Unity In Diversity

America celebrates inclusion. Actually, dissatisfied citizens around the world watched the evidence of unity in diversity in America and join the celebrants in America. Millions of disenfranchised, oppressed or marginalized people, especially women, worldwide who long for a different world of inclusion see the possibility.

Unity in diversity embodies more than skin color; it is a pledge of the acceptance of human dignity. The idea of unity that includes the diversity of humankind, progressive thought and equal opportunity signals inclusion. It recognizes the deepest human longing – fairness.

Goodwill unifies. Equality unifies. Fairness unifies. People in every hamlet, village, town, reservation, or country in the world cry out for fairness. Goodwill does not bend to politics. Goodwill opens the mind to inclusion rather than exclusion because of gender, race, geography or economic status.

Mankind is one. Aung San Suu Kyi of Myanmar, sacrificed much to free the people in her country.  Nelson Mandela sacrificed for the freedom of his people in South Africa. Shirin Ebadi of Iran sacrifices for justice in her land. President Obama in the United States of America, another Nobel laureate, believes “We will rise and fall as one nation, and as one people.” These Nobel peace prize laureates and many, many others struggle for fairness for all mankind across the world.

Women deserve dignity. The struggle for dignity extends to a former girl prostitute in India who was forced to sell her body. Sakena Yacoobi in Afghanistan fights to educate girls to fix the country’s severe gender imbalances. Layli Miller-Muro in the United States who protects immigrant women and girls fleeing the violence of genital mutilation champions dignity.   These conjoined problems of sex trafficking, gender-based violence, and maternal mortality all over the world depend on restoring women’s dignity.  Read Half the Sky

Unity in diversity is vital to the equality, dignity, goodwill and protection of all people.

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Getting to NO

NO.

One word, two letters often stop the faint minded right where they are and they give up often never to try again. What makes this scenario so damaging is that those around them hear the story over and over again as they repetitively re-play their NO and what happened and how unfair it was like a iPod stuck on repeat.  That one red letter word, no, becomes the rationalized excuse over a lifetime for not getting to yes.  Enough already-move on.

“You’ll never see the great things ahead of you if you keep looking at the bad things behind you.” ~Alvin

The achiever takes a completely different approach, they move.  Achievers get busy creating new pathways or finding other solutions.  The accomplishment-minded accept the NO as information to learn what else is possible. Achievers don’t give up after the first n0, after the second no nor after the fifth no. Real firm minded achievers work hard to get a yes and they often don’t stop until they get it.

Einstein heard no. Edison heard no over and over again. John Barry and Norm Larsen heard no thirty nine (39) times before they perfected WD40 (thus the name). Janet Harmon Bragg heard no nearly everyday but became the first African-American female pilot anyway. It takes stubborn tenacity, firm conviction, and oftentimes creative maneuvering to reach a goal.

It is likely that you will hear the word “no” more than the word “yes” in your lifetime. Researchers cite  studies validating that no is usually the first word a baby learns and speaks. What’s up with that?

No is a word, so what; celebrate getting to no. Instead of lingering in doubt or accepting no as a defeat – take getting a no and begin fresh with powered energy to a yes.  Build your determination to turn an obstacle into an opportunity. “Obstacles are only opportunities to succeed or fail; how we handle them determines what will happen.” ~ James Caan

Opportunities require work, but they are omnipresent. You can tap an opportunity anytime and almost anywhere it just depends on how deep is your thirst for success.  Each day opens with opportunity, never forget that. What the majority of people do is settle in and take their mind and eyes off focus, so opportunities pass right by. Others are not determined enough, not hungry enough to find a different solution. The noise of “no” is so programmed in the social conversation that you may just accept no as par for the course, don’t!

What if Jessica Jackley and Matt Flannery (the founders of Kiva) had given up when naysayers told them their idea was unreasonable and spoke the dreaded word NO? What if Aung San Suu Kyi had succumbed after one day of house arrest in Burma? What if Jay-Z and Russell Simmons or Josh Stone or Adele stopped recording or never made it to a recording studio because someone told them “NO?

What if you are told “no” today or tomorrow? Will you stop, will you give up your dream, will you throw away your goal? You had better not! Ask yourself, what would the world miss if I failed to get to yes?

“You need to overcome the tug of people against you as you reach for high goals.” ~ George Patton

Expect getting to no. Plan for getting a no and immediately go into Kennedy Space Center rocket launch motion and begin your blast off into the vista of “yes.”

No means yes to the achiever-get to yes!