Bridge the Gap with Attitude

The London Olympics started a couple of days ago.  The individual’s journey to a gold medal is a long one.  You can bet a person’s attitutude plays a big part in that journey; realizing the dream; getting from here to there.  Attitude might even be step 1, to bridging the gap?

The Olympics reminded me of the attitude marathon swimmer Marilyn Bell must have had, over 50 years ago.  So with video camera in hand today, I shot this short clip, in honour of one of her amazing journeys (that ended in Victoria), in which she bridged the gap.

(If video not displaying, click here)

Attitude frames everything.

Like ocean swimming, bridging differences between people is a process.  Great teachers have taught us that there are typically many paths to connecting and engaging the other side.

When in conflict, making connections and getting to resolution, bridging the gap, is a creative process. Adopting a non-adversarial approach, connections are facilitated through positive flow, within a multi-sensory, sometimes chaotic environment, just like Marilyn must have experienced.

The connector, gap bridging, mindset is to be:

  • Present in the moment. The connector listens, externally and internally, speaks what is true to them, and remains detached from particular outcomes.
  • Positive. The connector understands each interaction as an opportunity to bid positively for connection, and shows appreciation, our greatest psychological need.
  • Humble. The connector places a high value on humility, avoids assumptions, is open to discovery, welcomes surprise and paradox, and knows that the longer we stay in a place of not knowing, the more comprehensive our solutions will be.
  • A Wayfinder. Like Marilyn, or the ancient Polynesians whose role was to navigate canoes across the largest expanse of water in the world, the connector applies all their senses, skills and experience to the challenge, learning their way through it.

Got a gap you’re trying to bridge?  Where does attitude fit in?  Are you there already, with the “right” attitude, or is attitude something you’re developing, as you go?  What’s your experience with attitude?

Want some more creative ideas for making connections, and bridging the gap?  Check out my ebook; U Connect: The Art of Making Connections to Resolve Disputes.

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