As I reflect on my learning journey to date, the word or phrase that immediately comes to mind is “intentionality”. There is so much work to do and so many people, projects and things that require my time and attention right now and this fellowship reminds me time and time again to be intentional with how I approach the work and the multiple demands on my time.
I am working to build a legacy. I am working to build something that is radically different from what’s been done before. This requires intentionality every single step of the way. I’ve had to find intentionality in my path, the direction I’m headed so that it can guide my day-to-day decision making. I’ve had to intentionally focus in on my mental and physical health so that I can be healthy enough to do the work in a sustainable way. So I can absorb, brainstorm, and think about the next phase of my work.
I am busy! And with that I find that I end up jumping from one email to the next, from one zoom meeting to another leaving my brain spinning, my eyes squinted and my body tense. Intentionality means I release the tight gaze, loosen strained and tight muscles, and engage in deep breathing. By doing so, I create space to let the creativity and the big ideas in. I create the time to think differently, bigger, better, and bolder.
I find that I crave more of that intentional time, and I will spend the next few months working to even more deeply embed it through my days and weeks finding the little moments between face time on a screen where I can intentionally engage in creative thinking, where I can day dream and jot down a big scary idea in my journal to return to later.
I am working to find a sustainable pace, one that feels good, that I can maintain where my energy isn’t limited and my capacity to dream isn’t stifled by sleep deprivation and other responsibilities weighing it down. Where I can intentionally focus on the abundance of resources that sit in front of me and put them together in ways no one has ever thought of before to leverage change and manifest racial justice.
I’ve learned a lot about myself in the past few month—about what motivates me internally and externally. The intentionality in which I’ve engaged in this process of self-discovery has helped me to be a better leader to my team/staff but also to reflect and strategize on how to sustain myself mentally and physically for the long game and for that I am grateful.