Curator of the Good and Useful

May 14th, 2015   •   Comments Off on Curator of the Good and Useful   

by Kate Harper

curateMy client had a tough decision – go on the last business trip before retirement with a very special colleague or stay put and keep an eye on a very high profile project.

“Choose your answer,” I coached him. “Now imagine it is 10 minutes from now. How do you feel? Now move forward 10 months. How do you feel? How about 10 years from now?”

He got his answer. “Great tool,” he said.

“It’s not mine. I stole it from Suzy Welch.”

“Fantastic. I’ve never had an original thought, but I’m great at recognizing them.”

That got me thinking. I’ve always been in awe of people who create something – those with a message, philosophy, or good and useful tool. I’m sheepish that everything I have to offer has been learned from someone else. My client’s words stopped me short. What if the eye for something good and useful is a talent? Indeed one of my gifts is the ability to find, absorb, and share things that are genuinely helpful to my clients. I hereby claim my gift. I am a curator of helpful perspectives, practices, and tools.

Please join me for my first curated exhibition: one perspective, one practice, and one tool.

One Perspective

There is an opportunity in every situation

Before I became a coach I held a pretty powerful and positive perspective – there is a solution for every problem. I was the master of seeing things gone wrong and finding ways to fix. This made me very good at my high tech job. However in coaching we aren’t fixing people! Instead we are stewards for transformation. Enter a new perspective – there is an opportunity in every situation. Rather than ask what needs to be fixed, ask “What is the hidden opportunity here? What greater good can happen? What needs to or wants to shift?” then partner with the potential and let the opportunity be the source for action. Alan Seale calls this leading from potential; it is at the heart of his teaching and now at the heart of how I coach and live. Read more about Alan’s potential-based approach at Alan’s blog.

One Practice

Start meditating using guided meditations

My life changed when I started meditating. I became aware of and less entangled in my thoughts, grew more compassionate to myself and others, and rewired my brain for happiness. Getting started was not easy. Using a guided meditation made it easier. Back then I bought tapes (yes cassette tapes!) by Jon Kabat-Zinn. Today there is the free insight mediation timer app. Search for insight timer or go to It comes with 172 guided meditations varying in length from one minute to one hour. Tara Brach is one of my favorite teachers. Try her A Pause for Presence meditation.

One Tool

The rule of 10-10-10

Suzy Welch calls the rule of 10-10-10 a little life transformation tool. For any decision – small, large, personal, or business, ask yourself three questions: “What are the consequences of my decision in 10 minutes? In 10 months? And in 10 years?” I’ve added my own twist to her tool. In addition to thinking about the consequences, bring in the wisdom of your gut. Imagine yourself 10 minutes from now. How do you feel about the decision? Now move forward 10 months. How do you feel? Now 10 years. What have you discovered? Try it on your next decision. Click here to read the original article where I first spotted the rule of 10-10-10.

There you have it – one perspective, one practice, and one tool. If you would like another good and useful tool full of helpful practices, check out our book and card set: Pause: 52 Ways to Shift Any Outcome in Less Than a Minute.

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