Author Archives: Ted Lord

Ted Lord
Senior Partner, The Giving Practice
Exercises Poetry

Use Poetry as a Reflective Practice

Have you ever wanted to help….

•         Shift a group’s thinking from the tactical to the strategic?
•         Add the voice or perspective of the client/recipient to deliberations?
•         Reconnect a planning conversation to its original intention?

Poetry gives us permission and access to go through, under or around topics that are resistant to direct approach. You can use poetry to provide the spaciousness and distance that invites curiosity and a different kind of conversation. Enjoy, use, and add to this selection of reflective poems to center yourself or to  open up discussion on a challenging topic with others.

I reached out to my colleagues to see what poems they use as a reflective practice prompt.

Click here to see the poems they shared and why.

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The Dawn of System Leadership by Peter Senge

In “The Dawn of System Leadership” by Peter Senge and his colleagues reflect on the three core capabilities that system leaders develop in order to foster collective leadership: 1) the ability to see the larger system; 2) fostering reflection and more generative conversations; and 3) shifting the collective focus from reactive problem solving to co-creating the future.

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Achieving Mindfulness at Work, No Meditation Cushion Required by Matthew E. May

A recent New York Times article on mindfulness references the concept of the impartial spectator, an idea first introduced in the 18th century by Adam Smith. Smith wrote that we all have access to an “impartial and well-informed spectator.” This spectator’s form of attention puts us in the present and gives us a more unbiased perspective — much the way our attention is focused when we travel to a new place, noticing details that the locals take for granted.

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