About three months ago, a group of free-thinking risk takers met through LinkedIn and decided to form an organization dedicated to providing pathways of opportunities for people with disabilities to start or grow their own businesses.
We decided to call the organization the Global Network for Entrepreneurs with Disabilities (GNEWD). Our logo is a step toward realizing this vision, and is the result of us getting to know and work with each other across three continents and seven time zones!
Although I am not known to be at a loss for words when expressing a point of view or opinion, please allow me to share some profound insights & thoughts from other members of this group regarding the meaning and symbolism of using a Hummingbird as our logo:
From Alan: “I particularly like the elements of ‘life is meant to be savored’ and ‘symbolizes perseverance’ as they are relevant to my perspective on life/business/entrepreneurship. The onset of my disability provided the impetus to ‘get moving’ and the road we follow is a tough one requiring patience, understanding and most of all perseverance in knocking down or circumventing the many ‘brick’ walls we face in our personal and business lives.”
SYMBOLISM & DEFINITION
‘It is a symbol of love, joy, and beauty. The hummingbird is also able to fly backwards, teaching us that we can look back on our past. But, this bird also teaches that we must not dwell on our past; we need to move forward. When the hummingbird hovers over flowers while drinking nectar, we learn that we should savor each moment, and appreciate the things we love.’
1. No matter which symbolism guide you look at, the one characteristic that all can agree on is that the hummingbird is a symbol of joy.
2. Many people believe in animal totems or animal spirit guides. For them, the hummingbird is a powerful symbol of life and joy.
3. Because of their ability to hover and take their time drinking nectar, hummers are often thought to be reminders that life is meant to be savored.
4. Hummingbirds never seem to stop. Unlike other birds, they never glide, and if they are in the air, their wings are in motion. This tireless activity symbolizes perseverance.
5. Because hummingbirds do not simply flap their wings up and down, but instead move them in the pattern of the infinity symbol, or a figure eight, they are often thought to symbolize eternity and everlasting life.
From Trish: “I did a little research on my own on hummingbirds and learned that they are actually the only bird on earth that can move backwards. For me, this can illustrate the ability/need for PWD to step back when necessary to a take a larger perspective on things. Prior to disability and chronic illness in my life, I found myself continuing pushing forward to catch that illusive “brass ring.”
“Since my diagnosis, I’ve had cause, opportunity and the luxury many times to step back and assess my vision, direction, values and “mode of travel.” This has been a blessing in my life.”
“I also learned that hummingbirds expend so much energy in fight that they spend most of their waking hours resting. Ultimately they’ve mastered the art of “pacing” in order to maximize their unique abilities and honour and accommodate their limitations. This is “in a nutshell” the most vital learning curve that those of us who live with chronic illness-related disability must navigate in order to be able to effectively manage our energy limitations and our general quality of life. ”
Wow! What a group!
GNEWD plans to become a global resource of business owners and entrepreneurs with disability to which potential business owners with disability can turn at any stage of their business journey. It is a place to build community, dignity, and self-determination through a market place for disabled and non-disabled business people to connect and collaborate for mutual benefit.
The Network is unique in being able to share our expertise, first hand experiences, provide case studies, and leverage contacts/connections to a worldwide audience. It provides realistic encouragement because we have confronted (and in some cases still are facing) the challenges and barriers of business start-ups and ongoing operation with a disability. We can and will help people explore what is possible and prepare others for their start-up journey ow how to grow a business with one-on-one mentoring across the disability spectrum.
We will have a website up and running by the end of June, and interested parties are encouraged to make contact through our group site at LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com, and look up our group name or through this blog at https://discoverldi.com/blog/.