2013-12-28

Out with the old. In with the new!

Have you ever felt like you've been in a cycle of replaying or reliving experiences from the past that sometimes lead down a (hopefully short) road of negative feelings, reactions, or ineffective patterns that you regret?  The other day I overheard someone talking about re-creating an event.  That sparked a conversation between me and my brother about the potential pitfalls of re-creation.

I was thinking about this in the context of a Christmas party my parents have held for the past 45+ years at their home.  Food tastes and heavy hors d'oeuvre recipes have evolved.  Kids have grown, matured, had children of their own, and maybe even moved away from New Orleans.  Family elders (grandmothers, grandfathers, great aunts & uncles, ...) are now fondly remembered ancestors.  The eight track tapes of Christmas music have been replaced by streaming digital channels offering thousands of musical options.  The gathering consequently looks, sounds, smells, tastes, and feels different.  Yet there is resistance to accepting even the obvious changes.

There are usually good intentions behind the suggestion to re-create something like a party.  Unfortunately, re-creating an event can set high expectations.  High expectations can lead to unintended disappointment if they're not managed well.  That's a lot of effort, isn't it?

People grow and change.  Wouldn't it serve us better to recognize that what we're working on today is just a tribute to the original?  Since you know deep down that your party can't still look and sound like it did many moons ago, what kind of party do you choose to create now?  What do you imagine could happen if, instead of re-creating something, you now choose to examine your scenario through a lens of co-creation?  Wouldn't it feel amazing to know you're enlisting the assistance of someone who fully supports you as you take steps to bring to life what you want to achieve?  You may already know someone you can turn to who backs you, strengthens you, holds you accountable to your word, encourages you, or keeps you in your highest light.  And how phenomenal does it feel to realize that you can also become proficient at creating those positive transformations of your own accord?

As we approach the crossroads of the new year, I'm committing to a cognitive cleansing on several levels.  For one, I realize that it's time to move out of the business of re-creation in order to simply create new experiences in collaboration with colleagues, friends, family, other coaches, and my own intuition. Some of those ventures may remind me of other steps I've taken on the roads I've traveled, but we all recognize at this point that they stand on their own as unique.  Would you be willing join me in this endeavor now that we're about to cross the threshold into 2014?

Since we've considered a few options for how you can create new experiences in your life, I'll ask: What will you bring into existence as the new year dawns?  How are you bringing it about?  What support systems do you have in your environment?

If you've decided now that you want to take an active role in co-creating your 2014, send me a message to find out how you and I can work together so you can take stock of what you've got inside, clear out the corners of your mind, and discover & realize your own dreams.

Glossary

Re-create

According to Merriam-Webster, to re-create is "to make (something from the past) exist or seem to exist again : to create (something) again".  This is related to, yet subtly distinct in pronunciation and meaning from recreate or recreation, as in "to give new life or freshness to : refresh".

Co-create

The Collins English Dictionary states that to co-create (spelled in that resource without the hyphen) means "to create jointly".  Merriam-Webster, by extrapolation from the various meanings of "co-", co-creation might characterize the act of creating together or creating in association with another. 

Create

In order to more fully understand what re-creating or co-creating something might be, it's valuable to remind ourselves what it means to create something.  Merriam-Webster's online dictionary lists the definition of create as "to make or produce (something) : to cause (something new) to exist : to cause (a particular situation) to exist : to produce (something new, such as a work of art) by using your talents and imagination".