Phired Up Productions recently partnered with the RESPONSE ABLILITY Project to put on an educational experience like none other: BE THE PERSON | 2012. It wasn’t a conference, but rather a true immersion experience that made the streets of Chicago the classroom.
During the event participants worked through curriculum that was geared towards helping them identify the thing(s) in life that they have a passion for. You could say that the experience and curriculum even helped them identify their purpose. With that, we worked to help participants understand how to activate on that purpose/passion once they knew what it was. This is where the participants learned to put the steps of handshakes leading to conversations, conversations leading to relationships, relationships leading to collaboration, collaboration leading to organizations and organizations changiing the world into effect — Social Excellence.
It was incredible to see what transpired in individuals during this event. To see so many people leave ready to make a difference. To change, maybe not THE world, but at least go and change their world. The world that mattered to them. That was something incredibly special to be a part of. After all of the participants had left, I went and ate lunch with Vince Fabra before leaving town. As Vince and I walked to and from lunch (yes, for those of you who know me, it was at Chipotle) past this building site that was being torn down I remembered when we first arrived in Chicago seeing the building WHOLE. It was complete. It had been someone’s business. In a matter of 4 days, what was once someone’s passion, purpose, love, life had been relegated to dust. An empty lot ready for someone else’s dreams to become a reality.
All of us, as individuals and as our organizations, have a purpose. A reason for being. Too often, many of us have great ideas, passions, and purposes that we choose to pursue and further, but sadly, oftentimes, over a course of a few days, weeks, months, years, we lose that idea, passion or purpose. We get sidetrack by all of the other “stuff” that goes on from day to day in our worlds. We lose our focus due to tasks that we think matter and must be completed instead of completing the bold actions that will continue to breathe life into our true passions. THE world, gets in our way.
Maybe it was the emotional high of coming off such a great experience, or maybe it was just having the “fat happys” after scarfing down that carnitas burrito, but I had to pause as we walked past the building the second time. It made me think of all of the participants who were headed back home to change their world. I thought about how one’s passion can fade away from focus and how quickly change can be made, often by one person choosing to shake someone else’s hand. Mostly though, I hoped that the participants would be the ones making change and not allowing change to happen to them.
I hope for them that they have continued to pursue what matters to them. I hope that they are shaking hands and creating relationships to further their cause. I hope that they aren’t waiting to activate. I hope that they haven’t been sidetracked by THE world. I hope their daily to-do list hasn’t gotten in the way of their life’s to-do list. I hope for them — and for you — that you see NOW as the time to be making the change you wish to see in your world and your organization.
Are they, are you, bringing people together now around your passion, your cause, your organization? Because if there’s anything I know about our fans, friends, and followers it is that they are high quality people doing high quality things. I know that what you have to offer other through your passion, purpose, cause or organization is something that would be appealing to others and that others would want to join you. I hope that your building isn’t currently being torn down due to inactivity, but instead you are working to construct your own building, the place that will house your passion and purpose. The place that will be the headquarters for changing your world and maybe even changing THE world.