Repaying Meanness with Kindness

This week I experienced more meanness directed toward me, personally, than any other week I can remember for a very long time.

I had a choice. I could return the meanness with meanness of my own, or I could return the meanness with kindness and forgiveness. I chose to be kind.

We have to break the cycle of meanness in our society. I refuse to spread more meanness just because I have been hurt, and I was deeply hurt. We already live with too much meanness and too much hurt. It will not stop until we make better choices.

Please choose to be kind, even when others are unkind to you. Continue reading

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The Importance of Gratitude

“Daily discussion of gratitude results in higher reported levels of alertness, enthusiasm, determination, attentiveness, energy, and sleep duration and quality. Grateful people also report lower levels of depression and stress, although they do not deny or ignore the negative aspects of life.”

Gratitude

This quote is from a research study by Seligman, Emmonds, and McCollough. You can see the whole article by clicking HERE.

Who wouldn’t want all those positive benefits in our lives? But how do we get there? Continue reading

Wonder

Yesterday I had the privilege of seeing the movie, Wonder. I had read the book by R. J. Palacio some years ago (a copy sits on my desk today), and I was anxious for the theatrical release. I was not disappointed.

Wonder

Wonder is the story of 10-year-old Auggie, a boy with a genetic facial difference.
We first meet Auggie as he wraps his mind around the concept of entering school for the very first time as a fifth grader. Until then he had been protectively homeschooled. Continue reading

Understanding Privilege

As we pass through yet another period of increased racial tension in our nation’s history, we hear a lot of conversation around the idea of “privilege.” Privilege is understood differently by different people. For the purpose of this essay, privilege is the set of blessings we enjoy, which are not a result of our own hard work or our personal choices.

YouTube has several videos centered on privilege, some much better than others. Recently I came across a video published by Creator Studios on October 11, 2017. I will share the link below, but first I would like to share some thoughts with you.

Unfair race

When the Second Continental Congress voted for independence in 1776, they proclaimed, “All men are created equal.” But are we? Continue reading

Have it Your Way: Whopper Jr. vs. High School Jr.

Burger King has a must-see video on YouTube. It has earned nearly four million hits in less than a month. You’re going to want to see it, but before you do, please read…

Burger King employees filmed an experiment in one of their restaurants where they bullied a Whopper Jr. and they bullied a high school junior. They wanted to see which one would garner the most complaints.

Bully Jr Picture

In full view of real adult customers, a group of high school students bullied another student—both verbally and physically. At the same time, they served hamburgers to adults which had been bullied (smashed) by employees. 

Can you predict the percentages? Continue reading

Choosing Kindness in the Face of Tragedy

We live in a world where we are constantly bombarded with bad news. Bad news sells. Headlines and top stories scream at us of disastrous events. There is no escaping this fact.

We have a choice. We can focus on the bad news and become angry and bitter, or we can move beyond the stories that are so upsetting and work to make our world a better place.

One tragic headline hit very close to home this week. A first grade girl and her father died from carbon monoxide poisoning resulting from a house fire. The girl attended Weddle Elementary School in Salem, Oregon, one of the schools I support in my role as a retired principal.

Rainbow Continue reading

Enrique’s Journey

I’ve been reading Enrique’s Journey by Sonia Nazario. If you would like to check out her website, click HERE.

Enrique's Journey

The book is the story of a boy’s dangerous trek through central America to reunite with his mother in the United States. Nazario relates the true facts as she experienced them herself. She knows what he experienced first-hand, as she took the same journey, re-tracing his path, step by step, and putting herself in grave danger along the way. Continue reading