You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘Community’ tag.

It’s been awhile since I’ve posted. I’ve had a case of writers block and never was inspired to write anything but after a very lengthy conversation the other night, I think I found exactly what I was looking for.

When I’m in the mood (which is usually), I go out to an open mic night at one of the local bars. Being a musician I tend to look for opportunities to express my artistic side. This open mic has a featured artist which gets a little more time to perform. That night, one of  my friends I haven’t seen in awhile was the feature so went up there to see and support her. Usually when you go to open mics, it’s a crap shoot of talent who’s there. That particular night, everyone was amazing! Everyone was super talented on the level of the feature and it was one of those nights where I wish every night could be like that. One particular person who came through was an activist and spoken word poet who called himself Jus Rhyme. Jus Rhyme was on a tour he called the Segregated City Tour, visiting the most segregated cities in the country (unfortunately, Detroit certainly holds one of those titles) bringing awareness to the issue. I was very intrigued by his tour as he came from Los Angeles. After I performed my set, he enjoyed hearing my saxophone playing so much he asked me to perform with him during his set in the open mic and I gladly accepted. I totally loved the energy he brought during his performance.

After the performance, I talked to Jus Rhyme about his home and found out he was heavily involved in the Occupy Movement in LA and Oakland. He then asked me if he we could talk about it more and exchange my ideas on camera for his tour and I gladly accepted. We talked about many things from the occupy movement to money, success, spirituality, social issues, etc. While those recorded conversations were amazing, it was the conversation afterward, not recorded, that inspired this blog. We got into a conversation about his tour and touring with him and I mentioned to him I feel there’s too much pointless competition in the music world. “Co-operative Economics,” he said to me. “You are not my competition, you are my co-operation.” That was a profound statement to me because I’ve believed that for a long time now. He mentioned he has a hard time getting his regular band to tour with him because they don’t understand that. When he mentioned that, I started to think about how that showed up in other areas like in business and this one was easy… Gary Vaynerchuk! His whole business approach is that exact thing with the “Thank You Economy.” People think that he can do that because he has money but that’s why he has money. He learned (early) that it’s not just about listening to your customers but also caring about them. By doing that, you actually create a community that interacts with you (and each other) getting them involved. This allows you to go the extra mile and do things for them like sending them signed jerseys from their favorite football players and other acts that help to create repeat business. It was one of the most profound conversations Jus Rhyme and I had that night and we had some good ones. Naturally, I stayed in contact with him through facebook and twitter.

Outlook For The New Year

I sat on this post for a few weeks because I wasn’t quite sure how to transition through this story but with the new year comes new energy and new inspiration. The thought of co-operative economics has been running through my head for weeks now and I thought about how we can implement it into our lives. As I thought about it, I realized the solutions are actually quite simple. “How simple,” you say? Well, read on…


What goes through your head everyday? While you can’t monitor every thought every second of the day, the general repeating thoughts are the ones that you need to be concerned about. This means that the first thing that needs to change to bring about a change is changing you. Thoughts are a very good place to start. There was a pattern that many successful people and spiritual teachers talk about. Thoughts become beliefs which become actions which determine your results which create your habits (I may have switched two of them around but you get the point). You can chart it like this: Thoughts->Beliefs->Actions->Results->Habits. This means that everything that’s in your life has been created by YOU. In essence, you are responsible for everything that has come in your life at this moment. If you want that to change, you have to make a conscious effort to do so. We have to leave things like blame behind and start taking responsibility for our own lives. In the movie Thrive, Deepak Chopra says that if we want to have a different experience we have to start telling a different story to ourselves and to other people. Your thoughts are a good place to start. Just to throw this out there; Since it’s the new year, everyone loves to talk about the dreaded new year’s resolutions. I quit making resolutions years ago because if something is that important in life. I have to address it right away, not wait until January to attempt to change it. That’s a good example of what I’m talking about.


This one requires much more action. Our communities have to be in a state of communication before we can co-create together. A general thought is, “I can’t just go around to the average person in my community and ask them to change,” and that’s true. This is where you need to seek out like-minded people. There are tons of people who want to create a co-operative community within everything but you have to find them. One of the ways I’ve found those people is through networking events. There are only a handful I go to because of what they believe in and I support that mission. Just remember that whenever and wherever you go to meet and network that you take the time to learn about people. Take time to learn about them, their community, background, beliefs and other areas of their lives. You may find you have the same things in common. Accept and respect everything about that person and what they share. Don’t focus on the negatives. While you may not necessarily like everything about them, you have to respect it. This is the only way you can create a bond with them. Only then can you start coming up with solutions and executing them. Another place you can connect with great minds is at an Ignite! or a TEDx event. Those events are all about what’s happening in your community right now and how you can get involved. Community is a big one for me because I feel with the state of the world, this is desperately needed at this point in time. I could definitely go into more but I’ll leave this for later.

I could write more but I want to open this up for discussion. I really want people to contribute to this and help create the world they want to live in. We can no longer rely on institutions to give us the world we want. It’s up to us. I know what everyone is saying about 2012 but it doesn’t have to be the age of Armageddon.  It can be an age of golden harmony. As Foster Gamble said in the movie Thrive, we have what it takes to thrive. Let’s make it happen!

How can you contribute to a co-0perative economic system? What issues need to be solved and actions taken to help create our world? Please share your thoughts!


I just came back from Ignite Detroit and I’m super excited and pumped up. The event was absolutely amazing and very energetic. Why?

Well to give you a little background, Ignite is a speaking forum event that began in Seattle and has slowly made it’s way around the country. It features various speakers from all walks of life and they give a speech. Some are hilarious, others are quite serious. They have 5 minutes featuring 20 PowerPoint-like slides that switch every 15 seconds so it really keeps the speaker alert. This was the second year for the Ignite event in Detroit… and I almost didn’t go.

I recently started a job working from home and during the beginning of training, the power at the house was cut off (late bills, that sort of thing). Naturally, I panicked and immediately decided to run to my parents house to continue training. It wasn’t a pretty drive but I did manage to get there and get back into training. I later talked to my trainer and she told me it was best to go get my computer so that I can start taking calls. So I ran back home and packed up my computer. While, I was at home, I decided on a whim that even though I was having a sour day, I think it would be a great idea to go to Ignite. I planned it already, so why not? I packed some clothes, ran back to my parents’ place and finished training to get on the phones. It was an interesting first time on the phone but I did make a sale (Yes!). I proceeded to get dressed, and head down to Ignite Detroit. I entered the event, had some free food, connected with some of the local business owners and sat down to experience the event… and then the magic happened.

Did I ever experience an event! There were 15 speakers that night and for some reason, they all seemed to be speaking directly to me. There were various topics like “how to learn how to fail,” to “doing the impossible,” to “starting something new right now,” even “creating from your sexual energy!” All of these speakers had something to offer and they all said something within their presentations that touched me in a very special way. Every speaker said something that had relevance to something I’m going through in my life. Whether it’s my business, my music or my job, it was relevant all the way around. There were breaks between groups of speakers so I went to speak and connect with a number of them and they were as nice as they were professional. They gave me their cards and we were even able to discuss and exchange ideas. After the event, they held an after party in another room, so I decided to stick around. Even more magic happened there. I networked more, opened up more and created more of a sense of community but the highlight to that evening, were two people I spoke with. We had a very in-depth conversation about various different topics but one mainly dealing with how to impact massive change in our communities. The gentleman used Egypt as an example of how using a movement of energy can help change the situation. We all agreed that we have to come together to have a common understanding that we are the same at all levels. It was a wonderful conversation and I got their contact information as well. After that, I said my goodbyes and left for the night.

I connected with so many people that night and I will be, over the course of the next few days, contacting folks and connecting with them via Twitter, Facebook and possibly, LinkedIn. On my way home, I realized that I really LOVE networking! It was not what I was going there to do but it ended up paying off.

So why did I start my post with a story about my day? Because it actually ended up setting the tone for the evening. My bad beginning of the day actually encouraged me to go to Ignite Detroit. Had I not had that day, I’m not sure I would’ve gone. Also, this entire day and evening, ended up teaching me various lessons that I learned. Some came from Ignite, others before it. Here are some of them:

A Bad Day Is A Bad Day If You Allow It To Be

As my day went on, I let the events of earlier fall away. This allowed me to go into Ignite with a clear, open mind and an open heart. I was able to learn new things and receive some wonderful advice that I will now carry with me and can now share with others. The reality is that I made a choice to let go the earlier events. I choose to be open, attentive and energetic and it allowed me to experience a phenomenal event. Had I allowed those events to bother me, I might not have attended and then possibly kicked myself for it later. Think about that the next time you’re having a bad day. In the end, you are what you think about.

Put Yourself Out There

Despite the common belief of, “no one wants to see me,” there are those that do. Someone wants to see you. Someone wants to hear you. Someone wants to know who you are. Someone is interested in your voice. Someone cares about your beliefs. You have more power than you think you do but if no one sees you, your power is worthless. Get out, network, communicate with people and you’ll discover a world of opportunities. On that note…

Learn to Communicate, Network and Build Relationships

I never understood the power of networking and community building until that night.  Everyone has something to offer and share. If you learn how to communicate effectively, people will open up to you and offer their assistance. With that knowledge, you can also help them out. Share information. Learn about people and their lives and businesses. You’ll be surprised at how much you have to offer them, whether directly or indirectly. Everyone is always looking to expand. Help them to do so and they’ll help you too

Have An Open-Hand Attitude

As you give, so shall you receive. By allowing me to be attentive, I was able to share my ideas and energy with the presenters and many of the other people I networked with. Never close yourself off to ideas. The one thing you miss could be the one you need.

Use Public Tools

One of the presenters talked about this. He was able to defeat a billion dollar company by posting the issue on his blog and getting it reposted on other people’s blogs. Not long after that, he received all kinds of help from law firms around the world. He even got interviewed by a number of newspapers including the New York Times. Eventually the company backed off. How did he do it? He used his blog as a platform. Don’t be afraid of using public resources as a viable way of communication. Most people think that Twitter is one of the most mindless tools ever. In reality, they’re scared of it because it moves so fast. Most people are also scared of blogs but another presenter used blogs to bring international awareness to people back in his home. The point is, these tools are a way of gaining attention and creating movements. Especially if you have something you are doing for a community or a movement, you owe it not just to other people but to yourself to get this information public where it can be seen. If it can’t be seen, it’s dead.

Have you ever attended an event like Ignite or Tedx? What was your experience like? What did you learn from it? How did you share the information you learned from those events?

Start your transition by signing up and receiving new lessons to evolve your life.

Timmy G’s Tweets