Archive for the ‘Overall’ Category

Who We Can Be – March 20, 2021

Posted on: March 20th, 2021 by Kathie England | Time for Success No Comments

Generous

by Kathie England

Did you know?

  • 4 billion people (primarily women) on this planet cook their meals over open fires.
  • Smoke from these open fires is the equivalent of smoking 400 cigarettes per hour (that’s three packs a day).
  • Smoke from these open fires is the number one killer of children under the age of 5.
  • 4 million people (primarily women and children) die each year from the smoke generated by cooking meals over open fires.
  • 20 hours a week are spent carrying the wood needed to cook meals over open fires (when children carry the wood that means they are not in school).
  • Wood to build these open fires for cooking has huge environmental consequences – deforestation contributes to the climate crisis on our planet.

Did you know StoveTeam International is devoted to impacting this humanitarian and climate crisis?

StoveTeam International is an incredible non-profit organization that uses culturally-appropriate solutions to empower communities to solve local problems.  Founded in 2008 it provides improved cook stoves to people in developing nations in Latin America. According to the organization, it has been responsible for the distribution of over 76,300 stoves to date.

“A gift to StoveTeam transforms a kitchen into a safe place where a family can come together for years to come. Each $50 Ecocina or $100 Justa cookstove saves an average family of 8 people from the dangers of smoke and burns. Each stove also saves 50% of fuel wood, and provides local jobs where they are needed most.”

Climate Change

Each $100 Justa cookstove prevents up to 15 tons of CO2 from entering the atmosphere, equivalent to the average American’s entire yearly carbon footprint!

Who We Can Be

We can be generous. Take a small step and donate to StoveTeam International.

https://www.stoveteam.org/

 

 

 

 

 

Who We Can Be – February 20, 2021

Posted on: February 20th, 2021 by Kathie England | Time for Success No Comments

Courage

by Kathie England

“I am less afraid of losing my job than of losing our democracy!”

That was the perspective of Jaime Herrera Beutler, Republican representative from Washington’s 3rd Congressional District, when she voted to impeach the former president. Though I disagree with Representative Beutler on most issues, I want to acknowledge her courage! She along with nine other Republican members of the House of Representatives and seven Senators demonstrated the courage we need to preserve our democracy!

Jaime Herrera Beutler demonstrated Who We Can Be!

15-year-old Lily Gallentine, a 10th grader in Redmond, Oregon, was looking for toy cars for her father in the Farmers Co-op Antique Mall in Redmond. What she discovered were Nazi pins and a case full of swastikas. But that wasn’t all! There was a poster in the background, saying ‘coon’ and ‘monkey.’ There was a black doll in the background and a host of other racist items for display.

Last summer, Lily’s family displayed a Black Lives Matter sign in their yard. It was torn down. Lily’s mother who is white says she fears for her daughter who is a person of color. Lily spoke up and shared this story which was covered by Emily Cureton of Oregon Public Broadcasting last weekend. Oregon has a dismal history of white supremacy, but Lily spoke up! She became an activist last summer.

https://www.opb.org/article/2021/01/26/white-supremacy-antiques-contemporary-meaning/

Lily Gallentine demonstrated Who We Can Be!

Another example of courage is recounted in Caste, the incredible book by Isabel Wilkerson. She shares the story of how Albert Einstein invited the opera singer Marian Anderson to stay in his home in Princeton because the Nassau Inn in Princeton refused to rent her a room for the night she performed to an overflow crowd at the McCarter Theatre in Princeton because she was black.

This incident occurred only a few years after Einstein had fled Germany as the Nazis took over his homeland. Einstein became an outspoken critic of the treatment of people of color in his new homeland. He said, “I can escape the feelings of complicity in it only by speaking out.”

Albert Einstein demonstrated Who We Can Be!

How can we each demonstrate courage?

 

Who We Can Be – January 20, 2021

Posted on: January 20th, 2021 by Kathie England | Time for Success No Comments

Who We Can Be

by Kathie England

Today, January 20, 2021 marks the first day of the new administration of President Joseph Biden and Vice-President Kamala Harris.

Today also marks the launch of my new 4-year project, Who We Can Be. As I mentioned last month in the final post of My 1000 Small Steps, this title was inspired by Krista Tippett’s On Being interview with Karen Murphy, Director of International Strategy at Facing History and Ourselves, a nonprofit educational and professional development organization.

In the fall of 2017 I purchased the pen and ink drawing titled HOPE from the artist Steve Nowatzki at Portland’s Art in The Pearl. Steve gave me permission to use this drawing. It has hung in my office to help give me hope during the last four dark years of our country. I decided it is the appropriate banner photo for my new project, Who We Can Be.

As scenes from the failed insurrection in Washington, D.C. crossed our screens on January 6, many decried the violence we witnessed by saying, “This is not who we are!”

I believe we need to reframe that inaccurate perspective by stating, “This is not who we want to be.”

One does not have to be a history scholar to realize the violence we witnessed on January 6 is a sad representation of too much of our history. I invite you to listen to the interview with Sam Sanders on NPR’s Morning Edition on January 10, 2021. His piece is titled “The Lies We Tell Ourselves About Race.” Sanders is the host of the NPR podcast It’s Been a Minute With Sam Sanders. https://www.npr.org/2021/01/10/955392813/the-lies-we-tell-ourselves-about-race

Over the next four years I hope each reader of this post will engage with me in exploring Who We Can Be – for yourself, for our country, and for our planet.

My 1000 Small Steps – December 20, 2020

Posted on: December 20th, 2020 by Kathie England | Time for Success No Comments

Who We Can Be

by Kathie England

Who can we be as we look toward 2021?

2020 is a year that will forever live in our memories – a pandemic, a tumultuous election, horrendous wild fires, devastation of our economy, the fight for racial justice, the climate crisis, and the deaths of two inspirational leaders – John Lewis and Ruth Bader Ginsberg.

Throughout this year I have continued to find inspiration and solace in the On Being podcast by Krista Tippett. This podcast (www.OnBeing.org) explores what it means to be human. It asks: How do we want to live? Who will we be to each other?

Last year the On Being podcast inspired me to modify the Prayer of St. Francis, the Prayer of Peace, to include a loving kindness meditation. My goal was to make it more inclusive so it might better connect with individuals of diverse beliefs and cultures.

For the first two years of My 1000 Small Steps project I shared the Prayer of St. Francis in its original form as my December post. This year I again share the new version. I had created it with the hope that it would provide perspective – on the past year and the year 2020 that ushered in the third decade of this century. Little did I imagine the challenges that loomed on the horizon!

This post will be the last one of My 1000 Small Steps, but I am not done!

As we celebrate Inauguration Day, January 20, 2021, it is more important than ever to ask these powerful questions: How do we want to live? Who will we be to each other?

In this spirit, my new project is titled Who We Can Be.

This title came from Krista Tippett’s interview with Karen Murphy, the Director of International Strategy at Facing History and Ourselves, a nonprofit educational and professional development organization.

May this Loving Kindness Meditation inspire us to imagine what is possible and to discover Who We Can Be!

Make me an instrument of peace.

Where there is hatred, let me bring love.

Where there is offense, let me bring pardon.

Where there is discord, let me bring union.

Where there is error, let me bring truth.

Where there is doubt, let me bring faith.

Where there is despair, let me bring hope.

Where there is darkness, let me bring light.

Where there is sadness, let me bring joy.

 

May I not seek as much to be consoled, as to console.

May I seek not as much to be understood, as to understand.

May I seek not as much to be loved, as to love.

May it be in giving that I learn to receive.

May it be in pardoning that I allow myself to be pardoned.

 

May I be happy, may I be healthy, may I be at peace.

May you be happy, may you be healthy, may you be at peace.

May we embrace this message to help find the courage to take many small steps in 2021 and to be Who We Can Be!

My 1000 Small Steps – November 20, 2020

Posted on: November 20th, 2020 by Kathie England | Time for Success 1 Comment

The Power of Small Steps

by Kathie England

The outcome of the 2016 presidential election inspired me to launch the project My 1000 Small Steps, so the results of the presidential election on November 3, 2020 would not leave me and millions of other Americans with the same feelings of disbelief, despair, and doom we experienced in 2016.

Although we didn’t learn the results of the 2020 election until November 7, the power of millions of small steps prevailed. One example of the collective power of small steps was the work of Vote Forward and Swing Left.

  • Citizens raised more than $25 million for candidates and civic organizations in key states
  • Volunteers made more than 7.8 million phone calls to voters in battleground states
  • And we wrote more than 18.9 million letters to voters in key states

But when Joe Biden and Kamala Harris take office on January 20, 2021, our work will not be over!

Let us remember the words of the late John Lewis as we renew our commitment to create the country we know it can be.

“I never ever thought about giving up….Each one of us has the ability to resist, not to be quiet. We have to be brave. We have to be bold. And sometimes we have to fight some of the old battles over and over again for the next generation. You too can make a contribution, and you must.”

Each letter I wrote for Vote Forward shared the words of Lewis: “The vote is the most powerful non-violent tool we have to preserve our democracy!”

Let us continue to take small steps that will preserve our democracy!

My 1000 Small Steps – October 20, 2020

Posted on: October 20th, 2020 by Kathie England | Time for Success No Comments

Embracing Uncertainty

by Kathie England

Election Day, November 3, 2020, is exactly two weeks from the date of this post!

Can we embrace this day with hope?

“Hope is an embrace of the unknown!” That’s the perspective of Rebecca Solnit, a feminist writer whose words seem so appropriate today. She says that though we are living through times of unprecedented change, in uncertainty lies the power to influence the future. This is not the time for despair. It is a time to act. With two weeks remaining, what actions can we take now that our future-self will be grateful we took today?

What is the future?

Sonja Renee Taylor, poet and author, offered a vision of the future back in April as we were just beginning to embrace the uncertainty of the pandemic.

“We will not go back to normal. Normal never was. Our pre-corona existence was not normal other than we normalized greed, inequity, exhaustion, depletion, extraction, disconnection, confusion, rage, hoarding, hate and lack. We should not long to return, my friends. We are being given the opportunity to stitch a new garment. One that fits all of humanity and nature.”*

Let us embrace the uncertainty of the future with hope – hope that we will not go back to normal. Hope that together we will stitch a new garment! Hope that the many small steps we are taking is moving us closer to the vision and dreams of what is possible – hope that the new garment we are stitching will fit all of humanity and nature!

What is possible if we embrace uncertainty with action?

 

*These words of Sonja Renee Taylor have been wrongly attributed to Brené Brown who has worked diligently to give credit to the author.

My 1000 Small Steps – September 20, 2020

Posted on: September 20th, 2020 by Kathie England | Time for Success No Comments

In Memoriam

Ruth Bader Ginsberg

1933-2020

by Kathie England

“She changed the world for American women.”

Those were the words Nina Totenberg, legal affairs correspondent for NPR, used to begin her tribute to Ruth Bader Ginsberg on the morning after her death. Few people have had greater impact on the lives of so many than Ruth Bader Ginsberg.

That Ginsberg’s death fell on the day beginning Rosh Hashanah adds even more poignancy and irony to this holy period that is a time for reflection and introspection. Scott Simon, NPR’s host of Weekend Edition, suggested that the sounding of the Shofar in this troubled year should be a call for fairness and kindness.

One of Ginsberg’s most famous quotes echoes the purpose of My 1000 Small Steps project which I launched following the disastrous presidential election in 2016. Ginsberg said: “Real change, enduring change, happens one step at a time.”

As November 3 draws ever closer, I invite readers to look at steps they can take before Election Day. Here are two possibilities: Vote Forward and Vote Save America.

  • Vote Forward (www.votefwd.org) volunteers send heartfelt handwritten letters to low-propensity voters in battleground states encouraging them to participate in our democracy.
  • Vote Save America (www.votesaveamerica.com) offers a variety of opportunities to take action in this year’s election.

“Fight for the things that you care about, but do it in a way that will lead others to join you.” I hope these words of Ruth Bader Ginsberg inspire you to take steps to fight for the things you care about, the national election on November 3, 2020.

I conclude this month’s post with the eloquent words of John Lewis, another civil rights icon we lost this year:

“The vote is the most powerful non-violent tool we have to preserve our democracy!”

Honor the legacy of Ruth Bader Ginsberg and John Lewis. Get involved in whatever way is possible for you to help preserve our democracy!

My 1000 Small Steps – August 20, 2020

Posted on: August 20th, 2020 by Kathie England | Time for Success No Comments

The Vote

by Kathie England

“The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.”

These are the words of the 19th Amendment to the Constitution of the United States.

This year marks the 100th commemoration of this amendment. After a long and arduous fight, the 19th Amendment was ratified on August 18, 1920 and certified on August 26, 1920.

“Women weren’t given the vote! They took it!” The history of the fight to add this amendment to the Constitution is chronicled in a powerful film titled The Vote which aired on American Experience on Public Television. https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexperience/films/vote/

The 19th Amendment’s Centennial is commemorated by National Archives events that are streaming live throughout August.https://www.archivesfoundation.org/women/?gclid=CjwKCAjwj975BRBUEiwA4whRBx79l8kckcYqwV8ab01sfAmNESrBKiO_OAA7XkotEomDuwb6nY7hDxoCoUYQAvD_BwE

 Few words more eloquently explain the importance of the vote than those by the late John Lewis:

“The vote is the most powerful tool we have to preserve our democracy!”

As November 3 draws close, what steps can we each take to make sure every citizen of the United States uses this most powerful tool to preserve our democracy?

 

My 1000 Small Steps – July 20, 2020

Posted on: July 20th, 2020 by Kathie England | Time for Success No Comments

Changing the Narrative

by Kathie England

This month’s post is dedicated to the memory of John Lewis, the civil rights hero who died on July 17, 2020. Few people have more powerfully changed their narrative than John Lewis.

Prior to Lewis’s death, I had already selected the topic for this month, Changing the Narrative. I selected this topic after reading Dare to Lead by Brené Brown, in a coaching class I just completed.

Changing the narrative is an empowering concept. Brown says, “When we own a story and the emotion that fuels it, we get to simultaneously acknowledge that something was hard while taking control of how that hard thing is going to end.” (page 268)

Brown shares how Melinda Gates changed her narrative.

“For the longest time, the story I was making up was, That expert is ignoring me or condescending to me because I’m not Bill.”

“What I now believe is, I know just the right amount: enough to ask good questions, and not so much as to be distracted by minute details.” (page 266)

This story especially resonated with me because I recently read The Moment of Lift by Melinda Gates. This is the inspiring journey of a woman truly finding her voice, changing her narrative and the world with the work she and Bill do through the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

As I listened to the tributes to John Lewis, a hero who never stopped fighting for his beliefs and living his values, I decided to share some of his words that I hope will inspire all of us, especially during this pandemic year of incredible challenges. And as we draw ever-closer to election day on November 3.

“What did you do?”

“Where do you stand?”

“If not us, who?”

“If not now, when?”

What small step can we each take to change our own narrative? What small step can we take to change the narrative of this nation?

 

My 1000 Small Steps – June 20, 2020

Posted on: June 20th, 2020 by Kathie England | Time for Success No Comments

There Is No Video

by Kathie England

“What If There Were No George Floyd Video?” That’s the title of Nicholas Kristof’s opinion piece in The New York Times on June 6, 2020.

  • “There is no video to show that a black boy born today in Washington, D.C., Missouri, Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi or a number of other states has a shorter life expectancy than a boy born in Bangladesh or India.” Nor is there a video to show that a black woman is two and a half times as likely to die in pregnancy as a white woman.
  • “There’s no video to show that black children still are often systematically shunted to second-rate schools and futures, just as they were in the Jim Crow era. About 15 percent of black or Hispanic students attend so-called apartheid schools that are less than 1 percent white.”
  • “There’s no video to show that blacks are dying from the coronavirus at more than twice the rate of whites, or that a result of the recent mass layoffs is that, as of last month, fewer than half of African-American adults now have a job.”

Without a video these statistics are just that, cold statistics. Yet “they represent a kind of invisible, structural racism and violence that perpetuates inequality.”

How much longer are we willing to turn our heads to this reality, inequality?

I can’t suggest one single small step that can change this invisible racism. But what if we each committed to remembering these statistics and the people they represent as vividly as we recall the video of George Floyd’s murder on the streets of Minneapolis?

  • Would that motivate us to make even a small donation to one of the myriad of organizations that are fighting this racism?
  • Would it impact how we vote in November?
  • Would it motivate us to speak up when someone utters a racial slur?
  • Would it motivate us to show up for change?