When was the last time you really paused long enough to appreciate your life, team, or organization? Our lives and jobs are so busy that it’s extremely difficult to stop long enough to appreciate. And when we finally do take a break, reflection on what we appreciate is not typically a top-of-the-list priority.
Yet it’s in reflection that we can harness gratitude. Gratitude stems from appreciation. As an entrepreneur, I can understand first-hand how running a company is exhausting and all-encompassing. Early mornings, late nights, long hours, and weekends filled with work are the norm. Anyone who has a passion for what they do will recognize this experience.
We were in, what seemed like, the middle of nowhere when my parents drove into the parking lot of the Lexington Antique Outlet. They loved antiquing and I enjoyed taking a jaunt back in time with every stop.
Smells, memories, and laughs flourished while rummaging through things that every household used to have. These trips always brought up stories of the past and would undoubtedly create more to be shared in the future.
We’ve heard it all before when it comes to self-improvement. Read, try, or watch this, change jobs, start exercising, etc. We attempt to set worthwhile goals for ourselves. We take the time to establish what we wish to accomplish, then life happens, and we forget what we wanted to improve upon in the first place. We lose our goal sheet, or the dog, child, or Netflix eats it.
Self-improvement is an enormously good idea, but sometimes it gets lost in the day-to-day shuffle of family, work, and community. It takes discipline and commitment to make plans that stick.
Women’s Equality Day commemorates the struggle for women to be heard. While the basis of this day stems from voter rights and equal representation, the power of the message envelops every corner in the life of women. Our ongoing fight to be part of meaningful conversations and the subsequent decisions is a battle that seemingly never ends. We are less often invited to the table and more often finding ways to insert ourselves when and how we can, often with a fight.
According to the latest research by Datareportal, there are approximately 4.5 billion users on social media today. That’s more than fifty percent of the global population, with that number growing by more than 13% in the last year alone. They also report that of that number of social media users, the average time spent on social media per day is almost two and a half hours per user. That’s a significant population and a generous window of opportunity for leaders to engage with existing audiences and share vital messaging.
Instilling a strategic messaging platform for communication is a common and essential practice in business. It allows organizations to frame their core values, purpose, vision, and mission to the annual goals and objectives in a carefully crafted set of messages. Then, those messages flow to advance the mission, unite the workforce, and drive action through carefully constructed strategic communications planning.
According to Harvard Business Review, companies have invested hundreds of millions of dollars in diversity initiatives, yet roughly 85% of board members and executives are still white men. Despite our best intentions, unconscious biases make people reluctant to go against the status quo still exist.
In the sports world, there are usually weeks and months of practice and iterations of lineups, offensive/defensive options, and overall strategies before the first game day. In many college sports, the athletes practice year-round and then play their seasons in a matter of a few months. Most of their time is spent diligently practicing, mastering their skill level, and trying to improve. Many athletes vie for an increase in playing time or roster spots in the starting lineup.
Progress has come in many forms over the past year. For instance, we are finally reaching a moment where organizations are placing a greater emphasis on diversity and inclusion. There is a persistent shift in prominent organizations to create distinctive cultures that embrace and adopt pro-diversity policies and practices.
For months we’ve all been talking about returning to normal. We can’t wait to resume our lives and get back to the freedoms and social interactions we took for granted once before. Yet along with the isolation and upheaval of the past year came new things many aren’t quite ready to let go of or change.