If we are going to bring a culture of peace to our schools - we are all beginning to believe that it will not be with posters, rules, laws and punishment. We must change the climate or the culture. It is good to see Lee Hirsch make this point also.
Here is the link: Director of BULLY interview
Day 15 started with such high hopes with certain expectations. What was reality though was much different from the expectations and hopes. I was able to work out with our self defense instructor but beyond that the day was filled with administrative obligations. Who would have known that there were so many papers to fill out and deliver to far away places (they had to be originals).
This is where all the training of mindfulness comes in to your advantage. While I had some frustration with why all of this was necessary, and I feel there is a fair amount of things I want to accomplish on the presentations next week, there is no anxiety. I was able to stay aware of, mindful, and focused on the tasks at hand. I was able to go home later in the afternoon and out to dinner with my wife.
Today, Saturday, I will work out with my students in the morning and then proceed to work on these other tasks. It is going to be a beautiful weekend, and I am mindful of all the beauty around me. I am aware of what needs to be done, but also aware of the birds singing this morning and the warming sunrise. Taking those moments in the morning for yourself and setting your intentions for the day sets the tone for everything you need to do, while not ignoring what is happening at this very moment.
The Youth Suicide Awareness (YSA) group met yesterday for nearly four hours mapping out our next steps in Anne Arundel County for continued awareness and prevention of suicide, especially among youth. I have never been a part of a group so dedicated and committed to a cause as this one is committed to helping as many in the community as possible.
Today on day 13 I will be spending virtually the entire day (8 -2) working with a committee of teachers on bully prevention in a high school. While the subjects are different, they are somewhat related and this is another of my passions. The high school has a great program they are undertaking, and I hope that the buy in from the teachers continues to grow as they see the possibilities of changing the culture of the school.
Of course I will also be working on my on presentation at AACC as the time draws closer for the first presentation. It is interesting how many of the same individuals are involved in these groups. Our County is blessed with some committed citizens to the safety of our youth both in and out of school.
Yesterday at BLS we tried our 100 pushups too. I am so pleased with the progress of everyone. Some were able to do 50 and others up to 90 straight pushups without stopping. Amazing for how it all began with some of the participants unable to do even 10. In addition there were quite a few who reached their goal of 100 and along with reaching that goal - they also have a huge boost in confidence (yes I did 100). In regard to pull ups, yesterday my personal best day with sets that went like this, 11 pull ups, 12 chin ups, 11 pull ups 10 chin ups and 10 pull ups. I was able to do them all except 2 chin ups and 6 pull ups. Wow - a long way from the first week of only being able to accomplish 3 pull ups.
In this One Hundred Day challenge the most powerful success secret is Focus. For right now the only focus I can have is the completion of the Creating a Culture of Peace in our Schools presentation. To allow other goals to interfere with that one focus will only dissipate the power of that goal. I must use my time for the highest and best use, as there is a finite amount of time available. I must guard this goal and not allow a loss of power due to losing my focus. Everything I think say and do will either bring me closer to the goal or further from it .
Why have I written this out this morning? As a reminder for myself not to allow other great ideas and goals to get in the way of the preparation of this presentation. Speaking to teachers from Anne Arundel County on the subject of a Culture of Peace is part of the set up for actually creating a culture of peace in the classroom for all of our students in the County. It is about bully prevention. It is about lessening the stress on teachers and students. It is about suicide prevention. It is about personal, family, community, and world peace.
Peace in the classroom is our starting place for peace in the community.
The weekend was spent recharging my batteries. I did some reading and hiking. One of the walks we went on got the photos of the butterfly, dragonfly and a flower I did not know what it was. Then there was a great campfire that kept us warm in the 58 degree air. What a great way to spend the weekend and get ready for the week ahead.
Today had good lessons from Mr. Jim in street self defense. I am working with him along with 2 of the red belts on Friday mornings and I am getting better at the verbage and understanding and teaching the concepts that Mr. Jim teaches. After that class it was a lot of running around getting everything together and ready for the afternoon of testing at Quiet Waters. Oh yes there were the pushups for the day too. Everyone did very well - but my personal report is 204 in the sets and then a max of 70 at the end. Next week we shall see who can get to 100 straight.
The afternoon was perfect weather, about 81 degrees, no humidity, and beautiful blue skies. Some of the parents pitched in to do the grilling and there was all kinds of food for everyone. The testers did well - though you could see that being in a new environment was a bit unnerving for some of them. I hope I get some photos to share with everyone. I know I have some video and I will post soon.
My happiest moment at the test was seeing Garth complete his form without any hitches. This young man has overcome some major issues - but today he really did well and I could not be more proud of his effort and determination. There were others too, but when you know all that Garth has overcome to get to his yellow belt - it has to make you smile.
So now I am on my way to the mountains and will be working on the completion of the Creating a Culture of Peace in the Classroom presentation. Soon I will be making this presentation to be followed by a program for teachers to help them build morale. In combination with that I feel a very strong calling to put together a conference on bullying.
This morning I listened to a short piece on raising the bar on yourself. Here is one quote, ”Unless you go beyond what you have already mastered, you will never grow.” I am trying to live my life with that in mind. That means there will be failures and victories. But all will be done with the aim of progress.
This week has been filled with service to others and not a lot of work on my own goals. But now it really is crunch time for the Creating a Culture of Peace classes and I must be 100% dedicated to the completion. However with this being the end of the school year there are many distractions.
I am working with a high school on their Signature Program along with helping them with a Bully Prevention Program that is scheduled to be unveiled to the entire school in the fall. We have our own testing at BLS and the picnic. In the summer I am working with the new black belts on teaching skills - but the good news is they are stepping up and working on their own projects that will make a big difference in their life and in the school. We have some special challenges in the Youth Suicide Awareness County Task Force that need serious attention, and our own goals of presenting information on a regular basis starting in the fall at BLS.
So this weekend I will be going to the mountains to seclude myself and work on the big tasks at hand, so that I can give the attention needed to our students and these other projects in the community and the school. Does anyone have any experience in putting on a conference? I would be interested in getting some help with a project I have been encouraged to do in the fall - like in October.
It is Monday and I will say that starting a new challenge on a Friday just because it is June 1 may not have been a great idea. It was a poor start with all kinds of things that needed to be done at home and the weather was so good, I just wanted to enjoy that by sitting and walking and being outside.
However I did do a fair amount of reading and the latest book that has my attention is a book called Linchpin: Are You Indispensable? by Seth Godin. I have been awakened by his arguments to how we get things done or not so much. How we allow our “lizard brain’ to resist our desire to accomplish goals. Once again I have learned that awareness is the key to making breakthroughs.
In this 100 days I am going to continue to ask myself if I am resisting the completion of my goals? Am I creating the vision I have or am I hiding it by spending much time on the unnecessary things - not allowing the creative side show and accomplish?
I do not have to answer this out loud, as already today I have had to ask myself, do you really need to do this now or are you avoiding something else - like getting your work done? Oh this could be a very good 100 days! At any rate his point eventually comes around that what we put out there may not be perfect, but the only way we finally get something out that accomplishes our bigger goals is by “shipping”, or producing and not by sitting idly by.
My goal is peace in the classroom for the teachers and students. Bully prevention. Now I must really focus on this and work away at it without “resistance”. If you want a really good inspirational book to read, I suggest this book as a real wake up call.