I am an Italian-born citizen of the world.
Still, the sense of identity, belonging, attachement that one feels for their country is extremely powerful. Italy is a beautiful country, full of contradictions
As Jarda and I talked about in a conversation some weeks ago, it seemed to us that we have these two persons inside. One is developing a personality in a new context, with a new language, a different way of thinking etc. The other part of us is thinking in its mother tongue, is strongly linked with the roots of its culture, old friends, traditional ways of thinking (Jarda correct me if I am mistaking). The big question was: which part of myself is truer?
The art of asking the right questions:
I believe there is a tremendous power in asking the right questions.
I presume that we have a natural, spontaneous attitude to respond if someone makes us a question. It’s embedded in our education, because we’ve been taught to do so in our childhood. We think it is not polite not to do so.
I am meeting a lot of bright Italians since I am here in the UK. When it comes to talk about our country, and the things that go wrong, a lot of sensitive issues come to surface. The discussion becomes heated up, but all I can see from these smart, open-minded folks is a great passion in good faith for our country and a willingness to change the systemic errors.
Lately I am trying one strategy to make the most of all the thoughts that pop out from a conversation with these bright guys.
We are sitting at the dinner table, and I ask to each of them: “If you were the prime minister in Italy, what are the three most important leverage points of the system that you would change? And, in each of them, how would you make such change?”
I am happy that this kind of question encourages different positive behaviours. It sparkles positive thoughts, the idea of possibility, it suggests a ranking of the most relevant areas in which to intervene.
But now here is a question that I have for you folks. I am always open to new, better questions for my Italian friends in order to make the discussion more fruitful.
Imagine that you wanted to explore the seeds of change in a system like your country; that you want to make the most of the brilliant ideas of these guys around that table. What is the question that you would ask?