We sat there, laughing and nodding as we shared our stories and experiences around the long table. The warmth of the restaurant and evening lights matched the glow of the conversation taking place.
We started out with generalities and small talk, but quickly, our voices turned to the significant and meaningful.
Before dinner was even served, we were leaning in close and talking about challenges we’ve faced as writers and women, failures we’ve known, issues we still grapple with, and stories from our lives.
A few of us knew each other from writing group meetings, but mostly, the table was filled with new names and faces of women we hadn’t met until now.
Still, there was that connection.
So as we ate (and long after, actually), we talked and encouraged and supported and laughed.
We rallied around each other’s causes.
We took interest in each other’s projects.
We listened to each other’s ideas.
And as the night passed over minutes and hours, the connection deepened.
Because that’s what happens when women say yes to things like showing up to a dinner with people they don’t know, so they can meet others with similar interests and passions.
That’s what happens when women are open about their lives and experiences, and are willing to be real and reachable.
That’s what happens when women intentionally step out of their routines and inner circles to touch and be touched by the lives of others.
It can be easy to get caught up in our schedules and routines.
We’re busy. We have a lot on our plate.
We don’t have a minute to spare.
Or do we?
What would happen if we raised our eyes and saw things differently this holiday season?
What would happen if we intentionally got out of our comfort zones to spend time with, or serve and encourage, others?
What would happen if we bravely said yes to something we might normally say no? (It may be something as simple as going to dinner with complete strangers.)
Lives would be enriched, people would be encouraged, friendships would be formed.
Often, a simple yes can lead to something so much bigger. (It turns out dinner that night wasn’t just about meeting other writers; it was the beginning of some lasting and meaningful friendships.)
Because when we approach life with a sense of adventure and an attitude of being intentional, we see doors open that we didn’t even know were there before.
And the best part is, we don’t have to walk through them alone.
Want to meet one of the bravest women I know? Read about my friend Jenny Williamson, the CEO and Founder of Courage Worldwide. Her brave yes led to many girls being rescued from trafficking. Take a minute to VOTE FOR HER and make a difference in the lives of these kids (she was selected by Loreal as a top ten finalist for their Women of Worth award!).
A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken. -Ecclesiastes 4:12