Author: Julie Benezet
Rebranding the Blog
Introducing “The View from the Treehouse”
By Julie Benezet
My first book, The Journey of Not Knowing: How 21st Century Leaders Can Chart a Course Where There Is None, opens with a scene of me perched in my Colorado treehouse. I did so in response to the challenge of a valued advisor who said (and here I paraphrase), “You have to go to a more personal place. Be vulnerable. Otherwise, they won’t connect with anything you say in that book!”
Well, after 35 years living in the rough and tumble, defended, take no prisoners corporate world, I was not about to leap into that one… until I thought about it. Then I thought some more.
That evening, as I settled into my favorite armchair for the nightly thrash of ye old book writing, it came to me. In front of me flashed the image of a red haired, 9-year-old girl sitting in the green leafed enclosure of my childhood oasis: my treehouse. Nestled in that place, I logged endless hours, ignoring others, looking up, down and all around, sniffing for clues for something new, different, and wonderful.
Thus, it began.
So, what went on in that treehouse? Hiding among the branches of the old maple tree, I felt at a safe distance from those who scared, disappointed, or just plain puzzled me. I had the freedom to dream, invent, and forge new paths. In that sacred place, I could imagine something different, and gird myself to cope with the risks I would encounter to achieve it.
What is “The View from the Treehouse”?
This periodic column will talk about the mindset that embraces change, its scariness, and its possibilities. It is addressed to anyone who chooses to explore the new, and the awkwardness that comes with the search for something better, big or small. It will talk about how we learn to pull from our strengths, fears, and life experiences to reach new horizons.
Whether you are leading others or taking charge of your own life, the journey does not come easily, at least not all the time. Galvanizing growth is a complicated business. With it comes many stories of its challenges, including:
- Wrestling with staying in a role when it has out worn its welcome for you.
- Grappling with team members who are unhappy about how the business is going, but stay frozen in their positions, no matter what insights you offer.
- Rising every day loving what you do, and suffering when you cannot do it all, even when doing it all smacks of rescuing.
- Practicing a new behavior that others greet with pushback, because they find the “new you” uncomfortable.
- Trying to breathe new life into a culture where a founder’s autocratic rule suffocates ideas, mutual respect, and dignity.
In my many years on this planet, I have known leaders, entrepreneurs, and friends who have told me these and endless other stories. They also talked about how they managed to thread through the labyrinth of unknown places in search of the right product, culture, or societal contribution, fortifying themselves with their life lessons, and learning to tolerate the fear while doing so. That is the underpinning of The Journey of Not Knowing.
“The View from the Treehouse” will share stories, observations, and strategies for taking on the scariness of the new, convincing others to support us, and making a difference to others and ourselves.
I invite your suggestions, comments, and stories. We live in disconcerting times, from which we will emerge, especially if we dig deep into what we believe and what we want for the world.
Please join me in looking far out through the rustling leaves toward the adventure of the new.
Welcome to the treehouse.
© 2017, Julie Benezet. All rights reserved.