I’ve often described the last 10 years of my life as “the decade of personal development for Nancy Murphy.” Some of that personal growth resulted from intentional action – a Sufi retreat in the Sahara Desert, workshops on mindfulness, obsessive podcast listening. Other personal growth this decade resulted from experiences I wouldn’t have chosen, but that nonetheless provided important lessons: family health challenges, divorce, career missteps.

One of the best lessons I learned from these experiences is that when I’m struggling, I should get curious. When facing uncertainty, I want answers. Forcing the answer is not very effective, in my opinion. Instead, I’ve learned to start by asking better questions. Asking questions helps break my habit of assuming I already have certain information or know the “right” answer. I find this method allows space for clarity to emerge more organically – over time rather than on command.

As I approach my 50th birthday next year. . . read more.

What I’m reading . . .

Hot-off-the-presses book by Genius (the MacArthur Foundation says so!) Mauricio Miller, The Alternative: Most of what you believe about poverty is wrong. Part personal story, part manifesto for flipping the fundamentally flawed social service system, this book is an inspiring, urgent call to action.  When I sat down with Mauricio recently at Opportunity Collaboration, he gave me two gifts: a copy of his book and the invitation to brainstorm ways to enroll others in this vision for resurrecting the American Dream. I’m truly grateful for both!

Where I’m speaking . . .

I am NI17 bound! I’ll be speaking at the 2017 Net Impact Conference in Atlanta, GA, Oct 26-28. If you are a student or professional interested in using your career to effect social and environmental change, I highly recommend attending this conference. If you’re there, check out my session, Be an Intrapreneur: Leadership and Influence for Change, Fri, Oct 27 @ 4:40 pm. Learn more here.

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