I sat yesterday waiting to board a plane. A woman behind me–with unhappy sighs and tone–was ticking off a list of woes and frustrations about her tribe. I thought to myself, “Keep going, you’re getting close.”


About one second into the process of alchemy, your tribe is going to hit resistance.



Blockages are part of the path toward alchemy. Got any resistances on your tribe right now? Well that’s good news, because without them, you have no possibility of alchemy–no need for it, really.


Ingenious tribes don’t avoid or balk at their resistances or blockages, they look for ways to leverage them toward the alchemy they desire. And… 

You’ll never guess what -often maligned dynamic- can reveal with precision your blockages-not too mention the possibility of alchemy.


Complaining. Yep. Complaining.


Well, a certain kind of complaining. Of course, there is the type of complaining that is simply meant to grind joy out of life. That’s not the value-add complaining I’m referring to.


However, productive complaining is an early warning sign that you’re likely close to alchemy.


Because complaining reveals something is wrong in a system or process or, or, or…


In earlier days, if you visited the physician with a problem, the doc might ask, “what complains you?” Even today, when assessing for an issue, physicians look for the “chief or primary complaint.”


So what’s the difference between productive and unproductive complaining?


Well one big difference is what a tribe does right after the complaint is lodged. If you squash productive complaining on your tribe, you are likely reducing the chance of alchemy.


Ingenious tribes develop tolerance for complaints and then they leverage that complaint as part of their raw materials to turn it into the change that’s needed.