The ads on the underground platform this morning were all playing the same mood music. Amongst the latest movie releases were: yoga for everyone, mindfulness classes, philosophy courses to regain peace of mind…and the Samaritans.
Wrap-around support for maintaining a calm take on life is clearly available.
In the current social and political climate, with such turbulence and upheaval spreading around the world from Trumpton, anything that soothes and slows appears attractive.
(Should the words ‘Trump State Visit’ appear together in the same sentence?). Only a fool would take against calmness.
In a training session this week, I witnessed a dynamic that I hadn’t seen (noticed?) before. The idea of the session was to use a sophisticated game format to throw surprises and left-field happenings at the (excellent) team, to help them consciously experience, and learn more about, their styles and responses in difficult and changing circumstances.
Calmness was clearly an asset, and resulted in a pretty much stress-free experience for what was clearly a top-level team.
But something else happened, too. The calmness drew other behaviours and consequences in its wake as the exercise progressed.
It began when a surprise event early in the exercise was consciously, and judiciously, ignored; then a deadline was calmly missed; later came a ‘ we probably don’t need to be concerned about that’ response to a challenge.
Stress free, yes. But…… purpose and drive began to ebb away too. And it became impossible to re-kindle that sense of purpose.
So, bizarrely, I’m currently thinking that the better response to all that is happening in the world is to be ready to leap out of the calmness cocoon.
Hit the ground sidling by all means.
But be ready to lose your cool, set aside your calm, and start running.