Enabling Joy Through Alignment

I have been training for a back country hike in Yoho. I am not concerned that I will not do well on the hike, but I know that the better prepared I am physically, the more likely I will be to en-ABLED to en-JOY the whole experience, physically, mentally and spiritually as well.


The picture above was taken during this past summer’s hike to Siyeh Pass in Glacier National park. I have vision, and am well motivated for my upcoming trip!

As I have been training, I have been carrying a pack on my back, and gradually increasing the weight of it as I also increase the length and elevations of my routes. One thing I note in doing this is the importance of alignment. There are many adjustments on my pack, and the closer I pay attention to them, the better the load feels. If I remain ignorant (as I was for a time) of the potential for adjustment, I suffer in misalignment, and ultimately pain. Pain during a training hike is not always bad, for it helps us to discover the source of misalignment so that we can make adjustments before tackling even more aggressive terrain or distance. In a shorter hike over flat terrain with a light load it may not seem important to obsess over adjustment unto alignment. However, once the load is increased, the terrain elevations altered and the load increased, adjustments become appreciated – potentially even critical.

It is the same on other areas of life and business. Optimal performance, personally and corporately, requires that we pay attention to details as we become aware of them, so that we do not become unnecessarily frustrated or overwhelmed and tempted to give up on the pursuit of our journey and its compelling vision.

There are many adjustments possible within the culture of an organization. Before we can make the adjustments it is important to know what is creating the pain within the culture. Measurement of values alignment is one powerful tool in helping us to understand where there is alignment (or not) within an organization. Like a balance sheet, it provides a quantified measurement of health from within the otherwise vaguely qualifiable data that exists within culture.

In coffee shop speak, if an organization exhibit values of bottom-line/profit/survival focus, and the employees within that organization hold values of cohesion, community-building or making a difference beyond themselves, there will be a parting of the ways at some point – but worse, the gap may prove to frustrate efforts along the way.

There is little better that we experience in the human life than to be well-prepared, focused on, and pursuing a journey while being aligned with others and celebrating the achievement(s) along the way.