what am I talking about?
Well if you are not from the north of England then you might not know the delightfully old-fashioned expression to give something “a good bottoming” is to give a right good clean from top to bottom! And that is what we are doing here today at the Healthy Home in Skipton ready for the summer Women’s Gathering. We all know that if we have a group of women visiting we make sure that everything is tickety-boo (didn’t Mary Poppins say that?). All the corners are being checked for cobwebs and there are plenty of them as it has been too cold these last few months even for the spiders to go outside!!
If you are within driving distance then please do join us on Saturday (May 18th). It will be a wonderful day of fun, connection, good conversation and wonderful networking and community building. Everyone leaves feeling nourished, not just by the food but by the heartfelt connections made and the inspiring discussions.
A Gathering in London too next week
And there’s also a Women’s Gathering in central London next Thursday (May 23rd) so please do join us for that if you are down south. Eventbrite link for London Gathering.
* Here is a precis of the conversation we had last time in March when we had a discussion circle….
…… Insights from the last Women’s Gathering (March 2013)…
At the last Women’s Gathering which I hosted in the north of England back in March we had a wonderful group of women come together from all walks of life (business owner, seminar leader, author, activist, physical therapist, teacher, trainer, nurse, consultant, retired …) and from all over the north (Chester, Newcastle, Driffield, Manchester, Skipton!).
After supper I asked the circle of women to discuss what they would ask of our country leader (currently ours is David Cameron but this question is not about personalities, it is about having access to the highest level of decision-making) if they had the opportunity to do so. The women spent quite some time in animated discussion groups and then came back to share what they felt was important to talk about with our country’s leadership to drive much-needed change in our society.
Here are some of the highlights that came forth from our conversations:
- first and foremost compassion is completely missing from the political system and is the is key to everything
- the political system we have is seriously faulty, outdated, unrepresentative, antiquated, corrupt and undemocratic .. it is beyond fixing so a new one is needed
- a new system needed that would be more egalitarian, much more cooperative than we have today…. Iceland is an example of new ways of bringing a more democratic process to society where the Icelandic people have stepped forward to create a “People’s Parliament” [one criteria for people stepping forward to serve is that they have NEVER been in parliament before (!)]
- the way we educate our children needs to change; let’s stop trying to fit them into boxes, let’s be more creative and design something inspired by Steiner or Montessori; we need an education process that produces well-rounded human beings who can have a positive impact on society …. we are really feeling radical and like to start the whole system from scratch!
- does the prime minister feel that women make a valuable contribution to society, and if he does believe that, does he believe that women could play a more valuable role in parliament ?
- stop spending money on war and weapons; invest some of that money in the women of this country …. many are still stuck, held back and disempowered and need support groups like the circle we formed tonight. It is much harder for women to send their men to war when they are sending their own sons and grandsons .. Christine Lagarde, head of the IMF, says women feel this connection differently to men and so they would have less wars.
- is the prime minister capable of really listening to us instead of just hearing what he wants to hear? we women do not feel represented and heard. can we talk about the solutions instead of focussing on the problems. As women, we notice how resourceful and collaborative we are when all get in the kitchen and prepare a meal together (like we did for that evening gathering), no egos to watch out for just all of us happily and companionably making the meal happen even though we have not all worked together before
- and we are clear as and when women rise the top positions that we want to do things differently and bring our feminine energy with us and not end up as a clone of a man doing things in a masculine way.
An invitation to join our next lively and nourishing conversation
These are just some of the thoughts and insights that came out of our creative dialogue. I’d love to invite you to be part of our next conversation …. We might not be there in significant numbers at the top of government sitting alongside the many Eton and Oxford-educated millionaires that form our Cabinet, and we might not be chairing the major financial institutions that have taken our country to the brink but everyday we are “running the country” from our households, kitchens, desks, enterprises … working at a grassroots micro level making life work for ourselves, for our families and for our children. That has to count for something. We do have a voice and we need to start using it by firstly talking with each other about the kind of world we want and think creatively about what we are going to make it happen.
Please do join me at our next Women’s Gathering in the Healthy Home, Skipton, Saturday May 18th or in London on the evening of Thursday May 23rd. A warm welcome awaits, as well as tasty food and great friendship from the lovely women who always find their way to these gatherings.
Saturday May 18th 11am, read about & BOOK: Northern event in Skipton
Thursday May 23rd 6pm, read about & BOOK: London event