My main lesson from another year of agile coaching

Door Patrick Verheij

As the grand finale of 2018 approaches, peace of mind gradually flow in. Work has been put into suspension so fatigue finally finds its exhaust. While still getting used to the sudden vast and insurmountable void, the urge to look back and reflect emerges.

And that’s exactly what I have been ignoring a tad too often this year.

Despite grand lessons from the likes of Thich Nhat Hanh, Pema Chödrön and Ajahn Brahm, I too often just forget to retreat in the moment when it is time to do so. To find peace and happiness within myself. To be able to start anew from a position of mindfulness.

Too often I made rash decisions because I was not fully aware of my surroundings. Too often I reverted to bland advising where thoughtful coaching would have been the appropriate option. Too often I looked back in a bit of shame, realizing I had just missed out on another opportunity to live up to my intentions of being a better person and helping other people feel great.

When I ignore to sit down quietly and listen to what happens inside of me, I tend to get a bit numb for other people’s feelings. My empathy suffers and my ego tends to play up more often. Focus and discipline suffer alike, making me less effective than I can be.

Fortunately, I usually realize in hindsight what has happened and which consequences have been undeniably been created. A pattern of failures granted me with the ability to anticipate from instinct and experience in many difficult situation. But that’s not enough.

Whenever I do sit down consciously and make myself sit through the initial discomfort, all my senses grow strong again and I start seeing things more clearly. Fresh ideas usually come up and I feel motivated again to be focused and disciplined. My empathy grows and my ego shrinks to a more appropriate size.

When the daily rat race kicks in again, my energy and awareness is gradually being depleted. Without refreshment, I revert to habits and patterns which I have not yet been able to change firmly.

With this awareness, which now comes after distancing myself from a great company which I worked with for almost three years, I realize that next year I need to step up my game even more. The only way to stay effective in my job is to be fully present and alive while executing that job. No amount of reading, attending classes, or participating in agile events can compensate that.

Please nudge me when you catch me inattentive. I promised myself to take more care of me.

Onto a great new year then.

Patrick Verheij

06 59 443 447

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