Before I Die...

Written by Michael Donahue

A little over five years ago Glenna decided to redo much of the main floor of our home. G was intent on doing what we had been doing for years; including people who visit our home and finding a way for them to leave a bit of themselves, with the belief that this created a sanctuary spirit in our home. She contracted the house painter to cover an entire wall in our kitchen area in black chalkboard paint, so people could answer a simple question with various colors and sizes of chalk.  They only had to consider and answer one question “Before I die I want to...”   use the wall and chalk and their thoughts to fill in the blank.   This has been so widely well received that when we opened our basement apartment as an Airbnb three years ago, we added another wall with the same question and now have the visions, hopes, and dreams from over 200 people who come from all over the world adding onto hundreds more on the first wall.  The youngest author being six years old and the oldest well into her 80’s.

Here are some samples of those visions and dreams...

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Beautiful Questions

Always the beautiful answer
Who asks a more beautiful question.
E.E. Cummings

  1. How do we support organizations and people to thrive?

  2. Why do transitions have to be so difficult?

  3. Why do we conduct executive leadership searches in the social sector the way we do and why aren't we more successful?

  4. How might we narrow our work/life to focus only on the essentials... What are my essentials?

I have a new field guide - like any good field guide, it is tattered, marked-up and faithfully at my side. A More Beautiful Question - written by Warren Berger explores the power of inquiry and how deeply and thoughtfully using the art of questioning can lead to breakthrough solutions to challenging problems, innovative new ideas and unimagined opportunities. It is a go to source now as we navigate interesting and tricky challenges posed to us by our clients and for GForce Strategies.

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