This week we launch a new version of the Ever Widening Circles website!
“Start by doing what’s necessary: then do what’s possible: and suddenly you’re doing the impossible.” –St. Francis of Assisi
That’s a quote to memorize if ever there was one.
Take it from me; it can be your starting point, over and over, when you find yourself facing problems that seem absolutely insurmountable.
Today’s Ever Widening Circles article contains the story of just such a journey and it’s one that is making its way to the “doing something impossible” stage now and we hope you will join us for the ride!
Start by doing what’s necessary…
In January of 2014, one of my favorite morning news programs woke me at 6:23 am with all the graphic details of the latest market bombing in the Middle-east and that was my tipping point.
I said to myself, “There has got to be a better way to start the day!”, and the concept of Ever Widening Circles (EWC) was born.
In short, I wanted someplace on the web where I might like to start or end my day; someplace with a balanced look at the wonder in the wider world and the best in humanity.
“The News” was certainly not going to be that place, and things seem to have gotten steadily worse since!
I remember being shocked to discover that there was no place on the web that was carefully curating and celebrating all the insights and innovation happening in the world. And websites rarely cited and chose their sources carefully.
Oh, to be sure, there are many websites that claim they feature “positive news”, but if you look closely, you’ll see they end up devoting much of their content to politics, spirituality, or trivial things for a quick chuckle.
The web is largely a war for our attention, with no rules.
Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.
I had no particular fluency with technology, no experience as a website developer or publisher, and very little financial resources to devote to the cause, but I was a bit of a writer, photographer, world traveler, and citizen scientist.
It was far from ideal, but I was convinced that someone had to start the task of changing the negative dialogue about the world.
Then do what’s possible…
So I found a local fellow who built me the first Ever Widening Circles website and with determined zeal, I started writing one article each day–on anything under the sun–to prove this is still an amazing world.
I had no idea what lay ahead and there were more thrill and spills than I have time to tell you about here.
I just did what I could every day, learned from my mistakes and before I knew it, over a thousand people a day were reading our articles and I had tens of thousands of Facebook fans from all around the globe.
“Take the first step in faith. You don’t have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step.”
-Martin Luther King
After a year, it was clear that this was not going to be a pet project that I dabbled in, so when my daughter, Liesl–now our COO–graduated from Harvard, she joined me in the endeavor.
We began our official “proof of concept” phase in October of 2016 with the launch of the second EWC iteration: the website you will see until tomorrow, August 28, 2017
The whole operation hinged on Liesl not taking any salary and working 16 hour days. And with only a tiny investment out of my household budget, after 18 months we had 180,000 Facebook fans from over 100 countries, and close to 100,000 page views each month!
Suddenly, you’re doing the impossible!
And here we are today, having written over 1,000 articles that prove it’s going to be OK folks!
People are incredibly ingenious and in the end, if we all pay more attention to what gets our attention, we will ready to change the world!
Here are a few of my favorite articles that prove exactly that:
“Do not wait until the conditions are perfect to begin. Beginning makes the conditions perfect.”
If you are a regular visitor to EWC then you have probably enjoyed every one of those gems from our archives, but if you haven’t, dive in. You are sure to come out the other side of that journey with a renewed worldview.
And do join us for your daily dose of optimism. You can subscribe and never miss an insight!
The Nicest Place on the Internet!
Remember, this week Ever Widening Circles will look a lot different, but the vision is the same. Help us get ready to change the world by sending the word out. It is still an amazing world!
I’ll close with a great poem that sums up the transformation that is guaranteed when we begin to see possibility all around us:
COMING FORTH INTO THE LIGHT by Suzy Kassem
I was born the day
I was transformed the day
My ego shattered,
And all the superficial, material
Things that mattered
To me before,
I really came into being
The day I no longer cared about
What the world thought of me,
Only on my thoughts for
Changing the world.
Stay open, wildly curious and optimistic!
~ Dr. Lynda