The Gift of Growth

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“A vision is not just a picture of what could be; it is an appeal to our better selves, a call to become something more.” ~ Rosabeth Moss Kanter

Growth happens. Whether we encourage and nurture it or it manifests organically.

It’s an unseasonably warm Sunday. The Christmas tree is still up (shame), I’m listening to soothing Chris Botti music and friends in the blogging community are on my mind. As relaxed as one can be, I realize that even in passive settings, awareness can grow.

Eleven months ago I had short-term clarity about what was next on my personal journey. And I shared some of those images in a post. While there were clearly interests to pursue, what wasn’t factored inΒ was how unanticipated growth would parade her way into my new experiences… and what a lovely complement she became.

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Looking back, some of my growth was simply appreciating the wit, the wisdom and the insights of ordinary people, unplanned destinations and in allowing the intimacy of unfamiliarity to ooze into my being. I became more aware of other people, how they presented, the unique gifts they possess, and their openness to connection.

In a recent interview British actor Tom Hiddleston declared, “I suppose I am fascinated by the private vulnerability and the exterior of people.” “I think that’s an essential truth. I sort of quite like trying to find what makes people tick behind the construction of their identity.”

Similarly, Mr. Hiddleston’s intrigue mirrors what I have been exploring lately, by turning my attention inward as well as outward. For me, both seem meaningful facets of growth… considering personas and influence brought by others.

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Some of you may be interested in knowing how vision, vantage and vigor aligned and gave power to some of my warming experiences, outcomes and chance growth:

  • My speech Compassion as a VerbΒ was well received by audiences throughout the Spring contest season. It earned third place at Toastmasters District finals. More importantly, it touched people, profoundly. That impact alone made the process worthwhile.
  • My book “Awakening to Awareness: Aligning Your Life With What Really Matters” was published in December.
  • I succeeded at regularly scheduling and reveling in solitude and spending more time in/with nature. This has done wonders for growth and grounding.
  • Self-teaching/learning Italian has seen slower than expected progress. Yet it continues,Β unhurried. La pazienza paga.
  • I have traveled more, both domestically (within the U.S. and overseas). And what a balm each of those trips has been.
  • The goal to find a worthy cause, one that would afford a volunteer opportunity presented. It is a global initiative that couples Professional Coaching (on a pro-bono basis) and not-for-profit organizations with the purpose of making a positive impact and supporting safer, healthier, happier and more productive global citizenry. Put simply, it is work that focuses on the betterment of the human condition and on uplifting the human spirit.

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But back to growth… and not so much mine as yours! If you are interested in heightening your awareness around growth, consider these simple actions:

  1. Have a truly deep conversation with someone. Listen! Appreciate what makes other people tick. And learn from them.
  2. Ask questions that encourage others to reveal who they are and where they want to go. They may inspire new growth in you.
  3. Create space where silence is honored. Be comfortable there, whether alone or together. Appreciate the inner stillness and the possibilities that emanate there.

75 thoughts on “The Gift of Growth

  1. Eric! So nice to find you in my in-box!
    I am very happy for you that you’ve managed to experience such growth in what appears a most wonderful fashion. Congrats on third place!
    I have been practicing active listening in the last year. Maybe because of the year it was or maybe because I was just at that place. It has been quite enlightening indeed.
    Oh.. and guess what? I have booked Toscana in settembre! I, too am starting my Italiano lessons….

    • Thank you, Lorraine. What a nice comment (energy and life) to share. I had not necessarily thought of this blog as such but now that you’ve made the observation, I’m appreciating it. πŸ™‚

  2. Hi Eric!
    Congratulations on your speech, book, and growth explosion! Just today I was reviewing all the blogs I follow and I came across yours. I thought about where life may have taken you. It is such a welcome surprise to find your post in my reader. πŸ˜‰

    peace,
    Linda

  3. how wonderful to know
    you’ve grown physically,
    accomplishing your dreams
    and benefiting others, Eric!
    Even the font seems to burst
    off the screen.
    I’ll make a point to speak deeply
    then make quiet space πŸ™‚

  4. To see you on my reader again πŸ™‚ What wonderful experiences you have had in the past year – many congratulations for the third place! Looking forward to hear about your travels.

  5. What a perk to see your inspiring words pop up, Eric. Sounds like you’ve had a most impressive time of late. Congrats on so many accomplishments…..definitely a growth spurt to be proud of!

  6. What a great way to start my Monday Morning. So happy to read your words and hear of your growth. Congrats on your reaching your goals. Happiness and More JOY to you as you continue your journey.

    • Glad it was/is timely. Now I am curious (as I always am) about how? Fear not, the curiosity is rhetorical. πŸ™‚ I do appreciate your comments and the sharing. I was unsure it was even worthy of posting. Hope all is well upon the donkey.

  7. Great to hear all of this, Eric! Congrats on the book and I particularly enjoying seeing what you wrote about volunteering. Super cool. Anyone would be blessed to have you speak into their lives. Continued joy and peace to you in your adventures, my friend.

  8. Welcome back Eric! It was a pleasant surprise to open up my WordPress Reader and see your post this morning!! Congratulations on all the fun stuff you have been up to!

  9. Welcome back, Eric! Reading your post today reminded me how much I have missed your generous wisdom and grace. Thanks for sharing all that you’ve been doing over the last year, and for your inspiring thoughts. I look forward to more.

    • Thank you, Donna. I felt a bit flushed reading your comment, as in I was/am humbled by your words “wisdom” and “grace.” I simply see myself a messenger who enjoys sharing perspectives that people nod their heads to (hopefully) in the affirmative. I will endeavor to fulfill the “more.” πŸ™‚

  10. Hello, Eric. Good to read you. Looks like you’ve been busy with your book and lots of activities. I’ve been preoccupied too, for the most of 2015. Will try to visit more often.

    • Hello returned, Mary-Ann. πŸ™‚ I trust and hope your preoccupations are fruitful and that they provide you with a sense of (if not real!) fulfillment. Appreciate you creating time to share your comment.

      • Hello, Eric. Work has taken us traveling more. Our only child was married a few weeks ago, after an 18 month engagement. So, there was a lot of planning, preparations, details galore, leading up to the wedding day. Lots of gatherings too. We met our in-laws and extended families and friends, and they met ours. All good. Our community has expanded!

  11. Firstly great to see you back on here Eric, always a pleasure. And what a time you have had, congratulations on the publication and all your voluntary work. Fulfilment indeed. Thanks for all the tips, I like the first one myself……MM πŸ€

    • Thank you, John. The pleasure is mine as well to learn you are still photographing and actively blogging. The tips (I like to think them considerations) have become an integral part of my posts. I appreciate your acknowledging them! Stay well.

  12. I was happy to see your blog this morning! Congratulations to you on all of your accomplishments. I hope you’ll keep us up-to-date with your adventures. I’ve missed reading your inspirational posts. Time for me to find your book!

    • When I read that these posts inspire you and others in our WP community, I am truly grateful, Mary Ann. Thank you for sharing your warming comments. I’ll do my best to highlight some of my recent “adventures” over time.

  13. What a blessing to see you popping up on my like mailbox Eric! It made me so happy to realize that you are back in the community. It sounds like you’ve been on quite an inner journey that radiates its riches outwards. I can feel it like basking in the warmth of the sun. I look forward to reading more of the inner wisdom that supports us all in the end. πŸ™‚ Congrats, on your book by the way. It is a joy to see how others come into the manifestation of their dreams. Love, light and peace. πŸ™‚

  14. Yours is a keen observation, Salem, it is an inner journey. A continuum. And one I encourage all to consider and appreciate. Your warm sentiment truly radiates back this way. Thank you for sharing it, as well as acknowledging the return of my simple words.

  15. How nice to find a like from you! If you have been posting, I have been missing them. I will check my Reader. It seems you have been too busy with life to take that Christmas tree down. You seem at peace with your new growth. I will look forward to reading more about your activities, especially the one on volunteering. It is late but all the best to you in 2016! Thanks for the visit!

    • Jonelle, how good to have you touch base. Thank you for your observation and kind sentiments. I am at peace! Wishing you all the best, too… and it’s never too late to share good will. πŸ™‚

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