What does the word "community" mean to you? The dictionary defines the word as: an interacting population of various kinds of individuals (as species) in a common location.
To me, community is about the people, the tribe... It brings a sense of belonging, a sense of peace, a sense of hope. It means there are people who "have your back," and will love and support you whether you're up or you're down.
I've never quite experienced community to the extent I've felt with my Downtown Phoenix tribe.
The last couple of years have been hard on all of us. We've lost houses, jobs, businesses, suffered health issues, and struggled on numerous levels.
Yet throughout, or perhaps because, we have bonded together in the most joyful way possible - we have created community.
I truly believe a place is made by the people - not the place. A place can be improved upon and changed. A place becomes alive by the people who put their energy there. Without real "life," a place is just a place...
My optimism for the New Year fills me with excitement and wonder. I'm like a little kid in a giant toy store with a million dollar gift card and a shopping cart as big as a house. I can't wait to watch everything unfold!
I am blessed to have some of the most talented, amazing, caring human beings in my tribe. Creative visionaries. Idealists. Genuinely good people. A group of people who can together, elicit real, positive change in this place which is our home.
Heading into the New Year, I am also thrilled to have NOT landed that cushy corporate gig with the steady paycheck and expense card (which I secretly know I wasn't chosen for because I own a vagina and don't play golf unless it includes windmills and clown heads). Really, thanks for not picking me! I'm a die hard entrepreneur after all and I was excited to diversify and start a new business which can happily co-exist with my current business, but allows me to wear cute clothes more than a respirator and tyvek suit. It's nice to accessorize with prettier things than duct tape, trust me.
What is this exciting new company, you ask? Well, from all of my years in the green/environmental industries, Champion PR + Consulting will specialize in working with environmental non-profits and green/sustainable businesses (or those who want to be). The only missing component is my website - which will be done by January 1st, so stay tuned!
Too many companies out there are greenwashing and not really "walkin' their talk,"so my goal is to help make sure all of their marketing materials, PR, etc. are truthful and transparent (protecting liability,) as well as utilize my 10+ years of experience and contacts within the green arena. Yep - I was there long before it "tipped." Plus, "everyone needs a Champion," so it feels awesome to be excited about "work" again!
Our community too is building momentum. The circles are all starting to collide like a perfect 4th of July fireworks display!
Get Your PHX, Rogue Green, Radiate Phoenix, the Co-Hoots gatherings; it's drawing us all together and pushing us to be engaged and active community members. Our unified voice is getting stronger by the moment, and though we've taken some great baby steps - I have a feeling 2011 is going to see some real shift and domino effect action with our growing tribal force.
So at the end of the day, open your hearts and go meet your neighbors. Give a shit. Do something good. Live your truth. Laugh every day. Life is short, people. Nurture your community like a gorgeous, rare plant - and watch it grow.
Happy Holidays and a spectacular New Year from life's little cheerleader, Msss. Champion.