leader-shift / passion / the anthropology of food.

Two weeks ago, my husband and I completed a 12-week leadership course titled ‘Leadershift: The 11 essential changes a leader must embrace’. It was based on the teachings of a book written by world renown leadership expert John Maxwell. Every week, for 3 months, a group of us met online and dissected each chapter of the book. Sharing our thoughts on the chapter, how we felt it spoke to us, and as a result, actions we believed we need to make. The facilitator of the sessions directed each personal reflection with words of encouragement and reassurance from the JM Leadership team.

At the end of our last session, I felt equipped, re-energised and full of drive to put my learning into action and begin creating a life for myself, rather than just living with the cards I’d been dealt. Fast forward two weeks, and I am feeling drained and have much less drive. To be honest, I feared this would happen, but this is also expected, it’s how life goes. You have the life-changing moments, celebrate your accomplishments and soar from the highs, but the lows also come hand-in-hand. However, the difference with now, is that I am more aware of what is happening and I am conscious of my actions, so regardless of the ‘low’, every action is an active choice into making a better future.

So, in the hopes of trying to figure out what I really enjoyed in life, I have begun to indulge myself and my thoughts in experience and memories that bring me true joy. Conclusion: Learning about cultures & societies, with high focus on, (you guessed it), food.

The last chapter in the Leadershift book is titled, Career to Calling: The Passion Shift. It is in this chapter that Maxwell’s asks readers to consider these questions when looking for ones true passion in life.

  • If you could do one thing for the rest of your life, even if you never got paid for it, what would you do?
  • What do people often ask for your help with?
  • What experiences have you had that you desire to help others with?
  • What makes you cry?
  • What do you love learning about?
  • What can you do to make a positive difference in the lives of others?

Considering these questions, I began to write notes on my notion app.

My heart breaks to see those on the margins of society, deprived of basic needs and forgotten. I love to learn about people, their stories, backgrounds and what makes them different. I enjoy hearing about why certain things came to be, and what makes them unique and special to certain people. Memory association. Food significance. People often either ask me to write for them, help create rapporteurs, or suggest where to eat.

This got me thinking; all of what I wrote sounds like anthropology, the field that I committed 5 years of my life to. The field that I do not work in currently. The field that many say is too broad and all-consuming. But…what if I were to make it more specific, in a way that could encompass everything I enjoy, whilst finding a way to helping those on the margins of society, what is a basic human need that I believe everyone should have? Food. The anthropology of food.

*light bulb moment*

Spicy salt and pepper squid, line caught haddock and chips, and panko sesame king prawns | I’d had my eyes on this spot for a while and may or may have not insisted a beach day just so we could try their food | Beach Buoys, Margate, Kent.

Ps. I’d 100% recommended the Leadershift Mastermind course if you have a chance!

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