Individually we are one drop. Together, we are an ocean ~ Ryunosuke Satoro


Globalisation has made the world a much smaller and more interconnected place Historically, collaboration and connection provided success in common goals (food, shelter, health) for indigenous communities. Today, we model this tribal value on a world scale. Global trade and international organisations have created interdependence between countries as each provides materials, support or intelligence to the other.

If you think about it, everything – our bodies, the natural world, technology and our interactions with others – work synergistically. Without collaboration, our bodies would shut down, Nature would not survive and advances in human development and technology would not be possible.

We know we are intimately connected when wars and cultural strife in one country have a ripple effect in the world. (Think Syrian refugees and the many countries such as Greece, Germany who have opened their borders to provide them safe haven).


While the principles of collaboration are often applied to the world or in business they hold true as a powerful force for good and growth right in your own life too.


 See if you can spot these qualities at work in your own life. Are there some missing that you could add?

Qualities of Collaboration

  • Embracing team concepts that share, learn from each other, easily recognise others’ accomplishments, are flexible and take personal responsibility for outcomes
  • Generosity and willingness to take the initiative to help and support
  • Curiosity and the ability to ask questions that lead to better understanding
  • Appreciation for whatever and whoever contributes to achievements of goals
  • Attention and active listening that encourages clarity and promotes unconditional respect
  • Perspective and context that can see how present actions affect the bigger picture
  • Knowledge that finds answers that contribute to goals
  • Trustworthiness that follows through on promises and expects the same of others
  • Open to building relationships and able to ask for help as needed
  • Honesty and willingness to tell the truth in a mindful and respectful way without judgment or criticism
  • Commitment and self-discipline to stay focused on mutual goals despite blocks
  • Desire to find the simplest, easiest solutions to challenges
  • Ability to measure results that are related to achieving stated goals
  • Flexibility and ability to negotiate and adapt as situations change while still focusing on goals


Try this exercise->

1] Find a quiet place to be alone.

2] Sit comfortably and take a few deep, cleansing breaths help you focus and relax.

3] As you review the list above, write down one way you might incorporate the concepts as (1) an employee, (2) a friend, (3) a spouse and (4) within yourself.

4] Which answers give you the greatest reaction (either negative or positive)?

5] Choose one quality to practice each day and see how life situations change. (Do you notice greater cooperation with co-workers? less tension with loved ones and more joy? improved self-awareness? greater productivity? More peace?)


What Gets in the Way?

“Old habits die hard”.  Choosing to be collaborative can bring up past coping mechanisms that block you:

  • Difficulty in working mindfully with others or even yourself
  • Feeling uncomfortable honestly sharing your views.
  • Feeling awkward when taking personal responsibility for your share of a project, goal or even a conversation.


But, if you persist by taking small, intentional steps… you can embrace:

  • Greater harmony and less stress in life
  • More creativity and faster problem-solving
  • More loving, meaningful and connected relationships
  • Broader perspective and understanding of others
  • More loyalty and respect towards all humanity
  • Ability to work with others


We are all connected and share a common pursuit of basic necessities of life – food, shelter, well-being, safety and love. We live under the same sky, breathe the same air. At our essential natures, our interconnection is indisputable despite our apparent separateness.


Choosing to embrace collaboration in your life makes a difference in the world too.


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