I say it all the time because it’s true: coworking has nothing to do with desks and wifi.
If all you need is a place to sit and get online, you can go to any library, coffee shop or one of a growing number of banks and stores that are creating “lounges.”
If my job was to write about desks and wifi, I would not be working in this industry.
But I get to write about community, and connection, and dismantling the loneliness epidemic, and workplace wellness, and friendship.
I do this work because coworking changed my life.
I imagine you can relate.
Long before coworking was a hot topic in real estate circles, it was a movement transforming lives, one person at a time.
Dr. King and the Dream
Today we’re honoring and celebrating Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
My social media feeds are full of inspiring MLK quotes and images, and later I’ll watch the “I Have a Dream” speech in its entirety, as we do every year in my family.
If you’ve never watched or read the whole speech, I highly recommend it. It is some next-level stuff.
SideNote: Did you know the planned version of the speech didn’t include mention of MLK’s dream? Gospel great Mahalia Jackson hollered from the side, “Tell them about the dream, Martin,” and Dr. King improvised what is one of the greatest speeches ever made.
History in the making.
It gives me chills.
The Beloved Community
Dr. King talked a lot about nonviolence, and justice, and love for one another.
He also talked about what he called a Beloved Community.
The King Center website explains:
“In the Beloved Community, poverty, hunger and homelessness will not be tolerated because international standards of human decency will not allow it. Racism and all forms of discrimination, bigotry and prejudice will be replaced by an all-inclusive spirit of sisterhood and brotherhood.”
Community and Coworking
This all-inclusive spirit of sisterhood and brotherhood can be found in coworking.
At least it can be found in the best parts of coworking.
As a global community, we’re not where we need to be yet—we have work to do around diversity and inclusion in coworking. But the foundational elements of community, mutual-support, self-determination and authentic connection are found throughout this movement.
I’m moved every day by the generosity, kindness and willingness to help that I find in coworking—both my home space and around the world.
To celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day, I rounded up some of his most inspiring quotes about community and connection. These quotes are not as well-known as some of his others, but they speak to our humanness and to the heart of coworking. They hold a vision for a better world that is created one connection at a time.
1. “Our ultimate end must be the creation of the Beloved Community.”
2. “People fail to get along because they fear each other; they fear each other because they don’t know each other; they don’t know each other because they have not communicated with each other.”
3. “[Nonviolence] is a method that seeks to transform and to redeem, and win the friendship of the opponent, and make it possible for men to live together as brothers in a community, and not continually live with bitterness and friction.”
4. “It is this type of understanding goodwill that will transform the deep gloom of the old age into the exuberant gladness of the new age. It is this love which will bring about miracles in the hearts of men.”
5. “Darkness cannot drive out darkness: Only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: Only love can do that.”
6. “We must come to see that the end we seek is a society at peace with itself, a society that can live with its conscience.”
7. “Those who are not looking for happiness are the most likely to find it, because those who are searching forget that the surest way to be happy is to seek happiness for others.”
8. “The type of love that I stress here is not eros, a sort of esthetic or romantic love; not philia, a sort of reciprocal love between personal friends; but it is agape which is understanding goodwill for all men. It is an overflowing love which seeks nothing in return.”
9. “There is some good in the worst of us and some evil in the best of us. When we discover this, we are less prone to hate our enemies.”
Coworking space operators: Learn to create better content in the new Coworking Content Lab.