By Roshana Ariel
The way we communicate with others and with ourselves ultimately determines the quality of our lives. — Tony Robbins
EDITOR’S NOTE: The above picture has been Photoshopped.
Roshana here with my monthly look at Sunrise Ranch from whatever perspective I happen to be taking at any particular spot in space-time. This particular space-time spot is coming from the perspective of communication in leadership.
As a new member of the Leadership Program here on the Ranch, I’m often challenged to take different perspectives. While I whine about the amount of homework we’re given, I find that each assignment is interesting in a way that I hadn’t expected.
For example, last week, we were asked to choose a perspective from which to speak in our conversations with others all week. We could choose one of 12 perspectives, outlined in the familiar EDL (Emissaries of Divine Light) Sun Cross quadrants. There are three perspectives in each of the four quarters: Spiritual to Emotional, Spiritual to Physical, Spiritual to Mental; Emotional to Spiritual, Emotional to Physical and Emotional to Mental, and so on.
I chose Spiritual to Emotional, the Loving perspective, for the past week. The most important thing I learned was that in order for me to provide a loving perspective to those with whom I’m speaking, I need to experience that love in myself first, and from that place of love and acceptance I can radiate love to another person.
Wouldn’t you know, this exercise came in pretty handy this past week. It so happened that I had a couple of personal conversations that were rather difficult, even painful. Instead of retaliating with anger and resentment, I was able to say, “Well, my assignment this week is to speak from the Sovereign (Spiritual) perspective toward the Lover (Emotional) perspective.” I was able to completely defuse the situations with love and understanding. It was surprising for both of us.
Of course, first I had to do my own work of accepting love from the Spiritual realm for myself so that I could stand with confidence and fearlessness in the first place. That took some doing.
I spent some time this past week just sitting and imagining the love of the Universe filling me, washing over me, relaxing and calming me, and finally radiating out from me.
I should mention here that I have a few triggers relating to words like “God” and “Sovereign” and ideas such as “God loves me.” I’ve inhabited many spiritual realms in my life, from evangelical, fundamentalist Christian to atheist, and I have to say I feel more comfortable on the atheist end of the spectrum. The idea of letting “God’s love” fill me feels rather foreign. Still, there’s a longing for and a rational understanding around the idea of a Universal Intelligence, a Universal Energy, that is available to us, and exercising the muscle that lets that love flow in me and out to others is not only desirable and enjoyable but practical.
So my mostly atheistic brain occasionally allows me to dabble in experiencing the Universal Love that gives us life.
I definitely feel gratitude for my incredible good fortune in life. … And I spend some time wondering whom, exactly, I should be thanking for all the good things I daily enjoy.
Who would have thought that I would find a community so full of loving residents, and a job that uses all of my abilities, focused on the fascinating topics of consciousness and creativity and empowerment, in a beautiful, peaceful valley? I imagined such a place, hoped for such a place, but I didn’t think I’d actually find a place that so fully satisfies those imaginations. Truly, I am “living the dream.”
Communication is the real work of leadership. — Nitin Nohria
Now that I have Spiritual-to-Emotional communication under my belt, I have a new perspective from which to practice speaking this week. I’ve chosen the Mental-to-Spiritual perspective.
This is the perspective of imagination in service to the highest good, the Magician archetype serving the Sovereign. I’m looking forward to the conversations I will have this week, as I’m a huge fan of optimism, which makes every endeavor more enjoyable and productive. And imagining the best in every situation is optimism on steroids.
Like right now, while I’m waiting for someone who said he would be here an hour ago for our date tonight: I’m imagining that he’s become completely caught up in buying me flowers—the most exotic flowers he could get his hands on, in the farthest corner of Colorado—that’s why he’s late! And, of course, he couldn’t text me because that would spoil the surprise.
Positive imagination: That’s leadership, baby!
And once I learn that there are no surprise flowers, that he simply forgot or lost track of the time, well, I’ll have to work on imagining that some greater purpose was served.
One thing’s for sure: Leadership takes lots of practice.