The bigger picture for me, what I want most in life right now, what I hope for every day is for people to care for the earth as much as they care for themselves. Alas I am an anomaly in my circle, a lonely environmentalists. So for the last few years I have been trying to surround myself with people that think like me. I have met some great people but...here is my story of how I realized that people who think differently than me are just as important to have in my life and potentially reach that goal of 'saving the world'.
I was invited to a local women's circle- sounded like fun, plus I'm a stay at home mom and really need to get out. What better place to do it than a group of spiritually and community minded women.
I sat beside a women who I eventually realized ran the Conservative Party Riding Association for quite a few years. I have run the Green Party Riding Association for a few years. As you can imagine we have very different values on the outside, and I'm sure we could even paint a picture of who we thought one another was ( I a sockless, vegan hippy- her a pant suite wearing, littering elitist)
During this women's circle we were given a card and asked to relate ourselves or what is going on in our lives to that card- basically a way to get everybody sharing what is burning on their mind. A chance to be heard. A chance to express. A chance to feel supported and cared for. A very powerful, positive place for a person to be.
To sit beside this women, to listen to her as a human, to care about her, and also to realize she is nothing like I thought, but lovely, and of course I should have known, strong, brave, a natural leader, compassionate, and thoughtful. To have her listen to me, to be supportive of me, to make me feel welcome and heard- un judged. That was powerful.
That is how change happens. That is how you have people that think very differently than you listen to you- you listen to them, with compassion. That is how unlikely collaborations happen and positive change is made.
We all have reasons, stories, feelings, beliefs- we all have commonalities and differences.
We need to build relationships on respect and compassion, we need to LISTEN to make positive change that everybody can get behind.
Please join me at the next women's circle! (April 17th 2016)
Thanks for reading my blog.
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