Tag Archives: Goals

And…we’re back.

It’s been almost 7 months since my last post. I won’t bother with excuses. Suffice to say, I’ve been busy sweating and toiling trying to realize some of the philosophies I only pontificated about last year. This post is less of a triumphant return to blogging and more of a casual greeting to friends I haven’t hung with in a while.

So, hello.

In the past several months, my life has been in an almost constant state of flux. I feel like I’m being melted down and remade into a better me. The transformation is still happening and I’m looking forward to eventually establishing a New Normal. I’ve started and stopped two significantly stressful jobs (at non-profits), and now I’m in Tulsa, Oklahoma training to be a urban teacher for Teach for America. Essentially, it’s a boot camp for guerrilla educators. My mind is a barely-zippable, overpacked suitcase, crammed full of new facts and statistics, voodoo pedagogy, names of new acquaintances and authors whose writings I should ingest sooner than later.

People often ask, “How is it there in Tulsa.?” They mean well. It’s difficult to answer with equal parts excitement for a new chapter in life and unrivaled homesickness. I usually answer, ‘It’s OK,’ (silently congratulating myself for making a clever pun). In truth, I am thrilled to be actualizing a plan that has been over a year in the works. I am willing to put myself through the unpaid rigor and strain of 5am wake-ups and midnight bedtimes for weeks straight for the benefit of children here in Tulsa. I’m tolerate of the massive info-dumps that are ever-present when emails and soft copies would kill less trees and less hours. I’m more or less a willing participant in the rounds and rounds of ‘reflection sessions’ that TFA seems to revel in when most of us prefer to process internally and alone.

I sure do miss home. It’s been about a month since I’ve seen my home and those I care for most. Every day that passes I feel myself becoming more calloused and steeled from the emotions of home-sickness. It’s a survival instinct, I presume. No matter the ‘fun’ that might occur here, it’s still occurring 243 miles from the people and places that inspire me and replenish my energies. This is why I normally prefer short vacations or ‘stay-cations.’ I love being home.

The good news is: every hour that passes I’m closer to completing this summer program and returning to Kansas City.

 

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Monday Pep Talk

Today, shift your focus.

Shift your focus away from distractions and back to your purpose.

To your calling.

To your dreams.

Find a place to serve. Give some of your life away.

Be present.

Teach.

Learn.

Do both simultaneously.

Smile today.

Smile; even in the chaos.

Embrace the chaos.

Embrace being challenged.

Embrace being changed.

Did you think it would be easy?

This?

Finding your purpose?

Finding it then living it out?

It’s not easy, and it was never meant to be.

Will you persevere?

Will you reject what is good to pursue what is great?

Pursue greatness and become greater.

Become better. Become more.

See your influence and vision expanded.

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Push Things Forward

It’s officially a new year. Individuals worldwide are trying to lose weight, quit smoking, and become more financially savvy, among other worthwhile endeavors. It’s all easier said than done, isn’t it? As easy as it is for us to make grandiose plans about change and transformation, it all comes down to individual moments. In essence, it is all about making small tweaks on a consistent basis, in hopes that when we ring in 2013 — we have made some positive changes and become our truer selves.

Personally, I’m aggressively trying to turn the page on old chapters of my story so that I can allow room for new ideas and opportunities. I need to build some momentum, bit by bit, every day. In part, that is the purpose of this blog: to share my ideas and processes, and to acquire a sort of “cloud accountability.” The more I type my thoughts and share them here, the more tangible my goals seem, the more concrete they become.

Expect resistance. It would be foolish not to. Every day when we tell ourselves that we’ll live differently than we have in the past, life will be quick to shake it’s head and say, “No, you won’t.” Rituals and ruts quickly seep back into our existences and before long, another month has passed —another year has come and gone, and we are no closer to our dreams.

Let’s make 2012 different. Let this year be the year that you make small changes everyday with the hope that those tweaks will compound into lifestyle changes. Read up. Educate yourself on how to accomplish your goals. Dig in and spend some time investing in the mental toughness that is required to make postive changes. Develop a mantra — or even a manifesto. Buddy up with those who can grow you — with the people who are strong where you’re weak. Chances are, you’ll add value to their lives too.

Let’s push things forward.

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