We live in a world of poles, of contrasts and conflicts. We are brought up to make choices, thousands of choices each day. no wonder one of the hardest concepts to embrace is AND. In a world offering OR, choose AND.

Tick another box. Go on!

AND is not easy. OR is far easier. The choices are right there before you. Trade them off. Pick one and you are done. AND demands work. AND demands you look beneath the surface of all the dichotomies. There’s no magic abundance that takes away the need for choice but there are ways with work, effort and smarts to expand what is possible.

AND forces you to look to a wider community. We have no need to trade off one person’s success or wealth or health or happiness for another’s, but that is how so many debates are framed to intensify the conflict and polarise the issue. ‘They will win. You will lose’ is othering plain and simple. Effective but empty and manipulative. Those who rely on it usually expect all to lose but them.

Before you accede to the obvious choice look for ways to achieve more, to include more, to give more and to be more. Many time just under the surface of a quandary is a massive AND, especially if the choices are not from the same set, but only appear related or are t commonly treated as trade offs. Who knows what really goes on in the complex world of second and third order effects. Perhaps the surface trade off is no trade at all.

To deal with an increasingly complex world we need more inclusion, more innovation and more effort. We will only get that if we embrace AND. If we are driven back to OR then let that be a failure of our efforts to achieve more.

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