It has been a while since I wrote. A very close and dear friend died in June and my thoughts have been wrapped up in that. I needed some time to sort through them. A memorial was held for her a couple of days ago, and it was beautiful and liberating. A lot of things I had been holding onto came to the surface and I was able to release them with the encouragement and support of being in a room of several hundred people, who were sharing in the grief of loss and celebration of an amazing life.
So, I find myself reviewing the teacher’s strike, the impasse between the union and the government (despite the tentative agreement) and the fact that half a million children in beautiful BC are not at school. I have nothing to say about the situation itself. There are two sides to everything.
The process of the mediation however with Vince Ready gives me pause, even though there is a breakthrough. What seems to be the process is to identify all the issues of disagreement, ascertain where there is some common interest, which might be possible to resolve, and focus on it to get them ‘back to work’. Apparently they also identify issues they know will not be resolved, things that are so deeply polarising they are in the way of an ‘agreement’. These issues are classified as things that cannot be agreed upon, and set aside, so they can focus on what might be workable.
Fair enough that sounds, that makes sense, let’s get some agreement going here and get back to work. Why not?
My question is why would you leave the issues that are deeply rooted on both sides unresolved? Why would you give up, and simply say this is too difficult. This is classic old paradigm thinking. Forcing an outcome, blaming, withholding are what not to do. How do we know that? It doesn’t work. We are listening to both sides arguing about the same things, things that were ignored last time, and the time before that. Things left unresolved and kept hidden in the dark fester, like a rotting carcass.
Secrets, not saying what is going on, protecting, keeping things under wraps, are manifestations of our ‘shadow’ self.* REF BELOW These are stories that we tell ourselves and are afraid to reveal. They are parts of ourselves that we don’t want to admit to, so we keep them hidden.
As we see in the example of the teachers and government this year, just because issues are not ‘on the table’ doesn’t mean they are not there. The more they are ignored, the more power they have. Keeping them in the dark feeds them, grows them, empowers their hold over us, and ultimately they end up running the show.
It takes courage to confront your fears, your stories of not being good enough, or of being deeply flawed. (I submit they are stories by the way, but that is for another day.)
What we have witnessed this summer is the sad consequence of ignoring our individual shadows. They are being played out on a massive scale, with everyone’s unacknowledged stuff colliding. No wonder Mr. Ready cannot make any headway with the things that cannot be agreed upon. Moving into the new paradigm requires overhauling our systems and protocols, however in order for that to take place, an individual overhaul is required. It gets messy the other way around doesn’t it?
It is not collective bargaining. Perhaps it should be more aptly described as shadow collectively burgeoning… Time to wake up and do your own work.
I am glad for all that there will be an agreement to get back to work shortly, and skeptical about what actually was achieved in developing the trust that is required to look at the system and begin to have a conversation about possibilities for change.
I am here to support any overhaul you might want to embark upon! Let me help you shine your light into your shadow and meet yourself unafraid. You can create endless opportunities once you are in the driver’s seat.