I have been telling people that I go to Melbourne to keep connected with people and practice... I have solid professional networks there, I say, especially of people doing similar work and who 'get it'. This is easy to grasp.
Really, more than anything I go to Melbourne to keep connected to my self and to my purpose.
This is a challenge of integration, certainly... but at the moment it involves grappling with two different areas - a sense of the world, and a sense of me in it.
So as I head to Melbourne, this is where my head is at; these are the challenges I hope to make progress on.
The changing world
So many people are chipping away around the edges of a transition in how we work and collectively realise our futures... but none of us has nailed where we find ourselves, or what our journey might be.
There are some definite patterns... many many people touching on what I have started calling the 'ego control status power complex', and trends towards a more participatory way of being.
My tone has changed somewhat since May, partly from thinking about the fact that we are always in transition. But the sense of unease is the same.
Is it even possible to understand the world well enough to feel like I'm 'doing the right thing'?
Maybe I just need a way to convince myself of the validity of some convenient heuristics?
It has become a catch phrase of mine, that we should always strive simply to 'participate well'.
Trying to embody this myself is an interesting experience.
I have realised I have little interest in the success of 'my business'. My business is (at best) a vehicle to do good work. Perhaps it also plays into my own need to be successful and important. But the business itself? I have very little interest in it, so it's little surprise to have found myself with periodic motivation gaps.
Stepping beyond the trashed assumption that I should be 'building my business' as a priority, I am getting clearer on what I really need to do, to do better work while looking after my own sense of self too. Slowly.
I haven't been open enough about potential ways forward, nor have I been honest enough about the wisdom of running a consultancy from where I am (smart, skilled and flexible; but lacking key resources like professional networks and track record). I am getting by along this pathway, because I have asked 'can I do this', and proven so far that yes I can — but that doesn't mean that it is the best path, and I'm not sure I have been asking the right question.
I also need to be much more vigilant getting out of my head and my business. I know full well that 'good work' is done in the real world, with others, and while I have been doing this, I'm not sure I have prioritised it enough.