Wednesday, August 15, 2007

All sheets to the wind...

Have you ever heard the phrase "...all sheets (or three-sheets) to the wind?" Although the three-sheets image is used in reference to a variety of things, the term all or three-sheets to the wind actually comes from sailing. A sailor's dream and greatest exhiliration is when the wind is strong, but not overwhelming, and when the sails (i.e. sheets) are all out into the wind. It is in these moments when the efficiency of the sails, the boat, and the sailors are all at their peak - truly exhilirating.

Well, I've decided that Qatar is probably my "all sheets to the wind" time. Since I announced the decision to join the Qatar Foundation staff on Monday morning, I've had moments when I felt very confident and others when I pondered the possibility that I was over-running the capacity of my boat. Then I revert back to the fact that everyone who works for the Qatar Foundation and Education City is "all sheets to the wind" and how incredible it will be to join them.

One of the other things that I've realized over the last couple of days is that, besides my "all sheets to the wind" experience, I have become a quintessential example of Deeper Learning in Leadership. It's actually kind of scarey because I feel that something happened as I conceived of and wrote the book. It transformed and clarified my thinking in ways that made me aware that maybe there was more than I'm presently doing to make a difference through higher education. And, like the "calling forth" of the presence experience (which I describe in Deeper Learning in Leadership), new awareness emerged, I began to talk and write about it, and it eventually took form in the Qatar Foundation possibility and decision. I don't mean to become overly mystical, spiritual or abstract but this really was profound. I think the process of seeing, sensing, presencing, and now beginning to enact are what has been happening.

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