February: a time for renewal

Now that we have crawled out of the January blues, hopefully paid our holiday bills and settled back into the daily routines of work and family, there could be time to reflect on the year ahead. Time to make positive changes, set goals for a sustainably successful year and acknowledge those small steps that will take you there.

One really fun way of doing this is by building a collage. It is simple and easy and costs very little. All you need is a poster-sized (or larger) piece of cardboard, a stack of magazines, glue and scissors.

First you set your intention: eg "I want to make positive changes that will meaningfully impact my work, life and family." Then start paging through the magazines and without thinking too hard or too long, tear, or cut out pictures that resonate with you. Don't stop to question just rip and cut. Do this for about 20-30 minutes. When you are depleted, or have run out of magazines, arrange your pictures on your cardboard and stick.

When  you are done, sit back and reflect. It is often useful to do this with someone else or in a group and then to discuss what you have discovered with the others, allowing them to comment and ask questions. Make sure you choose people that you feel safe with.

This process is often used in the coaching context and reveals sometimes surprising results. I regularly do my own collage work and I am always amazed at what is revealed to me. I then laminate and stick that collage up to remind me of my intentions and goals for the year. Often years later I will go back to earlier collages and recognize where changes occurred for me. A powerful and inspirational process.

Collages can also be used to facilitate a team vision or for individuals in a department who need to get to know each other better. I can facilitate this process for anyone who is interested, it is a energetic way to spend a morning with friends, colleagues or team members.

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