On rules

This piece is not going to advocate for a form of anarchy but rather explore the insidious nature of how our attempts to control with rules can tend towards the opposite. A rule is an abstraction and usually an attempt to ensure conformity to a standard: driving on the left, working between 9 and 5, […]

On framing change

My original COVID-19 change framework was a simple attempt to help track what’s going on in the aftermath of a crisis event and offer some potential routes forward once things start to settle down a bit. I captured this in the idea that it’s not as simple as stopping what you’ve started and starting what […]

On starting points for change

By definition the status quo holds. The way things are settles into patterns of conformity and repetition, defaults and norms. The here-and-now of our lives processes with daily, weekly, monthly rituals and rhythms. It’s an effort to keep challenging and enquiring into the possibilities of different. It takes bandwidth to see the opportunity, effort to […]

On targets, again

Partway into year two of Covid, I set myself a target to run 100 miles a month. Not a bad idea, on the face of it, helping me to maintain my Lockdown-induced habits. Prior to this, a good month meant I was running 70 miles. From March 2020 I’ve been clearing 100. It’s a pretty […]

On understanding performance

How can the framework that I developed in order to help track and respond to the changes precipitated by crisis offer a new way to think about how we track individual goals and performance? I had practiced my archery as much as I could during the winter months. I was fitter than ever, I had […]

On the wisdom of Mavericks

As we turn our minds to the work that will be needed following the global pandemic of Covid-19, the challenges that confront society remain significant: from preventing the climate crisis to tackling racial justice, improving mental health to ending poverty. We need new ways of thinking and acting in the world. What can we learn […]

On comfort zones and expectations

The Arizona Cardinals, the Americal Football team I support, are the best team in the National Football League at the mid-point of the season, having only lost one game by the narrowest of margins. The 2018 team were, by contrast, historically bad in virtually every statistical category, winning barely three games and ending up with […]

On not rushing through transitions (part 1)

There was a moment, sitting nervously high up on the edge of the gantry from which I was to jump, when I realised I couldn’t reach the trapeze. I had to launch myself forwards, focused on the bar, and anticipate catching it, quite literally letting go of the safe and familiar to leap forward, confident(ish) […]

On dreamspace

Some things can’t be rushed. We know this. The maturation of a wine, the build of a three hour NFL game or a five day test match towards its denouement, the germination and development of ideas, the growth of a forest or the development of a child. But today’s world seems to have been gaining speed […]

On transitions and loss (part 2)

Transitional periods are a mix of both letting go of the old and experimenting with the new. Relationships, habits, patterns, behaviours, identities, ideas… It is not simply the case that a transition is a clean switch between two known states, the before and the after. Usually the after can’t be known. It arrives after a […]

On the markers of distance travelled

There’s a phenomenon when you take a new journey whereby the journey out seems to take forever compared to the homeward leg. It seems to be true however you’re travelling, so long as the route home is the same as the route out. I remember as a kid being surprised how quickly we seemed to […]