100 world changers in a forest, surrounding campfires and talking about life’s great mysteries. Things like Legacy, Blind Spots, Impact, and Wisdom.
Here I was, surrounded by people who change lives daily and I was intentionally asked to be there.
Meeting everyone was one of the best part. I talk to many of these people on a semi regular bases and it was great putting faces to names.
When we sat down for that first conversation, Blind Spots, I was excited to hear the experiences and perspective of others in an area that no one is free from having. More than hearing other people’s perspective, I became excited to share mine. To share my experiences, my knowledge and I even surprised myself by having some to offer. At the end of that first conversation, several people came up to me to offer thanks and were surprised at how well I spoke. My response: You can’t work with Tammy Kling for 10+ years and not learn anything. I am a sponge. She is a wealth of knowledge and I try to make sure that she knows how much I appreciate her years of coaching.
I know I have learned a lot from her but I was as much surprised as anyone else. Instead of stuttering umms and gaps in thought when someone said something that sparked a new way to think about something or a new eye opening realization I spoke up. I let myself be heard.
Of all the things that I could have gleaned from being a participant and an igniter at The Conversation, I think the biggest thing I learned is that I have more to offer than even I know. There are still things I have to learn about me. That is exciting and scary for me all at the same time. That is how I know that it is me growing. The people that I am surrounded by are awesome men and women of God. Ready to share their knowledge with me.
The Conversation I didn’t get to participate in was Legacy. I just want to say something about Legacy since I didn’t get to talk about it last night.
There are so many things that we can leave our children. In this technology driven world we can leave them financial security, our things, stability. We can teach them our drive, and what makes things work.
It isn’t enough.
I went through a lot so far in this life, though others have surely endured more, and I have learned something that inspired me, and made me brave when it was time to transition and grow into a new stronger me. I learned that strength and fear are important. I learned that even if you are afraid of getting out of the hole you dug yourself in, or the life that you have built around you, you can still do it. I was afraid, I built a life for 15 years for myself and my girls. It was all wrong. It was empty and it was holly and it was not a legacy that I wanted to leave my girls. My entire family lineage is full of the women who stayed, the women who endured the abuse and passed it on to their children. I didn’t want self doubt, self loathing, emptiness to be the Legacy that I left my girls.
I broke free of the bondage that held me down in sadness and failure. I told myself that I would teach my daughters a new legacy. I would not leave them the legacy that was left for me. I would show them bravery, strength, perseverance and I would teach them they are valued, loved, and WILL do big amazing things. Not that they might, that they WILL.
If I can take anything away from a night with World Changers, it is that we are all able to make a difference. We are all given failures and blind spots in this life. We are given chances to move forward or hit bottom. These things can be both bad and good. Sometimes you have to hit bottom to start the climb back up. One you get back up you have a choice. To push forward and surround yourself with a tribe of people who will tell you like it is. You can take this advice from your tribe with humility and openness for change. The amazing ways that your life will change and grow will amaze you.
I hit bottom, and I was lucky. I still had a few people left in my tribe after everything. They helped me get back up, they were open and honest with me about where I had been, and what I could do now. I lifted my chin up, and I chose to change the world.
Tammy, thank you for letting me be heard. I am so grateful for you, for The Conversation, and for being your sister in Christ. I love you girl. Here is to many more years of being a team.