One tribe

One week into my new job and my mornings are starting to become routine. Get up at 5.45am, make a coffee and then get online by 6am. 6am in Canberra is 2pm in Cusco, Peru where my office is located. I’ve been getting up early so I can participate in team conference calls and return emails during the Peruvian business day. Almost every day I’ve spent a few hours on the phone to Peru, mainly with the CEO, Angel.

Yes, I have a boss named Angel. Almost everyone I’ve mentioned this to has commented on the fact that this job has come from the Universe to me, and since we all know the Universe has a huge sense of humour, of course my boss is called Angel. Angel really is a great guy. He’s passionate about his business and I love his enthusiasm for life, for business, and for his small team. We spend lots of our time on the phone laughing.

After a couple of hours on the phone with Angel this morning, I had a call from our office manager Andrea. She was concerned about me, working so far away from the rest of the team (approximately 13,000kms away) and wanted to know how she could make my transition to working at Travel and Healing better. She really wants me to feel like part of the team and be happy working here.

To say I was surprised by this call is an understatement. I’ve never worked in a business where my happiness was taken into account. I’ve worked for many companies where I’ve sat next to colleagues who didn’t care what was happening in my life or whether I was happy. And for bosses who didn’t have the happiness of their staff high on their list of priorities.

All day I’ve kind of basked in Andrea’s concern for me. It’s made me realise that even though I’m currently 13,000kms away from my colleagues, I am part of a new tribe. One that wants to see me succeed, to see us succeed as a group and one who values each other’s contribution to the overall effort. I’m excited to be part of this tribe and I want to show up and be the best I can be to help the others and to contribute to a harmonious team dynamic and to the business.

Which led me to think about the various tribes I belong to, how I show up and contribute to each of them and what I get out of being a member. There is my family tribe, my friend tribe, my work tribe, my art group tribe and even wider tribes like my street tribe or my community tribe. I belong to a lot of tribes.

I am about to become an Australian citizen next month which will mark my entry into yet another tribe. I’ve lived in Australia for the majority of my adult life and I look forward to being able to vote and be an official part of the community. I will carry my Australian passport with pride when I travel, along with my US passport and my UK passport.

Tribes were useful once in history. Belonging to a tribe gave a person much of their identity. But tribes have also caused problems throughout time. Blood has been spilled in the name of tribes too many times to count.

I sometimes wonder if tribes have had their day. And part of me feels sad that we continue this nationalistic tribalism in this day and age that sees one country pit itself against another. I’ve traveled enough to know that people everywhere have the same concerns at heart. We all want to be loved. We all want to care for our families. We want a peaceful existence and be allowed to live our lives in a way that makes us happy.

We are all citizens of the world. Surely we should all be one tribe – humanity, working to save the only home our tribe has — the Earth. We all have a responsibility to the planet on which we live. And a responsibility to the other members of humanity who inhabit this planet with us.

We’re all one tribe.

It’s time to lay down our weapons, start working together to find solutions to the problems facing the planet and embrace the humanity in each other. If we could foster a tribe where we wanted to see others succeed, where we wanted to succeed as a group and if we valued each other’s contributions, we might just all be happier in the end.

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