Wednesday, November 19, 2008


Today the clouds parted and the sun came out and during a five hour window, Christine and I climbed in the MX5 (Miata) and drove to White Rock, our nearby ocean beach town and sat with a soup and wrap and a book outside the Watt’s Cooking diner. From the sun warmed table we could watch the wind driven waves. It wasn’t a planned excursion. In fact I was scheduled as a participant on an online webinar. Enjoying the moment was more important than intellectual stimulus of the structured kind.

I can’t believe I am writing this. Such impetuosity has not characterized my life and career. As a child I understood that spontaneity has a time and a place. It has taken me a lifetime to relearn it. It’s been a difficult lesson. I am assessed as‘gold’ within the four colour appraisal of personal and leadership style. I have been true to its characteristics for several decades. That means I follow rules and respect authority. I am loyal, dependable, and prepared. I am thorough, sensible and punctual. I need to be useful and I am faithful, stable and organized. Not a lot of room for impulsiveness.

Happily Christine has always been my counterbalance. For years she has encouraged me to do things I wouldn’t otherwise consider and at times that potentially interrupted the urgencies. Today I was the one who wanted to set aside the things we were doing in order to seize the sunny moment. Carpe diem is Latin for ‘seize the day.’ My relearned maxim is carpe momentum, or ‘seize the moment.’ As a young Dad years ago, I remember hearing Jim Croce’s plaintiff song. “When you coming home dad? I don't know when, But we'll get together then. You know we'll have a good time then.” I said I would never be the man who is left alone at the end of that song, with a son who didn’t have time for him. I am satisfied that I did have time for my own children, but there are so many other moments of life that I allowed to slip away in lieu of a crammed PDA calendar. Spontaneity is the capacity to surprise yourself, to trust your instincts and to interrupt an organized day in order to do something just because you feel like it.

Here is a downloadable PDF of a study. The Potent Self - A Study of Spontaneity and compulsion, by Moshe Feldenkrais, Michaeleen Kimmey.


  1. You spend too much time writing on the blog. By the way, the little coffee shop is called "Watts Cooking", just wanted this gold person to get it right. Too much information to too many people. You will have no privacy, and they'll come and get you, me too. I like to be unknown. See you in bed.

  2. Well Roomy, you really surprised me. By the way everyone can read these entries too.