Monday, September 27, 2004

Moving in a Fog

Moving in a Fog

On an early-morning jog yesterday, I saw a beautiful sight.  About 15 minutes before sunrise, ground fog lay before me as I plodded along our city's walking trail.  A translucent tablecloth draping a boggy area, it draped gracefully over the trail.  This will be kind of cool, I thought, to jog through the fog.


I got to the low-ish point on the trail, right next to the bog, where I had noted the fog was the thickest.  I wondered when I would really be running in the fog.  As I came up a hill to the other side, I realized what had happened.


From a distance, the fog appeared thick and foreboding.  As I moved through it, however, it did not affect my movement.  Particularly at my very non-Olympic pace, I could see my immediate surroundings quite adequately.  And I enjoyed the run.


It struck me that this illustrates what we so often encounter at work or personally.  What appears to be very uncertain at a distance becomes much clearer when we get into it.  Whether it is applying Lean in a work setting, raising a teenager, making a sales force work, dealing with an aging parent; the fog is very real at a distance.  Yet, with some grid to guide us as we move through it, move we must.  And when we get into it, the fog is not as deep, the uncertainty not so serious.  We often can see quite adequately what the next few steps can be and can navigate them safely. 


A Lean paradigm provides a safe trail in the work setting.  Ethical and spiritual paradigms are crucial to make sense of personal issues.  With these in place, the only big mistake is to not proceed.


I hope you can proceed into some foggy areas today.  And that this is helpful.


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