Why I Thrive in a Grey World

Like many Canadians I am following the craziness of trying to get a pipeline built in this country. I’ll leave it to others to critique the politics, approvals, consultation and court rulings. My interest is in the zealousness in which some environmentalists oppose the Trans Mountain Pipeline. It got me thinking about individuals and groups who are so rigid in their beliefs that they refuse to entertain alternative points of view, and a world of black and white is preferable to a world of grey.

I recall getting into arguments with my more learned Brother when I was younger over some ill-thought opinion. Even as my Brother deftly destroyed my points I needed to be right. I’d go down swinging, asserting my position knowing full well I had been TKOed. Thankfully maturity and life experience released me from my need to be right. I still have opinions and in some cases strong opinions, but I am open to influence. My life and my relationships are richer for it.

I get excited when someone changes my mind or challenges my views. I feel like my world has expanded and my knowledge has deepened. I like complexities because pondering them builds self-awareness and broadens my thinking. It makes for better decision-making, discovery and progress. It’s freeing as opposed to confining. I would be interested in how some of our provincial NDP MLAs, who once so vocally opposed oil sands development, feel now that they are dealing with the complexities of balancing economics, environmental stewardship and providing needed services to Albertans. Politics aside, I hope that regardless of the outcome of next year’s election they are changed by the experience of governing and thrive in a world of grey.

I wish that for anyone who cannot and will not see beyond their own point of view. Imagine the possibilities and opportunities for growth if we would open our minds and truly listen to what others are saying. We may still harbour our opinions, but we are acknowledging the world isn’t black and white and we are willing to explore the complexities of a grey world. We may even get a pipeline built.

For more information on Executive Coaching or workshops related to innovation, change resiliency, leadership and team-building message me through LinkedIn or email me at Tracy@bravebirdsstudio.com.