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the places we have been

Updated: Nov 2, 2022

It has been a while coming, this sense of The Point. The point of me, and my, of why and where and how. And, like recognising one's face in the mirror - it is revealing, but not surprising.


navigation (noun). the process or activity of accurately ascertaining one's position and planning and following a route.

whakatere (verb). (-hia,-a,-tia) to steer, navigate (a canoe), buoy up, float, accelerate, speed up, hasten, quicken.


And to navigate, to be kaiwhakatere, I need to know where I have been, so I know where I am, and can then understand where I am going. Ka pai? Ka pai.


And this is where I have been -


>At the heart of everything, I value being useful (tlawmngaihna, if you want to follow the Mizo thread) and being action-oriented (Facta Non Verba, as St. Edmund's College said).


>I see these values playing out in three ways - asking questions, telling stories, drawing maps.


>Mao Tse-tung on guerrilla strategy, Masanobu Fukuoka on growing plants with nature, and Laurie Baker on building beautifully and cheaply are my go-to texts on design.


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And suddenly, here I am, writing (part of) my year's work programme in the simple and elegant logic of a Theory of Change:


IF I ask better questions with the Healthy families team; BY using the Niho Taniwha framework in weekly coaching sessions, and also using the Niho Taniwha framework to connect across team discussions; THEN more and better stories of Healthy Families work will surface, and also Healthy Families will build evaluation into their regular practice; AND EVENTUALLY the Healthy Families team will collaborate more (+better) across projects and areas of work.


Repeat with telling stories, and with drawing maps. And for the Auckland Co-design Lab, and for the CX Collective.


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And now onward, to tāepaepatanga o te rangi - that place where the sky hangs down to the horizon. For there be land. Or dragons. Or both.

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