The four directions


Last Monday, I along with 5 others, engaged in a unique reflective exercise called The Four Directions Sculpture. I learned of this activity at the Authentic Leadership in Action program through the Shamballah Institute back in 2008. It was taught to us by the ever-enlightening Otto Scharmer. I found great success with it later that year when working with the Organic Food Council of Manitoba on a strategic plan toward financial sustainability.

The activity has you “sculpt” your current situation using objects and then view your “sculpture” from the four directions – at which point, you are asked a series of questions to stimulate reflection. The whole point is that you eventually change your “sculpture” to reflect your new found discoveries – and model your emerging future. Every time I use this tool – either personally or professionally – the results are profound. Interestingly enough, many participants tend to be very skeptical when engaging in this. Before they begin, they can’t see the value in it. But because it is so concrete, it can surface some amazing revelations.

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