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Seeing Yourself Whole

Flower mandalaWhat is the source of your greatest contribution to the world?

a) My remarkable brain
b) My big, generous heart
c) My beautiful body
d) My enlightened soul

You’re one step ahead of me, aren’t you? Of course, the answer is e) All of the above! As a complex, dynamic human system, your ability to live with purpose and impact here on earth comes not from any one dimension of your being, but from the continuous interoperation of all of them.

It’s easy to forget this fundamental truth when we get caught up in the expectations of a system—work, family, church, community—that seems only to want a piece of us. But when we collapse our sense of self to accommodate the perceived preferences of others, we forfeit much of the creative energy that comes with full self-awareness.

Conversely, when we maintain our awareness of self as a complex, dynamic whole, the rewards that accrue to us and those around us are immeasurable: We expand our options for intervening when we’re stuck or off-track; we gain clarity about the values that enliven us and the purpose that drives us forward; we gain confidence in our capacity for sustained contribution.

That’s why it’s important and courageous work to assert our wholeness on behalf of our own fulfillment and in service to others. In a feature article in this month’s issue of The Systems Thinker newsletter from Pegasus Communications, I offer a few ideas and tools, such as The Round Resume, to help you awaken and sustain your awareness of self as a whole system of power and purpose.

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