The Obstacle is the Path

I am known to say, “The Obstacle is the Path.” It’s a Zen koan, a type of puzzle, and I suggest an ancient example of upside down thinking.

Think about that. The only way we will change things is to head straight toward that which blocks the pathway to change.

It might be a system or the absence of a policy.

It might be a program or initiative that has had its time and now looms as a problem we must address.

It might be someone you do not get along with and your energy together saps your will and your spirit.

More often than we might care to admit, we are in the way of ourselves.

We resist changing our minds or how we see our work.

We resist facing the possibility that we are the problem we need to fix.

We know that to change communities, people within them must change, but sometimes, perhaps frequently, we don’t really embrace the fact that each of us must change, that “I” must change, not just “them.”

The Obstacle is the Path.

Head straight to it.

It’s really the only way to break through the status quo and make big change.

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