When can you count on serendipity?

Serendipity is one of my favourite words. It's fun to say, and it's fun when it happens.  These are two good things.

It's a sneaky concept, the idea that you can find good things by accident. It sounds unintentional and unreliable.  Often, that's true.  But there are some loopholes and using them I find that serendipity is a good strategy for opening up or digging down into new possibilities.

Here's an example of serendipity at work.

On the Saturday evening of the first weekend of NLP Practitioner training, I wanted something new to read, so I downloaded a book to my ipad. The book was Thief of Time by Terry Pratchett. If you click on the link, you'll see that the description is for a fantasy book about time.

Time is, of course, a key concept in change management and we held an event last week that included jazz musicians and discussion of time, timing, and getting into sync. So it's not surprising that this was the Terry Pratchett I decided would be a fun way to engage my thoughts and relax over dinner.

The serendipity is that the book is only partly about time. It's also about what it is like to live in the body and the senses. In the book, beings who are normally without bodies acquire human bodies and begin to notice how the body and senses have a mind of their own.

This is very funny.

It's also the main theme of the first weekend of an NLP training: we guide people into a heightened awareness of the connections between their bodies, their senses and their thoughts.

Isn't it odd that I found this book exactly when I was most immersed in its theme?

I think it is odd, but predictably odd. It happens to me all the time.  The book I need finds me when I go looking.  It's serendipity.  And it's been working for me for years.


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