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Crafting Your Moment of Truth

As a Creativity and Growth Executive Coach, I am part of many different forums. Recently on CreativeMornings, the prompt shared for the month of November is "What is Truth?" What does truth mean to you? How do you know what is true? As a company member of their CreativeGuild, I am inspired by the creators and designers that understand that life is much more interesting when it is unpredictable. I've been aware that today more than any other time in my life, leaders are struggling with the most basic questions of veracity. As a leadership coach, I've observed what we know oftens obscures what we don't know. We confuse what we know with truth. By embracing what we know in balance with what we don't know lends clarity and can often lead to moments of enlightenment.

The prompt made me think of one of the exercises I do with individual leaders and with teams to get to new insights. I call the process "Ransom Poetry." Personally, it was my safety net during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic. Think of it as a ransom note that can help define culture, clarify what is known by a leader or a team, uncover the unknowns, and it can be used to identify gaps or help leaders and teams "mind the gap" as they build strategy or growth plans. Here's how it works:

  • Take old newspapers, magazines and junk mail and cut out phrases that relate to the topic you are working on. (For this example I used the prompt, "What is Truth?") Choose phrases or words that resonate with you. Don't overthink it and don't spend more than 5-10 minutes cutting out the words or phrases. Don't forget about including punctuation marks.

  • Take a clean piece of paper and a glue stick. Assemble the phrases or words that relate to the following prompts: What do you know? How do you know it? How do you know it is true? What don't you know? How could you find out? How do you know it is true?

  • The last line of your poem should be one of resolution or inquiry. What insights did you have or when you put the known and unknown together, what question(s) remains?

Here is my ransom poem on the prompt "What is Truth?"

Ransom poetry
Truth You're here to tell a different story, guided by 2-step verification: Gods and Monsters -- Electrifying and shattering. Betting on your values, where cowboys make each minute count & everything old has been discovered anew. But in an era when facts are too often disdained what's next? Speak and Spellcasting? A gift for the price of loyalty? That couldn't possibly be true, I thought, yet the border between sense and nonsense is poorly guarded. Truth is a laugh/cry subject. As I started researching, I realized, Creativity is a strategy.

Break the Tape Leadership helps leaders unleash creativity and potential in themselves and the organizations they lead to generate meaningful momentum. (And sometimes we write ransom notes.)

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