Have you ever been in a place where you are overwhelmed by how smart and dedicated all the other people in the room seem? Have you had the joy of being so much in awe of what others are doing for the world that you can’t help asking more and more questions? Have you ever thought at the end of a day that you can’t believe how lucky you are to be among such amazing people? If you have had this experience, you have been in a room of genius.
This summer I attended the Canadian Positive Psychology Association Conference in Ottawa, Canada. Approximately 400 people arrived from across the globe to learn about positive psychology and consider the difference it could make in the world. From education to politics to workplace we learned and debated how happiness, well-being, and even greatness could transform lives. And there was no shortage of amazing people.
To a person the participants engaged in critical dialogue to understand how this science could make the world better for everyone. They were nurses, psychologists, life coaches, consultants and interested individuals. Each of them spoke about how they were trying to bring new messages of positive psychology into their domains. It was powerful and it was intimidating.
A little while after the conference an op ed piece in the NY Times opined about the necessity of having two of more individuals to create genius. Historically, “genius” was believed to be in each of us; it is the god within us as we are born. But the op ed proposed that we need others to challenge our thinking and bring our best to light. After this summer’s conference, I agree. My mind is still whirling with the ideas and suggestions from those few days.
Alone we have our thoughts, but together we have ideas, action and change. We lean on each other and learn from each other. We challenge, cajole, debate, edit, and refine ideas and then we dream, plan and achieve our dreams together.I was astounded how my thinking was lifted and my ideas were challenges… and it felt good. Who is in your room of genius?