choice Magazine

Beyond the Page ~ Janet Harvey: The Antidote to Knowing…Cultivate wonder in your life.

May 20, 2021 Janet Harvey
choice Magazine
Beyond the Page ~ Janet Harvey: The Antidote to Knowing…Cultivate wonder in your life.
Show Notes Transcript

Janet is a coach, an author, an educator, and a speaker. She invites people to be the cause of a life that most matters and an early adopter for creating a coaching-centered workplace.

In this episode, I talk with Janet about her article published in our December 2020 issue titled “The Antidote to Knowing…Cultivate wonder in your life.”

I would love to know your thoughts on Janet’s interview. Comment below with what some of your takeaways were.

Watch the interview here.

Full article can be found here -
Invite Change -

Grab your free issue of choice Magazine here -

Speaker 1 (00:00):

There we go welcome everyone. This is the meet the author series. I'm Gary Schleifer. I'm the publisher of choice, the magazine of professional coaching and your host today. Meet the author. It's an opportunity to hear more from the author of an article published in choice magazine and an opportunity to have a more in-depth discussion about that article today, we're meeting with Janet Harvey. Janet Harvey is an a coach, an author and educator and speaker. She invites people to be the cause of a life that most matters in early adopter for creating a coaching centered workplace. Janet has worked with global organizations and teams of leaders within to establish a generative resilient and high-performance culture through a coaching approach to leading and managing success. Janet brings her executive and entrepreneurial experience as CEO or invite change leaders in sustainable excellence through a signature generative coaching and learning process for people process and systems called generative wellness.

Speaker 1 (01:12):

Janet is also the author of an newly released book invite change. Congratulations. Thank you. And I have to say a little bit about how I know Janet. So the, I know Janet segment, I know Janet from our volunteer work on the global board of the international coaching Federation. That was Oh, 13 years ago. I'm going to say I, I count Janet as one of my most important friends and colleagues and I say friends first because she comes to everything that she and I does from that place of love and caring. And then we get onto business and boy does this lady know no business Janet ice. I see you for years, I've watched how you built and developed and worked with invite change. And I always saying that whatever Janet's doing this year is what I at choice should be doing next year. So thank you for leading. Oh yeah, very much. It's like it. And it's not like we have those conversations where you tell me exactly what you're doing, but we get this global, you know, big picture conversation about, well, I'm on operational effectiveness this year and sales effectiveness this year and I'm like, Oh, and then I run off when I do that. And then she says something else and I run off

Speaker 2 (02:40):

And do that. So 

Speaker 1 (02:43):

So thank you for that for being a visionary leader in so many ways for the coaching industry profession for for coach training organizations, such as your own for us as human beings and the human potential movement is you're just like, you're my rockstar. So let's just, let's just put it out there. All right. So welcome. Welcome. Welcome. Thank you. And the article we're going to be talking about today is in the recent issue of choice called the antidote to knowing cultivate wonder in your life. Welcome Janet. Thank you for being here today.

Speaker 3 (03:31):

Well, it's an honor and a delight, and I don't say that lightly you know, sometimes when I'm being interviewed or asked to speak about something that I've written in, particularly with the book, boy, am I getting an education about how to do these things? It feels a little hubris is the word that comes to me and what I appreciate Gary, about your ability to hold greatness with humility. You've been my role model with that. When you think about what it's taken for you to bring choice magazine into the world, and you have been a steady beacon for people to write for people to read and learn together, and you've brought a tremendous global community together to see what's possible. All right, you're always looking out the front windshield, which is something I admire greatly. And clearly, you know, we're of like minds when it comes to that. And, and you also know something else that I want to say about you know, you can't ascribe all the success to me. Nobody does anything alone. Everything in life has done together and connection and belonging are in our DNA. It's part of our social imperative as humans and really our relationship to the planet. So when we start to think more systemically, we make different choices and that that's an underpinning. I think we'll talk about today. Why cultivating wonder is the antidote to knowing, okay.

Speaker 1 (05:02):

Yeah. Thank you. Well, I want to tell you, I, you know, in preparing for this meet the author series and rereading your article, I'm struck by one thing that really, I mean, it was what I did to get ready for today's call. So I'm already learning and I invite our audience to take a look, the ABC of coaching, artful, pause, breathe, and center. And I was doing that, you know, reading through that and doing that this morning. So I want to say, thank you for already giving us something. One of the things we pride ourselves on in choices, giving the reader something to do as a result of reading the article and I'm reminded of this too. And so then I want to ask it. So what brought on this conversation about wonder, what was the Genesis of this article

Speaker 3 (05:48):

In some ways the dentist's office was the other side of having written the book and I've had so many people ask me why after all these years, did you find the, write a book truthfully? It was because the team asked me to hold the collaboration again. Exactly. And they took a whole bunch of impediments out of the way. Well, we'll just self publish. It, don't worry about that. Well, you don't have to go the regular promotion mouth route, you know, we'll figure out how to, how to do things, to promote the book over time and, and right, because you have something to say and your message is important to get out there. And when I was all done with the writing, I realized, you know what, I've already won. Like I could feel that it was an essential expression of me and nothing else was required.

Speaker 3 (06:39):

So whatever happens from this point forward is icing on the cake. And, and I realized that the way that happened was because I hold it with wonder not experts, not you know, that the big complaint I hear from coaches all the time is one of two things, well, the client asked for X, but I know why it's better for them, but I'm not allowed to give advice. So now what do I do right? There is clients are always asking for industry knowledge and I feel like they expect me to give them my industry knowledge, because that's what they, that's why they hired me. And both of those are inaccurate. I often say to it, to a prospective new client w w you're an expert in your work you've spent many years becoming highly competent and very clearly accomplished in your work.

Speaker 3 (07:38):

What would ever make you think that I could even come close to what you know about your role at your organization and your industry ever. I will never catch up to you. So why bother? That's not why you hired me. You hired me because where you want to go next. You can't see yet, but I can help you see, I can help you have the, self-trust the, self-awareness the opportunity to have something emerge. Well, what is emergence it's outside of, what's known. It's wonder as I can. I, can I open the aperture of my camera lens and see beyond what's familiar and habitual for myself. And as I see it, can I then interact with it? Can I allow that original idea to then take some tangible form? What are we doing? We're becoming generative in that, in that process. And I think this is the greatest contribution that ma that coaching makes to humanity is we reactivate that ability to originate and create and learn and produce from the inside out.

Speaker 1 (08:41):

That's great. You know, and you've, it's, it's interesting, the word wonder and how you interwove it with the word curiosity, and gave both a distinction and a Ana comparison, like a connection to it. And it, you know, and you referred to about our clients growing, and I feel the same way as you do. It's like, please don't consider me a subject matter expert. I I'd rather be somebody that's having the wonder with you of where we're going to go and what's possible. You know? So speaking of that, like how in a, in a world that rewards achievement over wonder, do we support clients to learn, grow, and change?

Speaker 3 (09:21):

To me, this is one of the very important paradoxes to understand due, to learn, grow, and change requires letting go of what we know. Jack Canfield wrote a book called success principles. What he really did was collate decades and decades and decades of really wise people lived enough life that they've figured out. Some things that were really useful in terms of mindset and skills and behaviors. And he, he's often quoted to say everything you want lives outside your comfort zone, everything you want lives outside your comfort zone. All right? We can say everything you want lives outside of what, you know, by definition, if you're wanting to something it's not in your awareness, it's not in your experience. It's not your habit, your preference, your assumption, your bias, whatever word you want to use, it's not constellating, which is why you're yearning for it.

Speaker 3 (10:20):

You're yearning or longing for something that is more meaningful or more satisfying than the way you are choosing in your life right now. So while that might be terrified to think about letting go of what's familiar and comfortable, there's also a moment when the inspiration with what you're longing for is a bigger emotion, enough of an emotion that it quells the limbic brain sphere that you're putting yourself at too much risk and says, I got this, I got this. My inspiration is strong enough. So that's why I make this distinction between wonder and curiosity, because wonder is the place that we feed our inspiration. I mean, think about the last time you had a really good idea, Gary, for an issue of choice and the, and the theme that you wanted to bring forward. What were you doing in the day or two or three before the moment that idea came in and you said Eureka, that's it?

Speaker 1 (11:19):

Yeah. Most likely collaborating, having conversations, the people it's tough. It's something outside of myself. Just like what you were referring to in an answer to that question.

Speaker 3 (11:36):

Yeah. So each person probably has ways in which they break their habit. They realize, you know, I'm not getting the answer that I'm looking for out of the rear view mirror of my history. I'm not getting the answer out of the everyday people I'm hanging out with, let me go stimulate my my energy, my ideas. What's in my worldview. And for me, I go to nature. I take a long hike. And when I get back from the bluff, I realize, Oh, that's what I'm really wanting. I'm in the wonder of nature, without thinking about it, nothing to be done, but to experience myself, feeling all of myself, right, getting past my left brain, allowing my right brain to just wander a little bit. And in that wandering, I'm having an experience. Now the key is to stay still with it. Not immediately translate it, but just savor it, you know, like a good bottle of wine or a great pot of soup on the back stove for several hours.

Speaker 3 (12:37):

And you smelling the aroma. I mean, those are the things of wonder the experiential receiving from the environment that we put ourselves in, always putting ourselves in the place of best potential. And as we sit with it, we start to realize, yes, I am inspired by this. Yes. It's bigger than my fear of taking a risk of doing something that's a little outside of the boundary and how might I right. Size it for where I am right now. Like I might, it might just be that I go and have a conversation with my friend, Gary, about this crazy idea I had when I was out hiking. And in the conversation, we realized that part is crazy, but this part, Ooh, that's got some possibility, right? And that I'm still connected into wonder and just like a good coaching session. My friend Gary is going to say to me, and what's your next step in flushing this out, putting some meat on the bones. Now I've got a practical place to apply it. And that's part of what makes coaching so powerful is it's and learning. Yes. That comes from the wonder and ultimately forwarding the action, making some new choice.

Speaker 1 (13:44):

Yeah. Oh, well said, thank you. Well, you know, it's all the things that you said reminded me. And it's, it's, again, goes back to some of the things you said in the article and the pullout box. It sounds to me like one of the elements in that I'm taking on more and more is meditation. It's the, these ideas. And then, then resting. It's like, you know, there there's things that need to rest there. You talked about foods and wine, why needs to rest sometimes. Right? And then when you open it, it's like, Oh yeah. You know, still I love the food analogies. And you had me with the soup. I have to tell you well. And so to your point about that, that the, the need to cultivate this cultivate, you gave lots of great examples of imagery. How do you cultivate that with your clients? How do you cultivate wonder with your clients?

Speaker 3 (14:40):

This took me a long time to bring into my repertoire if you will, with clients. And I think mostly because I had to do it first, so I do want to say that that the sort of common adage and coaching is you can't take your clients places you haven't gone yourself and why personal and professional development as coaches is so important to sustaining an ever evolving level of quality and excellence and ethical practice. So let me just be sure that that's on the table that yes, we, we want to partner with our clients to cultivate this. And it's important to have cultivated that in ourselves so that we can recognize when the opportunity shows up. That's like we recognize our compassion with both the high side of a client's life and the not so high side of a client's life, because we've lived life to hope, same parallel there.

Speaker 3 (15:35):

And I think cultivating yeah. Is a wonderful word. I was so happy to see that move into the ICF core competency model, because it's more than appreciating. When you go to an art museum, you appreciate the mastery and the beauty of that images than the sculpture that you're walking, walking around in, at the art, the art museum. But if you were going to cultivate your relationship with the art, you would start, you'd spend some time learning about who was this artist, in what time did he live? How did he become an artist? What does, what does he express as his value system in the way that he brings it is art forward? Or she brings her art forward either one. Right? Of course. And ultimately, what does it say about me then I'm appreciating who I now know this artist to be, and this is how collectors end up finding three or four artists.

Speaker 3 (16:37):

And they get everything that the artist has done because it's actually resonating interiorly. So resonate, meaning that there's a vibration that we experience in our own being when we're around another person or around something that we find intrinsic value in. So first it's about recognizing that a client is having a resonant moment with their life, right? That, that we're actually creating an environment for them to be safe well enough to let themselves be touched. So, you know, the moment when a client and you can feel it it's palpable, they've just said something so profound. And there's nothing that needs to be said for several moments, not to allow that to sit in the space between us and the client, allow the client to get to sink into it. And all of a sudden you'll start to see a tear or maybe a soft smile, or they just uproariously start laughing as the moment has happened. Right. The cultivation of wonder happened in that implicit unsaid region. Now that's not original words by the way, John O'Donohue Irish, mystic and poet taught me long time ago, that phrase, and it's so perfect for capturing the moment in a client's interaction when wonder is emerged. So our part in that is creating the environment where things slowed down a little bit and clients can really experience themselves and experience their own emergent thinking and discover what's feeding my yearning. Ah, that's how I might satisfy this next.

Speaker 1 (18:22):

Awesome. Thank you. You know, in what you said in there too earlier on is about us doing our own work first and thank you for that very clearly in the article with four steps for us to do some of our own wonderful work, let's put back together our wonder work, you know, and you know, and it, it leads to an, it kind of answers the, the, the other question that I have about how do I adopt an interior stance of wonder? And like I say, it's in the article, but how else do you feel that we could do that?

Speaker 3 (18:57):

You mentioned a meditation a moment ago, and I, and I want to say a couple of things about that because I find with clients that they hold meditation as a thing to do, and as a result, they don't stay with it. So and there are many, many, many ways to meditate and alternative word is the notion of contemplate. And I think what's most important is that we are choosing among options about what we're going to give our time and energy to. How do we learn how we choose the options that are restorative things that, that fill up our energy fields that fill up our emotional field that fill up our physical wellbeing field, and maybe also our spiritual fields and our minds get plenty of work. We don't need any more help figuring out stuff to do so it's important to hold the practices, whatever those might be.

Speaker 3 (20:00):

And as something you're choosing as a self honoring process, that you're for me, one of my high values is vitality. And I'm aware that without at least seven hours, preferably eight hours of sleep, I am not at my full vitality. And if that starts to be a pattern and I notice I'm not sleeping the way I know I get full of vitality, I'm on the hunt for what's the value that I'm placing as a higher priority. That's creating this conflict because not only am I not getting the sleep, but I've also got a values conflict going on. You can't hate it when that happens, but we're human, right. Or we're all going to do that. So, so part of it is having the mindset that says this self honoring choice. I'm going to make to spend some time in stillness, whether that's a walking meditation or a laughing meditation.

Speaker 3 (20:54):

I love that that's a really fun to do. Or it's a yoga practice or it's singing in a choir, right? The adding the resonance back to the heart and the, and the throat chakra is a wonderful way to be contemplative separating from the habit of what's, what we're doing in our lives. So it's less about what you do and more about the choice we make to be self-honoring. And in that we're starting to build the muscle to witness when our clients are choosing to be self-honoring are choosing to be self compromising. And we know the ripple effect of that, but particularly since, you know, one of our most important things is to, to consider and to draw out from client, their identity, their experience, their cultural norms, their beliefs, their values, these are all things that, that help us help the client get connected back to the wholeness of who they are.

Speaker 1 (21:52):

Yeah. You know, thank you so much for that word of contemplate. And also the reminder that, and I, I, you know, I do meditation too, and I mean, it's a choice, so it's requires time and in a world where we're all just doing, it made appear to be one more thing. However, you've added other analogies of like singing in a choir or walking, or I think of the meditative contemplated process as something that at, that takes my brain away from what I'm doing now, it's like, it's, it's a choice to give your brain a break and kind of move to your heart and to center your body. And just, I don't want to say distract, but take yourself away from that craziness that's going on in your brain right now and just move to some other. And that's, you know, we talked earlier about, you know, how do we get these amazing ideas, these, the wonderful ideas, the wonder is in those moments, it really is, like you said, you go for a walk and you, and, you know, get a good night's rest the vitality, but it's not. But, and for me, it's that moving away from what I'm doing and calming, what do they call it? The monkey brain slowing down and having it think about something else for even two to five minutes. And I found, you know, I always felt the same way that meditation was this woo thing. And now I've got an app on my Fitbit that says, here have two minutes of calming or five minutes to start your day. And it's not that tough. So I'm kind of enjoying it. So thank you for that reminder,

Speaker 3 (23:35):

You know a guy who has been maybe a grandfather of modern management his name is Peter Drucker. He used it. He had a very famous phrase that he would say to his leaders, if you are not putting your feet up on your desk and looking out the window, at least five minutes a day, you are failing as a leader. And his point was, unless you break, set your auto response, your autopilot decision-making and perspective, you will miss that the world is changing constantly around you. And if you are not tapping into that change and learning to anticipate, you're going to miss the opportunity to lead your team, to meet that challenge. And that's the job of leaving. So now take that back to self leading self. I might decide that my life is absolutely perfect. I've just gotten married. I'm pregnant about to have a child.

Speaker 3 (24:35):

I've got a great house. I live, I live healthy. I'm on the water, whatever it is, whatever that perfect scenario is. Well in about five minutes, something will introduce itself into that picture and it won't be perfect anymore. Does that mean your whole life is a mess? No. What it does mean is there are some well of resilience that can be agile in response to it. If we've been practicing that we are at home and centered in ourselves, that those are circumstances and we're at choice in relationship to those circumstances. And you know, this is the reason we do it. Not because it's a good thing to do. Not because it actually provides us with access to resiliency. So very important, particularly in what's happening in the world today.

Speaker 1 (25:24):

Yeah. No kidding. You, you know, when you said that about all of the nature in that I, and putting your feet up and looking out the window, it's interesting. You should have come up with that. No surprise, obviously, right? No coincidence. I find my best moments of thought or when I just look away from the screen and go look like, even in conversation, it's, it's a challenge when I have somebody right on the screen, of course. But there are times when I'm doing phone conversations and I look out the window and I'm fortunate to have a Hawk in the neighborhood and the hog, because everything is so geometrically fixed this. All of a sudden this piece of nature starts flying around soaring on the updraft and takes me away from it. And I just stop in wonder, like, how is that possible? Where does it live? You know, why here? And then, and then I get back to my other stuff. So I am a big proponent of feet up feet up. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Janet, is there anything else you want our listeners to know? I don't want to say do, but take away from not only the article, but our conversation, like, was there anything that you would have liked to have added to that article that you just, we couldn't fit in?

Speaker 3 (26:52):

I want to share a, a slightly different answer for you. And it's a question that is an inquiry question. Meaning something to be with over time. There's no singular answer to it. And it's the question I've been with for about 12 years now. I often share this with coaches when I'm talking about authentic self, how do we be present with our own authentic self? And as I began to study that more deeply, the question that I came to was what's in the way of me living fully potent today. Oh. And it's different every day, some days I don't ask the question, but I try at least one month out of a quarter I'll journal on that question every day. And could you repeat the question please? Absolutely. What's in the way of me living fully potent today, you know, coaching's all about maximizing potential.

Speaker 3 (27:52):

I think we actually have to realize we have potential we're not using, or we can maximize it. And and that question is what helps me examine where might I be discounting some capacity that I've developed and, and work diligently to develop over the last six, nine, 12 months, whatever it might be, where might I be discounting the effects of external influences that are inhibiting me from being as open and transparent and present as I want to be right? There can be all kinds of factors and inquiry questions are a wonderful way to cultivate wonder for sure, but mostly to cultivate access to all of who we are. And that's why I really believe in helping people find how to live the life that most matters to them. And this year, our theme for invite change is shaping a world where people love their life's work.

Speaker 1 (28:56):

I like that very much. Seeing, here you go again. It's like, okay, now I get to live this like carer asleep through you. So I think we already are. I think what we do is, is totally we've done that work. Yeah. We're doing that work. Yeah. Yeah.

Speaker 3 (29:14):

We're very blessed for sure that we get to contribute into the world this way. And I appreciate you Gary very much.

Speaker 1 (29:20):

Yeah. And do you, well, I want to thank you so much, Janet, for taking time out today to join us for the meet the author session. Could you, what would be the best way for people to reach you, to find out more about you, your book and invite change?

Speaker 3 (29:36):

So the organization invite is the easy website address. The book is it invite change also available on Amazon and the audio book will be coming out shortly. So stay tuned. That means you probably want to get on our newsletter. So go to our website and join the newsletter mailing list. And I have always available directly on email,

Speaker 1 (30:04):

And for those listening, I want to say to kudos to you, Janet, I find that your newsletter is probably one of the only ones I read. It's valuable. It's valuable. Not just because I know you, but if I started reading it, because I know you, I keep reading it because it is a value to me. If, if I were to use the word of the day, wonder it has to be wonder, you know, what's Janet saying today, like it's when I see that I save it. And I'm like, I want a quiet moment to just read again, take that break for contemplation and it's food for thought. It's it shifts gears for me. If, if, wow, let's get it. Let's me know what you're thinking. It has. It causes me to think more. And

Speaker 3 (30:55):

That's excellent feedback. Thank you. Caring team will be very happy to know that because we've been evolving it as you know. And so that's wonderful to hear. Thank you

Speaker 1 (31:06):

Again. I follow Janet and hopes that our newsletter use such a thing will look a lot better. So work in progress. We love ours. We love yours better just saying, well, thank you everyone for coming watch for coming to this episode of meet the author. Well, watch for upcoming episodes with other amazing authors to learn more about choice magazine or professional coaching, go to the ESA Genesis, the easy URL choice dash or hyphen And I want to close with saying, please enjoy the journey to mastery. Thank you so much for listening.