My Value Exchange
The idea of Value Exchange is to encourage people to reflect on how they personally derive meaning. By collecting your own stories and unpicking what was meaningful and what was not we can uncover what’s underneath those experiences. It’s like playing the detective of your own life, always asking ‘why’ over and over.
Becoming a Value Exchanger, then, is akin to embarking on a transformative journey where you link your time with personal resonance. This isn’t a surface-level quest. Instead, it requires introspection and openness to the interplay between both seemingly meaningful and meaningless activities. Over time, I have found immense joy in supporting individuals in carving out change, establishing new enterprises and charities. However, the meaning I draw from my work is no greater or lesser than that derived by a gardener, a road worker, or a car mechanic. Meaning is not just possible in the human condition; it’s our lifeblood, our raison d’etre and everyone can do it!
I find technology brings a lot of meaning to my life too, not for its own sake, but for its role in fostering sustainable change and its undeniable influence on our lives, for better or worse.
It’s not about linking your identity to a brand, product, paid or unpaid ‘role’ and it most certainly is not about linking your identity to your financial or socio-economic status. Rather we have found over the years (and thousands of iterations) that it IS about what we call “people and planet”.
If you unpick the line above “I find technology brings a lot of meaning to me” which is rather abstract, you most often find links to something that involves deeper meaning such as the role software may have in solving some problem. That problem being connected with something human or planet like.
Picture yourself without your brand-name sneakers. Now imagine constructing an image of your life, where meaningful relationships with people and nature are the core elements. Spending a fortune on high-end shoes won’t necessarily add anything to your life but a dip in your bank balance and an imagined representation of the social and context of an idealised life, holiday or retirement. Remember, these images are often painted by the marketers, not by your authentic self.
So we help individuals and organisations manage change by uncovering those things for themselves. Rather like yoga, you cannot expect to be so flexible that you can bend your ankles behind your ears on the first attempt. Following 10 years as an amateur, I’ve been practicing this for 15 more years seriously (full time profession). I am not a guru, but I have probable made a few more mistakes than most of you and my passion is to support everyone in sustainable change.
That’s where we come in – we help individuals and organisations navigate change by unveiling these authentic insights. Much like yoga, you can’t expect to master complex poses on your first attempt. After a decade as an amateur, followed by 15 years of dedicated professional practice, I’ve learned this truth well. I don’t claim to be a guru, but I do bring a wealth of lessons learned from my own mistake, and a passion for championing sustainable change.
One of my values is “to work out loud”. “Sharing is caring”, as they say. Although I have been publishing snippets for years now – here is the tool un-redacted just as I’ve used internally for 15 years.
This is my last three months covering 100% of my time. You can start by reflecting on just a few days or a percentage of your time or on one activity. Any time to start is a good time as long as it’s NOW!
I am looking for co-conspirators, partners, fellow-travelers, friends and colleagues to join me as we develop sustainable outcomes that are worth-while engaging in.
Here it is: My Value exchange as of 12/07/2023