Hello My Name is Michelle and I Identify As She

Hello my name is Michelle and I identify as she.

What do you identify as?

I was incredibly lucky to spend the afternoon learning about principles for inclusion with Kim Katrin Milan. I learned much about cultural, race, gender, sexual, LGBTQ and transgender inclusion. I am positive we only scratched the surface in this session. It was enlightening, insightful and definitely one of the best trainings I have had the opportunity to attend in the last few years.

If your organization is not offering you diversity and inclusion training beyond what is written in a policies and procedures manual, please question why and ask for this kind of workshop. Toronto is the most diverse city in the world and we are going to run into many different cultural norms. Ask questions and create an opening for conversation. Part of the way we treat people how they want to be treated is to simply ask.

Pat Mackey: Living with a terminal cancer diagnosis

“Somehow or other you need to get yourself in a headspace of living in the moment cause it is the only place to be when you have a terminal illness. Living in the moment is the only place to be as that is where all the good things reside. Your friends, your family, your love, your humour, things you like to do and that is the key.” ~ Pat Mackey

Very wise words from a beautiful woman who shared her beautiful spirit with so many including me.

Today marks the beginning of The Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association 2018 Hospice Palliative Care Week. It seemed like a fitting time to share Pat’s story.

I was very blessed to have met Pat when through my volunteer work. Despite the return of her cancer, she continued to give back to the North York General’s patient- and family-centred care initiatives. Pat also decided to share her own story about the return of her cancer, the important role of palliative care all while volunteering for the hospital and committing to enjoying every day. Sadly we lost Pat in 2014 but her legacy lives on through an award created by her family as well as the video she created during the final year of her life: Pat Mackey: Living with a terminal cancer diagnosis.

Pat’s wish was that by sharing her experience, patients and families will know that “palliative care is about finding energy and joy in your day, not focusing on the illness.” Please take the time to watch Pat’s video and share it with others.

Pat was an amazing and inspirational lady. She makes one think about what they want their legacy in this world to be. I am so lucky to have met her and will remember her forever. She was truly making a world of difference.

What will your work legacy be?

Legacy

“Something that is a part of your history or that remains from an earlier time.” – Cambridge Dictionary

When we speak about a legacy, it is often in the context of when someone has passed away. One may hear “George was an amazing husband, father and family man.” or “Andrea was so selfless to the needs of others and gave so much back to her community.” Not only do we leave a legacy when we leave this earth but also in the workplaces we inhabit during our lifetime. Whether one has spent their entire career in one organization or moved around from place to place, everyone of us has a work legacy we leave behind.

Will people miss you or will they be happy you are on your way out the door? Will you be known as a brilliant business person, a deal maker, a teacher and facilitator, a backstabber, a hard-worker, bully, one of the mean girls or guys, a manipulator or micro-manager, coach, confidant, collaborator, someone who includes other, who is inclusive, makes people feel at home, a team player, a peacemaker or relationship builder.

No matter what ones role in an organization is, we all leave it with a legacy – positive, negative or indifferent. If you left today, what would your legacy be? Is this something you would be proud of? If not, what are you doing to change it?

Remember YOU and your actions have the power to decide what legacy you will leave others with. What do you think your legacy will be? What do you hope it will be?