Tag Archives: 2010dec

Reflecting on the Best Book I read in 2011 – THAT USED TO BE US

That Used To Be Us: How America Fell Behind In The World It Invented and How We Can Come Back by Thomas L. Frieman and Michael Mandelbaum (2011) was the book that made the biggest impression on me this year.

I see this book to be an honest analysis of the America we are living in.  Further, my read of the book is that it present a reasonable message about America’s possible future.

Here are eleven links to posts I wrote this year stimulated by this thought provoking book.  I hope the posts lead more people to read the book and benefit form the learning it can stimulate.  Enjoy!

Collectively we need to act in the interest of our countries common good!

America simply doesn’t have time anymore for exhausting any options other than the right ones

We must invest in education, infrastructure, and research and development, as well as open our society more widely to talented immigrants

It depends on us . . . are we ready to transform our educational focus?

There are two types of workers in our economy: creators and servers.  Forget blue-collar and white-collar.

Do you believe that America has fallen behind in the world it created?

I don’t think this is fair to our children

Elegant thinkers and effective collaborators

The Opportunities to Build Community and a Brighter Future are Available – And it Will  Require Courage to Actualize those Opportunities

How can getting better at thinking ever be a bad idea?

Reframing our thinking is the beginning









I appreciate 2010 and all that that has come before. I am excited by the possibility of the future. Welcome 2011!


I made this Wordle at: http://www.wordle.net/create

and then took a screen shot and captured that in iphoto, cropped it up – and here it is.



2010 Census Data – And a link to an interactive Map of the 2010 Census

I find this information very interseting!  If you haven’t stumbled upon this VERY RECENT  U. S. Census data – take some time to poke around and ponder the current situations and the trends. Happy thinking!!!!

Embed on your site:

Data provided by U.S. Census Bureau.

Population Density: Includes Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia in population density rankings, 1 to 52.

Apportionment: Apportionment is the process of dividing the 435 seats in the House of Representatives among the 50 states. Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia are not included.

Alaska and Hawaii gained statehood in 1959. Arizona and New Mexico gained statehood in 1912. For apportionment, data before those periods are not reflected on the map.

Congress did not reapportion in 1920. Therefore, the apportionment data shown for this decade replicates the data for 1910. There is no data reflected for the apportionment population in the 1920 “people per representative” chart.


Big leaps and safe landings!!!!

This time of year is a great time for me.  I tend to really cut back on the ‘number of things on my plate’ during this week and attempt to explore a new idea or two.

One of those new ideas I am exploring, during this relaxing week, is the concept of how does one prepare to help individual adults who say they want to experience deep change in an area of their choosing.  Intentionally tackling a growth edge while in the midst of life’s journeys is by no means simple or easy.  And to find an approach to tackling that change that will both connect with and serve busy, responsible adults is challenging.

Immunity to Change: How To Overcome It And Unlock Potential In Yourself And Your Organization by Kegan and Lahey (2009) is proving to be very helpful.  Obviously, many scholars and practitioners have tackled this issue. Kegan and Lahey make a lot of sense.  There approach is not simple but it is clear and understandable.  Thus, I continue to read and think about their work and how I might help others apply the their approach.  When it comes to thinking about individuals and groups intentionally embarking on a journey of significant; this is a stimulating read!

They wish their readers “big leaps and safe landings!” page 323



Are we ready to tackle the challenges of the status quo?

When we are looking to the future and seeing the possibility of change.  We have to face the weight of the ‘status quo’.  Generally individuals or groups of people in families, classrooms, businesses and organizations find the current practices to be difficult to move away from.  Not impossible, but difficult.  A transition needs to take place.

William Bridges writes about transitions and change.  He explains that we have to be willing to move into ‘new beginnings’.  “Transition starts with an ending – paradoxical but true.   The starting point for transition is not the outcome but the ending that you will have to make to leave the old situation behind.  Situational change hinges on the new thing, but psychological transition depends on letting go of the old reality and the old identity you had before the change took place.” ~ W Bridges, Managing Transitions (1991, 2005 and 2009)

The lesson to learn is that ‘letting go’ (allowing for an ending) of the status quo is not an automatic occurrence for people. It is a process and the process may not be swift or smooth.  Yet, without that transition through the ‘space’ between the status quo and the new beginning – it is not likely that you or the group will really achieve grounded change.



It is an optimistic time!!! Let’s hold on to our optimism to help generate positive action!

Helping to bring about transformative change for our communities and for our children is both hard and possible. It will likely be both exhilarating and discouraging.  

 It is important, timely and worth doing.  If not you, who? 

 “Practice both optimism and realism.  Some people would have you choose one or the other. Believing in one or both is a choice.  By holding on to the both, by being unwaveringly optimistic and coolly realistic at the same time, you keep that optimism from floating off into naïveté and the realism from developing into cynicism.” The Practice of Adaptive Leadership, Heifetz, Grashow and Linsky, p 297-298, 2009  


Image by andybullock77 via flickr