Time Out …… from tricycles to bicycles


I am not sure how many of you as children owned a tricycle, but as I reflect on my big blue tricycle, I recall a sense of security, stability, the Rolls Royce of cycles. You just pulled up and parked. No need to think about maintaining your balance.

It was not like a bicycle. A bicycle said that you had graduated, you were now a big girl/boy, but there were some inherent risks in trying to rule the world on two wheels as my bruises tell. I remember my first ride on a “stationary” bicycle (the kind that once you stop peddling, the bike stops). I pulled the brakes and was simultaneously propelled into the air, my skirt forming a useless parachute as I landed very ungraciously on the asphalt. My ego hurt more than the bruises that I sustained. However there were many levels of skill and expertise that I developed on my bicycle, far more than would have ever been catered for on my big blue tricycle.

My reflection on bicycles and tricycles believe it or not was prompted by the internal transformational work that I do with friends and clients. Using the Frameworks for Change Process, I identify impeding and supporting behaviours and attitudes to achieving our full potential.

As I look back on the last twelve months, I realise that each client unwittingly shared three stories – which I am now referring to as the three wheels of the tricycle.

Each of these tales related an attachment to a situation, in which they were on the cusp of fulfilling their dreams and yet emerged disappointed, with a void. Even as they related their “tricycle”, no matter how far in the past these experiences were, the intensity of the joy and/or sorrow they had experienced was there. The learning that they were yet to extract was also there. This was the learning that would enable them to migrate from a tricycle to a bicycle – from comfort zones through risk that would facilitate growth and fulfilment. They got there through facilitated reflection and introspection. Are you ready to make that transition from tricycle to bicycle?

Take a Time Out ……. the intentional cessation of an incomplete task see what surfaces.

Judy Joseph Mc Sween is the Principal Consultant/CEO of Meredith Mc Sween International – facilitating internal transformation in individuals, teams and organisations. Email judy@meredithmcsween.com

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