Thursday, January 22, 2009

What does YOUR world look like?

I am so encouraged and inspired and excited to be living right now in the United States. There is a sense of possibility and opportunity that is almost palpable. And I love the Internet! We have, at our disposal, an unlimited supply of information, opinion, ideas, and inspiration for absolutely any topic we can imagine.

The interesting thing I'm noticing today as I peruse a few websites is that it is simple to reinforce an already-existing worldview by just scanning a few current events articles.

Since we are predisposed and conditioned to see what we're looking for, we can look at this time of presidential transition as either a very positive thing or a very negative thing and will see exactly what we're looking for.

There are many stories on the internet today about our new president, most with their own twist. Here is just a sampling of some of the headlines from a blog called The New Republic:

"Only Makes You Stronger: Why the Recession Will Revive America"
"Enjoy the Bipartisan Lovefest While You Can - It Ain't Going to Last Very Long"
"Signs Point to Frustration: Why Obama Will Confuse Partisans On Both Sides"
"The Battle of the Ivies! How Harvard Beat Yale In the Democratic Party"
"Was Obama's Speech An Incoherent Mess, A Wonkish Downer, or a Subtle Epic?"

You'll probably click on the article with the headline that supports your already-preconceived worldview, if you're like most people.

Even yesterday in one of the meetings I conducted I heard someone say that he thought Obama's inaugural address was the worst thing he had ever heard. It was depressing and didn't give him any hope at all (he's a very vocal Republican, from conversations I've heard before). How could he have heard it any differently? (And maybe I was affected by his attitude because I'm a supporter of our new president.)

Another topic I've heard so much about in many of my master mind community gatherings is the state of public education, since many of the participants are parents of children in those public schools. I would have to say that, in my very unscientific evaluation, approximately 90% of the comments that come up about public education have something to do with what's wrong in that setting. In fact, that percentage may even be a bit generous.

I'm encouraged, however, by something a friend sent me this morning. Her son is a 7th grader and every year the 7th graders participate in a Courage Retreat. Here's more information about that:

For students to succeed academically and socially, a caring and respectful school climate is essential. It has become a tradition at Horizon Middle School for all 7th graders to participate in a Courage Retreat as a part of the seventh grade curriculum. A team of three motivational leaders from Youth Frontiers Inc. along with a staff of about 30 high school mentors will facilitate the one-day retreat.

The goals of the Courage Retreat are that students:
Understand how fear permits them to compromise their goals and values.
Identify common fears of students their age.
Identify moments of decision between courage and fear.
Commit to one act of courage in their life.

I know there are countless other examples of ways public schools - and school teachers and administrators - are making amazing differences in kids' lives. Why is it that the conversations in most of our social and workplaces settings tend to focus first on the negative?

We are currently planning the Third Annual Bigger Small Talk Summit for June 16-17 in Fargo. Here people will get a chance to participate in dialogue that leads to meaningful and difference-making action in the world. In addition, they will get a chance to discover and name their own Genius under the expert direction and guidance of Dick Richards, author of Is Your Genius At Work? and the powerful blog Riding on Dragons.

People in our community who participated in the Genius Workshop last summer are still buzzing about the insights they gained from that day.

How FAR will you GO for Bigger Small Talk and more meaning in your business and personal life? Come to FARGO June 16-17 for an experience you'll long remember!!

Watch for more information SOON! (The website will also be updated shortly.)

Take part in activities that support the worldview you aspire to. You present results are no indication of your future success, so if you notice that clinging to your present perspective causes you to feel defensive (or offensive), tense, upset or in any way less than joyful, consider opening your heart and mind to another perspective.

You really do see what you're looking for.

What does YOUR world look like?


At 3:38 PM, Blogger Steve Aune said...

cool, I've been excited to live in the gool ole USA for 41 years now.

It's all good...

At 6:07 AM, Blogger Jodee Bock said...

Thanks, Steve - it's a wonderful life, isn't it??!

At 9:47 PM, Blogger +Baker said...

Our thoughts create an energy that manifests into reality. People really do become what they think. Great post.


At 7:45 AM, Blogger Jodee Bock said...

Thanks, +Baker! Glad you stopped by!


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