Sharing with you in my Reflections and Observations episode 190 this week, I spoke about how I can become a better person, how I can educate myself on areas that I may not have known about before and how I can give a voice to those who need to be heard.
We are all different in this world and we all have value to bring. You may not have found it or created it yet but know that it is there and when you know what your talent is, share it, use it and allow yourself to shine bright.
Many guests on the podcast have spoken about their work in the Diversity and Inclusion space. Jackie Handy, Prof. Laura Serrant OBE, Joanne Lockwood, Demetria Sloan, Rikki Arundel, Rachel Peru and Alisoun Mackenzie immediately spring to mind for the incredible work they are doing to create awareness and effect change. It is in fact, entirely their Focus on WHY they do what they do!
“Diversity is indeed all around us. Leveraging that diversity, however, in a space that is cultivated to welcome everybody's opinion, views and beliefs, in an equal way, that's true inclusion.”
As a bridge builder, futurist and visionary, I aspire to build a better life and a better world for everyone. Each of us are different pieces from one giant jigsaw of life. Connectedness and diversity are two of my core values and I believe that whilst we are all connected, we are also different. As a curator of stories on my podcast and very much a keen observer of people, my superpower is in recognising what makes each of us unique and in bringing that alive on Focus on WHY.
I am taking action in working towards achieving equality, equity, diversity and inclusion. I know sharing the message here in my Friday Focus newsletter and on the Focus on WHY podcast are just small contributions in the grand scheme of things but I am working to achieve positivity, diversity, inclusion and a more compassionate society. I believe that with the philosophy that if we all pull together, the impact can become huge and effective.
A LinkedIn post by Shelley Bridgman inspired me to focus on diversity and inclusion in my reflections episode 190 out this week and to continue the conversation here today. Shelley will be a future guest on the podcast soon so stay tuned!
“We need leadership from politicians and our communities, but individually, we have a duty to speak out and speak up. We can have a fairer, compassionate society for our children, and live in a world where difference is embraced. It will not happen if we are silent. We have to create it.”
Yes, Shelley, we do have to create it and small actions from individuals do make a difference. Never think that you are too small nor what you do is too small to make a difference. To create culture change, you need to start with the basics. Start with awareness and build towards achieving unconscious competence as it becomes embodied within you and the culture of the organisation you work in or the environment you live in.
Back in episode 129 Unconscious Competence, Jackie Handy said that inclusion is ultimately unconditional love, that diversity is simply your difference and inclusion is being valued for that difference. Valuing and loving others for their difference. Sounds so simple, so what’s the difficulty in doing this in today’s world?
“It is just the first step, however, to be mindful of it and then to challenge your own behaviour and language, and the behaviour and language that you see and witness from others.” Jackie Handy
As an individual, what do you do to achieve diversity and inclusion in your work? What are you doing to create a fairer, compassionate society?
In episode 189, Leaning In with Alisoun Mackenzie, Alisoun talked about white privilege and her roles of volunteering and again I share another powerful reflection from Jackie Handy from a recent talk I heard her give at the Professional Speaking Association. Jackie said that privilege does not make you a bad person, that privilege is an advantage that you did not ask for and cannot control. However, it is what you do with your privilege that makes a difference.
Knowing the privilege you have, how can you leverage the space you have to do things a bit differently? How can you find a way to Focus on Diversity and Inclusion to make a positive difference to the world?
Be an initiator of change. Be conscious of the choices you make and seek to make smarter choices.
With diversity, equity and inclusion, how do you apply your learnings and focus on love in the world?