Contributed by Alicia Neptune, Communications Specialist
It’s true that a lot of things about life have changed this year. It’s also true that a lot of things didn’t change–we still took care of our families, took care of ourselves, and tried to have some fun along the way.
When we made a plan to launch a new podcast in 2020, we had no idea what kind of challenges we would be facing. There were some challenges we didn’t expect because this was a brand new project. Other challenges came from circumstances outside our control, like trying to record safely, or even remotely, while physical distancing measures were in place.
Thankfully, with some support from JAR Audio to get us started, we launched Good For All this September. Since then, we’ve shared conversations about innovation, inclusive arts, and transition planning for youth and families. Along the way, we learned a lot from our guests. We also learned a lot from the work itself.
Before we return with new episodes in 2021, here are 3 lessons we’ve learned so far:
Find your people, especially when trying something new.
Trying something new can be intimidating. We might know what we want, but be unsure how to get there. Or maybe we need someone to help us dream bigger. Partnering with organizations like InWithForward helped change the way we at posAbilities thought about innovation and creating connections in community. Pam Neuman’s advice for youth transitioning to adulthood and their families was to “find other families.” Hearing other families’ stories of what worked and what didn’t helped during her family’s transition journey.
When it comes to the podcast, we also had to find our people! We knew what kind of show we wanted to make, but needed some guidance to help us make a plan and build our skills. Jen Moss and Claudia Kwan from JAR Audio designed a workshop to help us get up and running. Their support was an important part of our journey to launch.
Don’t be afraid to fail—but do be prepared to try something different!
It can be discouraging when things don’t work out. But as 2020 has taught us, sometimes plans go awry or our expectations aren’t realistic.
In our first episode, “An Innovation Mindset,” we learned how important failures can be for innovation. Part of the work that InWithForward does as a social design organization is to prototype new ideas. Their attitude is to “fail forward, fail quickly, and move on,” using what you learn from each failure to propel you into the next idea.
Even when we haven’t “failed,” we may find that we don’t like the path we’re on. Another great piece of advice from Pam was to keep an open mind and revisit our plans from time to time. If we didn’t, we might feel trapped by them! Instead, taking a moment to see what’s working and what we would like to change helps us to keep growing in the right direction.
Small steps can add up to big changes.
Something that seems big—an ambitious new project or a long-term goal—can be broken down into smaller pieces. When we visited Siobhan and Sheri from PotteryWorks, they were both working on pointillism paintings. No matter how big the painting was, the process was the same—one dot at a time. Eventually, those thousands of dots came together into a beautiful image bursting with colour.
Navigator Meaghen Taylor-Reid talked to us about how you can break a goal down into smaller steps. For youth transitioning to adulthood, a dream like having enough money to live on your own might seem hard to achieve. Breaking it down into milestones, like getting a job, and even further into action items, like writing a resume, help youth to start making progress.
The lesson is true in innovation, too. Trying to change the culture starts with changing the way we interact with our neighbours. If everyone starts to do things or think about things a little differently, over time, we start to see change on a larger scale.
We have big dreams for Good For All. We hope that, by sharing stories and having conversations, we might teach you something new or change how you see things. The only way to get there is one episode at a time.
If you haven’t listened yet, you can find all the episodes, plus transcripts & related blog posts here: Good For All – Conversations about Community Living
Want to support the show? Leave us a rating or review on Apple Podcasts. It helps other people find the podcast and lets us know what’s working!
Is there a topic you’d like to hear covered in a future episode? Do you know someone you think we should talk to? Get in touch by emailing us at [email protected].