Yesterday was values day at the Foundations of Coaching course I’m teaching. It’s the day we talk about personal values, what they are and why they matter. Because coaching is an action-learning process, we talked for a while and then I sent the students into the world with a renewed awareness of their values and a challenge to find concrete ways to express them.

What the students do I usually do too, so I chose the value of beauty and set off in search of some flowers to beautify the classroom. I headed down the elevator and into the underground city. I searched the shops along the way but there was not a flower shop to be found. Instead I discovered a Massage Centre with a 10 minute foot massage on special offer. Fortunately I value sensuality as much as beauty and surprises even more, so I whipped off my socks. Ten minutes later I put my socks back on and resumed my quest. I wandered through the food court and up a staircase, then followed the sound of falling water to a small garden in an hotel atrium. I settled into one of the padded wicker rocking chairs and put up my still tingling toes to soak up the scene. I’d been there maybe five minutes when a woman walked by wheeling a cart full of Bird of Paradise. I got up and followed her to the end of the corridor, where I found my florist, picked up a perfect white orchid and brought it home in time to debrief the student’s assignment.

Have I mentioned that I love what I do?

Three morals in this story:

1. It’s good to have a goal.
2. But not to be so goal focused that you are blind to the pleasures along the way.
3. You can search a long time to find what you are looking for, or you can park yourself in a busy traffic corridor and wait until it comes to you.

Yours with creativity and imagination,

p.s. My search string when looking for a photo to go with this post was “Paradise in the public domain” 🙂

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