Emergence Redux

Copyright: logoboom / 123RF Stock PhotoAs I’ve taken the time to think about my position on Emergence, I’ve come up with six points that I will strive to support going forward. Emergence is an ongoing process, which I feel to be extremely relevant to success of our times. Failure to pursue emergence means stagnation in terms of pursuing your passions – and who wants that, right?

As we’ve grown, we’ve allowed ourselves to be molded by society and this gradual change also means that we’ve allowed ourselves to adopt the expectations and values that society demonstrates. In many cases, this is good. A productive society with an agreed upon set of rules (or laws) which cover personal liberties is critical to our survival; yes, they can become overbearing but I do not want to cover that here. For purposes of Emergence though, the blind acceptance of societal norms can cause problems. This acceptance has caused us to bury our passions and our good. Most of us are not following the dreams, passions and desires that we demonstrated as children. I get that not everyone still really wants to be an astronaut, movie star, or doctor, but at the same time we all have a creative spark – and most of us are not honoring it. This is largely due to our upbringing, education, and the way that we are measured.

Deciding to go back and uncover those buried passions – the process of Emergence – can be extremely difficult. We have, over time, succumbed to an increasing list of responsibilities in the form of finances, relationships, societal expectations, and behaviors (to name a few). The idea of changing our relationship with any of these things is daunting, and yet our ability to move beyond these limited expectations is crucial to Emergence. If we change, will things still be okay? Will I still be able to feed myself and my family? Will my family still love me? Will my friends still be there for me? These fears are real for us and for those around us. Going through the process of Emergence will also uncover truths about ourselves that we would normally turn a blind eye to – we will confront the things that caused us to bury ourselves and also review the actions we’ve taken to make us feel better about it.

Despite the difficulties in Emergence, a growing number of people are pursuing it. This is evidenced by the huge number of self-help books, magazines and blogs, the creation of all the various “life coaching” jobs, and the number of media stars who focus on these areas. People are also starting to consider themselves more religious or spiritual – and those that don’t hold to a belief of a higher power still feel that they have a purpose. Many are in pursuit of this purpose or vision. Volunteering of time or donating money are up, showing that we are starting to learn that giving of ourselves is part of Emergence.

Once we’ve done the work and uncovered our good, there is a path to follow which will allow us to use that good to bring ourselves to a place where we can live from our passions. It’s important to know where we are headed, for as Lewis Carroll said: “If you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there.” Once we know where we are headed, we can create the map – the set of milestones that we will follow to keep us on the path. This is done through visioning and goal setting.

All of this work, while challenging, is worth it. Living from our passions lets us live a happier life, and demonstrates to those around us that a fulfilling life is possible – and that we can achieve this by following our own path and not the path that is “handed” to us. Once we start to truly live from this passion, we become more open to helping those around us. And that benefits everyone.

While we create visions and goals to assist us in our Emergence, it is an ongoing process. One that continually unfolds as we learn more and more about ourselves. And like any journey, there will be twists and turns – no story worth hearing or telling ever started with “They all lived happily ever after”. Society will conspire to stuff you back in your cubby hole – continue to push back. Failures will occur – they need to be reframed. Fear will surface – learn what it has to tell you and continue moving forward.

I know I’m not offering proof for any of these premises here, but I will as I continue on this journey – and if I find that I’m wrong, I’ll work through that with you as well. As always, I value your company on the journey.

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