Remember the spark? Those moments when you feel fully aligned with your purpose. When you feel the creative energy and excitement of being part of something larger than yourself and you know that you are doing the thing that you were meant to do in the world. These moments of genius are the engines of change in our lives, our relationships, and the world. And as the world gets more complex and our challenges more serious, we need you to spend more time in moments of creative genius.
Contrast that feeling with the overwhelm you have felt by the enormity of the work in front of you. How many of us working in mission based organizations feel ruled by our inboxes, our to-do lists, our calendar, and our Slack channels? All of these modern tools are meant to make our busy lives easier, but when used unskillfully, they often have the opposite effect. Bombarded by a seemingly endless stream of communication, overwhelm sets in and our genius (and impact) suffers.
For many of us, myself included, the answer is usually a mish-mash of tactics including: extending our working hours, convincing ourselves that things will relent (in a few months, years, etc.), attempting to take disconnected vacations or incorporating self care routines. Internally at Hollyhock, we know that an awareness and acknowledgment of the overwhelm is the first step in changing it, but the solution is not awareness alone. We must use the awareness to identify and focus on our moments of genius and then build a rigorous system to support them.
A few months ago, I met Amrita Ahuja and was introduced to her Groundwork system for creating “the foundation you need to go after what you want in life and to do it with clarity and peace of mind.” I am always skeptical when someone tells me that they have figured it out. However, a couple minutes into my first conversation with Amrita, I could tell there was something very real here. Amrita’s passion radiated through the screen and her commitment to helping people discover ease in the world was palpable. Her system is a fusion of deep wisdom (awareness) and the latest in performance science. It is both profound and practical. It is the perfect system to catalyze your genius.
Peter: How did you come up with the Groundwork System?
Amrita: I like contemplating things. I like watching the wind move the branches of a tree. I like searching for the source of the sounds I hear. I like walking through cities and people watching on an early weekday morning. I also like building things. I like having an idea and being able to do something about it.
At some point in my early days as an entrepreneur, I realized that contemplating and building were one whole movement. I realized that when I have the space and time to just experience life as it is, it feeds the ideas I have and the actions I take. I believe this is the genius you are referring to and the experience of being in touch with your life expression.
I built Groundwork so that my ideas could take off and land, but without losing the space I needed to stay connected to my reverence for life.
It’s exactly as you said. You can have the awareness that you are overwhelmed, but if you don’t have a way to mitigate the overwhelm, you’re likely to fall victim to it over and over again. I had to figure out how to take this way of thinking and make it real. I wanted the values I had for both getting things done and enjoying my life to be the reality of my everyday life. I wanted to be active in the world while still having lots of freedom to just be. This is why Groundwork is a way of thinking but also a “systematic approach to peace of mind”, as a Brand Creative Director and Groundwork user once said, “ultimately, it’s practical.”
I was also after something else. I didn’t need more tools. None of the tools I was using solved the real problem I was having. Of course, some of the tools and technology I incorporated into my life helped me tremendously with developing processes and operationalizing what I was doing, but they never answered the real question: how do I build and sustain peace of mind in this crazy, busy, chaotic world? This is why the tagline for Groundwork is: at ease in the world. Self-care routines, disconnected vacations, extending work hours – these are only temporary solutions to a bigger problem that Groundwork addresses.
Peter: What can people expect if they come to your program?
Amrita: There are many reasons I’m excited about the Groundwork Masterclass this spring but one of them is that Hollyhock is the perfect environment for immersing ourselves in one of the foundational principles of the Groundwork System: living with a balance between doing and being. We’re going to get lots done, but we’re going to do it Groundwork-style.
Our sessions will rotate between a learning component, a working session, time for contemplation, resting, and eating well. This Groundwork Masterclass is designed for people to get away from their daily pressures and reinvent the way they are moving through life.
Almost everyone I talk to lately is living with some level of overwhelm. If you’re done tolerating feeling that way, this program is for you. You will leave equipped with a new way of getting things done and a renewed connection to something important – your genius.If you have looked at the program details and still have questions, please feel free to meet with me 1-1.