“Power is the ability to remain present and aware and to shape reality.” Harry Palmer, author of the Avatar® materials
Do you ever feel you are swimming upstream? Does it seem like a huge effort to make anything happen?
I want to tell you about a conference that I organized this past month. I learned the power of having an inspiring vision and the skills to direct and redirect attention to create success.
I was asked to lead a volunteer team to organize a conference for 100 people. At first I was reluctant… it was someone else’s idea and all I could see were obstacles. The venue that was suggested was new, we’d have to have a different venue for the lunch, we’d need to make it a full day conference not the usual half day, there was no easy parking. There were so many unknowns!
Then I visited the conference venue and loved it! Someone I knew in the town gave me lots of ideas about where we could do lunch and the idea started taking shape. And that is when I got enthusiastic and that’s when I could lead the team!
We got started. There were a lot of tasks. We had to get a lot of people involved. A few times during the preparations I found myself thinking…Oh this is so much work, why are we doing this, and I could have got stuck in that idea and then I realized I wanted this and I was actually enjoying myself.
And then the day came. The sun shone for us, the fall colors were beautiful, 100 people attended and everything came together. The team worked hard that day and our guests really enjoyed themselves. The day was a success!
After the event I sat down, exhausted but happy. I contemplated how come this project was a success and fun.
Having a vision played a huge part. We had a vision that started as a skeleton of an idea and filled out as more people got involved and built different pieces…the lunch venue, how we could make a bare room into a room for the lunch, what our theme was, what the workshops for the day could be, who the workshop leaders could be, how we could tackle the parking issue. And then people gradually took responsibility for different pieces until the day when all the moving pieces came together.
The sustained effort that we put in was really important. There were a lot of unknowns that we had to get information and advice on. How much would this piece cost? Could we afford to do that? Would people pay for that? Would we sell enough tickets? And through all this we were good at directing our attention. We kept our attention and efforts focused on things that mattered, the things that we could do something about and not on the things that we couldn’t control like the weather. A couple of weeks before the event we didn’t have many registrations and we could have started panicking. A colleague told me her recent experience of attending two conferences where most of the registrations came in during the 48 hours before the event! We redirected our attention away from the panic and back to the goal of 100 registrants. We kept up our marketing efforts and then the registrations started coming in.
I learned the power of a vision and how an inspiring vision can carry me through! I learned the benefits of asking for advice and help with the multitude of tasks. I learned the benefits of believing that we’d find the solution and that people would come through on their promises. I learned you need sustained the effort to create the vision. I learned the power of directing attention to the important things.
How could you apply this to the things you’d like to create?
I’ve been building these skills by doing The Avatar® Course. If you’re interested in discovering how you could improve your skills, please get in touch.