Loving the work of Brené Brown

Still on the Brené Brown path… in my usual overly passionate way I bought every book written by her I could find on Amazon and am now trawling through them… I love this gem… ” When we stop caring about what people think, we lose our capacity for connection. When we become defined by what people think, we lose our willingness to be vulnerable. If we dismiss all the criticism, we lose out on important feedback, but if we subject ourselves to the hatefulness, our spirits get crushed. It’s a tightrope, shame resilience is the balance bar, and the safety net below is the one or two people in our lives who can help us reality-check the criticism and cynicism.” Working through 360s for a number of clients this provides such a perfect and gentle framework from which to view the feedback, which for some can be really confronting.

Out of my comfort zone

Yesterday I spent the day at a workshop with the mystic and founder of the Institute of Sacred Activism, Andrew Harvey...he is mesmerising, confronting, funny and demanding… Initially I was lulled into thinking it was an interesting workshop (his language is colourful and his voice soothing) but had heard much of it before in different guises… he spoke of humility and trust… wisdom and freedom… and provided simple practices to develop and strengthen our spiritual practices…and then he managed to punch us collectively right between the eyes… the gentleness of the morning replaced by what he calls the wisdom of the serpent which is effectively profound shadow work. Now I do love work with the shadow because I believe so deeply this is where the magic happens and of course this where we constantly stumble and struggle… WOW …but he takes no prisoners… he stands unashamedly in his truth… so by the end of the afternoon myself and I think my fellow participants felt battle-weary and certainly for me this rising anxiety about my own shadow and the shadow of the wider world… huge stuff for a Saturday… He is truly extraordinary… if only to shake you off your perch.

And then there is someone who inspires you deeply.

Leymah Gbowee

Leymah Gbowee

Yesterday I attended “All About Women” at the Opera House – no huge shock that it was 95% women… happily loads of young women wanting to listen to the many fascinating conversations that were on offer… none better than the extraordinary Leymah Gbowee, the Nobel prize winner from Liberia… Magnificent in many ways this woman set up the “Women of Liberia Mass Action for Peace” by working at grassroots level with women and children with calls to action like: “We are tired! We are tired of our children being killed! We are tired of being raped! Women, wake up – you have a voice in the peace process!” Their work eventually ending the 14-year bloody war that had strangled Liberia and electing the first female President in Africa, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf… Leymah Gbowee is mesmerising – authentic, funny, clever and passionate… I loved her response about fearless leaders – no leader is fearless she said, they just have the courage to dismiss the fear and continue with what they are passionate about… a lesson for all of us.

An Inspiring Night

A friend is the CEO of the Funding Network… It’s a new way of looking at philanthropy and supporting innovative social change projects… It’s based on the premise that we do many things together, but we don’t donate and celebrate together and philanthropy is not limited to the wealthy but that for as little as $100 each of us can make a significant difference…Last night she launched their first event in Australia – what an amazing achievement… about 150 people listening to the stories of 4 compelling projects that are making a tangible and meaningful difference – each of the projects got 6 minutes to pitch and the we got 6 minutes to ask questions…The aim to raise 10K for each of the 4 projects… My favourite and the one I supported was Food Within: Wings 2 Carry U…simple concept: allowing families to be able to pay what they can afford for healthy food… the founder built the social enterprise based on the challenges her family had faced when they were unable to feed themselves… Well done Lisa on an extremely successful launch and on raising more than 20K for each of these extraordinary grassroots programs!

exploring an idea

have you ever just felt an idea needs to be explored… in my case my intuitive sense is that the idea has enormous merit but at the moment feels a little uncontained and am trying to break my thinking into bite-sized chunks… there is this magnetic pull to at least review and take a look at the business implications. It matter less to me as to whether it comes to fruition and more about the research and the examination in a thoughtful and methodical manner… an invigorating change for me. Interestingly it involves technology and of course incorporates what I am passionate about – women and leadership and developing that holy grail of senior women in organisations… Any ideas on a what makes a compelling and stand-out business plan will be most welcome 🙂