Many of us have engaged in correspondence and discussions about learning the practice of Holistic Management over the years. This blog will take our discussions to another level so we can get more holistic decision making on the ground, where we find meaningful leverage.
Finding Leverage for Life
Think about it. All life on our planet (as we know it) comes from the ecosystem processes. Improving the function of these processes will make life more resilient . Water begins to absorb, at the soil surface. Plants begin to germinate and grow, at the soil surface. Plants begin to decompose and build soil, at the soil surface. Tools effecting ecosystem function engage at the soil surface. The greatest marginal reaction and leverage point for improvement of life on our planet lies at the soil surface.
Empowering Decisions at the Soil Surface
This blog will explore how we can better develop markets, policy, investment, knowledge, and skill that will empower those making decisions at the soil surface.
Trying To Think Like a River
Like always, Tony had "get the blog out" on his calendar. He carved out big chunks of time to write this month and produced a solid piece. Writing does him good.
Before he publishes the blog, Tony reads it to me over breakfast. Usually, I throw a few blows that he easily sifts through. The other day, I felt it in his tempo that he was hoping I’d say, “Yeah! Publish and let’s go sort heavies.” Well, I didn’t. He knew it wasn't fleshed out and the tone just didn’t feel right for the time.
Our discussion shifted to the news of the day; the unthinkable tragedy that has befallen New Zealand. Our condolences to our grazing partners and others who call New Zealand home.
We then turned to discuss Gabe Brown’s great book Dirt to Soil which we are both reading. His recollections of the late Neil Dennis reminded us of the first time we met him in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
We were joining a large gathering of folks during Holistic Management International’s conference at the Long Branch. There was a slew of people all sitting at one table in a tiny space. Tony can’t stand those situations. “I can’t hear. I can’t engage. What the hell does it take to get a drink around here?”
Luckily, Neil and his wife Barbara were sitting next to us, and we sparked up a conversation. As anyone who has had such a fortune surely can imagine, it turned out to be one memorable evening. After dinner and drinks, Niel gregariously stood up and said: “Oh! You are the ‘Think Like A River folks!”
As an encore, we are sharing: Think Like a River – Finding Peace of Mind through Holistic Management. It seems fitting to share with you given the previous blog on log jams and the mood in which we find ourselves.
In a couple of weeks, Tony will be getting a hip replacement. Thanks to all of you, upstanding (literally) cowboys who have been saying “Don’t you think you need to get that hip taken care of Tony?” This is all to say, Tony will have ample time to think and write, so look forward to new material next month.
The American Prairie Reserve and Wild Sky Beef are adding diversity and complexity to the Northern Great Plains. They are looking to free up the movement of animals, increase plant diversity, and be more tolerant of predators. They have the means to incentivize their neighbor ranchers toward this end. I recently was invited to be on a panel at their Living with Wildlife conference and I dropped the ball. This blog is about the message I wish I would have conveyed.
Logjams - the sacred or the obvious
Our highest marginal reaction moment happens, when we find and eliminate a logjam. Make it a point to set time aside at the beginning of your planning cycle, each year, and root out your logjam(s). Often unrecognized for a long time, logjams lurk beneath your consciousness sucking creativity, money, and our social influence. Often, one finds the logjam in the last places we would ever look - the sacred or the obvious. How can we rethink logjams and look at this most potent component of the planning process differently? Read More
January 18, 2019
Eric spoke and a firmament opened; that rare epiphany that shifts the reality beneath your feet.
Andrea and I were at our friends 78th birthday party and conversing over slow-cooked elk and good wine.
I don’t remember what drew the revelation from Eric, “We often fail to consider the consequences of risk. Low consequences mean little risk, while significant consequence means great risk."
My good friend and hired man of 20+ years was Shoshone. He would stand and look at a field for what seemed an eternity before changing the irrigation water. He would pause on the lip of a canyon forever before riding down. He told me his culture ingrained in their people that a mistake meant death. That’s risk of high consequence.
The early adopters of a new innovation are taking a risk. Often they do not have enough information to know the consequences of the multiple risks they are taking.
When at the precipice of the tipping point for a new innovation, many risks have been clarified by those who were first. In today’s environment, the world faces high consequences if we don’t empower decisions at the soil surface.