Architect Of Change
“A quality of listening creates a space beyond what is being said.”
“There is always something living that is bigger than us, and we can have the idea that we built something structured, but there is something wild in there too.”
“There is so much life in death.”
There’s your life before sitting down with Vanessa Reid, and your life after it.
Vanessa rocked our world! She joined us for a talk that spanned from the challenges of being an entrepreneur and the many ways one can be a leader, to the potential energy of chaos, to the gendered qualities of architecture, to how to befriend resistance within group settings, to name a few highlights.
Perpetually curious and a phenomenal listener, Vanessa possesses a quality of presence that enhances everyone’s experience in the room from the moment she enters it.
“4% of venture capital goes to women; .1% goes to women of color: We can spend a lot of time to fix or change that system, but that’s a big waste of time, that’s a system that doesn’t want to change. So lets just make a new one.
A Wild Life
She shared with us stories of her work in politics, her time as Executive Publisher during the last year of Ascent Magazine, her experience as Executive Director at Santropol Roulant, as well as the current work she is doing with The Living Wholeness Institute, the SheEO network, and The Art of Hosting network. She helps us navigate questions of how to be effective agents of change, as well as the nuances of collective versus individual forms of leadership.
Not An Era Of Change, But A Change Of Era
Vanessa’s love for poetry and language shines throughout her process, and her depth of experience as a leader in businesses and organizations combine with her artistic, spiritual, and academic endeavors to create a mesmerizing worldview.
It was an epic sit-down! Vanessa Reid on The SpiritBros Podcast!
Want to spend more time with Vanessa?
[5:00] Vanessa tells us about the delights of homemade olive oil.
[7:15] On where and when she learned to listen.
[8:10] “A quality of listening creates a space beyond what is being said.”
[11:00] On how both collective and individual work can be necessary in the process of change.
[13:45] On what she learned through playing soccer as a child and teen.
[20:15] On her project ‘the Conscious Kitchen.’
[21:30] In what ways the study of architecture changed Vanessa’s understanding of how spaces are inhabited.
[25:30] ‘Ladies in the House’: Vanessa’s graduate thesis on the gendered nature of parliamentary architecture.
[28:08]“Changing the way we move in [architectured] space changes the way space works.”
[31:00] On how the nuance between architecture and how we organize ourselves structurally within architecture is the edge that fascinates Vanessa.
[34:30] “There is always something living that is bigger than us, and we can have the idea that we built something structured, but there is something wild in there too.”
[37:14] On the ‘chaortic’ idea, or having just enough order to allow chaos to emerge, and how it can be a powerful agent of change.
[41:45] On how to face the discomfort of chaos and discover how to use it for your own benefit.
[46:40] On what it means to be present.
[51:30] On navigating death not just on an individual level, but within systems.
[52:00] “There is so much life in death.”
[53:30] Vanessa quotes the Pope: “It’s not an era of change that we’re in, it’s a change of era.”
[59:50] Vanessa speaks to the nature of collective leadership.
[1:05:20] The SheEO network.
[1:05:35] “4% of venture capital goes to women; .1% goes to women of color: We can spend a lot of time to fix or change that system, but that’s a big waste of time, that’s a system that doesn’t want to change. So lets just make a new one.”
[1:12:25] On helping guide Ascent Magazine through its final year of existence.
[1:23:10] On some of the outcomes of Ascent closing, ten years later.
[1:28:15] How to overcome resistance in groups?
[1:30:35] “Everything around you is supporting you to be the same. It’s really, really hard to be the one who is changing.”
[1:35:40] Vanessa on what she loves and what she hates about writing.
[1:37:30] En-Lightning Round.