Hard, sweaty workouts have not been my thing. Yet, I’m now on day #9 of my routine. Despite the initial pain, I’m achieving deep and sustained satisfaction.
I’m no sadomasochist. I’m a 30-something woman working to keep a toned body. Yoga is my love, though she needs a companion to help her achieve the results I want. I recently adopted burst training, also known as high-intensity interval training[i], after an inspiring conversation with wellness wonder Sharon Porter. According to my online research, the body can respond to working out in roughly 30-second stints—and at 90-100% maximum effort—by burning fat for the next 24 hours. You’re welcome!
I am playing with an original idea to apply the burst training tactic to the fitness of one’s cultural agility[ii].
In 15 years partnering with people to engage between differences, I’ve been running a figurative marathon. Incremental change over time has been a mantra I’ve advised you to take on, too, as you make way to wholly become the people and places that honor shared purpose. To me, a paced stride of steps toward change makes sense. Especially when among groups of people who both, “collectively create results that nobody wants,”[iii] and demonstrate ambivalence to the possibility of doing differently to achieve different results.
While I stand by this more classic strategy of choice (i.e. the figurative marathon), I am leaning into new learning. I invite you to consider with me: What if the burst training approach was applied as an expedient to promote cultural competence development around the differences that shape and strengthen[iv]? Here are some questions I’m posing so far as I work out this knot of an idea:
It would be a wow experience! When applied to training or workshop design, my idea of so-called culture burst™ training might offer simple choices to:
As your personal trainer, I would support you to build your mental muscle to achieve cultural agility to the level of personal power—whether individually or with a group; face-to-face or virtually; with single or layered goals as our guide. Ready to join me for a hard, sweaty workout?!
EngageBetween…people. place. purpose.
[i] Burst training, also known as high-intensity interval training (HIIT), involves short bursts of high-intensity style exercise for 30-60 seconds followed by one to two-minute recovery periods.
[ii] As I define it, “cultural agility” is the ability to balance cultural knowing and uncertainty for optimized results in real-life, real-time scenarios.
[iii] Quote attributed to Otto Scharmer from his book with Katrin Kaufer, Leading from the Emerging Future: From Ego-System to Eco-System Economies. In context, the quote reads, “We collectively create results that nobody wants because decision-makers are increasingly disconnected from the people affected by their decisions. As a consequence, we are hitting the limits to leadership—that is, the limits to traditional top-down leadership that works through the mechanisms of institutional silos”.
[iv] While my word selection includes terms like “expedient,” “burst” and “intensity”, I maintain that cultural competence development and the one’s practice of inclusion and equity is a process no matter the path chosen.
By the way: As a false cognate, the word, “expedient,” reflects the charm of the English language to sound like one thing and mean another. I looked it up: An expedient (n.) is a means to an end; it promotes a proposed or desired objective.
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people. place. purpose.