Author Archives: Margot Kelley
During the second quarter of 2017, we had the pleasure of working with three amazing organizations as part of our 12 Months of Giving campaign. We are so happy that we have the opportunity to share their stories and help them work towards their goals.
Our April pro bono client, The Greater Cleveland Food Bank, began in 1973 as a clearinghouse to recover food that was being wasted. It is now the largest hunger relief organization in Northeast Ohio. Their goal is to raise awareness about food insecurity in Ohio — one in six people is food insecure and The Greater Cleveland Food Bank is looking to bridge the meal gap.
Forbes House, our May organization, is the only domestic violence shelter in Lake County, Ohio. Their non-disclosed location is an ideal place for abuse survivors in Northeast Ohio to heal from the trauma of abuse and rebuild their lives. Their mission is simple and effective — to empower individuals and families to end the cycle of abuse.
In June, we shifted our focus to the Thea Bowman Center, which started as a food bank 50 years ago. The Center serves not only as a food pantry, but also provides after school programs and summer programs aimed towards children and senior citizens. Thea Bowman, a catholic nun from Mississippi whom the Center was named after, was a leader in her community who aimed to make sure that people utilized their talents. She was a lover of all people — something the Center aims to emulate to this day.
Each of these organizations brings something wonderful and new to the table in terms of how they are assisting others. Our time with them may have been short, but we truly enjoyed learning more about each organization and helping them prosper.
Gratitude: the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.
We’ve all heard the saying, “Be grateful for what you have.” In this day and age, where quite a few of us have more than we need, you would think more people would wake up and appreciate the great splendor of the world. But, unfortunately, we don’t.
Many times when something good happens we say, “I am so lucky and grateful for this blessing in my life.” But, if one small bad thing happens 20 minutes later a lot of us quickly forget about that blessing. Humans tend to gravitate towards the negative.
That’s where gratitude comes in. Gratitude is an extremely powerful feeling that leaves a lasting impact on not only your life, but the lives of others as well. But, as much as gratitude is a feeling, it is also a practice. You really do have to practice feeling grateful for things. You woke up this morning in a comfortable bed? Incredible! You have gas in your car? Miraculous!
It’s also important to remember that negative things do happen and we should feel grateful towards those things as well, even if at the time they seem awful. It’s all about perspective.
When we practice gratitude it shines through in every aspect of our lives, especially work. Considering we spend most of our days at work, expressing gratitude on the job is extremely important. Let’s take a look at some ways gratitude can boost your morale at work.
1. Practicing gratitude helps you focus on the positive.
I wake up every morning and write in my Five Minute Journal. The journal is a constant reminder for me to focus on things for which I’m grateful, as well as a few things that would make my day really great. Some days, I’m so tired that I simply write I’m grateful for my comfortable bed. Other days, when I don’t really feel like doing anything, I remind myself how grateful I am to work at a place that I love and don’t dread going to every day.
This simple practice sets my tone for the day and allows me to appreciate the small things in my life just a little bit more. Remaining positive is absolutely key in the workplace. Stressful things are bound to happen, but if you focus on things you’re grateful for instead of stress, negativity and worry, I promise your job will be a whole lot easier.
2. Feeling grateful helps improve your relationships.
Have you ever met someone who just seems like a light in your life? Someone who radiates positivity and exudes gratitude in every aspect of their life. Think about the way you feel when you’re around them—joyful, content, happy. You just can’t get enough of them. You probably find yourself feeling grateful for their existence because they bring you so much joy.
Now think about someone who focuses solely on the negative. Someone who complains about every small thing in their life. You probably have a totally different feeling about them.
Positivity is contagious and truly makes the workplace an enjoyable place to be. Practicing gratitude makes life seem a bit brighter. Once you start focusing on expressing thankfulness and appreciation, it will affect other people as well and lift the whole office up with you.
3. Gratitude does wonders for your self-esteem.
Taking the time to focus on things you are thankful for and all of the positives in your life leads to higher self-esteem. And self-esteem has been linked to improved career success. Who doesn’t want that?
Once your self-esteem builds, so will your confidence. And confidence in the workplace is key. Have you been dying to start a new project or shoot out some fresh ideas that have been brewing? Start practicing gratitude and the confidence to go for something new will come with it.
I can drone on and on about the benefits of being grateful, but the one thing I want you to hold on to is that it just feels good. Gratitude brings so much joy into your life as well as the lives of others. Who doesn’t want to feel as much joy as possible?
It’s Tuesday morning and Nick Edmundson of Heartwood Coffee Roastery is making his rounds. He’s delivering our custom ‘Purpose Fuel’ coffee blend. Heartwood roasts their organic fair trade beans on Monday and Thursday, and delivers it the next day to ensure their superior quality coffee is ultra fresh. This in-person connection is unique and part of the reason we love Heartwood Roastery.
Nearly two years ago, Nick didn’t know the difference between quality coffee and store-bought K-cups. But, his coffee-loving friend, Jim Sanders, expanded his horizons. As a wedding photographer, Nick brought entrepreneurial spirit to the table while Jim—a plumber for most of his life—brought his love of coffee and can-do attitude to their partnership. The two decided they could start a business.
Originally, Nick and Jim wanted to start a cafe, but with the cost of overhead so high they decided the time wasn’t quite right. So, they started roasting their coffee in Jim’s garage in Burton, Ohio. Once they got their name and heavenly coffee out there the company blew up. By attending events in Cleveland and interacting with the community, the loyalty to and demand for Heartwood Roastery coffee grew so much that Nick and Jim are opening a bricks and mortar store in Hudson, Ohio.
We asked Nick why they decided on the name Heartwood Roastery.
“Honestly, we were just throwing a bunch of different names around. Somehow Heartwood came up and we both liked it. Jim and I both love the outdoors and love the name. After researching what Heartwood is (the part of a tree that delivers all the nutrients to the rest of the tree) we loved it even more and it really fit what we were going for. We really had a vision of community and just a fun environment for everyone when we started the company. When we came up with the business name and our slogan, “Grow Together,” it fit right in with the name Heartwood, sticking to the whole nature/tree vibe. Oh, and coffee grows on a tree, too!”
Heartwood consistently sources the best coffee from around the globe, roasting beans from Ethiopia to Columbia—anywhere on the equator where coffee is grown. All coffee is handpicked at the perfect time, to ensure the standards of high quality they have come to produce, and roasted specifically to achieve the desired flavor. Even the highest quality coffee can be compromised if roasted incorrectly. This is why Heartwood Roastery puts so much love and effort into roasting their coffee.
Heartwood launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise funds to help open their new shop. With a few days left to go they have already surpassed their goal. They are looking to make the cafe a comfortable, fun destination. Whether it’s for a date, a study session, or just to spend some time sipping good coffee, they want the shop to be a place for customers to stop by and enjoy.
Nick knows that serving good coffee is one thing, but creating a great atmosphere and educating people about their coffee is another ball game. And they are up for the challenge.