Connecting With A Purpose

While hitting the streets of the South Bay in Los Angeles to meet people who are a part of the YOU ARE ENOUGH campaign, I am meeting the most amazing people who are showing me how they lead with purpose to make a social impact.  I have been delivering campaign yard signs and am hearing more and more how we need to come together as a society in order to help us all feel that we are ok, we matter, and that we are enough just the way we are.  Connection is so key right now as we face the challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic.   While many are facing isolation, depression is becoming more prevalent in people’s lives.  Therefore, when people connect with one another around a cause that they believe in, they are helping themselves and others feel a sense of self and unity. One individual I had the honor to meet was Vish Chatterji, an author, business coach, and motivational speaker who is also on running for re-election to the Bay Beach Cities Health District.   We talked about so many of us are affected early in life by statements about us not being good enough and how being told this one time can bruise our ego and sense of self and haunt us throughout our lives and careers.   In his book, “The Business Casual Yogi, Take Charge of Your Body, Mind & Career, Chatterji helps us learn how to integrate a systematic method to cultivate self-improvement – in work, in relationships, and in life.  More and more people are focusing on how to live and work with purpose and it is folks like Chatterji and those I am meeting on the YOU ARE ENOUGH campaign trail that are doing what they can to pave the way to help us all feel a sense of self.  ...

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Building A Culture of Connection, Culture, and Belonging

No matter who we are, how we live, or what we believe, we all share a deep, instinctual need and capacity for human connection and belonging. It’s at the core of our shared humanity — and baked into our DNA. As human beings, we yearn to be in relationship: to feel seen, valued, and understood; to inhabit places where we live together, work together and look out for each other; to be part of a community of shared values and aspirations that is bigger than ourselves. And yet, we are living in a culture that all too often reinforces just the opposite. A culture that stokes distrust and amplifies divisions. That fuels hyper-individualism and alienates us from ourselves and each other. A culture that creates a distorted sense of belonging for some of us by telling others they don’t belong. As we navigate the “twin pandemics” of COVID-19 and racial injustice, we face a fundamental challenge that lies at the heart of all others: a crisis of human connection. All around us, we see more and more Americans living in isolation, loneliness, anxiety, and fear. And all too often, our culture reinforces a zero-sum game that seeks to benefit by pulling us further apart — with an “us vs them” mentality that’s eroding our faith in each other, our institutions, and the future we seek for our children. The sheer speed and scale of these challenges can seem overwhelming, but beneath them lies a simple and inescapable truth: we cannot solve our nation’s most complex and urgent challenges unless we see, hear and understand each other first. If we want to build it back better, we must draw upon one of the greatest and oldest technologies we have as a species: human connection. Our ability to connect, empathize, build relationships, and collaborate may be our greatest gift. When we start to see ourselves in others and recognize that our own humanity is a reflection of our shared humanity, we begin to shift from a culture of turning on one another to turning toward one...

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The Power of PR and the Press – Storytelling Together Is More Meaningful

      As someone who has spent my career in the public relations field, I am so touched by the true power and heart that those in the press have and to those who decide to work with empathy to get a message and story out. Lu Parker, an Emmy award-winning journalist who reports for KTLA news in Los Angeles, covered my YOU ARE ENOUGH billboard campaign and then shared the piece on her Instagram and LinkedIn accounts. This is what being ONE is all about and this is my favorite part of the job.  When a PR person works with the press to get a story out we are a team and we want to do the best job possible telling stories that are factual.  This does not always work and we are getting a big dose of fake news these days.   So what a refreshing experience to have a journalist believe so much in the story that I pitched that she went above and beyond the call of duty and shared from her own personal standpoint as well.  She has a lot more followers than I do and I am sure she knew that she was going to help me as well.   Thank you, Lu for sharing and caring. #luparker #youareenough #connection #community #depression #mentalhealth #mentalwellness #love #youareenoughbillboard  ...

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Leading With Empathy and Purpose

During the Covid-19 pandemic a lot of companies have shown us how they can lead with heart and as I like to say, walk the purpose walk.  Instead of focusing on the bottom line, or the “what” behind a company’s business model, more than ever we are seeing how organizations understand that to truly reach their customers they must lead with purpose and empathy.  I found myself working through this recently while working on a heart-driven project called YOU ARE ENOUGH that I started 10 months ago.  As someone who has dealt with depression and the feelings of hopelessness and isolation that comes with it, I wanted to find a way to help others who may be living in the same darkness.  How could I heal while healing others?  So I came up with a super simple idea. Why not put a billboard up in my hometown of Redondo Beach, CA that simply displays the words, YOU ARE ENOUGH on it?  Pretty cool, right?  Does not seem like a hard thing to make happen.  A cool and simple idea that would have a lot of layers and twists and turns to it.  This idea has turned out to be a campaign that has legs and I have found myself taking a journey that I will always cherish and hold close to my healed heart.   It is July 1, 2020, and the billboard launched today.   I was alerted a 5:00 am that it went up and I jumped out of bed as soon as I heard and raced down the road to see it.  As I drove towards it, I could see it standing proud with its cobalt blue background and white words that were so strong and supportive.  I wanted people driving by the billboard to feel held, seen, and have a sense of connection while they were taking in these words.  This billboard was not going to be an advertisement for a client or for me for that matter. Instead, it was meant to be a vehicle to share words that are positive and supportive without any strings attached.  We live in a scarcity society today where we are already bombarded by 30,000 plus messages telling us that we need to do more, get more, be more to be enough.  Nope, my billboard was going to be positive and supportive.  I was not going to “tell” and “sell” and instead wanted to help hold a space for people so that they could lean into their worthiness.   There were many times that I wanted to give up on this campaign.  So many people told me straight out that they did not get it and that it was...

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