Helping Nonprofit Leaders Transform Conflict

Leadership Coach and Mediator

Thich Nhat Hanh tells us that giving makes us happy. Since I lately struggle with feelings of fear, depression, and discouragement, I am willing to give it a try. In each and every moment I’ll focus on generosity and “share my time, energy, and material resources with those who are in need”, including myself.

Sitting as silent witness as Lisa Coleman is executed is my act of giving. I know my vigilance won’t save her life, repair the pain and suffering of the boy she beat and starved to death, or bring peace to those left behind. I only know that I can be with her in spirit and send her love and peace, while she counts down the last minutes of her life.

As I drive up to Capitol Hill I am noticing how appreciative I am that I am alive. How grateful I am that I can feel the sun on my arm, my hands on the steering wheel, my breath flowing through me. I might muddle through life, and yet everyday offers a new opportunity to live and love.

Image courtesy to WikimediaAnd as I sit and imagine her fear, despair, anger, and loss as she is strapped to her death bed, I feel my anger towards society dissipate. We are in this together. We are confused and lost as to how create connections that are inclusive, supporting, open, and loving. We don’t know how to reach out to those on the fringes of society, at the top of corporations, and bridge the differences. We make mistakes with sometimes horrendous consequences, and we punish by killing, because we lost sight of our compassion and interbeing.

I look at the cars stopping at the traffic light in front of us. I look at the drivers and the passengers and wonder who they are, where they are going, what they’re doing. I imagine their families, their loved ones. I see them as children, maybe happy, maybe unhappy. And I tap into this universal reservoir of limitless love: “May you be peaceful, happy, and light in body and spirit. May you be safe and free from injury. May you be free from anger, afflictions, fear, and anxiety.” And all I wish for is that they will never kill, be killed, or lose a loved one to killing or execution.

Sitting as silent witness when someone is executed and sending out loving-kindness to everyone in this world is a simple way of giving, and I feel elevated by it.


You want help to practice generosity and giving? Contact me 512-589-0482 to schedule a complimentary discovery session.

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