Agents of Ourselves: Part Eleven

If you’ve been following the bouncing ball, you know I’ve been writing a weekly series of posts on the topic of agency for the past 10 weeks. In weeks seven through ten, I wrote about the celebratory progress we’ve been making in our weekly writing workshop, Finding Your Voice.

As life would have it, I was sick last week. We postponed our Finding Your Voice session. And I missed the deadline for publishing my weekly post on Monday of this week. But I’m back now. (You can decide if that’s good news or bad.) I don’t want to break my streak. And since we postponed our workshop session, I don’t have that to write about. I do, however, have agency to write about.

One of my LinkedIn connections — a person who had no idea I was like a ravenous Pit Bull with a five-pound porterhouse steak about the topic of agency — shared this video with me:

That, my friends, is agency in action.

Here are just two examples:

  1. “Regardless of our religion, regardless of our skin color, regardless of our cultures, there are things that bring us together on common ground. That’s freedom of speech. We want to make sure we’re protecting the innocence of our children. We want freedom of religion. There are some things that bring us together.” (Angela Stanton King)
  2. “If you want to know what conservatism means, it means conservation of the idea of the individual — that each and every one of us has inherent gifts that we are meant to give this world, and that deserves to be protected.” (Sonnie Johnson)

If we have full senses of our own agency — if we have self-faith, confidence in our abilities, the conviction that we’re sovereign individuals, and the determination to use that self-faith, those abilities, and that sovereignty to accomplish what we want to accomplish — we’re going to change our lives. In changing our lives — in starting with ourselves — we’re going to change the world.

I’ll leave you with this thought: A person whose political philosophy I won’t divulge labelled the conference at which that video was recorded as lunatic. If that’s lunatic, we’ve come a long way, baby. And the direction we’ve traveled is not good.

Let’s set a more positive, constructive course.


Mark O'Brien
Mark O'Brien
I’m a business owner. My company — O’Brien Communications Group (OCG) — is a B2B brand-management and marketing-communication firm that helps companies position their brands effectively and persuasively in industries as diverse as: Insurance, Financial Services, Senior Living, Manufacturing, Construction, and Nonprofit. We do our work so well that seven of the companies (brands) we’ve represented have been acquired by other companies. OCG is different because our business model is different. We don’t bill by the hour or the project. We don’t bill by time or materials. We don’t mark anything up. We don’t take media commissions. We pass through every expense incurred on behalf of our clients at net. We scope the work, price the work, put beginning and end dates on our engagements, and charge flat, consistent fees every month for the terms of the engagements. I’m also a writer by calling and an Irish storyteller by nature. In addition to writing posts for my company’s blog, I’m a frequent publisher on LinkedIn and Medium. And I’ve published three books for children, numerous short stories, and other works, all of which are available on Amazon under my full name, Mark Nelson O’Brien.

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