Episode 311 of the “Bigger Pockets Money” podcast struck me. This episode detailed a young man’s story and the major change in his life that caused him to go from working 4 jobs (barely) surviving and living paycheck to paycheck, to his newfound a life where he could save 80% of his income working a job he loved and succeeded in. He shared his process of learning how to go from only giving his life “attention” towards whatever immediate crisis demanded his focus, to giving his life “intention” directly fuelling his future life.
If we approach diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) work using an “attention” lens, it results in inefficient processes of responding immediately to urgent crises that are bound to happen daily, with no actual plan for genuine hope and healing. For example, the NY Times reported a NYC park swing as the source of the most park lawsuits filed from New York City residents across all neighborhood parks, as it injured many people. It was only until a city planner who focused on organizational effectiveness looked at the problem through a new lens. The previous city planner did not want to dedicate resources to providing that neighborhood with a new park. The new city planner looked at the costs of the lawsuits and quickly saw a straightforward decision to upgrade and install this neighborhood park with a playground that would be safe for residents.
This city planner found a solution through the lens of “intention”. I would imagine that these are kinds of conversations that came to her mind:
- What would be an ideal long-term solution? Okay, let’s start that today.
- What would I do if I lived in this neighborhood and had this same job? I would make a decision that would prioritize the safety of my children, so why not make the city safe for others?
- How would I want NYC children to experience playground life moving forward?
What is your intention carrying out DEI work?
Can you see the end from the beginning?
If you don’t have a clear picture on the life you want to create for yourself, your ecosphere, and your community…
What is your ideal long-term solution? This is a clear-cut question you can apply to your toughest decisions.
Lucky for you, you can begin living out this decision today.