Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The Tooth Fairy and Me

For many children, believing in the tooth fairy fades fairly quickly and they figure out that behind that great illusion are their parents. Last night, our daughter left two recently lost baby teeth under her pillow with a thoughtful letter to the tooth fairy. She began leaving letters for the tooth fairy from the beginning and the tooth fairy responded in kind. The letter last night was amazing, it had detailed references to the prior note left by the tooth fairy. Imagine our horror at 10:30 PM when we read this letter...we had work to do. Our daughter was expecting a note from the tooth fairy when she awoke, but that isn't what is important in this story...

The important part was our daughter was having a thoughtful dialogue with an imaginary being. She asked thought provoking questions and was nurturing the relationship. The money and other surprise she would find in the morning are clearly exciting to her, but what seems to be of greater importance is to have her questions answered, questions that she had been waiting to ask since the last tooth left her body. Reading this letter we learned that the prior letter from the tooth fairy was read often. We had no idea how deeply our little notes had gone into our child.

This morning brought gleeful smiles from her towel wrapped head and she shared the information and items left by the tooth fairy. My partner and I delivered academy award performances in response. When she left to get dressed for school we marveled that our 9 1/2 year old daughter still believed in the tooth fairy and we loved that she did. Our musings took us further and we wondered who was really creating the illusion, us or our daughter? Was she onto us or did she really believe that a magical being called the tooth fairy who left loving messages for her was real?

After some thought we decided it really did not matter - the experience was what was important and we were happy to be in it with her.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Defining Leadership

Does it really matter how you define leadership?

Leadership is a word that is similar to words like peace, and democracy each with distinct meanings dependent on the perspective of the speaker. Yet when we hear these words we have an intuitive understanding of what the words mean (Northouse, 2001). There is no surprise that there is not one clear definition of leadership. Moreover, the leadership theories use varied definitions in addition to characteristics such as skills and expertise, confidence, traits, and behavior to formulate theory (Yukl, 2002). With a broad understanding of what leadership means and the inclusion of elements such as behavior, which is yet another word that is loaded with intuitive interpretation; it is paramount to establish a definition of leadership in the context of which it is applied, perceived or studied (Northouse, 2001; Yukl, 2002).

Northouse, P. (2002). Leadership Theory and Practice. (2nd ed. ) Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
Yukl, G. (2002). Leadership in Organizations (5th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Taking Risks

Generally risk taking is not at the top of my list - okay let's be honest I am conservative about risk in the strangest areas.  With that said, today was one of those days were I suddenly found myself in a zone and put myself out there...and I survived to blog about it!

So I know what you thinking - woman what is your point?  My point - relax, trust yourself, trust your instints, and keep the faith.

Easy huh? 

There's nothing you can make that can't be made.
No one you can save that can't be saved.
Nothing you can do but you can learn how to be you
in time - It's easy.
                                                 - The Beatles