How are you being pickpocket today as a leader?
As I stepped into the cool sea on a hot day in Spain on my holiday, it sent tingling feelings through my body as each peart received the cool water. As I lay on my back, my mind rested in the vast blue sky above and the gentle waves of the seas rocked my body. I flipped an internal switch and let my vacation email response do the hard work.
The days merged into a simple routine of swim, eat, rest and it felt like one long seemless day. I took a short walk passing the shops and restaurant that had been home for the past days and returned to the bus stop to leave. The bus came, and I put my luggage under the bus and then turned to check it was all okay.
It a split second I looked down towards my man bag across my shoulder and it was open and unzipped. I looked up and saw a man very close to me, jacket over hand and speaking to somebody.
I checked quickly nothing gone. Phew!
I turned around and looked the man square in the eyes and jumped on the bus as I was next in the queue. I sat down and noticed the shock of what happened; i had a similar tingle as the one I had in entering the cool sea and it had a different mental label. Thoughts bounded around about nearly being pickpocketed.
Observing the thoughts allowed me to turn towards gratitude for that moment of awareness and all the support I had as a monk to recognise awareness; my mind settled and compassion arose for the pickpocket.
In some ways the attention of the pickpocket has also been trained our intention was different. My monks monks training was conditioning the mind/body to be self aware and then recognise awareness itself, to live an ethical life.
When I started off as Buddhist monk my ego was like a pickpocket, it would steal my joy, my ability to live more authentically, to connection, empathy. I see the same pick-pocketing going on with executive I coach and the coaches in super-vison I see.
Without self-awareness we can easily be deceived into doing what is right for others and not for ourselves, become unethical, whether that from an internal voice or external demand. I found it is this willingness to explore our inner world with another which both for myself and clients, allows us to recognise the way we get pick-pocked by our habits and allows the arising of compassion, gratitude, ethical behaviour and recognition of peace itself.
Wishing you a day of noticing, the coolness of awareness and the aliveness that brings.