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A Career, a Profession, and a Calling with Responsibility, Too
Most of us working as advocates apply the word “profession” to our work. Those who have been advocates for a longer period of time might tell you it has turned into a career. I often hear from new advocates, or those who wannabe advocates that they feel that this profession of advocacy (or what might evolve for them to a career of advocacy) is also a calling. So let’s look at that word “calling” for a minute. Merriam Webster tells us that a calling is: a strong inner impulse toward a particular course of action especially when accompanied by conviction of divine influence Amen. So now let’s look at “divine influence” – because recognizing divine influence, then acting on it, becomes a huge turning point in one’s life. If you know my story of how and why my career and profession evolved to advocacy and guidance for advocacy, then you know this is one of my core beliefs; that I most definitely feel called to the work I do. I am a highly spiritual person. I truly believe that divine influence guided me on this path. In fact, I go so far as to say that my misdiagnosis, the impetus for my work, was the reason I was put on this earth. I can scarcely type those words without getting choked up. It’s very emotional for me. Advocacy is a profession and a career that can result from a calling. I firmly believe that. If we are paying attention, we hear that call loudly and clearly – and we act. I bring this up today because I know many of you feel the same way. In fact, during the last few weeks I have been pleasantly surprised at the number of people who have mentioned to me, in email or during a phone call, that they, too, have been called to advocacy. That somehow they feel that divine tug. That their current work doesn’t call them in the same way, and they feel as if advocacy either already does – or can and will. And now they are ready to respond…