Lean In and Hurricane Dorian
I’m going to get right to the point. If your place of work has Lean In circles, you need to join, if they don’t you need to get one started. Go to Leanin.org and find out how you can connect to achieve your ambitions and work to create an equal world.
Now, I’ll explain. A few weeks ago, I had the amazing opportunity to speak to and meet with Lean In leaders from around the world. I was moved by their brilliance, dedication and compassion. What moved me most, was their ability to share their whole selves. These were not women just looking for ways to find mentors, sponsors and a promotion. They brought their whole selves to their groups so that their whole self could be better for work and life.
The Lean In folks shared the success of work, family and their communities. They were busy active leaders who felt engaged in every aspect of life, but they weren’t just trying to do more, they wanted to be more for themselves and the people they love.
So now, let me tell you the real reason I got up this morning to write. I live just outside of Savannah, Georgia, right on the coast. Late Sunday evening, we got the word that there would be a mandatory hurricane evacuation because Dorian would be heading our way.
I had been preparing for the eventuality but I had also been praying that Dorian would turn around and go back out to sea. Still, I believe that we should not just pray, but also act. I have a huge family and family connections. We have dogs and babies, elders and disabilities, so when the governor said “Get ta getting,” we got ta packing.
I posted that we were under evacuation and requested prayer. I got loads of response, but from my new Lean In sisters, I got the essence of what that connection is about.
Immediately after I posted, my messenger began to ring. New Lean In connections from around the world shared inspiration and information. They told me what to do, pack and prepare. We’d evacuated previously for Matthew and Irma, so I knew how to leave but I didn’t really know how to prepare for the possibility of having nothing to come back to.
I got a message from a Lean In sister who had to be boat lifted from a hurricane. She knew what I would need if everything was destroyed. This was much more than the “grab your important papers,” this was information that I really could use. I heard from other Lean In sisters with information for now and for later. All of them said that I should not hesitate to reach out for assistance whenever I needed it.
What I have come to see more clearly is that Lean In is a network of shared information, stories and experiences. People who have been through what I am going through are on the ready to help me through it. I have lived this way on a much smaller level, but here it was being given back to me large scale.
Hurricane Dorian is moving slower than molasses and we have no idea what may happen, but I know this; I am not alone. I am connected to the world through people who are ready to share what they have learned. We all need to Lean in.
Be You, Be Well, Lean In
Bertice Berry, PhD