In episode 23, Cynthia takes us on a journey through her “life path,” from living abroad starting at nine years-old, to founding multiple companies including her current endeavor, Global Scribes. In our chat, hear about how a book, some inspirational people, and “recalibration moments” impacted Cynthia along the way.
Keep looking through rose-colored glasses – the world needs more of us who do.
Cynthia is the CEO & founder of Global Scribes – a global youth-driven education initiative with a truly monumental objective–to contribute to world peace. Global Scribes incorporates an interactive platform and fosters global friendships and collaboration via written word, visual arts, and dynamic interaction. Before founding Global Scribes, Cynthia spent 22 years in the fashion industry, had a small interior design company, and also founded Great Dates – a reality television show, virtual interaction & merchandising platform picked up by The Hallmark Channel.
Influenced interest in traveling / other countries
- Started living abroad at nine years old
- Was a third-culture kid, always had a different perspective about other countries than most
Most impactful travel experience
- Walking “the way” Camino – had never carried a backpack, did it for six weeks. Learned miracles happen. We have more stability than we think. Nature is a hidden beauty. Not everyone is on the same path. Also driving the perimeter of the US
I’ve learned that .. not everyone is on the same path as I am and that there are amazing people everywhere.
I’ve had more of a life path than a career path.
- Friend encouraged her to be fearless, to embrace being unique, and to just go for it – this is against what her generation was taught
- Parents had a huge impact on her life – shut down some of her early career and travel decisions, but eventually gave her the green light. Her parents had a huge impact on her life decisions.Her mother was one of her only consistencies in her youth, since she moved around so much.
- Life list – Decided to check certain items off. This propelled her to push ahead to the next thing.
A smile around the world opens doors. A positive attitude often times is ridiculed but it will get you far.
What drove her to build Great Dates
In my life there have been these jolting re-calibration moments that have forced me to make course changes… Changes I probably would not have made otherwise.
- Owner of company she had been working for decided to shut down the company. Forced her to re-think what to do next.
- Friend gave her a copy of “The Artists Way.” Discovered her true loves was people, moments shared that stick out in our minds, true creativity is pushing against conformity.
That book changed my life.
- Decided she wanted to create an easy guide for busy people to spark ideas to connect with friends, meet new people.
Learnings from Great Dates
- Networking is key.
- When someone gives you a lead – take it and meet the person. You never know where it will lead.
- After major disappointment, don’t give up. Take a moment to breathe and get focus back, then get back out there.
Finding her creative spirit
Ask yourself the question “What is a life well-lived?”
- Moved to Europe for many years ago and had the opportunity to become a writer.
- In her previous experiences with corporate world, she was never encouraged to be think outside the box.
- Now, for most people it’s more about finding the correct corporate culture.
- If you’re not thriving, find another company culture or start something.
Don’t be stuck and be miserable.
- At the end of your life, will you be proud of the life you lived? Did you have a good time? This is something that is sometimes lacking in American culture.
- Put time on your calendar once a month to reassess.
Most of us don’t realize the amount of time that goes by because we are so busy.
Founding Global Scribes
- Wanted to give the gift of making the world a safer place
- Realized to change current trajectory, need to do it through youth.
- Writing had already been in her whole life, great way to start a conversation.
- Came up with Global Scribes – scribes used liberally as someone who uses words.
- Key element: Youth Uniting Nations
I have every confidence that, given the tools, our youth today can change this trajectory.
- Formed foundation of no politics, no religion, no socioeconomic segregation
“Typical” day / how she spends her time
- Skyping with youth / teachers / organizers all over the world
- Networking for awareness and potential funding, corporate backing
Memorable achievements / moments
- Adding our first schools.
- Being recognized as a UNESCO club, club of the month.
- Having Queen Noor open door to build out Jordan.
- Being recognized by envoy on Youth at UN.
- Most memorable: meeting with newspaper association in Paris. Wanted to help expand considerably, but wanted to add politics and hard news. Community unanimously voted no.
- First #1 in the country newspaper (in Jordan) creating a Global Scribes corner to publish best content by scribes in Jordan
- Building traction without the resources needed to do it correctly.
- Strength to keep pushing it forward daily.
People who inspire her:
- People who rise against obstacles and succeed. – Parents of disabled children, people born into abject poverty but are determined to break-out.
- Richard Branson – his gumption, his successes and failures.
- Be authentic.
- Be consistent.
- It’s ok to think out of the box.
- Share your difficulties.
- Make a goal each day to make one thing happen.
- If something is meant to be, have faith that it will happen.
- Take a walk when you’re weary.
- Keep looking through rose-colored glasses – the world needs more of us who do.