Care, Awesomeness, and the World Domination Summit


Do you want a life full of awesome? Do you care about community, adventure and service? July 5-7, 2013 I joined almost 3, 000 citizens from across the globe who, like me, care deeply about these values that the incomparable Chris Guillebeau has made central to his life project. I strongly encourage you to travel to The Art of Non-Conformity to learn more about how Chris and others are leading by example and living remarkable lives full of care and awesome.

At the World Domination Summit 2013 I saw my own passion for social justice and building more caring communities through meaningful connections “converge” with the dreams, goals, ventures and journeys of a multitude of amazing people. In our unique ways we all accept a spirit of adventure, are committed to service, and honour (honor for my American friends) community. I recommend you visit Chris’ partial re-cap of #WDS2013 to read excellent posts reviewing the incredible speakers and highlighting attendee “take-aways.”

The most important lesson for me came from Gretchen Rubin. She shared that she was giving herself permission to Be Gretchen. This had – in the words of Nancy Duarte – resonance for me. Of course, this means Being Joanne (not Gretchen) or others I admire like WDS Alumni Speaker Brené Brown or Sir Ken Robinson. This means listening to the stories of wonderful people such as Danielle la Porte and Jia Jiang (to name only two speakers who impacted me personally). This means accepting our shared humanity. It is also about appreciating not only their gifts and talents but valuing my own. I am giving myself permission to be what Darren Rowse would call multi-passioned.

In The $100 Startup Chris Guillebeau provides the sociological graphic below to illustrate a powerful concept – convergence. That life sweet spot where the things YOU care about or those YOU care for (passions) meet that which OTHERS care about and for.


I tell my students that “It is everywhere, so you can start anywhere.” Usually I am referring to a social problem or an issue that concerns a marginalized group. Whatever IT is for you – see it, find it, take it on. Never forget that we need not go it alone. I am grateful for my partnership with Bryan Hogeveen, who supports me and encourages me every day.

While I enjoyed listening to speakers and taking in the official workshops at WDS, I am taking away with me meaningful connections. I got more than Twitter handles or tweetables. I walked away thinking that I had found my tribe. My head knew it. More importantly, I felt it while dancing to 80s music in a courtyard at the end of the weekend with Lori-Ann Claerhout and Gemma Stone and Kate Northrup and Catherine Just and hugging the awesome Rita Chand (be sure to read her re-cap). My heart knows it too.

When your passions meet what other people care about the very best of – and for humanity can thrive.

With care,


Practicing Care

I am on a journey to get my head – and heart – around a fundamental part of our humanity – taking care of ourselves and one another. Einstein once said, “If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.” Studying care, alongside parenting three children, is giving me my own course in humanity! I look forward to charting my work and the lessons I learn. Care is a practice. Valuing care is central to handling our most pressing political and personal concerns. Next time someone says, “Take Care” reflect: What do we mean by care? Why should we care? Is it in us to care for each other? How do we come to take and make care?


What would it mean if we truly handled each other with care?