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She's Different: Sweet Dreams

The #ShesDifferent™ blog series started as a way to celebrate Women’s History Month and the amazing things that happen when women are true to themselves, unashamedly embrace their gifts, and celebrate their unique purpose and life. Throughout the series, I spotlighted great women who have had a monumental impact on me and countless others. However, this series and the website refresh have actually been in the works since last fall, all inspired by a conversation with my maternal grandmother.

What began as a blog series has blossomed and evolved into so much more. The #ShesDifferent blog posts allowed me to spark meaningful and deep exchanges with women from varying backgrounds, generations and professions about the importance of leaning in, embracing one’s purpose and power, and unashamedly owning the unique characteristics that make us brilliantly different! I learned several lessons from the blogs about my grandmother, great grandmother, mama and best friend. Perhaps the most profound microlearning came from reflecting on the series and how life experiences have uniquely positioned and equipped me to live my purpose and guide others to do the same. In essence, this series helped me to appreciate everything that makes me distinctively different.

“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams” - Unknown

In 1983, one of my favorite music duos of all time – Annie Lennox and David A. Stewart of the Eurythmics – released the brilliant track “Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This).” In her 2001 biography titled Annie Lennox: The Biography, Lennox shed more light on the meaning of “Sweet Dreams.” According to her, the lyrics focus on humankind’s quest to find fulfillment in life. And in doing so, mankind is motivated by their “sweet dreams.”

On the first listen, I was immediately drawn to the song’s uptempo beat, unusual sound and an encouraging message to stay optimistic and not give up on accomplishing your goals. The song became my daily mantra and the campaign theme when I ran for 7th-grade student council representative. Yes, I had sweet dreams of serving in a leadership role. What excited me more were the dreams and visions I had about communication methods to ensure my classmates' voices were heard and ideas to advance school spirit.

The desire to overcome obstacles as I pursue and achieve my sweet dreams and guide, motivate and inspire others to actively pursue theirs, has been what fuels my passion for life from the halls of grade school to C-suite boardrooms.

“Hold your head up, keep your head up, movin' on…” - Eurythmics

As I mentioned earlier, this blog series and website refresh were inspired by a conversation with my maternal grandmother. Our conversation and her transition inspired a new strategic vision and mantra for me in 2022. That vision included completing the Diversity and Inclusion certificate requirements for eCornell University’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations, as well as developing new content, speaking themes, a She’s Different workshop series and more strategic visioning workshops geared at connecting individuals and organizations to their purpose while applying continuous improvement methodologies to actuate diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility strategies.

I’m embracing everything that makes On To The Next One different as I motivate and guide others to hold their heads up and keep movin’ on!

Call to Action: If you would like to be kept in the loop about all the Sweet Dreams that are made of strategic visioning, please leave a note in the comments of this post. Also, your input is welcome for the upcoming She’s Different workshop series. Please CLICK HERE to respond to a brief survey.

Thank you for being on this journey with me. Let’s keep moving #OnToTheNextOne!

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