Since I love this date, and what it tell us about springing forward, I waited to post this month's update. I'm glad I did. Only four days ago, it was going to be a post about resilience in the face of the small but challenging traumas we deal with daily. Instead it's a post about hope. I'm finding it everywhere. Look at this TedTalk about Embracing Weirdness.
All the people I know are weird, in one way or another. We don't fit in, not perfectly, and the Rudy Reindeer/ Herbie the Dentist song about not fitting in, rings true for us, even now, decades after we grew up and perhaps stopped watching that holiday classic. (Not me, btw! Still a fav.) The idea and the hope of weirdness plants the seed of inclusion from which we will only evolve, be better, see more.
And that's why I looked back at the research and the discussions that I've gotten to be a part of recently, and I thought, what about others? Don't we all want to be part of the hope and the wow? So, in case you're short on inspiration, have a look at what science, engineering, and spirit are doing to compel us to see a bigger picture.
The Templeton Foundation is funding projects like the Imagination Institute's project, from the University of Penn's Martin Seligman! Seriously, I don't care what we call the right side of the brain, from spiritual to artistic to chaotic to, in this case, imagination, there is no mistake that this is the origin of the art, the writing, the beauty that transforms life.
Or, jump over to Michigan, they have the Mindful Connections Lab and one of their core research interests is 'dignity in the workplace.' Not to be outdone, UVA has just funded the brand new Convergent Behavioral Science Institute with its tri-fold focus to study sustainability, diversity/inclusion, and well-being. This is so new there isn't even a website I can direct you to! Think about it, the best thinkers of our time, coming together to solve problems in these three areas!
I'm feeling hopeful and happy tonight. Some of our best people are working on some of our most challenging problems! That just feels...resilient! March forth!
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"I have come across many smart, strategic, capable, articulate, empathetic, energetic leaders and advisers over the course of my career. While Kelleen has all of those qualities, she has one that is particularly rare and desirable in a mentor/coach: wisdom. It is her wisdom that truly sets her apart from the crowd and it is one of the qualities that inspires my trust in her counsel. She was instrumental in helping me create my business and will no doubt play a role in its growth and success. She will challenge you, inspire you, and ultimately be by your side as you discover your best path forward. The results are undeniable."
- Sirish Prabhu, Founder & Principal, The Policy Matrix, Winter, 2018
"When I was selected to do a TEDx talk, I felt pretty confident in my ability to write a concise, funny, detailed and representative presentation on the subjects allotted to me. As a cartoonist, that is basically what I do, only in a different form. The organizers suggested that we use mentor/coaches to help us, if we felt that we needed help. Kelleen was a Facebook fan of my work, and I knew that she was a mentor and coach. I thought, "What do I have to lose? I can always NOT use her advice if I don't find it helpful. It turns out that engaging Kelleen was the best thing I could have done. She helped me whittle down my talk to the essences of the subjects, she listened to my presentation multiple times and had great advice on how to make it better. She offered lots of encouragement, and sat in the audience grinning and laughing along with the rest of the crowd. And perhaps the best thing was that she always came back to the idea that I knew what I was doing; I just needed a little outside perspective to make it the best it could be. I highly recommend her services and I highly recommend her!"
- David Cohen, National cartoonist and musician, Asheville, NC, Fall, 2016