Sunday, December 27, 2020

A New Begining

I have just completed my first five weeks of radiotherapy and have two more weeks to go, so fingers crossed. The side effects are starting to show, the skin around my neck feels like it has beeen sunburnt and looks like it as well (bright red). I'm having to put moisturiser on several times a day. The NHS nurses and the staff at the RD&E in Exeter are really great and supportive, what a great project team. Everyone knows their role. But at the end of the day it is up to me and my body to get through this. So I decided to go back and have another look at life and maybe try to draw out some of the wider learnings from it and not just concentrate on the project management aspects. I will start it here from a project management perspective and as usual see where the way leads me.

The Way

The way cannot be learnt, it can only be known, so this represents a new look in my quest for that knowledge.  There will be darkness but out of that darkness will come knowledge of how things happen. 

Lao Tsu tells us: 

The Way that can be told is not the eternal Way. 

The name that can be named is not the eternal name. 

The nameless is the beginning of Heaven and Earth. 

With a name the mother of the ten thousand things. 



Tuesday, December 22, 2020

Letting Go

I haven't posted anything for a while as I have not been too well during the Covid-19 pandemic. It turned out after a lot of tests that I have cancer and I am now undergoing radiotherapy treatment, which has led me to have a long think about where I am.
I am 77 and have had a good life thus far (and was still playing walking rugby until the radiotherapy) so can't really complain but I do have a number of things that I need to take care of. Mostly to do with succession planning for my technical books and personal matters. So it really is time to start letting go.
I've got two great friends (one is also my son) who have taken on most of my technical books but don't have anyone to take over "Effective Time Management in easy steps", any offers? 
I don't think I want anyone to take over "The Way of the Project Manager" as it is very personal to me and it will eventually fade away. But if anyone is interested in doing something similar feel free to use it as a starting point or not, I won't mind either way.
For my health and wealth I'm setting up lasting powerers of attorney with my wife and children. 
The Way
In project management there is no point in trying to be perfect or admired. These don't have any impact on the project and they won't make the project or the team any more successful. By letting go of all emotional baggage and just being part of the team we not only benefit the rest of the team and the project, but we also benefit ourselves.
The Tao
Lao Tzu tells us: 

Empty your mind of everything
Let the mind rest at peace
The ten thousand things will rise and fall
Being open minded, you will act in a kingly manner
Being divine, you will be at one with the Tao
Being at one with the Tao is eternal
And though the body dies, you are ready.
The term 'kingly' is used in the Tao as an alternative to 'the sage'. It indicates possessing the clarity of knowledge, being open-hearted and open-minded. I hope that I can aspire to be both.