I finally got around to watching the Mr. Rogers documentary Won’t You Be My Neighbor.
I knew I’d be inspired, and I was.
What I wasn’t expecting was to learn that the late Mr. Rogers was (and still is?) a wildly controversial figure.
I knew he was a quiet warrior for racial justice and that his real talk with kids about emotions, feelings, death, divorce and other hard topics set him apart from, well, everyone else.
But did you know that his simple philosophy that every person has inherent worth and value—that everyone is special—is frowned upon and even attacked. One channel I won’t give the respect of a mention called him an “evil, evil man” responsible for creating entitled children and adults.
Apparently not everyone believes that every being has something to offer the whole. The thinking is that we have to earn our worthiness, our respect, our value.
I’m kind of trying to wrap my brain around that one, although I disagree so completely that I won’t give it too much energy.
In my ideal world, everyone is activated and engaged, working to fulfill their potential. I know that may seem like a ridiculous notion and that we’re far from that world, but we have to aim for something before we hit it, right?
This aim is one of the things I treasure most about coworking.
Coworking spaces tend to be full of people doing meaningful work, pushing themselves to learn and grow a business or career, to create a life of their own design.
And coworking space members tend to be activated, engaged and working to fulfill their potential.
Just like my ideal world.
Don’t worry, I’m not napping under a magic mushroom. I know that real life happens inside coworking spaces too. I mean, let’s just cry it out for a minute about some of the BS you have to handle in your space. I know running a space is physically hard, mentally taxing and emotionally intensive work.
I’ve also seen coworking magic play out enough times to know that coworking is something special in this world—something with the power to transform lives.
You’ve experienced the coworking magic too.
Those spontaneous connections, those sparked conversations, the collective buzz of a Monday morning and the relaxed vibe of a Friday afternoon. You’ve seen people grow into their business and themselves. You’ve watched the new member slowly become part of the community. You’ve held space for people to do their best work and build their best lives—to strive toward their potential.
As Mr. Rogers said, “As human beings, our job in life is to help people realize how rare and valuable each one of us really is, that each of us has something that no one else has—or ever will have—something inside that is unique to all time. It’s our job to encourage each other to discover that uniqueness and to provide ways of developing its expression.”
Sounds a lot like coworking, doesn’t it?
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