My friend, Jim Grigsby, and I were recently talking about the idea of “Courageous Conversations” – the conversations that go beyond the surface of our lives, beyond being comfortable and easy, to a place where words don’t seem adequate, but we try anyway.
At the latest (very crowded) Sip Session, I introduced the core principles of future design—a rigorous and multi-dimensional way to build a more intentional, creative, and satisfying relationship with your future and those vital to it. A courageous conversation indeed.
I described the dimensions as nothing more than a framework where you can present a larger story of yourself in a way that allows you to see your life as an ongoing relationship between three domains:
- What is true and real for you today
- What your imagination says is possible for your future
- What compels you to fully commit to creating the future you want for yourself and your world
After the introduction, everyone paired up with someone they didn’t know and discussed each of the three dimensions as it related to their own life. We spent the rest of our time reflecting on what the experience was like. Here is what attendees summarized:
- Passion: As the interchange progressed through the three dimensions, everyone felt increasingly engaged and enthralled by what they were hearing, discussing, and discovering about themselves and each other
- Relationship: Even a short conversation with a stranger, framed in this way, invited a profound connection
- Action: What stood in the way of each person’s future started to come clear, whether it be letting go of something in the past, or developing ones-self to prepare for the future
If future is a place of infinite possibility, then how do I give that possibly permission to exist?
Through my personal experience and my years helping individuals and organizations step into bigger futures, I hold one thing as true: Human beings come pre-wired with a deep desire to live a meaningful life. For many of us, circumstances have forced us to suppress this feeling or deny ourselves permission to examine it.
This last Sip Session reinforced this belief and proved that even in a short amount of time we can overcome what limits our relationship with future by simply having another person provoke us to speak about the things we dream about, believe in, and are committed to.
But, it takes a person with the courage to share more of themselves first. As scary as that might sound, if you are willing to share, even a little bit more about who you are and what you care about, you will invite others to connect with you in a more meaningful way, and also give them permission to more deeply connect with themselves and those they care about.