GRATITUDE AND GROWTH – A THANKSGIVING MESSAGE
Thanksgiving is time to take stock, to be grateful for what we’ve got, to break-even, in business, before bargaining for best margin, ahead of the Black Friday rush.
Thanksgiving, 22 November 2018
Celia Gates, Seaford UK
DEAR WORLD –
CAN WE HAVE A BOLD CONVERSATION CONSTRUCTIVELY?
To you, who already said Yes! Thank you for supporting this vision. Progress feels fast and slow, in cycles you’ve watched evolve, sometimes stagnant, then suddenly a seismic shift lifts everything to a new level. Last week I had such a ‘shattering and shifting’. Once perspective is broadened it cannot be re-restricted and the world doesn’t quite look the same.
It was Global Entrepreneurship Week, the time of year when 170 countries around the world shed light on entrepreneurship, celebrating success and sharing ways to further support the ecosystem. Usually, we deliver a Global Brainstorm, connecting people around the world. This year, plans was disrupted and the initiative fell through. I was bitterly disappointed.
Not one to give up easily and overcoming my frustration with distraction online, I stumbled on the most insightful and inspiring video I’ve watched in a very long time. Jada Pinkett-Smith, her mother Adrienne Banfield-Jones and daughter Willow Smith host Red Table Talks on facebook. You may have seen them. This one was titled ‘the racial divide, women of colour and white women’. It urged bold conversation.
Easier said than done. Intention, explanation, interpretation and understanding don’t always correlate when it comes to communication. I’ve experienced such misconception and it can lead to more confusion and pain.
“Prejudice is an emotional commitment to ignorance” the video eloquently announced.
I was reassured. My emotional commitment is to growth and I was watching to learn. In learning, it’s easy to accept your ignorance. The more you know, the more you realize how much more there is to understand. How ignorant was I really? I made a couple of calls.
It’s time to speak-up; to say what we really think and feel rather than what others expect or want to hear. Not speaking up keeps us in fear but doing so exposes our vulnerabilities. Stick your head above the parapet and you’re likely to get shot. Careless conversation costs lives. These war analogies are still in use 100-years later and they are not the only cultural conditioning to remain relevant today. It’s easy (and ignorant) to assume our minds have moved on.
Change is happening as certainly as our decisions define our destiny. Increasingly, I’m hearing “change is happening dramatically” and I can feel it too. The old ‘isms are back; racism, sexism and ageism. We warned of their rising, following the Global Brainstorm in 2013. People laughed then. Those issues have been overcome, they said but now we see the dangers of false freedoms and blind optimism. Denying the truth, gaslighting or pretending it’s not happening distorts all association with reality, enough to make even the sanest among us, mad. With mental illness a growing issue, this subject is vital and critical. It has to be addressed.
Losing ignorance is like losing innocence in a funny kind of way and it is time we all mature in respect of racism, sexism and ageism. Reality must be faced realistically if we’re to evolve successfully. Not doing so is destroying the fabric of our society. The risks of ‘sticking my head above the parapet’ are suddenly less than staying stuck underground. Time to grow and learn.
Currently, systemically, unseen pain beyond belief, anger, frustration and pent-up emotion caused by indoctrinated oppression coupled with false hierarchy, is tearing the hearts of our communities. Huge value is hidden in our vulnerabilities and diversities. Even greater potential exists in our collective acceptance and consequential healing. If we can uncover this, it’s my belief, we empower constructive creativity to build much happier, more productive, light-hearted and loving ways of life.
If you’re up for a bold conversation, please get in touch.
I will report on the ‘sims brainstorms once perspective has broadened adequately enough to see simple solutions. For now, I just want to say thank you. Thank you for inspiring me, thank you for supporting me, thank you for sharing your vulnerabilities with me, for evolving with me in your authentic energy. Above all, thank you for your diversity; your unique heart and mind, your individual presence and essence, your ‘visdom’ – or visionary wisdom – the thoughts and actions you contribute to designing our collective future, today.
Happy Thanksgiving 2018!