Be the Change

You must be the change you see in the world- Mahatma Gandhi

I was inspired by change when attending the #140confONT a couple of weeks ago in Kitchener. The concept was of the 140 Conference was developed by Jeff Pulver (@jeffpulver) to create opportunities for people to come together and share how social media in some way has changed their lives. The stories we heard at the 1st Canadian conference were profound and more than once throughout the day I found myself choking back tears as people bravely stood up on stage, recounting some of the lowest, most challenging, most amazing moments of their lives. Many people had different perspectives on the conference, some loved the connections they made, the networking opportunity, the stories. What it left me the most with was how much change was the integral part of so many of those stories. How sometimes it is entirely up to you and you alone to take a leap and make something happen. What you find out more often than not, is that as much as you think you are alone in that leap, you have people there to support you.

Even perfect strangers.

Or they start off that way. Then simply, quietly, from just starting a conversation, you find kinship in a sea of social media. And suddenly, these conversations very easily and very quickly can turn into tremendous friendships in real life.  They become your motivators, your cheerleaders to change/do/create/jump…simply by their strength of character, personality and words.

Those words can impact you tremendously.These speakers from the #140confONT spoke words that got to me, right in the heart and have created a sense of needing to push forward, to make things happen, to follow my heart in things I want to accomplish.

@tjzmommy recounted her heartbreaking loss of her son and how it motivated her to work towards fundraising and creating incredible rooms in the children’s ward of the hospital that Zack stayed in http://tjzmommy.blogspot.com/

@MattScobel talked about his dozens of ideas he had had in the past that never went anywhere and coming up with the idea of taking used Macs to Africa by creating @ProjectMacAfrica. The change, this time, he simply did it..and made it happen.

@karmicevolution bravely retold the story of finding out the day that she was homeless that day that she came home with her newborn baby. The entire audience was crying along with her as she recounted everything she needed to do to take care of her child and how through social media she met tons of people who gave her the support she needed when she needed it most

Almost everyone at the conference were tremendous motivators in connecting that Change is Good. That You, yourself needs to be the catalyst for change if you want something to be different in your life, but you need to take action. What Would You Do If You Weren’t Afraid? (Spencer Johnson-Who Moved My Cheese?)

I have always believed that I was destined for something different in my life. Part of something unexpected but have been afraid of failure along the way. The truth is, I want a few things to be different in my life and so I’m coming along to a world of no fear. Working towards thinking and maintaining positive energy towards of a world of possibilities.  I have goals…lofty goals.. but I figure by putting these down in writing, it will only help motivate me further to focus on what I have to do to put these ideas into action. So here goes:

* Change the perspective of Autism and look at new ways to teach children that helps them connect on their plane of learning vs trying to fit them in the box that is currently school and its curriculum

* Be part of something new in Africa that recognizes the challenges they face in education and creating education & learning opportunities that works for them

* Create an awareness and appreciation for what the men & women of our Canadian Forces do for our country

* Once I am done a half marathon, working towards a full (did I really just put that one in writing?)

Will keep you posted on the outcome. In the meantime, no fear.

 

Competition is fierce..

This feels true on with so many elements of my life right now. The good side of competition..My friend and I have actually managed to start running and are currently out there every few days trying to get our groove on and waiting for this fabulous running high that is so famously talked about…Instead our comments are mostly, “Oh my god, my legs feel like lead” or “are we done this round yet?”

See part of the Running Room philosophy is working your way up to your goal distance and then exceeding it so you are not dying at the end of the race. Our goal is 5k and so far we have done a number of runs at 7-1’s…which means we run 7 minutes and recover for 1. Repeat. Except now are we on 10-1’s…& that sudden jump to 10 minutes of straight running has totally kicked my ass! But here in lies the good part…my dear friend is highly competitive.. and while I didn’t think I was that much, I find that I am enjoying her need to compete as an incredible way to egg us on and keep us going (cause there is NO way in hell either of us are going to be the one to give up first!)

The dreaded 10 + 1’s weren’t as dreaded as I thought but I also am noticing that I am out of breath by the time we are finished…(I think our pace got faster and faster as neither wanted to be the “Lagger”) which is good right? They say getting your heart rate up is key to getting healthy and staying fit. Quite hilarious given that its taken me until I’m 36 to realize that perhaps healthy is something we should have been concentrating on. This has been largely motivated by feeling like we need to be an example to our kids vs. heading down to the couch and throwing on the TV/PVR. We have been witness to WAY too many kids shockingly overweight at such early ages in their lives, and are keenly aware how easily it can happen to our children. So we are bent on getting healthy.

My husband is back playing hockey, I’m doing running, the kids are in swimming and gymnastics and we have lots of plans for exercising this summer..& another part of the competition? In an effort to stay grounded through everything going on with our son, we are working hard at maintaining our relationship (we had read odds of increases of 80% on the possibility of divorce with a special needs child). So we have upped the date nights, set aside time for conversations that are painful but essential and are working together on this weight loss drive..part of that is agreeing to meet weekly for a game of Squash at lunch hour..and it our first one today was awesome! Nothing like two parents completely frustrated with “systems”, red tape and bureaucracy having the chance to WHACK a little tiny ball HARD against a wall…over and over and over again…HIGHLY recommended.