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Bringing Our Visions to Life

SEED Stretch


SEED Enliven


SEED Ennoble


SEED Discover


There comes a time when all our big dreams need to be brought down to earth, mingled with reality, and framed as an achievable vision. Right?

SEED Discover
Dream to Reality

Yes to that. And quickly as possible. Who doesn’t yearn to see their vision realized?  Yesterday. 

fingers pointing at the moon
Stretch Vision


We must continually stretch our view of what’s possible. Hence, a word of caution: 


Do not move too quickly to articulate a vision statement, much less to create plans for making it operational.  Don’t sweat the language, yet.  Especially when
working with your team and first catching glimpses of new possibilities,
we want our words merely to be like “fingers pointing at the moon.”




Because as soon as we put specific words to it, we will be
limiting our vision to what we already know
how to do. 


As David Whyte has said:


“Whatever we can
plan, is too small
for us to live.”


Building on the visioning activity offered in the January Tip of the Month, we recommend inviting the team to approach this follow up session as a transition from visioning to planning. 


There is much that we can accomplish in this space between the dream and reality.  Especially since our interest is to reach a new destination.  We are aiming for results that have previously eluded us, right?  This means we’ll need to take a different path than we have travelled before to get there. 


You know the drill:


“To get a place that we do not know, we must go by a way that we do not know.”

                                                                                                                                 ~T.S. Eliot


Here is SEED’s equation for success: 

Shared Values

Shared Vision

Ongoing Shared Reflection


Shared Vision plus Shared Values multiplied by ongoing Shared Reflection equals Social Change

When the vision is locally owned and rooted in many diverse inputs, we are guaranteed many hands to implement it. 


To the contrary, when one person proscribes the destination and delegates, it’s an entirely different project.  People don’t show up; a few folks get worn out doing all the work, and the results are not remotely as meaningful, lasting, nor relevant to the diverse communities we want the vision to impact.  



Has your vision been enlivened with the team’s core values? There are many ways to discover shared values. At SEED we also like to draw from the “being values” that Abraham Maslow developed in his work.  Here’s one simple exercise: 


Maslow "Being Values"

Maslow "Being Values"




We’d love to hear how this works for you:

Invite the team to select just two values that will really power up your work this year.  For example, let’s say that one value you choose is “simplicity.” 


Let’s hear from each member of our team: 


 When have you experienced simplicity in a powerful way?  


Invite people to briefly share a personal story in pairs. This will begin to bring the promise of simplicity to life in the room. 


Now let’s go one step further and get it in our bodies.  Invite the team:  Stand up and BE simplicity, i.e., pretend that you are simplicity. 


 What changed in your body when you became simplicity?  Did your shoulders 
 relax?  Did you breathing shift? What?  


Everyone can be seated for the final question: 


 Imagine that ‘Simplicity” walks into the room to advise us about how we 
 should implement  our vision. 
What would Simplicity say to us? 

Repeat the exercise for an additional "being value" the team wants to keep alive in your work this year. Take notes to inform our upcoming planning session.

Tip of The Month – ARCHIVE


April 2017 – Are We Dancing Yet?

March 2017 – What Is Going On Here and How Can We Work With It?

February 2017 –  Are We Listening for What Is Trying to Happen?

January 2017  Designing Your Own Website, Without A Designer



December 2016 – Are We Facing Our Fears?

November 2016 – Have You Identified Your "Strategic Who?"

October 2016 – How Are You Watering Your Own Garden?

September 2016 – What Did You Do On Your Summer Vacation?

August 2016 – Shall We Dance?

July 2016 – Creating a Culture of Philanthropy

June 2016 – What Is Your Secret Sauce? 

May 2016 – Changing the World and Reporting It, One Butterfly at a Time

April 2016 – The Right Tool For The Right Job

March 2016 – Listening For What is Trying to Happen

February 2016 – How Do You Get to Carnegie Hall?

January 2016 – New Year. New Possibilities. Get On It. 


December 2015 – Trust: A Gift that Keeps on Giving

November  2015 – A Team that Reflects Together ... Rocks

October 2015 – Are You Contributing from Your Sweet Spot?

September 2015 – What Did You Do on Your Summer Vacation?

August 2015 – Emptying the Page to Empty the Mind

July 2015 – Emptying the Mind for New Insights

June 2015 – What do we do when our beautiful plans get derailed?

May 2015 – Who will Bring Your Plans To Life?

April 2015 – Planning with the Magic of Kairos Time

March 2015 – Vision Infused-Planning

February 2015 – Bringing Our Visions to Life

January 2015 – Visioning: We'll See It When We Believe It



December 2014 – Busting Out of the Habit of Critique

November 2014 – Enrolling Allies

October 2014 – Achieve Your Mission

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