The definition of empowerment is “the process of becoming stronger and more confident, especially in controlling one’s life and claiming one’s rights.”
This weekend, millions of woen, men and children participated in the Women’s March which set the world ablaze about the value of rights, activism, unity and empowerment.
The guiding principles of the Women’s March was women’s rights are human rights, regardless of a woman’s race, ethnicity, religion, immigration status, sexual identity, gender expression, economic status, age or disability.
Through the nonviolent activism, the idea of bringing people together to support, encourage and motivate one another while also championing the mission is critical and important.
The fight for true equality will continue for many groups across the world who feel marginalized or underestimated, undervalued, overlooked, simply ignored, taken advantage of and the list can continue. The organizers and marchers recognize there is more to be done thus there are immediate next steps on the Women’s March website to continue impact.
I’m sad I couldn’t make it to the march. Though the sheer size of the crowds gathered gives me anxiety, I also get goosebumps thinking about the powerful images of people peacefully getting together to make an international statement. I stand in solidarity with the movement to encourage/challenge our leaders and fellow citizens to actions that protect people and foster community over division.
May all the peaceful and positive voices who came to be seen and heard, continue to do just that. May communities join together in unity, get inspired and make movements to create a better world today and tomorrow.
In honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. who we remember and celebrate tomorrow, I wanted to use this post to share powerful quotes from him including one of his famous speeches.
What gives me great joy in this world is love uprooting hate. People united together in support of one another, lifting each other up, spreading light instead of darkness brings me great joy.
A couple months ago, I was having a tough morning and I read this article. I put the link below. I cried all the way through it because it struck a major cord with my humanity.
I hope and pray for a world that can heal and to be part of a global community of people who are fiercely serious about spreading goodness and love and peace to others. I want this world to be better and brighter because I was here. Don’t you?
The deep division in my country and in this world across every line you can think of, saddens me. Gender, race, religion, nationality, you name it. We could overcome what divides us if only we would work together. If only love, justice, understanding, peace, humility was everyone’s first response.
“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”
“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”
“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”
“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”
“I look to a day when people will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.”
“I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.”
“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?”
“The time is always right to do what is right.”
“Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into friend.”
“If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.”
I remember when I was a kid in school, I had to memorize the “I Have A Dream” speech by Dr. King. I don’t remember a lot of school assignments from when I was a kid but that one will never leave my memory. It was hard, a pretty challenging task and yet made tremendous impact.
Letting go is hard. Letting go of failure, disappointment, fear, anxiety, people, things, control, ego.
This has been a heck of a week already. Friday I was at a funeral where people shared memories and anecdotes about a person we had to let go from this earth. That person can still exist in memory but there are some things that can never be how they once were, even a week ago, because that person is gone now.
Saying goodbye to people always brings about the very sobering reality that time is promised to no one. So Say what you need to say. Love on those you have and if you have been holding yourself back in any way from living your best life, step out on faith and do what you need to do. Time moves in one direction and that’s forward.
Another heck of a week moment was a call that may possible get me a ticket to see President Obama’s final speech as President while he’s in Chicago on Tuesday. Still hoping that one works out. America takes on a new leader in just over a week. I anticipate a lot of change will come with it. After following the direction of one person and their administration for 8 years and another single person for 8 years prior to that, a new direction that doesn’t feel as stable or reassuring is unsettling.
The idea of letting go to unwillingly embark on the wave of unpredictability we’ve seen so far is troubling. I hope and pray the reality will prove to be more positive than it currently seems.
But the nice thing about letting go is holding onto the good stuff. When we let go of 2016 to enter 2017, that didn’t mean erasing it from our history. That’s why people get pissed when with every 12am clock strike, some throw off the old year declaring “New Year, New Me!” But what about the good things you can keep building upon?? We don’t need to write a whole new story each year. We just add a new set of chapters to the book. In your letting go, don’t go at it with reckless abandon. Keep the good, handy stuff and build with it. Keep those memories of those lost and honor them by how you live.
Being 8 days into this 365 day adventure that is 2017, I know more letting go is to come. Some will be productive.
I intend to let go of some bad habits in favor of new ones. I intend to give over more control so the lessons I need to learn this year will come easier.
Some letting go will be tougher say in moments where I may not want to or feel ready to let go. I have to challenge myself to move on anyways when it’s time to move on. We all do sometimes: in work, in life, in relationships and friendships, etc.
Building up what I have once other things are let go is important — my relationship, my community, my friendships, my family, my career, my next moves, my choices, my freedom, my character, my health and wellness.
When we can free ourselves enough to let go of fear and control and let life happen, we may find it’s not so hard to turn the page when necessary. We may even find something good waiting for us on the other side, after the page has turned and a new chapter begun.
Be encouraged that light can always manage to find its way, breaking through darkness to bring hope and direction.
I hope January, chapter one of twelve for this year will be full of more ups than downs for all of us. Cheers to health, wealth and sanity.
In this final hour of the first day in a new year, I just want to send light and love.
I hope everyone who reads this has plans and purpose for each day this year.
An awesome quote that I put on canvas and hung in my home is this:
“If you want 2017 to be your year; Don’t sit on the couch and wait for it. Go out. Make a change. Smile more. Be excited. Do new things. Throw away what you’ve been cluttering. Unfollow negative people on social media. Go to bed early. Wake up early. Be fierce. Don’t gossip. Show more gratitude. Do things that challenge you. Be brave.” -Lessons Learned in Life