Our last blog was focused on Alan Seale’s Transformational Presence approach to leadership and its application to navigating a complex world. If you missed it, please click here. In that post, we announced a four-part series dedicated to exploring a tool or framework of Transformational Presence in each of the next four months. Read on for Part One.
The Three Questions
Let’s start with a focus on the three foundational questions upon which the Transformational Presence approach is built.
1. What wants to happen?
2. Who is that asking me to be?
3. What is that asking me to do?
On the surface, these seem like pretty simple questions. Yet, the beauty of these simple questions is their power to tap into our heart intelligence. Too often, we rely solely on our intellect which is incredibly good at analyzing situations, solving problems and keeping us safe. Our heart intelligence is more visionary. It can take in the big picture and show us the next step to take. One is not better than the other – which is a huge relief to me since I’ve spent most of my life relying primarily on my head. It’s using the head and heart intelligence in concert with one another that is the key. Incorporating our heart intelligence helps to break through overwhelm and complexity and find an element of clarity that can show us the way forward.
A Discovery Process
Let’s take a brief look at each of these questions.
When we ask “What wants to happen?”, we’re open to discovering what the shift might be that wants to take place or what the opportunity or breakthrough is that is waiting to emerge. We are recognizing that there is a message in the situation or circumstance we are faced with and that something “wants to happen” or evolve.
As we look at question #2, “Who is that asking me to be?”, we are exploring how we choose to “show up” in relationship to “what wants to happen”. What are the qualities and personal attributes that we want to express? For example, this might mean being more playful, forthright, resilient, open, etc.
“What is that asking me to do?” is our action question. Rather than this being a question where we try to figure out what to do next, instead we are inviting “what wants to happen” to reveal the next step to us. Then, after we take that next step, we go back to question 1 and repeat the cycle.
While we navigate the complexity of our world, we typically go directly to the third question and try to figure out what actions we need to take and how will we execute on them. Yet, if we begin to consider that every situation or circumstance we encounter might have a message for us, we can start to develop a new approach. No longer is it reasonable to plan far out into the future. Our world is changing too quickly for that. Instead, if we apply these three questions to everything that we do, we can be shown the way, one step at a time.
An Exercise to Get You Started
Here is an exercise that Alan shared with us in our recent Transformational Presence – Leadership in Action course. I invite you to experiment with this as a means to begin applying this approach to your own life and work.
- Bring to mind an opportunity available to you, personally, or to your company or business right now. Then, ask yourself The Three Questions. Really listen, sense and feel the answers that come. This is a no judgment zone – let whatever experience you have with these questions be okay. It does take practice to quiet our minds so that our heart can be heard.
Then, please feel free to share your experience with us in the comments section. And, if you’d like to learn more, you can purchase Alan Seale’s book here.
Derived from: Seale, Alan. Transformational Presence: How To Make a Difference In a Rapidly Changing World. Topsfield, MA: The Center for Transformational Presence, 2017.
About the Author: Sherry Dutra is a Talent Development and Career Coach and Facilitator who believes we each have far more potential than we typically tap in to. She helps you learn how to step into your full potential so you can create consistent, optimal performance for yourself and your team with less stress and more enjoyment. If you would like to uncover and address hidden challenges that may be sabotaging your success, leverage your strengths, and accelerate your progress toward the results you desire, contact Sherry for a complimentary consultation.