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Blessings during challenging times

November 19, 20204 min read

It is hard to believe that it is Thanksgiving already. Time is going by differently in 2020 as you all know and have experienced. Before I go counting our blessings at Thanksgiving, I’d like to circle back to our amazing blessings we had in October and November.

The last couple months have been unusually busy for the Inquiry Institute. And extremely fulfilling. Surprisingly, the pandemic contributed to some of the experiences and breakthroughs we enjoyed.

In October, after taking into account your input from our September survey, we launched our virtual Q-Work™ Foundation and Practice courses as well as the 6-month immersive Chief Question Officer® program. All of the courses were at capacity for the number of participants. We were especially excited to have such a wide variety of participants, both geographically and professionally. Of course, many joined from all over the U.S. and the world such as from the Philippines, Abu Dubai, Kuwait, and Canada.

A wide diversity of participants always adds richness and benefits for an entire cohort. We had one geographically dispersed team in the aerospace industry as well as coaches, consultants, leaders, and educators and also entrepreneurs and an architect. Imagine all the different kinds of questions they think from and how much they learned from each other as well as from us.

Our reimagined, modularized virtual courses were invigorating both for us and for the participants. They were scheduled in such a way for their work and home life balance. The participants found that design to have real opportunities to apply, practice and build the Learner habit. Some of the Q-Work Foundation & Practice participants said afterwards:

“It helped me to start accepting the Judger in me and embrace it as well as holding space for other people. It is easier and more manageable to manage my judgmentalness, the Judger. I feel I am standing in front of a field of abundance of new possibilities and opportunities where I can practice this.” N.A.

“Being in more of a Learner mindset will build trust between colleagues and those I work with and where the relationship is more open to people feeling like they can come to me when they’re struggling and be more open and honest with their needs in the workplace.” L.C.

Also in October, thanks to a dedicated team in the Cleveland, Ohio area, we were able to participate in a Change Your Questions, Change Your Results workshop that took place at Pebble Ranch outside Cleveland, which included a herd of horses and a zebra!

This in-person two-day workshop was originally scheduled for last spring and when the pandemic hit it became obvious that Kim and I were not leaving New Jersey. It was to include an equine experience at Pebble Ranch with Jackie Stevenson, author of Someday We’ll Live Like Horses and collaboration with fellow facilitator, author and CQO, Leslie Yerkes and consultant, CQO and authorized trainer, Kathy Telban. There are many leadership courses that include equine experience for years so naturally I was excited about this and also integrating the Q-Work™ Approach with that.

Fortunately, it was a collaboration and the participants still wanted to have an in-person workshop at Pebble Ranch when the time was right, as long as masks and social distancing were honored. The participants, facilitators, horses, and even the Zebra, Holly danced successfully together for a Learner experience even with some weather challenges. Kim and I joined through Zoom from time to time, including the end when we got to hear some truly remarkable and inspiring results they’d gotten from the experience.

“Connective and healing experience that allows me to take and develop the tools to utilize both in my personal and professional elements of life.” J.W.

“Absolutely loved deepening the learnings and practicing the model with the horses.” LB

The pandemic is teaching us to connect and learn in different ways. It is testing our resiliency and Learner Mindset. We are learning what we need to take care of ourselves, all at new levels. There are many blessings from our process, the participants’ learnings and experiences and we look forward to continuing our deep work with our Learner community.

May you all have a connected and blessed Thanksgiving and holiday season.

In the spirit of inquiry,

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Marilee Adams

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2023 Inquiry Institute

2023 Inquiry Institute