Two decades later, the quest continues to Recognize Our Unity and Celebrate Our Diversity, no matter what form it takes
Sunday was the 20th(?!) year anniversary of the nonprofit organization I founded, The Women’s Mosaic. On Jan. 24, 2001, a diverse group of two dozen women came together to celebrate the Lunar New Year. My goal at the time was to create a forum where women of every background — cultural, ethnic, religious and professional — could gather to learn about and be inspired and empowered by one another. The tagline was Recognizing Our Unity; Celebrating Our Diversity.
That was nine months before 9/11. We offered close to 100 events over 10 years to advance that cause — and many of you remain on my email list today because of that work … We’ve come a long way, baby! You can read about some of the amazing things we did and how women benefited via the PDF editions of our TWM Inspirer Newsletter one, two and three. (You can see how my own career journey evolved since then, and how it is all very connected to what I am doing today in my PGG All Roads, Same Place).
Two decades later, I could never have imagined that the diversity needed to be bridged with understanding, and that the unity would include deep political and ideological divisions in how we think about government, health care, freedom, the media and how we should live in general. Social media didn’t even exist back then! After the extreme events of the past four years, we need to rebuild in many ways, including our perceptions of and relationships with each other, strangers and kin alike.
So it’s been an interesting journey, my friends, and one that is constantly evolving and relevant to the times at hand, as I continue to do that work, albeit in different forms: for example, my recent YouTube/Instagram post here, or here.
Being who you uniquely are, I feel, is one of the most important things to get us through the new era we find ourselves in, and there is no accident you are here now. I am grateful that I use my creativity often, and others have benefited from those gifts, whether via TWM, these PGGs, my book, or my Instagram posts — but I only put my time and energy (and often blood, sweat and tears!) into them because there was something in me that needed to be expressed, whether one person or a thousand experienced them. And I am stronger, more peaceful, fulfilled and connected to myself as a result. For you, it could be the amazing cakes you bake, the song you sing or the painting you make. It doesn’t matter, because we all have a spark within us — don’t let that be dulled by anything outside yourself.
Someone who used her creativity brilliantly — and in my opinion was the most powerful person on the inaugural stage — was National Youth Poet Laureate Amanda Gorman who concluded her work of art on Wednesday with:
For there is always light,
if only we’re brave enough to see it.
If only we’re brave enough to be it.
This week’s Instagram post talks about how each one of us needs to stay balanced and strive for understanding as we enter this new chapter. The PGG Video of the Week talks about what is creativity and why it’s important. More of my thoughts about that topic and others can be heard in this podcast-style interview with Rick Young of What’s in Your Hand Radio Show.
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Kristina Leonardi is a nationally recognized career and life coach, speaker and author who for over 13 years has empowered individuals to make lasting professional and personal changes aligned with their true passions and talents while fulfilling their role in the world at large.With a holistic and personal growth-oriented approach, she has helped hundreds of men and women over the past decade improve their job performance, enter or re-enter the job force, change careers, better manage their time and stress, and live happier, more meaningful, balanced lives. Her specialty is working with people who feel stuck or are in transition and can help you clarify exactly what you want to do, identify blocks, issues, and patterns in your way, and offer proven ideas, resources, and action steps to get you there.
Check out my book Personal Growth Gab:Personal Growth Gab (PGG) Volume One: Thought-provoking, inspirational and entertaining essays to keep you connected to yourself and make sense of this journey called Life on Amazon
If you like what I write, you’ll love what I have to say in person!
Read more about me and my work in these past PGG’s: