Do the Thing

February 22, 2011 Leave a comment

show 'em what your made of

Photo by: Allie

When I walk out of my door in the morning I am forced to look at a note that I’ve written to myself – “Do the Thing.”  Sometimes I will also place this note on my meditation cushion, so that I have to pick it up and move it right before I turn within.  I’ve been thinking a lot about the persistent gap between “talking/thinking about the thing” and actually doing it.  It is a gap that runs the gamut, I find it in my own individual life and in organizational life, I find it in our political discourse and within the social larger movement.

Perhaps the gap is inescapable.  It is possible that we live through aspirations.  It is possible that we think and talk about the thing in order to slowly catch up with it through the grind of real life.

And we do know that reflection is a good thing, that we learn through conversations, that it is important to articulate our vision.

I’m not trying to deny or undermine these things.

I just think that it is good to mind the gap.  When we mind the gap we are less abstract.  When we mind the gap it becomes harder to talk about goodness and justice while treating each other badly.

As a “process consultant,” a designer of interaction, I also think that minding the gap is what inspires me to strive for a generative experience – and actual taste of the thing we are working towards.

When aiming for transformation we must create transformative spaces.  Do not have “another meeting” where you talk about social change.  Design transformative spaces that give you a taste of it.  Mind the gap.  Live in the world you are trying to build.  How you get there is as important as getting there.  Do the thing.

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