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Beyond Boundaries: Visionary Artist and the Power of Shifting Disability Perspectives

Clarke Reynolds smiling wearing his signature yellow and black braille suit standing in front of his art exhibit titled"The Power of Touch"

Let’s dive right into the mega, profound theme that lies at the heart of Eye Openers: the transformative power of altering our perceptions. It’s about transcending disability and disadvantage, recognizing the remarkable ability, and boundless potential within each individual.

How We See Things Matters

As the saying goes, the lens through which we view the world shapes our reality. When we shift that perspective, extraordinary things happen. Acknowledging our own unique talents and skills from lived experiences allows us to recognize these qualities in others. It is then that we can harness the power of disability, diversity, and inclusivity.

Roy T. Bennett’s thoughts on this are perfecto: “You are unique. You have different talents and abilities. You don’t have to always follow in the footsteps of others. And most important, you should always remind yourself that you don’t have to do what everyone else is doing and have a responsibility to develop the talents you have been given.”

My favorite part of that quote is “You don’t have to follow in the footsteps of others.” I would add here that we also should not expect everyone’s way of doing things to be like it has always been done!

Real World Example

Consider the inspiring journey of Clarke Reynolds, whom I met at the inaugural Succeed Without Sight Summit. Despite facing severe vision loss, Clarke dreamed of becoming a renowned artist, incorporating Braille into his artwork. His unique perspective and artistic expression, stemming from his blindness, set him apart. The world, including the art world, didn’t see that. At all.

Clarke, driven by the desire to create opportunities and challenge norms in the art world, joined a community that values uncovering and utilizing unique abilities. Today, he stands as a commissioned artist on two continents, spreading his message of self-belief and celebrating unique abilities.

Here are three takeaways to kickstart your journey of shifting perceptions:

  1. Shift Your Lens: Challenge yourself to see beyond the surface. When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.
  2. Embrace Unique Abilities: Your distinct talents are the key to unlocking your true potential. Celebrate diversity, empower others, and recognize the extraordinary abilities within yourself and those around you.
  3. Join the Community: Connect with like-minded individuals who believe in the power of perception. Attend the 4th Annual Succeed Without Sight Summit on Saturday, December 2nd. Discover stories of triumph, gain insights into unlocking your unique potential, and immerse yourself in a community that celebrates every individual’s capabilities.

Experience the Community 

Don’t miss this opportunity to redefine success and possibility. Register (FREE!) at www.ThrivingBlindAcademy.org/summit for a day filled with inspiration and discovery.

Here’s to seeing ability where others see challenges and unlocking the extraordinary within ourselves and those around us.

Discover the power of embracing ability and advantage in disability through Kristin Smedley’s transformative books, impactful speaking engagements, enlightening workshops, and thought-provoking films. Dive into her best-selling book “Thriving Blind” on Amazon, and elevate your next event by booking Kristin at kristinsmedley.com to ignite conversations that foster inclusivity and empowerment.

cover of what i can be is up to me cover with text The book that does good

Get the children's book that not only empowers children to believe in themselves and see their unique abilities, 100% OF THE PROCEEDS of this book go to programs at Thriving Blind Academy to empower families raising blind children to thrive!

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About Kristin Smedley

Kristin Smedley is a visionary leader who empowers individuals, teams, and organizations to unlock their hidden potential and gain a competitive edge. Kristin, a TEDx speaker, best selling author, nonprofit founder x2, business owner, and acclaimed filmmaker, leaves audiences on their feet cheering and wanting more of her energy and influence.

Kristin has spent her lifetime studying people that succeed without sight and discovering those repeatable systems and strategies that cause a  competitive advantage. 

As a single mom with a signature smile that has raised three children (two of which are blind) to surpass all grim expectations and out- achieve everyone around them, Kristin leaves a lasting impact on those fortunate enough to experience her powerful presentations.

the book thriving blind

Find out how Kristin went from crying on the couch over her two son’s diagnosis of blindness, to raising them to thrive! Download the Introduction chapter of Kristin’s Best Selling Book Thriving Blind: Stories of Real People Succeeding Without Sight. Click the button below!

Thriving Blind Academy!

Join the community with a vibe of THRIVE! Our mentors, live programs and online portal guide Parents of blind/VI children and blind/VI young adults and adults to create lives they are excited to live!