Byron's Babbles

Containers Of Memories

Posted in Educational Leadership, Global Leadership, Leadership, Leadership Development, Mixtiles, Rob Hart by Dr. Byron L. Ernest on April 7, 2022
Some Of My Mixtiles

I sorted through notes this morning that I took while reading and came across this quote from the incredible book The Paradox Hotel by Rob Hart: “Time is a container. Places are containers.” In the context of the book my interpretation was that when we think of time and places we think of things from the past. In other words time and place contain memories. Those memories are very important to us and important to build. I blogged about this earlier in the week in Building Memories. Time and places really do become the containers for those memories.

As a member of the last of the baby boomers I am not a digital native, but a digital adoptee. One thing I love about my iPhone is the ability to take incredible pictures. No more carrying a bulky camera with flash bulbs and extra film (boy am I aging myself). Some call them the good ‘ole days. Me, not so much. I love it when my phone magically sends me a “memories show” with some related pictures from some past event or trip. Another container that takes me back to a time and place. I laugh when I see kids with there new pastel colored Polaroid cameras. Yes, I had one. And, yes they are cool. But, I am not carrying one and my phone is even more instant!

I have found an incredible new way to “contain” these memories. Have you heard of Mixtiles? Their call to action says it all: “Turn your photos into stunning wall art.” I was intrigued one evening when I saw their commercial and took them up on their buy 10 get 10 free, and a couple of days later (literally) had 30. I know I got carried away, but I’m giving 10 of those to my son. But, in full disclosure turned around and got a bunch more this week. The tiles are about eight inches by eight inches and a little under an inch thick. Here’s the best part, and I’m quoting from their website: “There’s a sticky strip on the back of them. You peel off the protective paper and stick them on the wall. Easy as pie! (We enjoy pie.)” So, no hooks or nails! Then, here’s the even better best part (I’m full of superlatives today). You can move them around: “Super easy – that’s what Mixtiles are made for! Just pop them off the wall and stick them in a different spot. Knock yourself out, you can do this a few dozen times!” Why am I telling you this? I love them and wanted to share.

I put a few of them above the woodwork of the entrance from our living room to the dining room. They are in plain view from our chairs in the living room. My wife and I catch ourselves gazing at them and then get to reminiscing about the times and places of the photos. These wonderful Mixtiles have become containers. I’m excited to put up more around the house. I should become a Mixtiles ambassador. I wonder if there is such a thing?

Anyway, we need to remember that time is a container and places are containers. While travel is a great disruptor for new memories, we don’t have to go anywhere new. It could be something inspiring we heard at a conference. I sometimes remember where I was sitting when someone told me something inspiring or important news. We must not forget that we play a role in filling the time and place containers of others. Let’s fill those containers with positive and inspiring memories.


Thinking About Love

Posted in Educational Leadership, Global Leadership, Leadership, Leadership Development, Love, Rob Hart by Dr. Byron L. Ernest on March 6, 2022

What is love? Now there is a question. When I looked it up there are at least eight different kinds of love depending on what source you are studying. Lately, however, I have been obsessed with this idea of leaders, organizations, businesses, and now even governments, loving their people. We all want a community in which to “belong”. A community in which everyone can bring their best self to and leverage their talents each and every day. If we want people to be engaged, whether at work or civically, we must create communities of belonging. So how do we do that? By loving each other!

My thoughts on this were prompted by a line Rob Hart put in his great new book that I just finished, The Paradox Hotel. I’ve got pages of quotes from the book for further pondering, but here is the prompt for this post: “There are different kinds of love, nevertheless they are all still love.” Very true!

Maturana and Verden-Zöller (2008) asserted that, “We humans are loving animals that become ill when deprived of love” (p. 7). They went on to assert, “…that these many different expressions do not denote different forms, kinds, or levels of love as an emotion, but that they in fact connote only different relational dimensions of our living as loving animals” (Appendix 10). So, nevertheless, all the different kinds of love are still love. It seems we have let success, measured in monetary terms, expectations, or desires for what others do take over for our love. Because love is not blind acceptance we must be sincere in creating mutual respect. Love is about a coexistence where we do not put our own desires expectations or aims ahead of others and begin to manipulate. When we think about love in this way it really is about a feeling of belonging and making sure others have the opportunity to belong.

Clearly, love is a complex thing, but all the different kinds of love are still love. What goes around comes around. So let’s all show a little more love.

Reference The Origin of Humanness in the Biology of Love, Humberto Maturana Romesin and Gerda Verden-Zöller Edited by Pille Bunnell, Imprint Academic 2008.