August 25th, 2016
I’m really not sure where to start so I’ll begin where I walked in and back fill. As I entered the Wellness Center at the Main Unit on the Marion County Correctional Institute Sean Kahlil was addressing 55 Men in a circle on Visualization and Meditation. He held them and myself captive with his calm voice and introspective words. Next was inmate (we have come to affectionately refer to them as our Men in Blue) David Yoakum who spoke on Imagination and Creativity. And then I was up next to speak on Integrity. Now would be a good place to bring you up to speed.
Several years ago Manal Fakhoury started the Fakhoury Leadership International. You can click the link to learn more but I think she said it best on her Facebook post yesterday;
“When your professional life and your service come together as one. Grateful for this opportunity and the path that God has put me on. #Leadership #PrisonWork”
It was a day full of “Who would have thoughts?”
-Who would have thought that Sean (Jim as a child) would choose James Bond (007) as his alter ego name to visualize all that he wanted to be and later change his name to Sean (as in Sean Connery.)
-Who would have thought that Sean’s closing exercise with the Men would be to have them gather in a group, have one of them fall back into the arms of the waiting group and be hoisted above their heads. I had planned a similar exercise and if dovetailed beautifully when I presented on Integrity and Trust. I directed one of the Men blindfold around the room and his final destination was on the small stage 3 feet off the floor. Standing on the edge of the stage with his back to the other Men and I standing in front of me I ask him to fall backwards. I of course had Men to catch him. This all done to demonstrate how trust builds integrity. It’s one thing to fall backwards with your eyes wide open to waiting arms but it is something entirely different to be blind and fall backwards wondering what the result will be. The risk of that first time trust. This provided a powerful contrast and made an impactful impression.
-Who would have thought that David Yoakum would talk about Imagination and Creativity strengthening relationships and what a perfect segue that provided to addressing Integrity before we broke for lunch.
The room was electric and the Men were hanging on every word. Pens in hands and jotting notes. The baton passed from speaker to speaker without effort laced with synergy that always offers more together than from one single person.
And then enter Ronnie Betts. “Why do I continue to give control to other people?” This sparked question I had to ask myself;
-Why do I wait?
-Why don’t I act?
-What am I waiting for?
-Do I want them to cheer for me? Of course I do but I have to give them something to cheer about. And when I do I hope they will give me a reason to cheer for them. To be their champion!
I had just had this very discussion with my friend Marianne not two days ago when I shared with her that I had been asked to give a speech at a local Toastmaster Club that was well received and I wanted to give it again if asked. She said, “Don’t wait to be asked Carey…offer to give it again” and I took these words to heart. Yesterday I saw a Facebook post from my friend Kimanzi Constable who has gone from baking bread to an international speaker, coach, author, and consultant who was offering a Lifestyle Entrepreneur Mastermind class. He has the lifestyle I want but he cannot give it to me. Only guide me to it so I did not hesitate. I acted and signed up.
Today has been a culmination…points of clarity…dots that have been connected and the picture is coming into view not just for me but for many!
My your candle burn bright enough to light another.
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