The economy should never take precedence over valuing and nurturing human life. Every human life. This is a core issue today. Without the health, safety, and well-being of humanity there will be no economy. We must remember and reclaim that we are the economy. Not the elite 1%. We, the every day people of the 99%. We the “essential workers” who support life. For most of us there will be no bonus or bail out.
We have to be courageous. We have to live our lives based on core values. Values of caring, respect, compassion, and integrity. The financial bottom line must always be subservient to these essential core values. When we allow ourselves to make governmental and economic decisions based on caring, respect, compassion, and integrity, the economy will thrive.
Greed has created fake leaders who are narcissistic, abusive, and strive for domination. The bottom line has oppressed and dominated the larger population. We have been sold a lie that our security lies in having more than someone else. This lie has almost destroyed community.
Community is the answer in this pandemic.
“In and through community lies the salvation of the world.“ - M. Scott Peck
In community individuals come together, we depend on each other. We share with each other. We communicate with caring, kindness, and honesty. We commit to each other. We rejoice together and we grieve together. We support each other. We trust each other.
“Trust is the heartbeat of genuine love”- bell hooks
In community we are open and courageous. We want to know and be known. We recognize and affirm each other’s value. We acknowledge each other‘s presence and make connection. Being kind connects us.
The ultimate goal of community is “to seek ways in which to live with ourselves and others in love and peace” - M. Scott Peck
Some people ask me why am I still working, full time, at 68 years of age. Why? Because I was raised with a work ethic that taught me to contribute to the greater good. I saw my father work 3 jobs into his 60's, always thinking of his family and contributing to his community. I saw my mom teach kindergarten for 37 years. Always loving every child she had in class. I was always taught to make a contribution to something and someone greater than me. I was taught to try and create something of value that would last long past my life.
I believe good caring leaders always think about generations after themselves. I have never seen myself as a good business man. I have always wanted to be a good man who wanted to leave a legacy. I have always found my passion in education and human services. I have been driven to make schools as human and caring as possible. I have never thought of those that worked with me as employees. I think of all those that work with me as family. It has been a blessing to watch our family grow and see the beautiful service they all are giving to the world.
My clear vision for the past 20 years has been to have every K-12 school be a fully integrated Social Emotional Learning and academic environment. At 68 years of age and 47 years as a professional educator, I am aware I may not see my dream as a reality so I take solace in every day of progress I can contribute to building. I am inspired every day I work with fellow educators. Their passion, love, and commitment ignites my spirit to continue to serve. I am aware that every good we do in schools benefits multiple generations. Our work is personal and it must be personal. Our personal work is authentic, transparent, vulnerable, and full of integrity.
We must create schools where everyone can do their best. Whatever unique form of their best might be.
Creating success for all while being authentic, transparent and vulnerable demands integrity. Integrity is built on trust.
"Trust is the stacking and layering of small moments and reciprocal vulnerability over time." - Brene Brown
"Trust and vulnerability grow together and to betray one, is to destroy both." - Brene Brown
I am aware that all of our work is dependent upon and built upon trusting relationships. It is only with trusting relationships that we can do the heavy lifting of leaving a legacy of Social Emotional Learning for many generations.
"Our shared humanity is strong and vast enough to encompass our beautiful diversity.
Think of yourself as a bridge extending forward so that others might walk across."
- Jacqueline Novogratz
It takes courage to build bridges. When we build bridges, we encourage others to believe in themselves. To encourage someone is a great gift. It is the gift that says "I believe in you."
"Courage is not the absence of fear.
Courage is the ability to look fear in the face and continue to walk forward."
- Jacqueline Novogratz
We must find the courage to speak our truth. The courage to speak our truth is born in our core values, our authenticity, our transparency, and our integrity.
Change requires courage.
"You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, 'I have lived through this horror'.
I can take the next thing that comes along.
You must do the thing you think you cannot do."
- Eleanor Roosevelt