Action was a key theme of this year’s Festival of Doers. Among the great speakers, Danusia Malina-Derben spoke powerfully about taking action "No Matter What". And thanks to a similarly inspiring call to action which she gave at last year's Voice At The Table conference, I found the courage to ask Miisa whether I could lead a new DrivenWoman group in Wimbledon. Thankfully, Miisa agreed, and our first introduction was held on 8 February, setting us up nicely for 2017. Here's why I was keen to set up that Wimbledon group.
I believe that nothing changes until you choose to make changes yourself.
Equally, I know from my own experience and that of my clients that taking real and consistent action towards a goal can be hard. For example, I know that I am more inclined to reflection than action and now that I'm self employed, I need more than ever to have a band of people around me who help to keep me moving forward. DrivenWoman is very much a part of that band.
'Think global, act local'.
The world is an amazing place, but can also seem filled with problems over which we have no control. Our ability to influence or respond to any of those challenges - if we choose to - starts with the action we take ourselves and with those around us. I hope that the Wimbledon DrivenWoman group will be as supportive and encouraging as I've found the other groups to be, enabling women to 'be the change they wish to see in the world'.
DrivenWoman brings together a rich group of women.
I believe that our diversity is a key part of our strength. Every time I meet a group of driven women, I am struck by the wonderful variety of experiences and characters, backgrounds and dreams they have. Exploring with them what's been going on in their lives and where they're going next helps me to learn and improve too.
It's important to have a space where we can let our guard down and ask for help.
For much of our lives, we must put on the happy face and get on with it. As an optimist and a pragmatist, that's a place I'm generally entirely comfortable with. Even so, moving forward is not always easy and we cannot learn from our mistakes if we don't have anywhere we can admit to them, talk them through and enlist others to help us improve.
I’m taking action and have chosen to set up the DrivenWoman community in Wimbledon and South West London because I want to help local women take their own action to achieve their dreams. Having lived in the area for 25 years, I know there are very many inspired and inspiring local women and I look forward to meeting even more of them through DrivenWoman.
Katie Driver is a DrivenWoman Group Leader in South West London and founder of Thinking Allicance.