As the year draws to a close, I find myself intuitively wanting to release the excess baggage of the year – all my moments of failings, longing for what could have been, regret for mistakes I made, and unfulfilled yearnings.
With this natural process of letting go, it’s tempting to add a tinge of guilt, to add that “should have” or “could have” voice into the mix, and to look back on these failings in a chastised way. It’s incredibly easy to also add guilt and a sprinkling of shame.
However, this year, it strikes me that failing and righting myself is actually not a bug but a feature of our human condition.
Our failures, when followed by awareness, compassion, and the introduction of new behaviors and deepened resolve, actually bring us to a better place than when we started.
It’s a powerful tool we have been given as humans to take each challenge and the inevitable unconsciousness and associated reactivity, and transform it into a deepened, more powerful inner strength and resolution.
My intention, as the new year begins, is to take each failing as an opportunity to right myself, deepen my awareness and center of being, to help me grow and ultimately give to others. And ideally, to have fun – knowing that process, which is inevitable, has the power to continually make me a better person.
The same applies at the level of a company.
A company is, after all, ultimately analogous to a living organism – one that seeks to continually grow and thrive over time. It has an organizational structure, and people who comprise it, who work collectively toward goals and adapt over time.
Companies, just like individual human beings, constantly face challenges. On an ongoing basis, the people within a company – like all people in the world – are tested. Sometimes we act valiantly, and at other times, we act unconsciously and out of alignment with our values.
Companies that ultimately succeed, that pass the test of time – for their employees, customers, and shareholders – are those that view challenges and failings as opportunities for growth: to learn, sharpen awareness, better adhere to core values, and strengthen the quality of products and services to better serve customers, and in the process, solidify the bonds holding together the people that comprise the company itself.
As we approach the year 2020, may the clarity of our vision strengthen – both when we get it right, but more importantly, when we get it wrong.