This weekend I had the opportunity to collaborate with some very intelligent and insightful people, and was reminded that two are always better than one. A dozen is even better!
On Friday night, I was the guest of honor at a beautiful dinner party hosted by Kate Shannon of Merrill Lynch and Christy Morrell-Stinson of Vision Performance. We were in a beautiful space, the Minneapolis Club, with over a dozen people sitting around a table discussing what truly matters in life. We shared our challenges and discontentment, but also our dreams, hope, and progress towards making this world a better place for all. I was given the opportunity to share about my work with Cultivate, and bring to the group our biggest challenges. I took with me so great insights, ideas, and new things to try.
Saturday morning was also wonderful. We brought together a dozen of Cultivate’s donors, interns, volunteers, and advocates to explore the ways in which language deeply affects perceptions and understanding. For the last few months, we have started to evaluate the language we use to share about Cultivate. We have found that quite often our words, descriptions, and processes are not as easily understood as we hoped. So we’re working hard to change our words and clarify our descriptions.
These two events are a great reminder to me that we should never isolate ourselves. Community is always better. We may think we know what to do or say, but quite often we become blind to our own ways and errors. It often takes community to see beyond ourselves. I hope I never forget this important lesson. I know I have so much on my own to give, to help Cultivate grow and flourish. However, when I surround myself with people who have different experiences, knowledge, and wisdom than me, and if I am open to the idea that this organization I started is truly not mine to hold on to, I will see how it can become something so much better than I ever dreamed of. This takes community to achieve this dream.
-Elaine, Executive Director