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Notes from the Nexus

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Presence in Complexity Series #9: Investing in Embodied Capacity

16th May, 2017 / 1 Comment / in Blog, Series / by Doug Silsbee

Complexity requires embodying new ways to lead. The problem is, our lightning-fast cognition says “good enough” way before our nervous system has embodied a new capability. Physiological change and cognitive processing proceed at very different timescales. A sound strategy for development requires components for both. We must feed our agile and impatient cognition. And,...

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Presence in Complexity Series #8: Scaling Awareness

27th April, 2017 / 0 Comments / in Blog, Series / by Doug Silsbee

Complexity is unpredictable. Our world responds to good intentions and common sense actions with perverse and unintended consequences. Our noblest efforts fail to accomplish what we believe we should be able to accomplish. This is of course a huge challenge to our sense of self! And, it’s not personal! Complexity is actually normal Complexity is actually normal. Even when...

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Presence in Complexity Series #7: Resilience: De-Coupling State from Context

5th April, 2017 / 1 Comment / in Blog, Series / by Doug Silsbee

Directing attention instantly and directly modifies our inner condition. We live in extraordinary times. It is a new form of agency to begin to discover that we can affect our mood, our sense of ourselves, our outlook on life, and our thoughts simply by directing our attention where we choose. What do you mean? No drugs, no therapy, no decades of self-improvement reading?...

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Presence in Complexity Series #6: Leadership Presence in Complexity

8th February, 2017 / 6 Comments / in Blog, Series / by Doug Silsbee

Leadership presence is the means by which our internal feeling states are shared into our relationships. Leadership presence is the means by which our internal feeling states are shared into our relationships. Consider this thought experiment. You are walking down the sidewalk alone, at night. Someone is coming the other way on the same sidewalk, a hundred yards away. There’s...

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Presence in Complexity Series #5: Embodying Congruent States

9th January, 2017 / 3 Comments / in Blog, Series / by Doug Silsbee

To the extent that the system around us being chaotic or fragmented means that we are chaotic and fragmented internally, we have lost the boundaries that distinguish us from the system. Wow, what a world we live in! It’s a New Year. And, we face a level of risk and uncertainty that I’ve not experienced since the Cuban Missile Crisis. My father is in the hospital, facing...

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Presence in Complexity Series #4: Resourcing with Presence in Challenging Times

13th December, 2016 / 2 Comments / in Blog, Series / by Doug Silsbee

We live in very unpredictable times. And, this has profound effects on our moment-by-moment experience. Complexity, for leaders who are accustomed to making things happen, is an uncomfortable space. Lack of predictability can trigger us in ways that reduce our resourcefulness when we need it most. As a ready example, note your own reaction to the recent US election. What has...

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Presence in Complexity Series #3: What Does the Body Have to Do With It?

30th November, 2016 / 5 Comments / in Blog, Series / by Doug Silsbee

Everything, really! Our body structures our interpretations of the world around us, generates our reactions to things around us, and determines the actions we take. Attention in the body is the key to staying resourceful when the world isn’t cooperating. It is how we can bring bringing awareness and choice into our reactions to the world. These urges drive our relationships,...

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Presence in Complexity Series #2: Identity on the Line

16th November, 2016 / 4 Comments / in Blog, Series / by Doug Silsbee

Our responses in complexity are often determined, in ways that are both debilitating and invisible to us, by our perspective We experience situations as difficult when they call into question our sense of who we are. Among most of the people I know, domestically and overseas, there is a sense of outrage about last week’s election. Among others, there is presumably a sense of...

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Presence in Complexity Series #1: Reading Our Context

4th November, 2016 / 14 Comments / in Blog, Series / by Doug Silsbee

Because we don’t know how to navigate this terrain, we tend to double down on what we’ve always done in an effort to re-establish our inner sense of a competent self. It’s most people’s experience that the world we live in is changing rapidly. We experience it as “VUCA,” a term coined by the acronym-favoring military at the end of the 80’s to describe the...

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