"Come to me all you who are weary"- Matthew 11:28
I'm not sure I've ever been as exhausted as I am now. This week, I've had others ask me if I was ok. Those who know me know that it's unusual for me to be lackluster or without energy. Today, while driving from an impromptu Saturday of work only to do more work when I got home, I saw this sign that read, "Matthew 11:28" in the oddest of places. It wasn't outside of any type of religious center, it was actually on the advertisement board outside of a gas station. For some reason, my gut told me to look-up the scripture. After reading the passage from The Book, something became clear: I'm not tired because I work too much; I'm tired because I care about the value of my work. Nevertheless, I am weary when I feel the value of my work is not good enough and I somewhat punish myself by working even harder.
It is very difficult for me to balance my goals and aspirations with what's necessary to balance myself; "self" can be a closet-act in the face of ambition. I realized that I am greedy; I do not want to settle- I want what I want and I want it now. For many, that may come across as impatience or selfishness. However, the desire that I have to achieve my goals is one of the most essential elements that make me who I am. My approach to achieving what I want is relentless- almost to a fault. With that, comes a passion and energy about life that I would not trade for the world.
Matthew 11:28, brought me back to something that I'm not sure I do enough- call on HIM for guidance and support. Yes, I thank HIM for the many blessings in my life and I pray to HIM- but I've never asked HIM for balance in my life. I invest a great deal of time into working. Prior to today, I cannot remember the last time I truly just focused on ME outside of all the "extra" that life brings on a daily bases. Sure, work is important and so is the time that we put into our relationships with family and friends. I for one know that success requires sacrifice. Nevertheless, it is important to realize that finding time to recognize and enjoy YOU is important to your health, well-being, and mindset; and, most of all the contributions you are able to make into your happiness.
It's ironic that tragedies open our eyes to the simplest of things. We dance in "purple rains" when life deals us those devastating moments. We make promises to ourself in the worst of times, but often forget about those promises once the rain clears from our life. So today, after seeing what I feel is a message from HIM, I decided to focus on three things that will be an addition to my mindset: 1.) I promise to remember what I'm working for beyond "the work", 2.) I promise to commit to time that's truly dedicated to ME beyond "the work", and 3.) I promise to ask HIM for balance that is about my joy beyond "the work". These are the ADDITIONS that I will make to my ambition and goals within the work. The work is not just the careers or jobs that we have, "the work" is everything that we invest time into that is not centered on ourself.
It's amazing to see a child grow; as such, we tell children to enjoy that time while it last. What is it that we recognize in childhood that we do not in adulthood? Perhaps, it's freedom; freedom from the responsibility NOT to focus on responsibility; freedom to GROW; freedom to enjoy SELF. As adults we either lose this perception because of the daily "extra" that life brings, or we are reckless with it. The key is finding balance.
Finding a balance between myself and "the work" does not separate me from investing into my life; it increases my opportunities to invest because it expands my acknowledgement of ME. We have to create opportunities to make deposits into OUR LIFE within THIS LIFE.
How does one grow without spending time enjoying who they are and not just who their "titles" say they are? Like a marriage, self identity is very important. Many people are known for who they associate with or what they do- versus who they are; I think this can cause a great deal of weary on a person. It's difficult enough to deal with the dipping fidelity of life; imagine the dips without any real self-worth. We have to feel value in ourself; that who we are matters to others because we stand for something.
Remember to provide a little extra time for YOU; not to the extent that it compromises the "work" you put into your life- but so that it compliments those investments that you continue to deposit into your livelihood.
Many people ask me what it means to LIVE600. I've defined LIVING as investing in your life to create opportunities that grant you fulfillment in all things that bring joy and happiness: success, family, love, and relationships. How you go about obtaining this fulfillment truly captivates how you live your life.
Prelude to each day; to the idea that an adventure, whether grand or small, awaits you. The tour of life is like no other; in fact, it is the most inexplicable trip or journey. Think NOW and think FORWARD; because, thinking back should have granted you some wisdom to recognize the things you should appreciate, and educated you on habits that help to create new opportunities- new possibilities in your life. This is the definition of "forward progress". If you think your "tour" is done, then you've obviously stopped believing that life can be incredible and it is truly what you make of it.
How you rise from the most difficult and sometimes hopeless circumstances to arise a bigger, better, and stronger person- is resilience. This resilience is what ultimately determines your 600: Being able to look back on the full circle of your life and say that you did something truly worth remembering. The truly rare special moments that happen on our tour are the benchmarks of our life. They are not determined by a status quo of impact; they are determined by the effort in which YOU place your heart and soul into an idea- a vision no matter how big or small- and achieve it. This tour is already special, because it's the rarest gift we are ever given; it is LIFE. We have to remember to leave our milestones on our journey, so that others can follow in the footsteps of change, possibilities, and hope.
Like many, I still run like I'm competing for a spot; like my opponent is standing next to me every moment of everyday. If I don't find a way to stay in the race- to accelerate or to outlast them- then they will without a doubt run past me. My worry is if I continue to get passed, maybe it will be forgotten that I was ever in the race. I don't want to be forgotten. That's just the competitor in me. Nevertheless, I admire and appreciate those running with me- with a pupose. My hopes are always for others to join-in the race. This desire for others to be successful does not take away from my passion to win; my motivation to conquer; nor, does it make we a weak opponent. If anything it increases my motivation and drive. It keeps me humbled and balanced, and reminds me to never take anything for granted.
As positive and forward-thinking as I am, I am a little bit of a cynic; somewhat a pessimist when it comes to the pessimistic views of life. It is very difficult for me not to recognize negatives in circumstances and people. However, I still recognize positivity as the most essential element on "the tour". Positivity is willing to push you to run harder, faster, and longer each and every day- because it brings instant value and purpose to life. When we compete in life we are trying to win or accomplish something. Some people throw in the towel when they see their opponent or when the work just gets too challenging. However, winning can happen on many levels. You may not always be number one, but if you're competing for your 600- placing is not half bad when you are still in the company of number one. Too many people forget to acknowledge when they've placed; and as such, they don't recognize when they've reached another milestone in their life. Milestones increase our desires to keep pushing forward on this great journey.
Lately, I've felt that exhaustion is getting the best of me; that everything that I'm working on leaves me no room to work more. I find myself pulling on the very edge of a rope. This "tug-of-war" is extremely trying. As I find myself becoming completely exasperated, I pull back on that rope; gaining an inch more just when I need it. I am able to muster strength that I know it is from growing and from my faith in HIM; it is from being inspired and motivated to reach my 600 because not only do I believe in me, others do. Any and every ounce of appreciation, recognition, and guidance that anyone has ever given me is added fuel to my tank. To me, motivation comes from the simplest idea: Why IT, anything, matters. In those trying moments so many people who sprinkled positivity into my life become my why. Some still near and dear to me, and some watching me from above. I think about the one promise that I can still give back to them: To never quit on me.
My tour, my journey in life, is about more than me. It requires a great deal of sacrifice of not just what I want to be, but who I need to be in order to become the very best of ME. There's this idea that if you work to please others, then you are forgetting about yourself. There is some truth to the statement, and it is one of the philosophies that I still believe rings true. However, I realize that the people I want to be better for want me to be better for ME. My well-being to them is not about what I can do for them, but how bettering myself brings them joy and happiness. I am a part of what they need for their 600; their LIFE- just as they are for me. They MATTER. We do not take this journey alone, and the people willing to run along side us, behind us, above us, or even in front of us are often the very ones that extend our rope.
My pleasure- my true joy- comes from what I can do for others. Servitude is one of the greatest characteristics of a leader, and yet, so few embrace this quality. The "others" running or willing to run for the same "tour" as me, are the people that I want to serve. We may be competing at different levels, but I appreciate and value the sustenance they bring to my life.
A great story has characters, protagonist and antagonist; it's filled with action, sometimes dramatic and tragic; and it has a resolution that resolve the conflicts within the story. I want to be a character that matters in a great story, and I hope my story has other characters that matter just as much. What is living without others to share it with?
It's easy to say, "I tried and failed". It's much more difficult, and yet rewarding, to say, "I tried and failed, but I'm still trying". If you are having difficulty getting on your LIVE600 tour, start by discovering what matters and why.
Prosperity is acknowledged when you are fortunate enough to realize you're on this grand tour; this epic tale; this journey called LIFE. It is priceless. LIVE it.
When I was young, peanut butter sandwiches were the go-to-meal for "hard times". Many of you can relate, there's nothing like a peanut butter or bologna sandwich when you are hungry. I have to admit, I haven't had a "burnt bologna" sandwich in over a decade- but peanut butter... peanut butter sandwiches remind me of how far I've come and why it is so important that I remember where I came from.
Stay with me on this one. It's not just about peanut butter...
Not long ago, spending $20 was a big deal. Not because I was poor; not because I'd never had a $20 bill; but because, having $20 meant that I could buy at least 10 jars of peanut butter. For those that do not know, having unexpired peanut butter in the cabinet means that you should never go hungry. Peanut butter can be spread on bread, a cracker, a pretzel, a carrot- or just a spoon; it is one of those universal items that provides fulfillment and satisfaction of a lot of taste-buds at a low cost. The value of peanut butter is, therefore, not in the dollar amount but in the necessities that it satisfies. I open my cabinet sometimes to get a reality check; to remind myself that I'm still working for the endless supply of peanut butter. How often do we forgot that everything we want is not what we necessarily need? Peanut butter reminds me of that.
I reflect on conversations that I have with people, young and old, about their needs. I hear a lot of wants but seldom do I hear needs. When we satisfy the things that we need, perhaps, we can get to the things that we want. It's a process; one in which requires an investment of sacrifice and a prioritizing of real needs to wants. For those of you that enjoy analogies: We may need peanut butter, but do we really need jelly? How do we ever get to what we truly want if we've yet to establish what we need?
There are 3 things that I know I need: HIM, inspiration, and purpose. Each essentially lead me to all the other things that I want: Success, love, and the right kind of power. Success is not defined by money; it's defined by how the money effects my life. If the money doesn't bring me joy and happiness- it doesn't matter. If love doesn't bring me lifelong relationships of family, friends, and the right matrimony for me- it doesn't matter. And, if power doesn't qualify me to help others grow- it's not worth it.
I don't want a life without peanut butter. Peanut butter keeps me down-to-earth and balances my humbleness and modesty; most of all it inspires me to never backdown from my needs and to recognize my blessings. If you step back just for a second and look at what your absolute needs have brought to your life, you will find that they have gifted you just as many of your wants than actually "wanting" for them brings.
I lust for life. The invigorating type of life that brings LIVING alive. This is a difficult concept for many to understand; it sounds redundant and naive to some. But, what is life without living it and what is living life without knowing WHY you're in it? If you ever have said you are blessed, acknowledge what that means. Accept that it means you have peanut butter in your cabinet: An essential part of your needs and a true nurishment to living.
I'm no mother. I do not proclaim to know what it's like to be one. However, I am a woman; a daughter; a sister; a aunt and much more that symbolizes a woman. So, to some degree I can say I know precisely what it's like to feel a mothers love. In light of many unexpected and tragic events of late and in the past, I begin to think of life in reverse. I wonder how would it be to start the last part first and the first part last?
The question took me to unfamiliar, yet familiar, territory. I thought about my own life in reverse. Life has a boundless timeline. My clairvoyance may allow me to predict the consequence of my actions and reap the benefits of my work, but it does not allow me to see the time on my life clock. My life in reverse is such a different story. Pay close attention to what's unveiled...
At 31, I'm a work horse. I've dedicated a great deal of my days to "grinding" towards my goals. My circle of friends, real friends, is greatly limited. But, most wouldn't suspect or know that by my personality. I'm cynical; my cynicism has both protected and hindered me from entrusting my time and energy into others. My mindset each day does not begin with the goal of obtaining friends or spending more time with family; it begins with thoughts of how I can progress even further from where I am today. Does that make me selfish? Heartless? Naive? At what point is that supposed to be the focus in my life? Did I mention I was a work horse...
My 20's were like the 90's; potentially the greatest era of my life, thus far. This was the decade of rapid growth for me. I learned what fit me; and, I'm not talking about clothing. I'm talking about what fit my livelihood and the person that I wanted to see everyday in the mirror. I became the woman I am today through the experiences of my 20's. Whether it was the good, the bad, or the ugly- it shaped me into the person, the woman, that I'm extremely confident with today. I walked on "the line" in my 20's; not behind it or over it. My favorite "keepsake" from that decade of my life are my old cellphones. Every now and then I'll power them up and scroll through the contacts and all messages, just so I can remember the freedom in which I allowed myself to be daring in relationships and choices. I wasn't wreckless then, but I definitely wasn't rigid either. The "roaring 20's" was real to me.
As an adolescent, I was innocent. Innocent from choices, mistakes, and even responsibility to some degree. My focus then had everything to do with FREEDOM. Then, the only obstacle that stood in my way was authority and structure. I walked "the line" everyday; afraid of consequence. Nevertheless, my adolescence was the most surreal reality of my life. Life then, was less complex; less real; less compromising; less detrimental. My "cry for help" was always intercepted by the people in my life that loved me unconditionally. I had far greater freedom then than I realized; I had freedom to fall...
So many people forget that tomorrow is not tomorrow until it happens; the only promise we have is right now- the breath we take at this very moment is our promise. The realization of that is a deafening thud; a thunder on our rainbow. So, while your rainbow is a rimlet in the stars, and your freedom is at the foundation for your falls- LIVE. Live like you know the only thing that's guaranteed is today. Live beyond the stress of life and for the opportunity of living. Invest in LIFE.
Living to the fullest is without emptiness. We can't regret what we cannot control, but we can control what we don't want to regret. A mother feels life, and not that a father doesn't, but a mother... she knows the rumble in her belly; the heartbeat of Gods gift. And in that moment, she knows that the first part doesn't come last; the very best that life has to give is described in a single moment; the beginning; the period of innocence and of freedom. Yes, everyone does not have the opportunity to experience the very best of life in the beginning, and that's an unfortunate reality of society. But the first part... the very first part of life... of conception...
of breathing... I imagine that is LIVING. That is a gift, a joy, and a blessing that no one on this earth can take away.
Nothing has been more inspirational to me than experiencing pain. Be it moments of losing a loved one, rejection, struggling, or falling short- pain has made my skin thick and my armor strong. Many people use pain as an excuse to why they "can't" do this or that; however, my faith in HIM- my belief that we sometimes have to walk through the pain to feel the joy- is what keeps me moving forward when my escalator in life wants to take me backwards.
Nothing is perfect. I can't think of one relationship or experience in my life that has been perfect. With that being said, I can think of many relationships and experiences in my life that are priceless. I can pinpoint the moment that I understood who I am; understood what I wanted to be known for- the footsteps of what I hope to be my legacy. It was the simplest of revelations, which made me a believer that little moments can often turn into some of the biggest moments of your life...
July 1999, I was at Mammo's house. My older cousins wanted to walk to the corner store, and I didn't have a dime to my name. I walked anyways in hopes that one of them would give me a dollar to buy something. When we arrived at the store, we all went inside and I watched as everyone raided the aisles. Candy, chips, soda- you name it and they had it. I stood by the door because I didn't have any money. Everyone got to the register, placed their items on the counter, and begin walking out with their bags. I remember wanting one thing that day: a Mrs. Baird's Apple Pie. They were always on display in the front of the store. As I stood and watched everyone checkout with their items, it became very apparent that no one was going to offer to buy me anything. As we walked back to Mammo's house, I lagged behind watching everyone walk with their bags of goodies. At first, I felt pitiful and angry; I almost began to cry. But, for whatever reason I held back the tears.
When we got back to Mammo's, everyone sat down on the porch and begin to eat their snacks. I didn't say a word- I even pretended to laugh at their jokes as they talked about various things. Finally, one of my cousins asked if I wanted the rest of their chips. For a split second, I could feel myself grow happy. Before I knew it, these exact words came out of my mouth, "No. I'm good." I didn't mean it; had no idea at the time why I even said it. Of course, I wanted the chips. I realized years later that my pride held me back. I didn't earn those chips; they weren't a reward for anything I'd done. They were simply someone else's "sloppy seconds"- "leftovers".
To this day, I refuse to take anyone's seconds. It doesn't anger me not to be given anything, it simply makes me work harder. I didn't know it then, but I realized in the summer of 1999 that you can't expect anyone to feel sorry for you; you can't rely on pity to get ahead. You have to work to have anything, and if you wait on "seconds" and "leftovers" you'll never get ahead.
My cousins may not remember that day, but they will recall that I begun to ask them what "WORK" I could do for them to earn money. Whether it was washing dishes, cleaning the bathroom, or folding clothes- I learned how to work to earn "the all mighty dollar". As silly as it may seem, every now and then I'll go into a store just to buy a Mrs. Baird's Apple Pie. It reminds me that hard work pays off.
It's all about the perception of that experience. I could've wrote this post and changed the whole perception to seem like a victim; as if I were treated poorly. But, that's not the case. My cousins unintentionally taught me that you have to earn your share; your piece of the pie. No one has to hand you anything.
There's no obligation owed to me by anyone. If anything, I'm forever thankful to my struggles- my GROWING PAINS. It takes a lot to break a mindset that accepts hardships, rejection, and falls (not failures) as opportunities to learn- to GROW. Even in the most hopeless of situations, I may shed a tear- I may even collapse in a state of hopelessness for a second- but I will not give-up without TRYING again and again.
There is a fighter within all of us; an inner strength of determination that pulls us through the worst of times. Although it is not ideal to be down and the solution is not always the outcome that we desire, there is a will and a way in every situation; we just have to find the will to find the way. Remember this: GROWING pains are simply pains needed to GROW.
Many people wait to celebrate living; they wait for special occassions like Christmas, a life changing event, or their birthday. To truly LIVE, a person should be able to look back on most of the days of their life like a great poem- a journey of legendary moments unique to them. I continue to find two things to be true about life: It is what you make of it and how you live it that makes it beyond special.
We can never be certain about what's in store for us from day to day; what hurdles we will have to leap or moments that can potentially change our life. The only guarantee we have is the gift of life in every breath we are blessed to take; that means every breath that happens every second in our life is a blessing. To me, that entitles us to always have something to be thankful for. If you are a cynic, always seeking the very worst outcome, nothing will ever matter or awaken you enough to change the course of your life. Nevertheless, if you are someone who believes that life is an opportunity in itself to be epic- to be better than average, to explore endless opportunities of those opportunties- then you can understand what it means to LIVE EPIC.
The degree of success from person to person often differs. A lot of people do not mind losing as long as they lose by a small margin; while others don't value winning unless they scunk their opponent. These "games" taught me that an opponent is measured by skill and weakness; what power you give someone over you versus the power they actually have. A skillful opponent has always taught me something that made me grow, and a weak opponent has always reminded me of something that I did or should know not to do.
For many men the journey of life is about how they stand-up to any man standing next to them. However, the difference from man to man is what they do to get ahead or measure-up to the next man. This, I believe, is the same for most women but on a different scale. Many women may measure their success by the success of their man, but forget the singular image of themselves. The difference is being able to say what "WE have" and what "I have" in a relationship. The point is that people have different expectations in life. Our "quality of life" is not one image of the white picket fence and the pictureous Cosby Show family, it's a cluster of several different images unique to the eyes of the beholder. At the end of the day, people have a choice of what defines their life.
The amount of energy we expend on absorbing others worries or engaging in pointless competitions like the men talking at the gas pump, often hinder the progression in our life. I realized that the best thing I can do for anyone is to invest the very best of me into ME. It doesn't mean I have to cut everyone out of my life or stop caring, but it allows me to focus on controling things that are within my power and release the things that are for others to control.
To this day, I can remember my most epic Spades and Dominoes games: 1.) the first time I beat my Godfather head-up, and 2.) the first time I yelled "roll call" with my mother and grandma as my opponents. These were strong opponents. They challenged me, they made me think for myself, and they helped me grow.
We only have ONE life to LIVE. Define what "living epic" means to you.
Recently, I received bad news about a family member. Their choices landed them in a very bad position. Upon receiving the urgent phone calls and dramatic text, I became nostalgic. My thoughts took me back to the City Park in Commerce, TX; back in the day when it was the place to be on a Sunday evening. There were the best of times, when nothing went wrong and everyone got along; there were the worst of times when you could literally smell the brewing of confrontation in the air before all hell broke loose.
I remember the first time I heard the sound of a gun and bullets ripping through the air. No colors like fireworks; no trace of their [the bullets] location. I don't remember feeling like I was in danger; I can't recall crying; I don't even remember the sound of people running and screaming in panic. In fact, the only other thing I can remember about that day besides the sound of the bullets leaving the gun, is that I never saw blood. Surviving bullets should always be a reminder that life is too short to waste not placing a stamp or living in the joy of knowing who you are, who you want to be, and how you want to live.
The moment we are born may be the very moment we begin reversing the path of bullets...
1983, the year I was born; the beginning of my life as I know it. My mother was a 17 year old high school dropout. I was born out of wedlock to a societal labeled "loser". My father was "un-named" on my birth certificate. But, I was raised "right"; raised to the best of a "losers" ability and beyond. My mother loved me, and all of her children to "the moon and back; to the deep and oblivious". She was the Rockefeller in my life. No filter on the tough way she showed love, the way she struggled, or the setbacks she had trying to grow.
"To the moon and back", she dodged bullet; after bullet; after bullet. Her survival taught me that running was not the best approach to life. Facing the murkiness in a chaotic storm, in rage and in fear, is the strength that we gift ourselves. Boys and girls, women and men, survive hardships and labels because life lends itself to the "comeback kid". Living past those predestined bullets, has taught me you can survive bullets even when you are the target.
Choices are often the bullets in our life...
My Uncle "Head", surreal that I haven't said his name in years, died in early 2000. He was only in his late 20's. He never had the opportunity to see much of his life because he spent most of it institutionalized. He was a great guy that always figuratively seemed to keep his gun loaded. He was the epitome of self-destruction, and yet he was the one that you cheered for simply because he made you feel like you mattered. He was a thief to his own livelihood, and yet he inspired me with the simplest acts of kindness. So to me, his life was not all in vain. Nevertheless, bullets shot right through his soul; it [his soul] lended no shield. Rest in peace James Easter; you taught me a lot about the power of choices.
Everyday we are gifted the opportunity to open our eyes to something new, we must sift through the smoke of the gun; the slippery slope that challenges us to be a great story or a forgotten memory. I will never forget the bullets that my mother dodged in life to give me the opportunity to LIVE my here and now; I'll never forget the choices my Uncle Head made that unfortunately ended his opportunity to see the now and future.
We are our greatest vessel of strength, and our greatest conquers of self-defeat. Everything that doesn't go our way doesn't make us weaker; it makes us stronger and more aware of our absolute power and powerless surrondings and internal flaws. What is life without flaws and imperfections? Inadequacy is an incapable mindset. Without my flaws, my faults, my stumbles, and my imperfections I would be stifled- incapable of growing- and that would make me incredibly-un-incredibly ORDINARY. I live in a reality that I'm not perfect, I will make mistakes, and that is perfectly ok as long as I don't become a victim of my own inflicted misfortunes.
Life will bring a few bullets your way. Survive the disillusion that when things fail to go as planned you then become a failer; a loser; written- off. Because if you don't, you will fall at the helm of a short story entitled "same story different day", and those often get left on dusty shelves.
The world is defined as the togetherness of earth, its people, its countries, and its natural features. How valuable is the idea of six degrees of separation in a world that has transcended into a mass of ongoing and emerging technology? Technology has allowed us to reach someone from the tip of the panhandle to the edge of the Bermuda Triangle. This "new dawn" of communication is arguably as exquisite, if not more so, than the age known as the period of "Enlightenment". There is a profound amount of emphasis on individualism and reason in this day and age, and adolescents are the critical elements to the exploration of such empowering skills.
"Brain Networking", is the idea that kids can exist in a global community of learning, and become responsible for the discovery and delivery of knowledge. Recently, I came across a website/app entitled: www.brainly.com. A few things struck me: 1.) it was free to join, 2.) it was an educational learning community, and 3.) it's a community of students helping students. To some, there may be nothing truly mindboggling or maybe even phenomenal about the concept; however, in this day and age this site is on the cutting edge of a very important factor of what it takes to produce the autonomous learner.
While previewing the site from my cellphone, I thought about my little sister who's currently in high school. During final exams, she called me late one night and said she needed help with Geometry. I chuckled out of embarrassment; being an educator and a college grad, I know she believes that I should have the knowledge to answer almost any question. In this instance, I was clueless. Geometry was one of my worse subjects in high school, so other than a long hour of Googling to try to help her- I had nothing else to offer. This brought me back to the overshadowing question that we often ask ourselves in education, "How do we truly help kids outside of our walls when they need us?"
I thought about the households of those who are economically disadvantaged- the exact label that I was growing-up. How many of their parents are educated beyond high school? Can afford a tutor? Have a computer in their home? Or, can even afford or find a way to get their kids home from after school tutorials? These are problems that exist in abundance in education. Moreover, even in the most affluent or educated of homes, there still exist a high probability that no one within the home will be able to address questions concerning various levels and subject areas in education. So, why is Brainly.com effective?
Even in economically disadvantaged homes, kids most likely have access to a cellphone. Even if they have a cellphone that is turned off, they are able to use the web as long as they can find a wifi server; this is the exact situation my little sister faced through middle and early high school. With this website, students have an opportunity to give and receive help from thousands of students across the world, and it's easy to access and use from any electronic device. With high competition in college admissions, scholarships, and preparation for jobs we've yet to see- the right or wrong answer and knowledge can make all the difference in a GPA, SAT/ACT, AP, or STAAR score. Furthermore, for that student that may not be college bound, but is trade bound and simply needs to know a material property for their welding class- Brainly.com is a meaningful outlet.
The overarching question: How does asking, receiving, and giving answes to questions help kids learn? The cycle of learning is not complex but the process usually is. We best learn through inquiry and the response to that inquiry. When inquiry comes from self, it produces more ownership towards the response; thus, increasing the value of maintaining that knowledge. For example, most of us experienced our first job in the food or retail industry at the lower level. Someone had to teach us how to do the work. Once we learned the "how" we performed the task. However, when we became ambitious or inquisitive and began to inquire about other positions, we had to ask questions in order to learn. This same cycle is how we've always learned, but the process becomes more complex as learning is deepened by levels and expectations.
Homework has become somewhat of an anomaly in education. It's easier for kids to rely on cheating when there's no one there to answer their questions. Most kids will attempt to do their homework, but will become frustrated and give-up when they reach a roadblock of understanding. Brainly.com allows students the opportunity to engage in questioning, understanding, and delivery of knowledge. It's not fail-proof, in the sense that it's going to produce Einstein's, but it absolutely helps households of students level out on an even playing field when it comes to receiving that additional help that's often needed.
We should all live to enlighten ourselves through self- discovery of knowledge. The world is a power of brain networks that we just have to access. There's a lot of power in contributing knowledge and obtaining it. Even the very best teachers will tell you that even they continue to learn by teaching, because they have exposure to continual practice and feedback. Brainly.com is an opportunity to explore individuality in how you learn; there's great empowerment in that.
Most people, whether they know it or not, wouldn't argue against an organized society full of enrichment; enrichment of favorable chances. How you set yourself apart from the normal perception of your culture, your ethnicity, and the tragic pitfall of the illusional ruthless perception of life- the idea that you are a victim of failure if you don't succeed on the first or second try- will define your destiny. It is not society that sets anyone up for failure, it's the mindset that society controls your drive to be ambitious and successful. I can't imagine looking back on life and saying, "Dear Society, thank you for ruining my life..."
It had to be 1998 when I really understood the power of societal influence. I'd never seen so much control exerted over someone simply on the premises of acceptance and pity. I dare not call a family member out; that's not the intention or purpose of this post. However, the illustration is very real. The probability of meeting someone that can impact your livelihood for better or for worse, is very high. Moreover, the probability of meeting someone in the criminal institution we call "prison" and presuming that they will somehow influence your life in a positive way is more doomed for failure and problematic than any of the later.
When I was younger, I experienced what criminals are truly like for a brief time; please forgive me for the term if it offends you. I've watched the co-habitation of mindsets that are completely stuck in "plotting" for the quick fix to get ahead. Watching the life of criminals within my family taught me what distruction truly means. I witnessed deception, violence, and panic playout in one solitary picture that never once lead to anything positive but somehow always lead to a lot of blame. It's a fascinatingly devastating reality to realize that some people truly can look beyond their own destructive actions and place responsibility on anything and anyone but themselves.
The disturbing behaviors of a criminal-mind play-out in the most destructive ways. A criminal continues to seek felonious acts to satisfy their sickness to conform to taking what they feel society owes them. It's a mindset foolish enough to believe that the only forgiveness for shortcomings or failure is to take and ruin what anyone else has that they envy. Society doesn't create criminals, circumstance and influence does; those are not people they are actions.
A couple of weeks ago I was working at the gym, and a mother was riding the bike in front of me, while talking on the phone. I tried not to listen to her conversation, but it was difficult not to. She was talking about her son; telling the person on the other line that he wasn't going to be anything but a criminal like his father before he even turned fifteen. I listened to the disgust and certainty in her voice as she talked about the reasons her fourteen year old son was failing to be a prosperous young man with the potential for a bright future. She pointed the finger at his father and then his schooling; from there she blamed rappers and "his ignorant hood friends", as she distastefully put it. I begin to shake my head as I walked away. That mother labeled her son a criminal; she set his potential at fourteen to nothing more than an orange jumpsuit. I could be wrong, but I imagined that she talked the same in his presence because she felt no shame talking that way in the public eye. What a shame to give-up on less than two decades of living, on a life you created; what a shame to face such a vast amount of potential problems vs potential opportunities in society without hope.
I thought back to my family members who'd been labeled criminals; thought back to why someone would mate with an inmate and then bring them home knowing that it is likely a futile relationship. After many years of knowing them, I realized somewhere along the way they lost hope. They lost hope that anyone saw them as anything differently than that label that they should've shed or left back in some locked file cabinet with tarnished sheets and fading ink.
I'm not sure that we can rehabilitate the mind of some criminals, but I do believe that a mindset without the belief that society has just as much good as bad will forever remained chained to the label of criminal. Not just the actual criminal defined by law, but the criminal that steals their own opportunities or the opportunities of others simply by degrading their possibility at living a quality life.
Each and every one of us deserves a chance at bettering ourselves. Not through a production of excuses and expected obligation because of race, sexuality, or status- but because we are fortunate enough to live in a society that holds valuable opportunities. Surround yourself with people that help you grow. We live in a society of more than criminal-minds.
Many people play on weakness; in fact, all of us have used the weakness of others to get what we want at some point in our life. Our motives are not always bad. There are times when the intentions of persuasion are for the betterment of others, not just ourselves. However, in society- whether in business or any type of relationships- you must have leverage earned by value. If you don't, you will be a China Doll: easily breakable; delicate. China Dolls can only sustain so many falls. If you're a lucky or a well built China Doll you can be dropped and sustain the cracks, but if you're not, one fall can ruin your entire livelihood.
I think about the preparation I've put into interviews in my life; the amount of thought, practice, and planning I put myself through because I didn't want anyone to see me as weak or incompetent in my abilities. When I was 15, I wanted to work for CiCi's Pizza as a hostess; the true aspirations of a 15 year old. I was determined to prove that I had the endurance and humility to work in a place where many of my classmates went to hangout, frequently trashed tables, and order absurd combinations of "specialty" pizza they knew they wouldn't eat. I wanted to serve them and not feel a bit of shame for it, because I had a job.
It just so happens that a year before I turned 15, we lived in an apartment complex right behind CiCi's so we would go there quite often. There was a young girl, likely 16 or 17, that worked as the hostess. I thought her job was cool because she got the opportunity to deal directly with the customers, and not behind the buffet counter making pizzas. She was a intricate part of the business limelight, in my eyes. I would watch what she did closely, critique her interactions with customers. If she didn't smile enough, I noted that; if she didn't greet every customer with the same enthusiasm, I noted that; if she missed giving one kid in the room a balloon; I noted that. I was convinced that I could do her job, and not only that, I could do it better. That was just the way I thought.
The day I went to apply for the position, the managers happened to be having a meeting. One came over to check me out to the buffet, and I told him I was actually there to apply for the hostess position. He looked at me, surely thinking I looked like a 12 year old, and said, "The hostess position isn't open for hire." I told him I knew it wasn't, but I wanted to apply early in case it opened. He looked puzzled, but he asked, "Why do you want to work at CiCi's?" I still remember my response word for word, "Because, I like making people smile and meeting new people excites me." He then said, "But, people can be rude and mean sometimes; especially when you make a mistake. How are you going to handle that being so young?" I responded, "Everybody has bad days and everybody makes mistakes. I would still treat that person kindly and do my job." It may have been the most immature and naive answer in the world, but he smiled at me and told me to fill out the application. He called me the next day, and I became a hostess at CiCi's Pizza.
I think about how getting the job at CiCi's Pizza, working only 15 hours a week making $5.15 an hour, had an impact on my life. I realize I didn't have a traditional interview to get the job at CiCi's, but what I did have was a genuine moment of a first impression. I thought about what the manager saw in me, and I can think of four traits: enthusiasm, ambition, confidence, and fearlessness. I wasn't a China Doll. I wasn't intimidated by the fact the position wasn't even open, or that he was a manager, or even that I was only 15 years old- I knew what I wanted and I went for it. I wasn't going to be broken or defeated by obstacles.
It's extremely difficult to watch people advance when you know they are truly China Dolls. When you recognize their weaknesses in character and their limitations in ability, or even more so- their lack of passion. Their title is tarnished when these areas are exposed; that is a difficult aspect to recover. However, even if you are a China Doll you can re-invent or create a stronger reputation and advancement for yourself by the effort that you put into your ambition, being enthusiastic, showing genuine confidence, and being fearless in the face of disappointment; the revamping of failure lies in your passion in these traits. We all have China in our character; those delicate spots of weakness. But, the armor that you place around those delicacies is what strengthens your potential to surpass true China Dolls.
There's a sickness in self-pity. Pity is a decision to accept misfortune as an answer to failure. Failure is not necessarily a final decision; it's a part of life- a large part of growth. Misfortunes can be the death of progression if you're weak. Complaining about what's already occurred wont change the outcome, but it will dull the present.
I see China Dolls everyday. I wonder if they recognize their weaknesses as I do theirs and my own. I don't waste time dwelling on their flaws or position in life. I focus on my own China spots, and I try to strengthen my armor by gaining more knowledge in what I seek and making myself visible through the efforts of my work. If your investments are predicated on others performance, positions, or lack there of- then you've lost site of YOUR potential. If you feel you work with or for China Dolls, just remember that it's not the work you do for them or that they don't do- it's the work you do for yourself and the motivation you put into others to maximize their true potential by showing them how to grow. Build YOUR armor and don't worry yourself with China Dolls.
My China has never failed to empower me.