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Nollind Whachell
Works at Be Real Creative
Attends The School of Life
Lives in Vancouver, BC
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Nollind Whachell

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Melissa Fortune's profile photoNollind Whachell's profile photoMatt Hooper's profile photoKenneth Hardin's profile photo
Thanks for your additional insight, Nollind. This is a fascinating journey. I've bookmarked this to refer back to and reflect further on
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“Willingness to change your beliefs can unleash creativity beyond pre-existing boundaries.”

+Tracee Vetting Wolf talks about emerging principles for facilitating learning online.

1) Don't use a shoehorn if you can help it
2) Create 'lessons' of exploration
3) Provide provocative and inspiring ways of thinking
4) Call attention to beliefs and frames
5) Provide situations where practice provides learning
6) Conduct learning activities around both personal and shared understandings
7) Appeal to and dwell in the space of intrinsic motivation
8) Make it a journey 
Ferananda Ibarra's profile photoJohn Kellden's profile photo
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Nollind Whachell

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Novation Launchpad

I saw the hardware version of this music app a while back with someone jamming a song on the fly (this isn't the video). Completely unbelievable to watch.

Now they have an iPad version that's free to download and use, letting you create and save your own songs. In App purchases are available if you want more sounds or to be able to import your own custom sounds. But again, you can create music with it and even upload the music to SoundCloud, all for free.

I may get the import option, as it looks like a perfect compliment to my Figure music app which is great for creating 8 beat loops but not capable of creating a whole song. This way I could create loops in Figure and then import, arrange, and play them on the fly in Launchpad.

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Sweet, sounds fun. I love loops! 
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Exploring, Navigating, and Storytelling Yourself

I read this post by +Simon Terry the other day and thought, “Ok, I know this already. This is no big deal.” This morning I realized what an egocentric idiot I was and how very poignant this post actually is. That's because I asked myself why I felt I knew this already. In effect, why did this seem so familiar to me?

When I reread it again and looked deeper, I realized that what I was looking at was some of the very same elements used in what I describe as exploring, navigating, and storytelling your own life's journey which in turn reveals your integrated identity (i.e. your passion, purpose, and vision).

In effect, this reiterates to what I've said all along. This approach, path, or way is universal, fractal, or spiral in nature. It can be applied from an individual perspective (connecting with yourself) as well as from an organizational perspective (connecting with others).

This is important because to be a leader for others, you need to have taken leadership in your own life first. Therefore, to be a navigator for others, you need to have navigated your own life first as well. Below I'd like to try to translate the similarity between the two.

Setting a course - This is about playfully exploring, defining a quest, so as to clarify yourself within the context of the world. How can I serve others? What is my purpose? What is my passion, my talent or gift, which helps me to achieve my purpose?

Seeing the big picture map - This is about integrating the seemingly discordant pieces of your life and synthesizing them together into a cohesive whole that provides meaning for yourself. When you see this new composite perspective of yourself, you finally begin to see the greater potential and value of yourself in a completely new way. So much so, that your new sense of self-worth and self-confidence empowers and inspires you to do things you never dreamed you'd be capable of before because newer possibilities and pathways have now revealed themselves to you.

Making new connections - This relates to another conversation the other day about integration. This is about looking back on your life and comparing two seeming diverse aspects of it but seeing the deeper relationship and pattern between them that's often intangibly hidden below the surface. By making these connections, by building bridges between the different aspects of yourself (just as you must bridge the silos in an organization), you help to make sense of yourself and your life.

Recruiting a crew and local pilots - The more you make a deeper connection within yourself to the point that you begin to trust and believe in yourself, the more accelerated your transformation and change will be. It's about letting go and delegating to your Inner Self and intuition more and more. A perfect sign that they are working effectively for you is an increased frequency of serendipity.

Translating strange cultures - The different parts of ourselves are often at conflict with each other because of the way our rigid, technical, and traditional culture defines these aspects. How I can be this and yet also still be that, if I'm expected to only be one or the other? By synthesizing what's called a Post Conventional mindset through a sense of heightened self-awareness, you begin to accept and understand things from multiple perspectives at once which helps you to understand and make sense of the paradoxes of this paradigm shift that are occurring in both yourself and the world around you. Suddenly you begin to bridge and integrate the seemingly opposing perspectives of yourself into a unified whole and begin living, working, and speaking in diverse harmony with one voice. And rather than just feeling like a flat cardboard cutout, your sense of self identity and presence takes on a breadth and depth of dimensionality that suddenly makes you feel more alive than you've ever been in your life.

Logging the journey - This is about working out loud with yourself. By journalling, by extracting your creative synthesized thoughts in the moment, you give yourself the ability to reflect on yourself and learn from yourself. For myself, I'm almost religious now in my ability to record my creative thoughts when they strike because I don't want to lose that creative energy, so that I can reflect and build on it. This is about building structure from your creative flow. If you don't harvest that creative flow in the moment, it continues to flow and disappear. Therefore, learning to tap into your creative self in the moment, by logging your journey in the moment, is essential for building momentum and direction.

Weathering storms and avoiding shoals & Navigating where there is no map - I've merged these two together because they relate perfectly to my post the other day on making a Leap of Faith. You need to continually frame yourself in an arc of understanding between the old world that is dying and the new one being born. In doing so, this not only gives you the impetus and momentum to step forward, persevering through the journey, but also the inner bearing to step in the right direction, thus through the uncertainty and ambiguity of the foggy often invisible path before you.

Thanks again to Simon for writing this excellent post, so as to give me another perspective with which to channel my expression of this greater composite perspective that I see emerging.
Nollind Whachell's profile photoSimon Terry's profile photo
“ can map the elements above to Joseph Campbell's hero's journey...”

Most definitely. Actually in the coming days I want to do just exactly that. In effect, build a tangible map that people can use to make their own journey. More details on that later.

Thanks again though for writing such an excellent piece.
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Nollind Whachell

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Be Real Creative

It's not about helping people to find a job. It's about helping people to find their life's work. And in doing so, understanding who they really are, their authentic identity.

We are not our jobs. We are human beings with the creative potential for so much more.

It's time to release that untapped potential.
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Have him in circles
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Nollind Whachell

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An Apology

Over the past month I've had a variety of very synergistic conversations with people like +Georgina Lester, +Gregory Esau, and +John Kellden. All of these people are striving to catalyze change in the world and make it a better place. Yesterday though, I had an amazing conversation with +Tracee Vetting Wolf who seemed like a kindred spirit on my own life's journey because we're both Healer (INFP) Idealists in terms of personality.

Inspired by my chat with her and the realizations revealed within it, I reflected upon my actions the other day within my post I'm Out and realized something very important. I was being the very type of person I did not want to be. While this might be evident to some people already, it was the why behind it that was very poignant to me.

You see I was frustrated by this other person because they couldn't see my identity. Yet the irony is that identity is supposed to be my passion (i.e. understanding and articulating it). So if they couldn't see that aspect of myself then the problem wasn't there's but mine. It would be equivalent to a teacher getting angry with a student for not understanding them, even though it's the teachers responsibility to communicate on a level that the student can understand.

So even though my identity is self-evident to me, it's obviously not evident to others...yet. Again that's my responsibility to communicate clearly, not theirs. I have to stop playing the victim here and recognize my own failures in communicating my identity, even more so because I dislike people playing the victim themselves (thus another thing I'm not authentically living and practicing myself).

Structure vs Flow

It's funny though because I see another lesson here. I remember hearing someone say that you need to continually repeat yourself so that people can get your message because it can often take time for it to sink in and click with them. I realize today that this goes beyond this though. I could have repeated my identity, my core message, everyday for a year and I don't think it would have made a difference. Why? Because if my message continually gets lost in the flow, it's often hard for people to find it and see it.

This is where structure comes in. Structure is you taking a stand and being vocal about what you believe in. It's your greeting to the world, the first thing that people see. So instead of just continually communicating your message in comments and posts, you're communicating it in your bio, About page, and even tag line (and even on your business card).

So nothing has changed in terms of me being out though. I still need to stop talking in this flow, this stream on Google, as my words, values, and beliefs just end up disappearing within the week, lost on the river of newer posts unless someone decides to wade through and explore them, going back in time (which some do). No, again it is my responsibility to tap into my flow and pull the words and structure out of it, creating something that can be contained and made sense of as a whole, by itself, but on a larger scale than just a simple post.

But that said though, even though I'm out of here, it doesn't mean I'm disappearing. If anything, I'm going to commit to making myself more accessible to others over the coming days and actually start putting my words into action so I can help others face-to-face. And in turn I'm hoping people can help me articulate this interactive experience, so as to make it better for both of us. So just as I hope to teach and pass on my knowledge, I'm hoping for you to teach me how to be a better teacher (and leader).

Learning By Leading

Finally I just want to profusely apologize to two people in particular. The person who I said didn't recognize my primary message, my identity, and the person who I said got the credit for it. These people did nothing wrong. They are working hard to make the world a better place just like me. It is I, myself, who is completely to blame and is at fault here. I fell victim to being a victim, something again that I don't abide by and most definitely don't want to repeat. I need to lead by example and I most definitely failed to do so here. Lesson learnt.
Nollind Whachell's profile photoDoug Breitbart's profile photoDan Durrant's profile photo
+Dan Durrant That Python bit was perfect! Well done.
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I'm Out

I've mentioned in the past that every once in a while, a situation would occur that I wouldn't know how to handle without sounding like an egotistical twit (which I obviously don't want to be). This situation has occurred again.

Rather than reveal this situation, I'm just going to say this. I've continually gone out on a limb over the past year and made myself look like a complete idiot by saying stuff ahead of the curve of others. I did this for one simple reason. For someone like myself, who has an intuitive talent to see things emerging before others, I need to prove this ability, so that others can trust me when I reveal things that will seem intangible to them at the time.

And yet when this emerging awareness is finally recognized by others, the recognition usually goes to someone with a more “prestigious” traditional background (versus my self-taught path). I mean seriously. Even though I'm on a social network, I feel like I'm back in a corporate office and my boss just took recognition for all of my hard work over the year, work that I wasn't even paid for, and work that clearly differentiated myself from others.

There's something that's clearly evident to me now though and it's a repeated life lesson that's finally sunk into my head. Because of my intuitive talent, just talking to people and trying to convince them of what I see is pointless because all they seem to remember is the crazy talk and not that the crazy talk was actually true. Therefore, I need to become an entrepreneur and make it happen on my own. In going forward, this is what I will be doing. Enough talk. Time for action.

PS. BTW this has been a very valuable lesson for me. In the conversations, I've had with people over the past weeks, I've seen this same look in their eyes. They are doing something ahead of the curve, yet they themselves aren't being fully recognized for their tireless pioneering work. I just want to let those people know that I do see your potential, even if others can't.

Update: Please read my followup on this post below.

An Apology
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“Having too much money is actually dangerous to innovation.”

“It’s ironic that many companies aren’t investing in people, but are then prepared to pay through the nose for people who have critical abilities. A farsighted company realizes that human talent is one of the few things that enable it to surf from wave to wave of advantage. A company that treats people like disposable resources is going to get rewarded for it in the near term and punished in the long term.”

ht +Gregory Esau
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It's not so much about “attracting and retaining”, as it is about “recognizing and releasing” the talent that's already around you.
Not so smart

At a recent conference one of the speakers, without a hint of irony, put up a slide which read "We need to attract and retain the best talent." To my horror the lady in front of me raised her phone to take a photo of it. Really?!!

How many years have we been trotting out that same trite truism, and how long have we been doing the opposite? Our organsations don't generally treat smart people well. Smart people think for themselves. Smart people say what they think out loud. Smart people tell us when what we are doing isn't so smart. We don't like this.

I spent the weekend in Italy helping to plan this year's [SOTN][1] for which the theme will be "Smart Life". As I mentioned to Paolo, my friend and one of the founders, the first step to becoming smart is being willing to admit that you are stupid. We need to get better at this.

James O'Sullivan's profile photoNollind Whachell's profile photoGregory Esau's profile photo
I wish I had read this post earlier, +Nollind Whachell ! I would see why we were tripping over the word "attract" and "talent"!
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Liberating Others By Liberating Yourself

“The book, if I get it right, will help people help themselves and help each other.”
+John Stepper , How's The Book Coming Along

This single sentence spoke volumes to me within John's recent post. The last part of it, where he says, “...and help each other”, is the differential, the intent, that changes everything. Let me try to explain.

Culturally Empowering

Back within the communities of practice I built online around video games (i.e. a World of Warcraft guild), my friends and I noticed a certain pattern occurring that others who have played a massively multiplayer game (MMO) may have noticed as well. Basically what was happening is that because we cared so deeply about empowering people, we'd get people coming into our community, empowering themselves, and then leaving after they'd had their fill. Simply put, these people took advantage of our generosity and beliefs of empowerment.

You see we had “projects” within our community that we wanted to complete (i.e. Dungeon Raids) and to be able to achieve them, we needed empowered people not only in terms of fully knowing their abilities, which we helped mentor them with, but also having the resources to help them achieve their abilities, which we helped fund them with as well. So just like in a business, they were a huge investment to us.

But more important than their abilities and resources was their cultural knowledge. We cultivated and nurtured these individuals so that they could in turn cultivate and nurture others as leaders themselves (just as leaders at W.L. Gore & Associates cultivate leadership in others as well). So when we lost individuals like this, basically like a cancer, it drained us on a variety of fronts and reduced our capacity to sustain our cultural growth in empowering more people.

The Synthesis Organization

You see I have a very specific vision in my head, one that I've had most of my life, as it evolved from a mere fantasy to becoming a potential reality today. What I want to cultivate and create is not just about learning together. It's about working together as well, in ways that create something that is a hybrid, composite, or synthesis of different traditional institutions that we normally see today.

This is why I'm not just looking for people in general to empower but rather I'm looking for people with the right character who want to empower others as well. So it's not about selfishly “liberating” yourself at the expense of others. It's about selflessly liberating yourself so that you can in turn help liberate others which helps sustain this empowering viral growth cycle as it spirals outwards and affects others in turn.

Over the coming days, I'll try to elaborate more on how this synthesis organization works in striving to create a self-sustaining cycle of liberation.

Image via Warrior Rising
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Have him in circles
306 people
Social Catalyst
  • Be Real Creative
    Social Catalyst, 2013 - present
  • Squarespace
    Customer Support, Documentation, Training Videos, 2005 - 2006
  • FirstWeb
    Senior Web Developer, 1998 - 2001
  • Human Resources Development Canada
    1991 - 1995
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Vancouver, BC
Edmonton, AB - Thompson, MB
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Connect, Empower, Inspire
My natural talent and passion is identity and my purpose is to help people discover theirs as a whole, so as to give them a greater understanding of themselves within the context of the world around them.

While I've always been fascinated with the identity of heroic characters in stories and games, it wasn't until I had to rise to the heroic challenge of figuring out my own identity over the past decade that this passion was revealed to me. Through a hero's journey of playful discovery and learning, I've come to realize that this same process can help others in discovering their own identity in turn, particularly on an organizational level.

To fully understand the power of identity within the context of an organization, community, product, or service, please note the quote below.

“Want to figure out an innovative way to promote a new product, expand into a new market, build a community around your company, or improve employee relations? By all means, bring in a catalyst.”
-The Starfish and The Spider

I've had the experience of doing most of these things as a catalyst of transformational identity change myself.
  • I've founded and built communities online around a positive cultural identity.
  • I've helped to identify and solidify the identity and direction of a startup.
  • I've helped to articulate the potential future path of product in relation to its customers.
  • I've helped to cultivate a positive cultural identity within a company to improve its morale.
If you'd like someone to help you explore, navigate, and tell your organization's story of identity in an authentic way, I'd love to help.
Bragging rights
Intuitively created and cultivated social organizational techniques in the late 1990's before even hearing the term more than a decade later.
  • The School of Life
    Majoring in Playfulness, Wholeness, and Uniqueness, present
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December 13, 1965
Nollind Whachell's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.