. I mean ‘attached to’ in the sense that my point of view at the time seemed to be ‘the’ way or ‘the’ truth and, with all the energy and confidence of youth, I charged the barricades and felt empowered and inspired by

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Passion and Purpose

By Jim Selman | Bio

I was working on the design of a course the other day and musing about what would someone in my circumstances want to ‘get’ from a workshop about ‘designing the rest of my life’. When I began to think about it, I realized I’m happy and okay financially. I have lots of friends and family and experience lots of love. I am still engaged in my career and have numerous outlets for my creative impulses. All in all, I can’t think of much that I want that I don’t have

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