During the month of June, NeW hosted a book club for Candace Cameron Bure’s latest book Kind is the New Classy: The Power of Living Graciously. In her book, Cameron says the most important virtue we should emulate is kindness towards others and ourselves, especially during times of conflict. She explores how we can do this in our friendships, our relationships with family, and in our careers.
This message is one that resonates with me as a young college woman who often engages in conversations and debate with others who do not agree with me.
Unfortunately, these conversations can frequently lead to personal attacks on each other’s character. Cameron’s words served as a reminder and inspiration to discuss challenging topics with grace and kindness, never resorting to name calling or defaming someone else’s character. She shared that to be a strong leader means carrying oneself with kindness and grace, especially when confronted with conflict.
Hearing the experiences from other women during our discussions on the book provided me with different perspectives on what it means for each of us to be strong, courageous, and kind women. During these meetings we talked about how during the pandemic and the last year we have seen hostility occur on social media and in person, between strangers and even friends. The message of Cameron’s book to pause, give yourself time to react, and then respond with kindness is needed now more than ever.
In her book Cameron shares personal experiences of times when she has had to respond to hate and anger with kindness and compassion. Cameron would often come under fire for being the conservative voice on the predominantly liberal show, The View. In our discussions we talked about how many of us could relate to this experience whether it be an angry comment online, a snarky remark from a friend, or being on an overwhelmingly liberal college campus. Through our discussions we were able to gain support from one another and provide insight on how to successfully navigate these challenges.
While reading Candace Cameron Bure’s book and hearing from other women during our discussions, I was reminded of a phrase I have heard during other NeW events, “Leaders are Readers”. To gain the insight and tools needed to be a well-educated, effective, and strong leader, it is important to read and learn from a variety of perspectives. This book club exemplified that phrase being put into practice. The life lessons that Cameron shared in her book and the discussions had with the women of NeW provided further guidance on how to be a stronger, kinder, and more graceful leader in my own life.
This blog was written by Franchetta Groves, NeW Communications Intern.