An International Focus

This is a piece I thought would be especially fitting for the start of the new year. I’m inviting my readers to start this year with a different intention. At least that is how I am beginning 2020. The new intention is to have “An International Focus”. Over the years I have been exposed to so many great people from all over the world and I am absolutely excited by the experience each time. And this isn’t just because I am in the media industry. What I now know is that I am constantly being enriched with all of these new connections from everywhere I go. The key thing I have learned is that there is so much more to learn and even more people to meet. So, this challenge of setting a new intention is one I am ready to take on full force in this upcoming year.

I would like to see the world come together in a special way for this new year. We need this perspective in all mediums, not just print.  And I already see this happening in some television and social media with equality, inclusion, and other topics on how we, the world, is better when we come together. More is needed and I will be leading that charge; especially in the television and entertainment industry. When I think of the premise for International Focus Magazine, it is clear the benefit it provides in bringing visibility to leaders and communities all over the world under the pages of one publication. This gives us all an amazing place and space to learn about various cultures, countries, and people. IF Magazine provides that platform and then some; highlighting those making an impact in the Americas and abroad. This magazine celebrates the uniqueness and the similarities of a vast world on its pages. I, for one, have been excited to share my Media Moment column for the past year in 2019.  The various covers, interviews, events and more show how the world is an amazing rainbow just from the magazine’s perspective. I want to see this more fully and uncover the stories that display the truths of our existence in video. As Martin Luther King, Jr. said so eloquently in his Christmas sermon that we must “truly believe in the sacredness of human personality”. Because we are all having a different human experience, we definitely have our own personality to bring as well. 

Most people don’t realize that getting to know new people and people from different backgrounds is something I really enjoy.  It may not have always been that way for me.  Since I was a military kid, I really didn’t have a choice because we moved so much. Now I see the exposure benefited me greatly and has allowed me to expand my media company to service those around the globe no matter what their background. What always makes me laugh is how we, including myself, can be so focused on who we are and where we come from that we forget there are others who only know their way of speaking or doing things as well. People will say I have an accent or they will notice that my twang or pronunciation of words is different from theirs when they have come from other countries.  When I speak to other Americans, particularly people who know I am from New Orleans, they make it a point to say that it sounds like I lost my accent because I no longer sound like other people from New Orleans. It’s all about exposure.  Over the years, I have lost and found my New Orleans drawl depending on what I am saying or who I am around. Or maybe it never really formed because I left New Orleans at such an early age.  Yet the point is we all have accents! It just depends on who you ask.  What I’m saying is it is time to embrace the things that make us different in everyone we meet.  There is a pleasant surprise waiting on the other end of getting to know people who didn’t come from where you are from, live like you lived, or look like you do. Communication in a language is the music of a people connecting with the world. I want my ears to bend to the sounds of all accents so I can communicate and understand better. I’m not really concerned about the accents or drawls themselves though. I find that there are some universal communications like a BIG bright smile which often says hello, you are welcome, I am happy, I’m approachable, and it’s nice to meet you!

This world is so big!  The more people we know the smaller and more intimate the world will start to feel. And I feel like we have a little taste of the world right here in Houston. Such a diverse city, representing every background you can think of it seems.  Even in such a diversely populated city you can still find a way to gravitate to the people that look, sound, think, and are like you.  That homogenous congregating happens unconsciously and there is nothing wrong with it.  It’s human nature. What you must do is be intentional about surrounding yourself with people who are so different from you in many respects.  It is about stepping out of your comfort zone and exposing yourself to the wealth that exists in the experience of new people. Whoever said it ain’t easy never said something so true!  It is necessary to expand your exposure and perspective. You would be surprised the myths and stereotypes that will fall by the wayside when you take the time to try something and meet someone new! Houston has so many different events, luncheons, galas, conferences, organizations, everyday meet-ups and venues that are prime ground for making new connections happen.  This is where your exposure can begin. You just have to seek them out. I say “An International Focus” because that’s what I want to have more of, what I am going to continue to have, and what we all must have! The more we know about those around us the more “We” can all thrive together.


This has been a Media Moment written by: Centrell Reed, Founder and Co-CEO of CReed Global Media & Production.

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