You have to have a lot of passion for what you do...because it’s so hard that if you don’t, any rational person would give up
— Steve Jobs

Session 4,

We continue exploring the world. In this session we practised for first time "Auscultation" (Lanfranchi, 1978)

  • Auscultation is "listening" or "sounding" active and careful attention to what is happening in "oneself". It is penetrating the depth of our existence. More than observing and analysing, the aim is to gather "oneself" to penetrate the depths of our existence. It is the gesture of listening, giving of oneself, penetrating our existence.
  • Auscultation is not introspection
  • Introspection is analysis. It is a mental exercise which aims to distinguish the factors in play in one or a given attitude, what leads to one situation or another

How is auscultation related to our work of practising creative leadership?

We also worked on one of the phrases of our personal notebook:

It is true that the world is what we see, but we have to learn to see it
— Merleau-Ponty
  • What do you need to see?
  • How will you organise yourself to see it?

After you have thought about it you can consult the following material. How is learning to see related to our work on developing our creative leadership?

We also viewed some "animals" on video....and discussed....and.. How does it link with creative leadership?

Being aware is more important than being smart
— Phil Jackson

Session 5,

We further explore what does it mean to learn to see.

We did another auscultation and a movement exercise. We discussed issues around these experiments

We also worked on the "selection experiment" :

Imagine you are looking for two people to collaborate with you. The purpose is to develop a consulting management project for a multinational in Switzerland.

  •  Please pick two people you would work with. Describe the qualities by which you choose each one of them.
  • Please pick one person you would never work with. Describe the qualities by which you choose him or her.

Once you have finished the experiment,

  • Please report your findings about the process.
  • How do you think it connects with our “Practicing Creative Leadership”?

Session 6

We explore diverse types of leadership and follow an inquiry on the type of leadership required nowadays. What type of leadership does current work environment require?

We also worked on understanding how to develop our "distance" skills, we did the following distancing exercise

  • this distance exercise is a tool that we should be able to use in real time (we just work on looking at a past conflict as a way of training it). This distance connected with full attention and interest to understand the conflict surely will create new ways of perceiving and understanding the situation and therefore the ability to be creative.
  •  the distance exercise is very useful because it allows us to understand the underlying currents of our actions and not be a puppet to unresolved issues. Therefore it helps us to liberate from "ourselves". Also, it helps us to see those underlying current in others, we are able to discover how others are moved.
  • Therefore the distance exercise it is not a tool "to be good", though it could be used by some people for this reason, it is a way fine tune our abilities to perceive beyond, and understand beyond our automatic patterns of understanding (this involves perceiving and feeling as well) and therefore improve our ability to create new possibilities.
  • Thus the more you practice "distance exercises" the more you will fine tune your ability to be creative. 

We also developed some further understanding on the distancing exercise.

Session 7

We investigate our interests and passions.  Interest and passions are the key, our fuel be creative. Interest and passions are their own reward, by devoting time and energy we can develop our creativity.

We only do what we want to do and, if we are still not convinced of this, it is because we don’t know what the true roots of our actions are
— G. Lanfranchi (1977)

Experiment: What do I really desire?

Understanding and working on our interests is a key aspect on our ability to be creative. We know that one cannot be creative if one does not have interest on that specific field, material or discipline. Many times we believe that we have interests but if we inquiry about them, we might find, for example, we do not know which are our interests or we might find out that some of the interests we thought we had are long dead.

Please spend at least 15 minutes, use pen and paper to write down while you think, listen and explore your interests and motivations (don’t worry if it does not make sense), just write and write. Use as a guide the proposed exploratory method described by Lanfranchi here below.

Text from Lanfranchi, G. (1977). La formation de soi par soi. Beauvais: La Table Ronde.  What do I really desire?

We shouldn’t rush to answer the question. It will serve as a guiding thread, allowing us to fully get in touch with ourselves. It is not about analysing, but, rather, carefully questioning ourselves until the answer, some answer, arises.

In the beginning, it’s possible that our first responses will be more complaints, lamentations about what wasn’t given to us, what we lack, more than anything else: we want the health we don’t have, a less difficult family situation, etc. That path is wrong; we have to correct where we focus. These responses correspond more to placing the source of our feeling of impotence outside ourselves, not achieving a lucid look at what is truly our inner motive. After stopping all attempts to complain or lament, not giving them any room to come into play, we have to reconsider the question. Perhaps the same desires will emerge, for example, “I want to be healthy.” If that is the case, the next step is to further explore the issue, live it without lament, give form to the desire, making it more consistent, more defined, without worrying yet about how to fulfil it. At this time, it is a question of shedding light on it, bringing it up out of the darkness of paralysing laments and making it an objective reality with which we will later be able to work on. This task is valid for any other example.....what do I really desire text here. If you want to read the full text, please click here.

Practicing this during days, weeks, months, etc., is worth it: the time necessary for the energy itself to organise more clearly and openly. The more authentic this self­ awareness becomes and the greater our understanding of the different situations, the greater our lucidity about ourselves, our own desires and the reality in which we move and the reality which we can create with our actions; also, the greater the possibility of us orienting our steps in the desired direction and the greater the opportunity to guide ourselves.
— G. Lanfranchi (1977)

We have no guidelines...."the bag" as a metaphor

The first step is becoming aware of these desires, understanding our own strength and trusting that it can become an invincible power
— Lanfranchi (1977)

Session 8

We investigate what does I D S mean.  We work in group. How do we work in group? can we work in such a way to foster creativity?

We still  have a lot of questions.....

Session 9

how are we seeing? who are we being witness? which are the ways in which we can embed our attention practise?

Seeing is in itself a creative operation which requires great effort, that and the necessary values to eliminate all prefabricated images. This is fundamental for someone who wishes to see something as if it were the first time
— Henri Matisse
There should be no deliberate intervention other than from silence. The artist has to succeed in silencing all the voices of prejudice inside; he has to forget, create silence, be a perfect spring
— Cézanne