In the wake of the devastating school shootings in Connecticut, which fill me with unspeakable grief for the loss, and awe for the selflessness and bravery witnessed, I’ve taken pause. And a number of deep breaths.
Today, it’s raining. It’s as though Nature knows her tears will help our grief. My soul is grateful for the help. I have my own first grader tucked safely into his classroom each weekday morning with wonderful, loving teachers. Each morning, I kiss him and tell him I love him as I send him inside the door, knowing the most important lessons he will glean are not from academics, but from creating meaningful friendships and learning in relationship with others.
That’s why, as a feminine business leader, I have chosen to “do nothing” these past days. No selling, no shameless self promotions, no capitalizing on a tragedy as opportunity. I have not re-written my email sales letters to include a paragraph about the shootings. I have not made the deaths of children and teachers a call to action so subscribers will sign up for my programs. I have not blasted my supporters with sales oriented social media posts. My heart is leading me to look for meaning, to respect my relationships, and to hold space for the collective.
As a result, I have quite mindfully chosen to do nothing.
Yes, I took the private actions needed to remember. I lit a candle in honor of those affected. I prayed. I gathered my beloveds close. I honored my own grief at the senselessness of violence against all beings, but yes, especially children. I looked for my own humanity. I searched my heart. I looked for the love in it all, and found it, and hugged it close.
The greatest of all these is love.
In the public sphere, I find the insistent selling of “conscious” entrepreneurs in the face of deep tragedy appalling and offensive. When coaches send perky sales letters inviting me to become a better version of myself in the middle of the aftermath, my skin crawls. As hours pass, and the story unfolds, I watch those who try to exploit the tragedy, to create personal gain out of others’ losses. I pay attention to the ones whose auto-responders keep cranking out impersonal “relationship building” content as though ignorant that the world has changed around them, that suddenly what they want “for me” no longer has meaning or relevance. These models of professional behavior are not those I aspire to, and my trust – like our collective innocence – is lost and will not be regained.
So today, Sunday, I quietly and with discernment begin my own unsubscribe campaign across platforms. There’s a better way, and it’s grounded in respect, ethical choices, genuine care for others. If it’s not present in the world, then as a feminine leader, I commit to do my part to create a new way of working.
So be it.