Spring in Chicago: A visit to the Chicago Botanic Garden

It’s been a rough couple of weather months. I was so, so naive to think Chicago would start warming up in March. Today though, Spring finally seemed to arrive. A friend of mine summed it up best when she tweeted: “Damn, Chicago. It’s like your heart started beating again today.”

While today’s high temp barely hit 50 degrees, the flowers were blooming and trees were budding at the Chicago Botanic Garden.

We didn’t get a chance to see the corpse flower (a titan arum plant native to Indonesia) named “Spike” that recently opened. We did see this Bonsai tree that’s thought to be 400-600 years old.

We also saw this, which almost made up for the extra long winter:

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Two-minute read: Why mindfulness is important in change management

Last quarter, I finished a six-week mindfulness and meditation class. It was an incredible experience and is something I’ll continue to practice. The ability to be present, calm and observant is critical when helping guide companies and individuals through the process of change.

At the end, the instructor gave us a handout called “Symptoms of Inner Peace” by Saskia Davis. It’s worth sharing:

A tendency to think and act spontaneously rather than from fears based on past experiences

An unmistakable ability to enjoy each moment

A loss of interest in judging self

A loss of interest in conflict

A loss of interest in interpreting the actions of others

A loss of ability to worry

Frequent, overwhelming episodes of appreciation

Contented feelings of connectedness with others and nature

Frequent attacks of smiling through the heart

Increasing susceptibility to love extended by others, combined with an uncontrollable urge to extend it

An increasing tendency to let things happen rather than make them happen

To me, this concept is so powerful that I’m considering writing my Master’s Capstone on the subject. Specifically, research seems to show that mindfulness has a connection to change readiness. Could mindfulness be as important to the process as a stakeholder analysis or training?