Heart of the Hustle Interview: Power of the Pen with Ellen McGirt and Ruthie Ackerman
In today’s Heart of the Hustle Interview, we dive into the power of the word.
So you might be thinking what is she referencing?
The power of the spoken word like poetry at an open mic night?
The power of the biblical word in The Bible?
The power of the written word in our favorite?
Let’s talk about the power of the pen and how it gives birth to the power of the word.
Yes! Taking a in depth look at – how writing impacts and contributes to forefront of social change.
To often we underestimate the power of the pen to give us a voice – a voice that effects change.
Recently, I had the opportunity to meet Ellen McGirt and Ruthie Ackerman at the Ellevate Network’s Mobilize Women Summit hosted at App Nexus on June 21,2018 in NYC whom both unknowingly discussed the power of the pen as a call to action and their passion for it.
Through their respective roles, both of these power starters curate content that challenges the status quo to empower their readers to “be more”. Ellen McGirt is the Senior Editor at Fortune Magazine where she covers race, culture, and leadership in a daily column called raceAhead.
Ruthie Ackerman is the deputy editor at Women@Forbes, where she curates the site's content, community and events.
Their message was simple but also required the action to execute it – Harness the power of the pen to be your voice. Your voice can be the lamp to light up the path of change for you or another woman.
Frankly I couldn’t agree more, we can equally use the variations of our voice – speak or writing to guide the change.Ellen passionately shared “Women who share their stories are like stars that grow to light up the universe”. In her talk with Margaret Keane, CEO and President, Synchrony – they discussed the importance of moving the up the bar together by leveraging our talents and power collectively.
So Mama! Who’s universe are you lighting up?
Ruthie shared its important to be more than our circumstances to change the context of the conversation and pivot the platform. Most people cringe at the thought of writing. It’s easier at times to just “mouth off” what you feel instead writing it however I’ve learned writing provides a sense of permanence like an artifact. Once it’s written it cant be erased. You can challenge it or cover it up but cant erase its original meaning.
So little did both of the Mamas know they gave the same #MamaLessons on harnessing your power of the pen:
1. Practice – Perfection isn’t real but progress is tangible. No one is born a “great” writer. It takes practice and commitment.
2. Core of your power – What is fueling your power? Channel that energy to fulfill and guide what you should write.
3. Your voice – People often connect to what’s being written by the person behind the pen.
Be authentic. Its like you can tell when someone reads from a script vs speaking from their heart (and head). Trust me! It applies to writing as well.
I encourage you to join me in using our power of pen in our everyday lives to change the context and pivot the platform – whether writing in your journal, writing your local politician or writing a note to let kids know you love them.
Use the power of the pen.
Thank you to Ellen and Ruth for encouraging me to pick up the pen again. Follow these power starters at Ellen @ellmcgirt and Ruth @ruackerman
Ellevate Network’s Mobilizing the Power of Women Summit brought together an intentionally diverse and committed group of people to take action towards equality. Download the Mobilize Women Action Guide here and subscribe to the Ellevate newsletter.
Latosha Frink Harrison is the FoundHER of Mama Hustle & Co. Thru Mama Hustle &Co., she believes in Optimizing the Brand of Mom™ while Redefining Motherhood by providing “mamas” a community to thrive and discover their power paths in entrepreneurship while balancing home and motherhood. She is a native New Yorker whom currently resides in the Washington, DC area with her husband, Troy and their 2 kids, Jewel and Nyles. Follow her on social media at @mamahustleco and @iamlatosha