What is success? I recently watched this video on Facebook about this “successful” businessman who had a revelation after his father passed away. His father was very sick and in the hospital, but instead of going to visit his father right away he decided to try and close the deal that he was working on for his business. He thought that him closing that deal would make his father proud and he wanted the gratification of successfully closing this huge deal. He ends up closing the deal, but then he hears that his father had passed away in the hospital. In shock and heartbroken, he had a revelation that changed his outlook on life and his definition of success. He switched his mindset from chasing the never-ending ladder of success and prioritizing external achievements TO pursuing significance and instead began to focus on leaving behind a positive legacy with his career.
I loved this video because it reminded me that our society’s idea of “success” isn’t for everyone and maybe we should think about creating a new definition of success in our culture; one that is flexible and open-ended and values collaboration and significance. Our society values success and aggressive ambition vs. kindness and compassion. But making an impact in the world doesn’t just come from being in the newspaper or becoming rich and famous. Changing the world and making a difference comes from small deeds that often don’t make the headlines. Smiling at someone as you walk past, helping a stranger, giving someone a compliment, supporting a friend as they go through a difficult time, these simple things have the power to shift people’s lives.
This week I had the Global Conference in Madrid with my 10 students and I could not have been more proud of them! It was incredibly rewarding and inspiring to see them debate, discuss, and collaborate with other students on the issue of juvenile crime and violence. They have come so far in the past four months preparing for this event. Not only has this been a great learning experience for them, but for me too. It’s made me want to be more aware of global issues and advocate for justice, peace, and a more sustainable society. My role at the conference was the Rapporteur, so I took roll call, kept time during speeches and debates, and got to bang the gavel:) I LOVED banging the gavel and am considering becoming a judge now! Also, the people I have met through Global Classrooms are incredible and I feel really lucky to have been part of this project.
Sending you lots of love and hope you stop and smell the roses this week.
“Tell me, and I will forget. Show me, and I may remember. Involve me, and I will understand.”