Rebekah Marler describes some of the “IT” she’s experienced at Kayser Ridge AND Polarity Thinking at Kayser Ridge. Life is good…Thanks for the beautiful post for Cliff’s Notes, Rebekah — and for who you are.
In March of 2010 I sat on a comfy red couch that could be considered center stage in Kayser Ridge’s ongoing showcase of nature’s majesty. The grandeur of the great room, with it’s soaring windows that expose the heavens and rich logs that root us to the earth was a perfect setting for me to learn with others how to unpack the seemingly unresolvable tensions that define all of our lives.
In a few short hours I had a new lens for experiencing the reality of my life’s experience in profoundly different ways. I finally had the following:
- An explanation for the radical pendulum swings in the educational system I had spent my life and career in
- A lens which clarified my immediate professional challenges and an approach to action step my way to observable improvements in performance
- A set of practices and tools to map my own individual growth and progress on any journey I ever take in the future
In two short days, the way things occurred to me on every level of both my life and the educational system were transformed, and I could untangle the future-limiting language I and those around me were tangled up in by using the tools of polarity thinking to move artfully toward the future we all desire. One year and 8 months later, I sat on the same couch with 8 educators from vastly different geographical locations, backgrounds, settings and organizations. Everyone who showed up is driven by the same hope-filled commitments, and challenged by the same tensions that are being leveraged poorly throughout our educational system writ large and in many instances in the places we show up to work each day. The commonality of experiencing poorly managed polarities in our organizations and personal leadership drove us to spend the weekend considering artful ways we can influence our own lives, work, and the larger systems of which we are inextricable parts through polarity thinking. We all left with the ability to see, map, and tap polarities, and with the desire to continue our learning as a group of educators committed to developing the most effective ways we can individually and collectively use both-and thinking to shape and support everything we do in learning communities across America.