Dreamer All-Star Training Session #1: Daymond John

Congratulations, you’re almost finished with Week 1 of The STRETCH. I want to wrap up this week by welcoming you to your first training session with a Dream All-Star. The goal of each weekly Dream Training Session is to share business tips and strategies that I’ve picked up from some of the Dream Project’s extraordinary participants. That’s right—great Dreamers don’t let fellow Dreamers Dream alone. Instead, they inspire. And because this training session is strictly mental, all you have to do is sit back and enjoy hearing from entrepreneurial All-Star Daymond John as he shares stories and insights, starting from his days as a child entrepreneur. In these excerpts from his session with the Dream Project, Daymond offers observations and business strategies that I believe are well worth noting in your Dreamer’s Playbook. So, get your notebooks and pens ready—it’s time for some expert Dream Training with an All-Star!

  • Dreamer All-Star: Daymond John
  • Dreamer Type: Make-it-Happen Dreamer

Daymond John is the epitome of a Make-it-Happen Dreamer. He is a public speaker, author, entrepreneur, and investor on the hit TV show, Shark Tank. He was also President Obama’s Ambassador for Global Entrepreneurship and is the founder of FUBU, a fashion brand that is now worth approximately $6 billion. During his time with the Dream Project he talked about several aspects of entrepreneurship, including early ambition, mentoring, and surrounding yourself with the right people. Let’s learn from Daymond about each.

Dream Ancestry

“My dad came over from Trinidad at 16 and he swept the streets. By the time he was 20, he made enough money to bring his family over, which included him and his other six siblings. My mom was African-American—she was brilliant and very hardworking. They always taught me to work hard and that my day job wouldn’t make me rich, it would be my homework that made me rich.
My parents got divorced when I was 10-years old and I would never see or speak to my father after that. I became the man of the house, and it was only me and Mom, so I worked for people. I was an apprentice electrician. I had a bike shop where I would go around, find all those tools and old thrown out pieces of the bikes and I would put them together. I also shoveled snow and raked leaves. I knew I had to step up, so I did.”

Failure

“You know, I fail every single day. Still today, I don’t have a fear of failing. I have a fear of not starting. I have a fear of not continuing. I have a fear of not exploiting every single aspect of whatever I’m venturing into—to know that there was only one more door I had to open to find success.”

Building a Dream Team

“When we get into our businesses, we’re experts at one or two things. If you think you can be an expert at warehousing, an expert manufacturer, expert distributor, or expert advertiser, expert designer, you’re wrong. You have to surround yourself with people and assets that can deploy these things. You can’t do it alone, so be careful to build the best team you can.”

The Importance of Mentors

“The real reason why businesses succeed is because of mentors. I’m talking about a local mentor, like someone who has run a bodega in your neighborhood for the last 20 years through thick and thin. Mentors, especially those who have nothing to do with your business, will tell you things they’ve learned firsthand. They’ll tell you not to scale too quickly. And they will tell you not to take capital too soon. They’re also one step away from connecting you with so many other assets in your business. So find yourself a mentor, it is KEY to your success.

The people who have appeared on Shark Tank are entrepreneurs who are allowing us to be part of their dream, so I have an obligation to mentor. I’ve invested in 43 companies on that show. And I have an obligation for the next five to 10 years to help these individuals give them the best shot that I can.”

Be a Problem Solver

“When I invest, I look for problem solvers. Are you a problem solver? Or are you going to call me every single day with a problem? If you have a problem and you’re going to call me, I want you to call me after a week and say, ‘Hey listen, D, I tried these ten things. They didn’t work, but I have three more things and I’m thinking about and I want to know how you feel about that.’ That’s a different story. That tells me you’re handling it, you’re a problem solver. You have to bring me solutions.”

Identifying Entrepreneurial Dreamers

“When I see that spark and that energy in entrepreneurs and they’re really excited, I want to be part of what they’re doing. That’s exciting stuff. They got that twinkle in the eye that I used to have. Number two is they’re brilliant. A lot of them are digital natives, and they’re doing so many things online and things like that, they can run circles around me, and I want to learn from them. And number three is, is there a way for me to make money as well as for them to make money? You know I get excited about people like that. I want to work, and I like to learn, and I’m going to look for people I can learn from. And I’m looking for that spark.”

The Power of Word of Mouth

“Once you identify the market, now you have to do the sell to identify how your customers want what you’re selling. Say you sell your product to your friends—you sell to 10 friends of yours, and 9 of them don’t like it. They’re not going to tell you they don’t like it. You have to talk to an absolute stranger who doesn’t have any interest in your business or company, the person who’s taking his hard-earned money and buying something from you. If you do that, you’ll start to understand your customers. When you gravitate towards that one or two customers and they latch on to your product—they start to share it with everybody, they become ambassadors. You can’t pay for the way ambassadors behave. They’re about word of mouth, and everybody wants that. You just have to blow it out from there.”

Going From Dream to Reality

“Turning a dream into a successful business is a big list, actually. And here’s how the laundry list goes: First of all, identify the dream. Second of all, identify that you love the dream. It’s not that you love the end goal, but you have to love the process of going through the dream itself. Then you have to come up with the product or category or thing that you’re going to deliver. You have to get a great team around you that believes in you. Then you have to make sure that you have the desire and the drive. And when you add all that together then you got to come up with distribution and financing, or structure. And those are all the things that will just get you started. But first, identify the dream and make sure you love it.”

Dreaming in Color

“We’re all born thinking like entrepreneurs. As bright-eyed-bushy-tailed kids who have no blinders on, we say, ‘I’m gonna be Superman. I’m gonna change the world. I’m gonna save the seals. I’m gonna be the richest person on the planet. I’m gonna be this and that.’ Sometimes the people around us say, ‘You can’t do it. It hasn’t been done, you’re gonna embarrass yourself,’ or ‘You’re gonna embarrass us.’ Society then says ‘you have to go and get a job’ and I think we’re taught not to think like entrepreneurs. We need to teach kids to think like entrepreneurs.”

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Dreamer All-Star Training Session #2: Brandice Daniel

Congratulations, Dreamer! You are officially almost finished with week #2 of The STRETCH. To wrap up week two, you’ll be training with Dream Project participant, Brandice Daniels, founder of Harlem Fashion Row. You’ll read about how Brandice ran with an idea of hosting fashion shows in Harlem and literally STRETCHed the idea into the nation’s largest platform for designers of color.

For the past 12 years, Brandice has hosted some of the most sought-after fashion shows during New York Fashion Week, and she recently spearheaded a history-making partnership between Harlem Fashion Row and Nike in which she matched LeBron James with three Harlem Fashion Row designers to create his first women’s basketball shoe with Nike. I’ve watched and supported Brandice for 12 years as she’s STRETCHed again and again during her Dream journey. In the following excerpts from her session with the Dream Project, Brandice offers winning business strategies and tips and stories.

  • Dreamer All-Star: Brandice Daniel
  • Dreamer Type: CEO Dreamer

Brandice Daniel is the founder and CEO of Harlem’s Fashion Row (HFR), a prestigious platform for multicultural fashion designers. Brandice also co-founded and co-hosts “Great Girlfriends,” a podcast created to offer women daily tips and solutions for living passionate lives and building thriving businesses. She went from being an industry outsider to now being called by the Wall Street Journal, “A Fashion Insider that Pushes for Diversity.”

Releasing the “How?”

“I had no evidence that I could make this dream happen. I didn’t have any experience doing a fashion show from start to finish, and at the beginning that was the entire dream. Then the dream God gave me was so much bigger, but I think He started with the fashion show. I needed that smaller start because I think if God had showed me the whole picture I would have freaked out. I didn’t have any evidence that I could do it, but I felt compelled to do it. I didn’t know anything or anyone when I got started. I didn’t know the people who I was asking to be a part of it. I really didn’t know how I was going to pull it off, but I kept going forward anyway. I didn’t have any experience doing a fashion show from start to finish. I didn’t even know what kind of people I’d need to put it together, but the thing I was convinced of was that this dream was given to me. I felt that so strongly that I didn’t worry about how I was going to make it happen. I just kept going.”

Being on the Right “Floor”

“When I first had the dream, I was working a full-time job as a production manager for an instant apparel company in New York. Before that, I was a senior assistant buyer for a company in Memphis. So, I’d been around fashion, but never this particular thing. I always say, ‘Just be on the right floor. If you’re on the right floor, you’ll eventually open the right door, or you’ll land in the right place.’ I was on the right floor, but I just hadn’t found the right door. I was doing different things around fashion, but this was my door.”

The Advantage of Being An Outsider

“Being an outsider can be an advantage. Being an outsider, you have the opportunity to build and make mistakes while nobody’s watching. A lot of times people think, “Oh, I don’t know anybody. If only I had connections.” But those first few years of building something as an outsider can be a gift. Nobody saw all my disastrous mistakes in the beginning because I was an outsider—nobody cared. Nobody was paying attention to me.”

Making Space for Dreaming

“As an entrepreneur, you can get so caught up in a day-to-day, it is very easy to stop dreaming and just keep working on the dreams that you have—not letting your mind wander. One of the things that I’ve been doing for years now is I take this trip called ‘the golden girls trip’ with three of my friends. We go to Miami—we go to the exact same hotel because it’s a mindless trip, right? We don’t want to think about anything. We’ve gone to the same hotel every single time and we do the exact same thing every single trip. We go to the same restaurants. We ride the same bikes. Every time I go on that trip, I come back with new ideas, new perspective, new dreams, new ideas, solutions to problems that I just couldn’t figure out before.”

Checking Out to Check in

“Right now, I’m off social media so I’m not posting anything. I just had to give myself the space. I felt too crowded, and I have to give myself the space to turn off everything that wasn’t necessary. Social media was one of those things for me. Particularly Instagram. Probably once every other month, I’ll just turn off social media for a week or so just to give myself the time to think and dream and be and be present. Because, I can tell you for sure, when I’m on social media, I’m not present.”

Learning to be a Fighter

“I think my biggest battle has definitely been finances. I remember one year in particular, I was planning an event and a sponsor confirmed and then they backed out. They confirmed verbally, but then they backed out. I remember just sobbing because that was a big sponsor, and it was a big amount. I left there and was on the subway, and God said, ’Fight. You don’t sit back. You fight.’ So, I wrote a respectful but very direct email that I wouldn’t normally send, explaining the impact of retracting of sponsorship that you verbally committed to — and what the relationship meant for us. They actually ended up coming back on board, not for the same amount, but they came back on board. For me, so many times, it’s been about fighting the challenges of financing a small business, fighting, also, the fear that comes up within myself. And the doubt that comes up. And making sure that I never get to a place where I start questioning, ’Is this going to happen?’ I make sure my language is as if it’s already happening and is following my dream, not undermining my dream.”

Knowing Her Purpose

“My purpose is to create opportunity for designers of color in fashion. It’s really that simple. Whether that’s supporting them with their own lines or helping them find opportunities within a brand as a designer, my goal is to make sure that any talented designer who’s a person of color is able to find opportunities in fashion without discrimination. I think it’s just a part of my DNA; I want to see people live out their life’s purpose. What I’m doing through HFR is allowing me to see designers be able to live out their purpose without blocks, without anything holding them back.”

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Dreamer All-Star Training Session #3: India Arie

Congratulations, you have successfully finished week #3. You’re nearing the end of PHASE 1 of your STRETCH, and I hope that means you’re Dreaming in bright, vivid colors and feeling more clarity and courage. This week, I’m very excited to share the thoughts of India Arie, a creative musical force who over the years has inspired me and fed my spirit with powerful messages in beautiful songs. She knows quite a bit about going after a Dream and about what it means to Detox. As the music industry pushed her in many directions, India had to go through a Dream Detox so she could find her way back to living authentically. She returned to writing the kind of music she wanted and took charge of her tour; she stopped performing in big arenas in favor of intimate spaces where she could interact with her audience during a show that combines music and conversation, a show based on her album, ‘Songversation’. After going through a Dream Detox, India developed the clarity to know just what she wanted and the courage to take charge of her creative future.

  • Dreamer All-Star: India Arie
  • Dreamer Type: Make-it-Happen Dreamer

India Arie is a Grammy-award winning musician, singer, and songwriter who has sold more than 3.3 million records in the U.S. and more than 10 million worldwide. Below, you’ll read excerpts from India’s visit with us at the Dream Project when she shared some of her biggest life lessons and talked about the journey of defining her success and her purpose on her own terms.

Growth, Balance, and the Meaning of “Success”

“I was 23 years old when I signed my record deal with Motown on April 20th, 1999. In
2001, I released ‘Acoustic Soul’. In 2002, I released ‘Voyage to India’. Then, in 2006, I
released ‘Testimony: Vol. 1, Life and Relationship’. And in 2009, I released ‘Testimony:
Vol. 2, Love and Politics’. There would be so much time between each album because I
was living a life that was outside of my nature. I was recovering a lot because there were
award shows. Things were always hectic. There were times that somebody was putting on my make-up and my clothes at the same time. It’s flashy, and I see why somebody would look at it and think it’s fun, but it was not my definition of fun. It’s funny—I lived the biggest example of the American dream: I didn’t just have wealth; I was famous too. I was rich and famous. I guess I still am, but now I actually am the true definition of wealth, because I have a more well-rounded life. And thanks to my mother, I still have most of my money.

Between my albums, I was always recovering. I would just be at home and spend a long time writing songs. It served me well because my songs are put together thoughtfully. It’s my nature to move slow, and so I honor that part of myself and what it’s been able to do for my songwriting.

But, it was really hard to live that life of a touring musician. And I spent all of 2009 doing the same thing I had been doing all of my career, which was pushing through and thinking if I just get a couple more radio hits, I could stack up this money, and then I could do my real life. Then, I realized that things felt so distorted that there was no amount of money that would let me see my real life.

“After that, I released ‘Testimony: Vol. 2’ and when I went on the road, my voice went out. I don’t do conventional medicine, but I had to get a steroid shot. Then, I was in the airport headed to the next city and I had to throw up. Then, I was on stage and waving at the bass player and my finger pops out of joint. I kept pushing through the fall of 2009, but then I saw it clearly in black and white—on a wall somewhere. It said, ‘At any time, you can say “stop.”’ I just got chills all over because it’s so simple, but I had never allowed myself that kind of power. I thought I had to push through and hurt myself and just keep going because in our society we work hard. I was just living out what society expected of me at the time. But I had the option to stop.”

The Power of Saying “Stop”

“A couple of days before Halloween 2009, I stopped everything. I again realized that I could love myself and just say ‘stop,’ and so I did. I call the day I decided to let everything just drop, ‘my breakdown.’ I call this whole journey ‘my breakdown, breakthrough, break the shell, elevate, and fly.’ I let go of most of my business team, and the first thing I did after that was go into nature. I went to the Pacific Northwest, outside of Seattle to the San Juan Islands. I got a little rental house and sat there for weeks and weeks. I got to know myself away from working and being in the public eye in makeup and clothes. It’s funny because one of the things they do in the music industry is to package you. They have to make you a product. But the real India Arie is a natural girl who’s barefoot, and she runs through the woods.

“I pushed through really for 10 years, and it just got worse because what I have come to understand is that there’s nothing worse for your physical, mental, and emotional, spiritual health than living a life that’s outside of your nature. I spend time on stage, and I do what I do, but I’m actually an introvert. I recharge by spending time alone. I like things to be quiet. I’m a thinker. I’m a reader. My passion, my hobby in life, is just exploring things, learning new words. Reading, and writing, and thinking, and having conversations with small groups of people where you can really connect.

Discovering Her Worth

“I started my Songversation album with a song called ’I am Light‘ because I lived my whole life up until a few years ago not understanding the truth that there’s nothing ever really wrong with anyone. We’re all worthy and significant, and we matter because we exist and nobody’s better than anyone else. In order to go after your dreams, you must first understand and know that you are worthy.”

I know I had Billboard chart stuff. I won Grammys. I won Image Awards. I sang with Prince and Stevie Wonder. I sang with James Taylor and my heroes, but none of those things ever felt meaningful. What really is meaningful is living your truth. My personal definition of success is clarity of my intention, because you know in the business everybody has an intention for you. But what’s your intention for yourself? That’s what I had to make clear for myself: clarity of my intention and reaching that intention while being true to myself and in balance.”

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Dreamer All-Star Training Session #4: Marc Pritchard

Congratulations, you have officially finished your first week in the Design phase of the STRETCH. This week was about discovering your purpose and the purpose of your Dream. To wrap the week up, I’m thrilled to share with you insights from one of the world’s greatest brand builders. Marc Pritchard is the Chief Brand Officer of Procter and Gamble, the world’s largest advertiser. Marc knows how to build purpose-driven brands, and he also leads with purpose in his personal life. He’s a stellar example of a Careerpreneur who pioneers new products, platforms, and marketing campaigns—all while connecting the dots between principles and profession. This week you’ll read about how Marc discovered his personal purpose, tips on how to conduct your professional life while following your highest ideals.

Please enjoy these excerpts from a Dream Project session with my dear friend and long-term client, Careerpreneur, Marc Pritchard of Procter and Gamble.

  • Dreamer All-Star: Marc S. Pritchard
  • Dreamer Type: Careerpreneur Dreamer

Marc Pritchard serves as the Chief Brand Officer of Procter & Gamble (P&G), a company known for some of the world’s most trusted brands including Tide, Pampers, Crest, Bounty, Charmin, Dawn, Pantene, Vicks, and many more. The marketing efforts he oversees for this global company reach more than five billion people around the world. Marc believes that brands should serve people while also being a force for good by demonstrating ethics and responsibility, working to positively affect communities, and fostering diversity and inclusion, gender equality, and environmental sustainability.

Discovering Purpose

“There were multiple moments that eventually connected to make me clear about what my ultimate destiny, so to speak, would be. The first moment was about 20 years ago. I was on a spiritual retreat at Wind River Ranch up in the Colorado mountains with my wife Betsy and our three daughters. The girls were all under age 10 at the time. This retreat was multi-denominational, and it was important that Betsy and I ensured that our family was grounded in spirituality.

“I’m Catholic, Betsy’s Jewish, and my dad believed in the higher power of Alcoholics Anonymous. So there’s a lot of spirituality in our family, for different paths. There are many paths up the mountain, and we were trying to just make sure that the kids knew that. At the very end of this week, which was an amazing week, the leader of this ranch, who was a minister, said to me, ‘I hope you know the good you can do because you’re in business. And business will be the greatest force for good in the future, not clergy, not politicians, not government. Business. And so, if you choose to do so, you can do a lot of good.’”

Brands as a Force for Good

“We believe brands can be a force for good and a force for growth. In fact, if a brand is just a force for good, it’s a charity. Charities are awesome but the amount of money that a charity can really contribute to do good is often limited. If a brand is just a force for growth, it often is accused of being a mercenary only interested in the profit motive. So when a brand or a business can be a force for good and a force for growth, it actually has a much broader reach, and it’s sustainable. Because now if you’re doing something good and it is driving growth, well, you’re able to keep doing it and you can have a greater and greater impact.”

Putting Purpose into Action

“My first kind of blinding moment of clarity when I connected the dots between my purpose and profession came when I was running the CoverGirl business, and we had just created the ‘Easy, Breezy, Beautiful‘ CoverGirl campaign, and we were refreshing it with new spokespeople. Many of those spokespeople were too young, they were too skinny, and they were too white. They represented a stereotypical standard of beauty, not a true, diverse, accurate, and realistic portrayal of beauty. And it really struck me, because I looked at my young daughters and I thought, ‘My God, we can have an impact on how people see themselves. And I need to do something about that.’ So, I went back to challenge our team, particularly because I wanted my daughters to grow up with not just stereotypical images of beauty. I went to our team and said, ‘Look, we’ve got to change this. We need to broaden the diversity of those representing CoverGirl.’ We ended up bringing in Tyra Banks and Mikki Taylor. We brought in Brandy, then we brought in Amelia Vega, who is Hispanic. Queen Latifah was one of our best ever. These images and spokespeople really started to change the standard of beauty. And then we eventually brought in Ellen DeGeneres and Sofia Vergara and the rest is history. It was a 20-year campaign.”

Moving From Success to Significance

“I was on vacation and reading a book that my boss recommended to me, called Halftime, and the book talks about moving from success to significance. ‘Halftime’ meant, halfway through your life, and I was in my mid-fifties at the time. I think I was 55. So maybe a little past halftime. It said that what you should do is think about what you can do to have significance and meaning in the world using the skills and the capabilities you’ve built from your professional life. And then it was solidified for me. Like, ‘This is it: use my skills, experience, and voice in advertising and marketing as a force for good.’ And particularly focused on gender equality, on racial equality, on really equality of all kinds. And that became what I focused on as my true purpose, or destiny, in terms of making a difference in the world.”

A Simple Way to Connect Purpose and Profession

“There’s one piece of advice I give to everyone, which was given to me at one point. It’s to focus on being useful. I told you about the specific action of using my skills and voice in advertising in order to be a force for good for things like equality. But, behind that, I would say my very simple purpose in life is to be useful in everything I do. I wake up every day and I ask God for the strength to be useful, to be useful. To be useful in meetings I’m in and to the people I meet with. Before I go onstage to speak, I pray that my words will be useful to the audience.”

“Think about what you can do to be the most useful for others. It’ll lead to your days being more meaningful. But it will ultimately lead you to finding your even bigger destiny. I think you know this because it’s proven over and over again that the people who are the happiest are the people providing service and doing good things for others. And generally, people who are doing that just have better lives. So, whenever I’m unsure about something, whenever I’m a little bit off, I just try to move outside of myself and focus on how I can be useful to others. If you’re unsure, think less about yourself and think more about others and what you can do to help them.”

“I mean, to me, the dream of an equal world is a big dream. But it’s certainly something I’m going after with all my might.”

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Dreamer All-Star Training Session #6: Lisa Stone

  • Dreamer All-Star: Lisa Stone
  • Dreamer Type: CEO Dreamer

Lisa Stone, BlogHer co-founder and its former CEO, is now Chief Strategy Officer at Ellevest, an online investment platform for women. Under Lisa’s leadership, BlogHer grew from a community of 300 women to 17,000 influential writers and bloggers reaching over 127 million unique visitors monthly. In 2014, BlogHer sold to She Knows Media for between $30 and $40 million.

Should You Work for No Fee?

“When we started BlogHer, we had no intention of starting a business. We were leading a holy crusade to prove to the world that women loved and were already using blog technology, writing code, leading huge communities, and really pioneering a new kind of media, which became social media. As we did that, we were volunteering all of our time. So, we went online and invited other women to help us. We said who we are and what we were doing and why we were doing it, and invited them to help. There was total transparency. We weren’t getting paid, and so we didn’t offer to pay anybody. Fast forward, two years later, we had pulled together this conference, this website, where we had 60 different editors who were blogging what women were doing in different categories. Then as soon as we could afford to pay, we started paying people upfront. We started being able to pay ourselves, lower than market rate by the way, but we started being able to pay ourselves and other people. From that point on we took a stand that women should not work for free in our network because we had these resources.

The bottom line is if you’re totally transparent about what you’re doing, then I think the person with whom you’re trying to do business can make a well-informed decision about whether or not she should do that for free.”

Thoughts on How to Dream Responsibility

“I became an entrepreneur as I became a single mother. In 1997, Time Warner bought Turner News and my marriage ended, and I had a one-year-old to support pretty much by myself in Silicon Valley. I marched over to WebTV where there was a CNN alum and said, ‘You’re looking for a news and sports producer, and I’m looking for a three-day-a-week job because I can’t afford four days a week of daycare. So I’m going to take a huge pay cut if you give me this job, and I’m gonna learn about this internet thing and learn some HTML, and you’re gonna get great news and sports production. It’s a win-win.’ He was like, ‘Done and done.’

“Because I had responsibilities, I made a decision I was not going to work for nonprofits. I needed to make a real salary, and I chose my jobs accordingly. It’s why I left the newsroom and went into digital content and then publishing. I knew that I had to support my son. I’ve remarried, and I’ve been able to support my family and two stepchildren as well. And I’ve never worked for a not-for-profit for that reason.

“While I was bootstrapping BlogHer for two years, I did invest significant savings because I was trying to continue to consult, but I basically had to cut my consulting income in half to make time to do it. I ate into my savings. It was worth it to me because I was 37 years old and I had time to make up the difference. I made calculated decisions about how to balance the opportunity with my responsibilities. How old was I? How much time did I have to earn my savings back once I invested them? Did I feel I would learn enough that any investment of savings could end up being tuition? It mattered more to me to live the speculative life of an entrepreneur than it did to drive a luxury car or to invest in shoes and clothes. I really have tailored my lifestyle so that I can experience the abundance of a creative life because that means more to me than material things.

On Raising Capital

“BlogHer raised 20.25 million dollars in venture capital between 2007 and 2014. I am so proud of the BlogHer team because I believe we were regularly experiencing bias in our valuation by VCs, and it was so much harder than it should’ve been given our performance. I’m very proud of the fact that we paid all our bills and were able to exit the company the way we did. The under-told story of women in venture is that we are crushing it. The performance of businesses led by women and/or where women are on the management team significantly outstrips the amount of money people are willing to give us. We should all be very proud.

“When you go in to fundraise, you need to do three things:

Number one, you need to know your numbers cold. If you can’t survive a grilling on your numbers, you’re dead.

Number two, you must network, network, network. And by networking, I mean with the men. If you’re fortunate enough to be a parent, you need to leverage every parenting environment you can in order to meet people where you have a shared experience. If you are a runner or a bicyclist or a hiker, anything you can you do to meet people in the industry and have a shared interest is absolutely essential. I don’t care what gender, what race, what background you are, you have got to find some kind of shared connection with the people who have the money.

The third thing is you must become a kick-ass storyteller. If you can’t captivate them with your ability to tell a story in a way that’s true to you, it’ll never work. The numbers alone won’t do it. The connections alone won’t do it. The story alone won’t do it. And it’s going to be harder than you think. But if you’re afraid of something hard, definitely don’t become an entrepreneur.”

Shy Sales People Have Skinny Children

“Ross Levinsohn once said to me, ‘Lisa, shy salesmen have skinny children.’ I was a very introverted, behind-the-camera journalist when we started BlogHer. The first public speaking gigs that we did for the first five years were really knee-knocking hard for me. I had to get over it. It helped enormously to have two gregarious, gorgeous co-founders who could do all kinds of things. But I was the CEO, so I had to raise my game. Do not become the CEO and founder of your company if you cannot and will not get out in front of the company.

A Few Thoughts On How to Connect

“Connecting on LinkedIn is a really easy way to stay in touch without over-committing or asking too much. When you publish something or you share something, it’s in the most professional social network that exists today.
“If you feel a really personal connection, writing an email makes sense. But people are very busy, and so I think it’s important to be very circumspect with the amount of early asks you have.

“And I would try to treat it all as a gift economy. What can you do for this person? Can you go share one of their posts? Or share, like, or comment on something that they have done? Make it a give not a take.”

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Dreamer All-Star Training Session #7: Christine Caine

  • Dreamer Name: Christine Caine
  • Dreamer Type: Activist Dreamer
  • Dreamer Title: Founder of A21 Campaign & Propel Women Who Lead

Christine Caine is an Australian activist, evangelist, author, and international speaker. She has a heart for equipping leaders, empowering local churches, and championing the cause of justice. As director of Empower Ministries, she travels the world teaching the gospel and inspiring her audiences to connect with their God-given purpose and potential. Christine and her husband Nick are the founders of the A21 Campaign, an anti-human tracking organization. She has authored five books including Undaunted and Unstoppable.

Your Origins Don’t Define You

“I’m living proof that it doesn’t matter how you start in life—you can finish strong. I grew up in the poorest zip code in my state as a second-generation immigrant Greek, before My Big Fat Greek Wedding, so when it was not cool to be Greek in Australia. I was very marginalized because of my ethnicity and my gender, and pretty much every week of my life from the time I was maybe three years old through my mid-teens, I was sexually abused at the hands of several men many, many times a week. Most young women with that kind of background don’t end up doing what I’m doing. They end up either drug or alcohol dependent, with maybe two or three different kids from two or three different fathers. I was full of unforgiveness, shame, guilt, anger, and bitterness.

“Then, two weeks before my 33rd birthday, my older brother George called and said he’d gotten a letter from the government saying he was adopted. I laughed and told him the letter had been sent to the wrong person. He sobbed, ‘Chris, they’ve got a whole file on my life. They told me my name, when I was born, when I was immunized—they have all the information on my life.’ He said, ‘They told me the name of my biological mother, my biological father.’ I thought, this is crazy.

“Separately, we raced to my mother’s house. I got there right at the minute that my brother was giving my mother this piece of paper from the government. My mom just started sobbing. She said, ‘George, I’m so sorry. All the adoption laws in Australia 35 years ago were all closed adoptions, and we never thought you would find out. One of the final things I promised your father before he died was that I would never tell you, so I tore up all the paperwork.’

“Now you could imagine, this was a moment. My mother was sobbing. My brother was crying. The dog was crying. It’s like a big fat Greek moment. What do you do in that moment? I was thinking that food is the answer to life, the universe, and everything. I’m going to go and make some baklava. So I went to the kitchen, and my mom came in behind me after a little while, and in Greek she said, ‘Christina, since we’re telling the truth, do you want to know the whole truth?’ With tears streaming down her face, she told me that I was also adopted. I didn’t say anything for the first few minutes, and then I asked if I was still Greek. Then I said, ‘Oh well Mom, before I was formed in my mother’s womb, whoever’s womb that was, God knew me. He knitted together my innermost parts. I am fearfully and wonderfully made.’

“That day, every fact that I thought to be true about my life changed. My official documents include a birth certificate without a name. My doctor’s report says, ‘Unwanted.’ But the truth actually never changed because although the facts changed, Ephesians 2:10 says that I am his workmanship recreated in Christ Jesus for good works that God prepared beforehand. So at the end of the day, I knew God had a plan for me.”

Moving On From “Unwanted”

“As I was standing there at the airport, I saw all these posters of young women and children. I went on to find out that these were the alleged victims of human trafficking. I didn’t know slavery still existed, and it’s the fastest growing crime worldwide. I had this sense that I’m supposed to do something about this, but my instant response was what could I do?

“The reality is that if your creator has put the dream inside you, He’s going to make a way for it to come to pass. He wants us to have faith and to do what we’ve never done before. That’s what I do. I would never have guessed that the kid from Sydney who had been left unnamed and unwanted in a hospital, who had been abused for 12 years, could do this. Who but God could have taken all of that brokenness, woven it all together and said, ‘I’m going to work all that bad together for good, and I’m going to use your past, Christine, to give somebody else a future?’”

Life is Risky

“I’m involved in helping to rescue the victims of human trafficking, the largest humanitarian crisis since World War II. Standing with Russian and Albanian mafia when you’re in court cases putting traffickers in jail and having some of them come to your office with guns and threaten to harm you is risky. There is much danger in this job, but the way I look at it is living itself is risky, so why be afraid to tackle big issues? The temptation is to stay safe in a controlled environment, but there is no such thing as a safe controlled environment. Vacation is risky. Flying is risky. Work is risky. Living is risky.

Dreamers Need to Jump

“For anyone on the edge of launching a Dream, you’re going to have to jump. You’re going to find twenty reasons why not, and you’re going to find a different twenty reasons next week and another twenty reasons the week after. At some point you’re going to have to decide that the planets haven’t aligned and that they’re not going to. So, I always say to my team, ‘We’re about to jump off this ledge and take a risk. I’m hoping there’s a bungee cord attached to my ankle, so I don’t splat on the ground. And we’re going to catapult higher than we ever have, but you’re never going to know that you’re safe until you take the risk and make that jump.’”

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  • Dreamer All-Star: Earvin “Magic” Johnson
  • Dreamer Type: Make it Happen Dreamer
  • Dreamer Title: Chairman/CEO, Magic Johnson Enterprises

Magic Johnson played basketball for the Los Angeles Lakers for 13 seasons and later went on to become the organization’s President of Operations. After retiring from the game, Magic became an advocate for HIV education and research, and he’s also an entrepreneur whose ventures include a film studio, record label, talk show, multiple movie theaters, and more. Magic Johnson’s net worth is around $600 million.

The Work Ethic of a Point Guard

“I’m still the point guard, only I’m in a different room, and I’m not wearing those little short shorts. My work ethic got me to the NBA, and I carry that over to the boardroom. If you start a business you’ve got to work very, very hard, so you need to know that right from the start. I’m still super competitive. I want to win for myself. I want to win for my partners. I want to win for the community. The strategy for being a successful point guard and running the Laker team is the same for business.”

Going in Through the Roof with Winning Partnerships

“Before I first partnered with AMC Theatres, I thought about how African Americans go to the movies all the time. It’s still one of the most affordable things we can do as a family. So, I approached the theater chains about a partnership and said, ‘You put up half the money, I put up half the money. You have the knowledge of running a successful theater, but I have the knowledge of our people.’ Your partnerships will be similar. You have a skill set and your partner has a skill set, but you must clearly define those roles. And, so with Sony, I said, ‘Hey I know the minority community and I know what we want to have at the concession stand.’ I told them, ‘We have to hire our people, serve our people, and train our people to do their job.’ At first, they said, ‘No way it’s going to be successful, but give it a try.’

“Well, my first theater in LA came in the top 10 highest-grossing theaters in the nation. In the nation. My per caps were off the charts because I understood how to over-deliver to our customers and to my community. It was important that I brought that knowledge to the partnership. We came together and we made a lot of money. I was okay with letting them be the chief sometimes, and then other times I would lead too.

“Building a partnership is very, very important because then you don’t have to put up all the money. I work well with partners. I want them to make money just like I want to make money. That’s why my partners are happy with me.”

Take People to The Deal

“I really wanted to bring a Starbucks to our community as a partner, but they weren’t interested. Finally, Howard Schultz said, ‘Okay let me come and see how you manage your business.’ So, he came down on a Friday night to visit my Magic AMC Theater. I’ll never forget it. Waiting to Exhale was coming out, and I had about 5,000 black women wrapped around the corner and Schultz said, ‘Wow. Okay, I see what you’re talking about.’ The lobby was alive. We went inside the theater, and about a half-hour into the movie, every black woman in there started talking to the screen and giving their advice to Whitney Houston. Howard Schultz pulled me aside and said, ‘I’ve never had a movie-going experience quite like this.’ And then told me I had a deal.

“Sometimes you have to take the people to the deal, to the community and let them see for themselves. The skeptics didn’t think Starbucks would work in African American neighborhoods, but I took the scones out of my Starbucks, and I put in sweet potato pie, sock-it-to-me cake, and peach cobbler—foods that resonate with the urban consumer. And then I took out that elevator music, and I added Smokey and Prince. It was a subtle change, but I know my customer base. We started with a test of three Starbuck stores and worked diligently to make these successful. The hard work paid off, we ended up building 125 Starbucks in more than 40 cities.”

Building Dream Teams

“Let me stress that you must remember to drive the best customer service that your customers have ever seen. That should be the number one goal. Also, make sure you manage your business well. That means keeping your business clean and making sure you have the right people working inside. The number one cause of a business failing is hiring family members, people without proper expertise who think they can come in at 11 or 12, instead of 9 because they know you. You can’t have that happening. You have to have people who understand how to be a professional, and also bring something to the table to help your business be successful. I hire smart people, ones that are smarter than me so I have to lean on them. But that’s what it’s all about. I hire the best and then make sure that they manage my business well.”

Reinvest in Your Business

“Always reinvest in your business. I didn’t take money out of Starbucks until we built store number 50. Why? I let the first one build the second, the second one build the third one, the third one build the fourth, and so on. When you do that, you’re building a big business, with scale. You’re putting yourself in a position to be bought or acquired. And this is really important. Always have an exit strategy.”

S.W.A.T.

“Always run a S.W.A.T. of your business: strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. I run a S.W.A.T. twice a year, of myself as the CEO and of my company, and it’s saved me a lot. It’s saved me because I’ve bought companies, but I didn’t have the right number of managers in place to make that business become successful. I ran the S.W.A.T. and figured out what I needed to do. Understand your strength, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.”

Confidence Follows Planning

“If you have a solid business plan and you’ve gone over it again and again, you should have confidence in yourself. We struggle when we’re not sure about our plan, or we’re not sure if there is a business there. Too often, we go into the same businesses that already exists. I always look at businesses for which there is high demand but not a lot of competition. You have to do the research before you start your company.

Be Still

“God tells us to be still because that’s when we’re going to receive our blessing. A lot of times we are running too fast. My greatest business ideas come to me when I’m still.”

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Dreamer All-Star Training Session #9: Esi Eggleston Bracey

  • Dreamer All-Star: Esi Eggleston Bracey
  • Dreamer Type: Careerpreneur Dreamer
  • Dreamer Title: EVP & COO North America Beauty and Personal Care, Unilever
Knowing When to Quit

“I’m someone who’s never quit anything in life, ever. I stick to stuff and just do it, do it, do it. I was at Procter and Gamble for 25 years. Following that stint, I was named President of Beauty and Design at Coty Cosmetics. I was in this major executive role, yet when I looked at my life, it was really out of control. I had a thriving job by some standards; I guess you could say I made it to the top. I had great responsibility and I had two kids.

“The year before I made the decision to leave, I traveled in frequent flyer miles equivalent of 400,000 miles. I went a whole month without seeing my children. My scope of responsibility was global, so one morning I’d wake up in Japan and another week I was in Brazil and then another week I was in China. I was living in Geneva and I was working in New York and traveling all over the world. One day I looked up, and I was stressed, I wasn’t sleeping. I realized that my life had gotten to a place that I didn’t really recognize it and I wasn’t living consistent with my values. I looked back and I wasn’t with my kids, I was stressed out at work…

“In December 2016, we had a family trip to Thailand. I went to get a massage. I was with an Ayurvedic doctor who convinced me to get this assessment, and this woman was like, ‘You are living all wrong. Your chakras, and your ‘this’ and your ‘that’ are off. Bottom line: you need to change.’ And that was the moment I made the decision to leave my position as President of Consumer Beauty at Coty.

“After returning from vacation, I went back to Switzerland with the intention to leave, and then I got scared. I said, ‘How am I going to let go of this good job? What’s everybody going to think? Everybody’s going to think I couldn’t cut it. that I failed.’

“So I went back to work completely stressed out. I ended up getting sick. I just kept getting sicker and sicker. I had a car accident, I walked home, walked into my apartment, and I was just crying — and I don’t ever cry. My husband said, ‘What’s wrong?’ I said, ‘My body just hurts. I don’t feel good. I’m so sick.’ I truly do feel that this was my body’s way of reacting to the resistance of me doing what I needed to do, which was leave. It was that week, the middle of January 2017, it was very clear to me that it was time. I was leaving.

“So I leave Coty, and I’m officially taking a sabbatical. I’m not sure what I’m going to do next, and then I start getting scared; I thought I need to go find a different job, but then I was like ‘No. I need a moment to just be with my family, find myself.’ I was afraid, because what was I going to do? Someone that’s been very, very do, going, going, going, my whole stinking life.”

A Different Kind of Race

“I didn’t know what to do, so when Central Park sent me that note saying I could sign up for the marathon, I thought ‘I can do this! I can be productive.’ Running the New York City marathon was originally something for me to do during my sabbatical, and of course it turned into something completely different, but it gave me the courage to just be bold and say, ‘I’m taking a sabbatical. I’m going to find me.’ And that’s what I did.”

How She Figured Out What To Do Next

“I started networking but not in the typical ways of networking. I had no idea what I wanted to do, so my networking actually was more interviewing people to figure out what they were doing, what they were up to, what was interesting. It wasn’t networking with an intention of meeting people to land a job, more to help decide what I wanted to do.

“So, I really took on that I didn’t know what I wanted to do. And I used a lot of inspiration to figure out what that was. I did a training curriculum and did a purpose workshop. That had me really reflect on my purpose. I also interviewed people and asked them who I was for them, not who I wanted to be, but I listened to people tell me who I was to them.

“I enjoyed my experience at Procter and Gamble, and the company is committed to having an impact on people, but I felt like my role was strongly focused on selling the product, not through any community impact program. So I ended up, through networking and discovering, being led to a company that was a platform to make an impact beyond counting up the money.

“Eventually I met an individual who recruited me into Unilever, and the first three times, I said no, but I got to know the people and the model and what they were committed to, which was way more than selling products, and it all made sense. And then with the acquisition of Shea Moisture with the New Voices Fund—an unprecedented fund of $100 million to invest in women of color entrepreneurs—plus the platform of Dove and bigger brands committed to making a difference, it was right for me. I joined the Unilever team as EVP & COO of North America Beauty and Personal Care. My purpose driven assignment was right there.”

The Power of Quiet

“When I was most fearful about leaving COTY, a meditation helped me through the stress, I would repeat this meditation over and over again: ‘Things are just as they are, feelings arise and pass away, all things are impermanent, and I am safe in this moment.’ Whenever I felt anxiety, I would say that and breathe, feelings arise and pass away. All things are impermanent. I am safe in this moment. No matter what I was doing, if I felt the stress come then I would say this meditation. It was just so helpful, and you know, it just helped keep me moving and it helped me to be brave and not be so worried.

“Too much time, we’re in think mode, and not in feel mode. And we block the path, and we get signs from the universe when our path is getting blocked. My advice is to listen. Listen to where you’re being called.”

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Dreamer All-Star Training Session #10: Lara Hodgson

  • Dreamer All-Star: Lara Hodgson
  • Dreamer Type: CEO Dreamer
  • Dreamer Title: Co-Founder and CEO, Now Accounts

Lara Hodgson is CEO and President of NOW Corp., a B2B payment company headquartered in Atlanta that enables small businesses to be paid immediately, using a system that in a way that feels like accepting a credit card. Their company Now Accounts immediately pays what the client owes the small business and later collects the money from the client. In exchange for gaining immediate access to account receivable dollars, the small business owner pays a fee.

Now Accounts services over 400 clients across the U.S. and has processed over $500 million in transactions. Previously Lara founded and served as Chief Executive Officer for Nourish, a children’s healthy food company. She earned a B.S. in Aerospace Engineering with highest honors from Georgia Tech and an MBA from Harvard.

Your Biggest Pain Might Lead to Your Purpose

“I started NOW Corp from my own pain. I’d had a series of businesses, and I discovered that as I started to grow and I took on larger and larger customers, they took longer and longer to pay. I remember thinking that I was doing everything right, but I felt like I was running on a treadmill and getting nowhere. I would deliver my goods or services, and I would send an invoice and I would wait and wait and wait. Meanwhile, I’d have to pay my employees and my vendors. I couldn’t sleep at night wondering if a check was going to come in the next day or if I was going to be able to make a payment. I was talking to one of my suppliers and he said, ‘Lara, everyone has that problem.’ As an engineer, my response to this statement was, ‘How do I get rid of it?’

“After struggling with this problem and eventually having to close my business, Nourish, I decided to create the answer: a business payment solution that allows small business owners to get paid now.”

Growing to Death

“Most of us assume that when a business goes under, it’s because the idea wasn’t good, the market wasn’t there, or the person who was running the business wasn’t doing a good job, but I actually don’t think that’s true. I think many businesses go out of business because they grow so fast, which means they do have a good product and the market is there. We had a client who went on Shark Tank, and he’d been selling 100,000 units of his product a month, and overnight it was a million a month. He wasn’t ready for that. His factory wasn’t ready for that. Nobody in his system was ready for that. So, the company was at risk of dying, not because it was doing anything wrong but because it was doing everything right. This reminds me of the saying, ‘He’s over his skis,’ which basically means your momentum is taking you so fast that you can’t deliver well to the client.

Beyond the Glass Ceiling

“In most environments that I’m in, I’m the only woman. It’s funny because a lot of women say, ‘I have to dress more like men. I have to act more like them to play the game.’ But, in reality, that’s the worst thing you could do. I wear a dress with a big ol’ necklace, and it’s colorful. Out of all of the people on that panel, a year later, which of us are you going to remember? You’re going to remember me, so I’d better take the opportunity to say something that’s a little bit edgy. When I’m on a panel, I always challenge what the men say. It’s not necessarily because I’m trying to pick a fight, but because I’m trying to get you to think.

“I’ve busted through many glass ceilings in my life, but I don’t know what they were because I refused to acknowledge that they were there.”

The Power of Giving Up

“I wanted to change children’s health with my company, Nourish. But, the company was dying because Whole Foods was taking four months to pay me. At this point, I had come up with the idea for NOW account, but I was still totally attached to Nourish.

One day, my business partner, Stacey finally said, ‘You know everybody else is dealing with the problem NOW account can solve. When are you going to give up Nourish and focus on NOW?’ I said, ‘You’re asking me to give up my child. Nourish is such a part of me. I can’t give up on it.’ And, the problem with this is I think most of us are taught at a young age the importance of resilience and never giving up. But I realized that holding on to Nourish was causing me to give up on NOW. It wasn’t until I let Nourish go that NOW account took off. I had to give up to move forward.”

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Dreamer All-Star Training Session #11: Tarana Burke

  • Dreamer All-Star: Tarana Burke
  • Dreamer Type: Activist Dreamer
  • Dreamer Title: Founder of the Me Too Movement

Tarana Burke is a civil rights activist and the founder of the “Me Too” movement, which she started in 2006. In 2017, her movement became a global phenomenon that has empowered countless women and men to speak out about sexual harassment, abuse, assault, and rape. To say that Tarana’s efforts have raised awareness would be an immense understatement. “Me Too” is now a household phrase.

Tarana is the epitome of an Activist Dreamer, and I was privileged to interview her about the world-changing movement that she initiated. I hope you enjoy these excerpts from that interview.

Why the Movement Began

“Me Too started out of necessity and seeing what was happening in the community I was in, which was Selma, Alabama. Being a sexual abuse survivor and being in a community where there was so little access to resources for people who have dealt with sexual violence—in particular for young people, and especially young black and brown girls in that community—it became a necessity to create something that would fill that gap.”

Focusing on the Purpose to Keep You Going

“Years prior, I had all of this energy around trying to make Me Too become essentially what it is now, but specifically for communities of color. I knew in order to reach young black girls, I definitely needed to reach out to people who were influential in that community who had also been impacted by sexual abuse. So, I wrote letters to Mary J. Blige, Queen Latifah, Gabrielle Union, and Fantasia, asking them if they would be ambassadors for the Me Too Movement.

“We didn’t get much traction on that because we were unknown and small. When I wrote down the vision for it, that vision included engaging with those people at some point. It didn’t happen right away, but it certainly didn’t stop us from moving forward. That’s really the whole point, right? We thought, we’ll create something that’s so good and so necessary that they’ll want to come to be a part of it.

Standing Up for Girls

“We first started to teach young people and give them language to talk about sexual violence so they could talk about the things that’ve happened to them and communicate with us what they were feeling and what they needed. We knew they needed resources. They needed to be able to communicate what happened in their own words. Many of them first needed to understand that something had happened and that what they had experienced wasn’t right.

“We started off very simply doing workshops that provided definitions, really literal definitions, of what these things meant and what these experiences meant. I was a survivor, and the person who was doing the workshops with me was also a survivor, so we talked about our personal journeys.”

A Great Idea Catches Fire

“All of a sudden adult women started reaching out to us saying, ‘Oh, God thank you for starting this. Thank you for doing this work. How can I get involved? Can you bring it to our community?’ We thought it was crazy that we didn’t even think that adult women survivors might need the same kind of space that we’re providing to the young women.

“That was the point when our work shifted from dealing with young people to dealing with adults. Our language changed and it became about providing resources for adult women who were reaching out to us. Eventually, we had men who said they were also survivors and needed resources. It kept growing from there.”

Fighting Self Talk

“Self-talk is dangerous because we have these negative tapes in our mind, and we take them as facts when the reality is they’re just feelings. One of my favorite saying is ‘feelings aren’t facts.’ The truth is, it’s hard to convince yourself that you can do something when it looks like so many other people are already doing it and doing it better. This is foolish. What if it doesn’t work? There are all these reasons that people have to talk themselves out of doing something.

“You have to really work on dealing with the negative self-doubt that says that you can’t obtain your dreams. You have to work on it like a job. You have to actively tell yourself every day, ‘This is not true.’

“When you have something that’s your life’s work, you can’t keep away from it. That’s what happened to me. I put this down at some point because I didn’t have the money, and we weren’t getting funding for it. I was just frustrated because people didn’t really want to engage about it. But no matter how many times I would put it down, people would come into my life, or situations brought me back to it. I had to eventually just pay attention to that. I realized I might as well get comfortable because it’s definitely not going anywhere.”

The Guts to Relive Trauma Every Day

“If you’re going to do this work and also be a survivor, you have to be prepared for a life that keeps you in constant contact with your trauma. That means you have to have a self-care plan that is tight, and a circle of people who really care for you. You have to have a structure set up to make sure you’re okay in the midst of taking care of other people. That was a challenge at first because, no matter how much work you do, you’re never prepared to have to continue to tap into the worst parts of yourself or the parts of yourself that are the hardest to face. But it’s absolutely necessary for the work.”

The Spirit of The Activist

“Unless you’re looking for fame or looking to be a huge platform out of the gate, there’s absolutely nothing hindering anybody who’s passionate about doing this from doing it. Whether you’re doing it in a small community, on your college campus, in your church, wherever it is that you decide to do the work, people who do this work, do it because they are completely compelled.

“I think that you don’t need motivation for that. Try different things. Volunteer at different places. Take classes or just get involved in stuff that draws your interest, until something’s fun, and stay there. If you need constant motivation to stay doing this work, this may not be the work for you. It should get you up out of bed in the morning. It should be what you’re fretting over before you go to sleep at night.

“Some people want to do good in the world. You might be a dentist who donates some of the money to great causes, but you don’t actually do that work and that’s okay. Not everybody has to be on the frontline, or even in the back. Just go out and do it.”

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