Good morning Monday. I feel like I am ready for the weekend. Oh wait. We just had one didn’t we?
Ok so I missed the “weekend” but it was totally worth it because instead I got to connect with 100 of the top young social entrepreneurs in Ontario. As with all of my professional development experiences, I take a bit of time to reflect on the meaningful take-aways. I also look at where I spent my energy – that is, what I invested of myself in the experience and where I placed my focus. I absolutely believe that you get out what you put in.
Matt Tod of Leadership ReWired kicked off re:Vision 2010 by inviting us to consider what change means to us. One of the things he said that stuck with me most is that we are often so willing to change others and “the world” but not willing to change ourselves. And this idea of change starting with “self” really resonated with me. Clearly it did with others too because at our table we sketched out the world as we wanted to see it and a common theme surfaced: change from within. That simple idea helped me set an intention for the entire conference.
I realized something very profound early on in the conference (partly inspired by some of what was happening last week in developing copy for the iP website) that I needed to change in a big way. The best way I can explain it is like this: I have long felt that Prairie Girl is to iNSPiRED PRACTiCE as Clark Kent is to Superman. Two personas. Operating in distinct spheres. Only up until this year have I included personal references on the iNSPiRED PRACTiCE website. I thought I needed to put on a suit, mask big pieces of my identity and basically, be what I perceived others wanted me to be. And how did this make me feel? Like an imposter.
Change from within meant outwardly reflecting Prairie Girl and iNSPiRED PRACTiCE all at the same time. By investing all of myself in the process, I was able to make awesome and meaningful connections with people. I listened and learned. I shared my own story complete with challenges and triumphs. (In the past, I might have been less forthcoming with the “challenges” part.) The irony is that I discovered that by simply opening up a bit more, people were approaching me to share their story and ask about mine. I didn’t need to try so hard. Things could happen organically if I held the space for that.
One of the first things I did “right” in the process of changing from within is I went to sit at the “business” table. The amazing crew of biz people at the table (who I intend to share more about later) in their own way (and probably without realizing it) helped ignite new energies and change in my world. Better yet, I can’t wait to connect with them again.
I have about 20 take-aways from re:Vision 2010 to share via iP and 20 follow-up emails to send off. So let’s get going already!