“We Are Not Living an Era of Change but a Change of Era”
By Chris Lowney
Pope Francis said, “We are not living an era of change but a change of era.”
One could engage in intellectual debate about his claim: is it really a change of “era”? But this much is beyond debate: we’re living through a complex, volatile moment in history. One that is challenging leaders in Politics, Business, Religion, and not least, Education.
To thrive in this new environment we must all pick up some new skills and abilities, including this one: to become comfortable with the reality of being uncomfortable. It feels deeply uncomfortable, for example, to have to plan for the future when one can’t predict the future with any confidence. It feels deeply uncomfortable to have to make decisions amidst circumstances that seem to change constantly. Faced with such realities, some leaders shrink from the task. They step back, hoping that things will go back to “normal.”
But I’m afraid that volatility and complexity are here to stay. Therefore, we will all have to learn to step up and lead amidst such challenging circumstances. Put differently, we’ll have to get comfortable with being uncomfortable.
I’m looking forward to discussing this and other ideas during my keynote presentation at the CPCO Conference. It will be my great privilege to present to educators who are making a powerful difference in our society.
Chris Lowney is the author of seven books, including the award-winning Make Today Matter: 10 Habits for a Better Life (and World). He founded Pilgrimage for Our Children’s Future, which supports education and healthcare projects among severely impoverished, marginalized communities, and also co-founded Contemplative Leaders in Action, an emerging leader formation program now active in a half-dozen cities.