Aligning Ourselves In Love (an ode to the balancing scales of Libra)

Have you ever tried slack-lining or walking on a high-rope? If you have you know there is a certain core-strength involved and meditative-like focus, combined with a surrender to deep and slow breaths. There is both a pressure and an ease involved, which is parallel to the energy Libra season brings. If there was ever a theme song for this season, amidst 6 planets being in retrograde and being that the planet of war (Mars) is currently being stuffed in Libra’s love blanket, it’s ‘I Walk The Line’ by Johnny Cash. (Just hear me out here.) He finds it “very, very easy to be true” (he is in love after all, and Libra, which is ruled by the planet of love, embodies the Golden Ratio, which creates all of existence, therefore loving is easy peasy for Mr. Cash) *elbow nudges you*, and his love is as sure as “night is dark and day is light” ( I mean do I even need to point out how Libra that line is?) All silliness and songs aside, we are in a season asking us to wrangle and reason with anything that keeps us from the simplicity of operating from a place of love, which involves mindful and deliberate action, as well as rest.

Like it’s justice-centered predecessor that is Virgo, here we are in Libra-scale season being further pushed (really I think cornered is a better word choice at this point) to align our walk with our talk, our innermost desires and beliefs with the life we live, and to find balance on that fine center between the night and day dwelling within us.

‘Themis’ by Natalia Socolnicova

Ruled by Venus, Libra is the only constellation in the zodiac that is not an animal or person. Libra was given it’s classification of all things “balance” at a time when, at this point in the year, night and day were of equal proportion. The scale used to determine truth and virtue is held by goddess Themis, the androgynous oracle who does not know wrath, yet does see things simply for what they are–both the dark and the light. Blindfolded, Themis navigates and feels her way to her final judgments by way of Love, the dance of Venus and Earth around the Sun, which is the Golden Ratio 1.618, and in divine order with seeds growing in the earth, and the blood that flows in our bodies. For this reason she is trusted by the gods to make decisions, for there is no discrimination–you are either aligned with the cycle of Venus in your intentions and actions, or you are not. Libra embodies both the cut-throat and harsh, and the liberating, lightweight, and flowing.

The Dance of Venus and Earth Around the Sun (Golden Ratio 1.618)

I’ve been thinking a lot about transitions lately, and the way the balancing theme of Libra comes into play when it comes to making changes in one’s life. Being that Libra is in the center of the zodiac, it is a transitory time that symbolizes the mark between your relationship to yourself, and how you relate with others. The second half of the zodiac asks us to look at our dealings, commitments and interactions, and Libra is right at the middle of this turning point. Editing your story requires dismantling what once was, reconstructing, putting things into order, blindly making something new out of what is apparent and before you. This requires taking a close look at the people we engage with, and inviting others, or setting boundaries with them in order to actively create the environment most supportive of who you are and who you are blossoming into.

Right now I am walking on a line existing between shadow and light. I am in a vulnerable, yet also empowering place of saying goodbye to the roles I have filled, scrapping a career I have built around teaching, into being able to express myself freely and artistically, and move in the world authentically in alignment with my bliss, my beliefs, my passions. As I feel my way through, I have the option to choose to submit to shadows, give in to voices that critique, downplay, and shush what expressions want to come out. If I choose to I could fall into that pit and allow my limbs to be pulled by self-pity, shame and despair, but I know better. I am choosing to acknowledge, observe and dance with those masks, as if they are twirling in the mirror reflected back at me, tantalizing and seductive I give a playful smirk and sway where I am, which is on this golden twine just out of their reach. I choose not to demonize them, or keep them locked in a box I pretend doesn’t exist, but to use their existence to fine-tune myself into grace, humility and keep my feet on the earth to be of service in my own way. I love them all, but I see them for what they are, and I have boundaries. When they lash out in front of me, I bend accordingly and am in return grateful for the opportunity to rise, to beat my drum until they are dancing with me.

There is also the beaming light of day on the other side, where if I stay for too long, I may lose momentum in taking the strides necessary to dance with all of my relations. It is by stepping off of this chord in the middle, then overstaying my welcome in the sun glaze-coated bakery of bliss, that it then becomes a certain willful ignorance. Darkness inevitably emerges and has the power to startle me into a reaction that is off-centered and unaligned–it has the potential to catch me so off-guard that I have to spend a longer amount of time trying to get back into center. It is by embracing the dark we are able to stay above it. There is no righteousness in denying the wild, the untamed, the out-of-line mischievous fire-starter within you. It is right here on this line between chaos and purity that my sight is most clear. It is by welcoming everyone to my fire that I am able to move in ways I have never moved before. It is in being acquainted with death time and time again, that I am able to live. It is because of performing duets with my demons, that they know I am the director of the show.

As we negotiate, decide upon and show up to spaces during this season, let us strive to make our lives as simple as we possibly can (especially being that Mercury, Saturn, Jupiter, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto are all in retrograde). The easiest way to ensure we are making the right decision is to check in with the reasoning behind the choices we make. (Hint: operate from a place of love–this is no time for revenge, performative acts, or desperate pleads for love to come in from outside of ourselves.)

Questions to ask yourself as you operate over these next couple of weeks:

  • Am I longing to/choosing to do this because I sincerely enjoy doing it?
  • After I send this message/email how will I feel about myself? How will these words make the other party feel about themselves?
  • Where in my life do I speed-through just to get-through? Where in my life can I slow down? What can I afford to sacrifice?
  • What am I working for/toward? Are those things in alignment with what will bring me peace?
  • What activities/past times/hobbies do I regularly engage in? How does my body feel (special attention to heart-rate/mind/eyes/gut) as I engage in these activities?
  • Who are the people I regularly show my affection and intimacy toward? Do they share the same beliefs, actions and attitudes that I do toward life and what I value in mine?

As we embark down the paths our transitions lead us to, let us remember it requires both tension and surrender to walk in alignment with love this way, and before you get frustrated with the ever-evolving choices life presents us with–choices to speak up, edit, or stay silent; stay or go; follow a rule, break a rule, or create new ones—remember that being alive is a gift, one with love and heartache, closed doors and new terminals, memories and experiences we have yet to meet. As you maneuver your words and actions in your relations, forget wrong vs. right, you vs. them, and return to where your heart rests along the middle plane. There are no sides after all–it is only by gazing into the intersection where they meet in the middle that we gain stride into living in harmony with ourselves, and with others.

The Power of Integrating the Unconscious

“Work in the invisible world, at least as hard as you do in the visible.”

Rumi, The Soul of Rumi: A New Collection of Ecstatic Poems

The unconscious mind is the moon of our lives–our dreams, our innermost desires, beliefs we have of ourselves and the world, fears we harbor, memories we shove away. Speaking on matters of the unconscious, and bringing them into the light makes the average person squirm, plug their ears and say “la la laaa–I do not heeaaar yoou”. Psychoanalysts experience clients who lash out, run away to never return, or blindfold themselves to pretend they do not see, but the individuals on earth who get us to do this deep diving are always going to be called upon because of the value and power there is in facing our shadows.

“…going too long without popping the hood is going to mean that eventually we have to pull over”

The tumultuous and ecstatic interactions that periodically occur in our lives, the risks we take, and the ones we do not take, and all of the choices we make are driven by this layer just below our consciousness. No matter how much we think we are in control, it is our unconscious that drives our lives, like the engine below the hood of the car–we can take the wheel, operate the radio, step on the brakes and drive north, but it is the engine that determines how far we will go, and going too long without popping the hood is going to mean that eventually we have to pull over.

Holding our unconscious in our awareness means understanding the duality we possess, which can be a mighty tool to have available if we allow it to show its fangs, flex its prowess, and be expressed in the light of day.

While the world of psychological science has not come to a concrete consensus as to what constitutes as the subconscious, subliminal and unconscious, it is generally agreed that our motivations, beliefs, dreams, creative and intuitive natures all stem from the world of our unconscious, and it is also generally agreed that there are many underlying facets to our unconscious which we are unaware of (Bargh & Morsella, 2008). It is these elements that are unseen which influence many of our decisions, then also our indecisions. These unseen factors are so powerful in their ability to dictate our lives, that people across cultures and the span of time have sought psychologists, therapists, shamans, religious leaders and every kind of healer available and worthy to them to help uncover, unlock and free them of their binds.

Identifying Where Integration is Needed

Although it is easy for me to type these words, staying aware of and accepting the ugly and uncomfortable truths for what they are is not a blissful skip up the street. Working with the unconscious mind often means disposing of lifelong beliefs we have adopted that add security to our lives. It could mean defying the norms that keep us accepted and involved in our social groups.

Bringing what we repress into the light could threaten the frameworks we have established as a means for safety and comfort. The consequences of bringing these shadows into the forefront of our awareness could disrupt the comfort of relationships, careers, and every aspect of our environment. People go years, and sometimes lifetimes avoiding the pain and discomfort that comes with confronting fears, recognizing desires, honoring The Knowing that is dormant, yet very much alive.

The liberation and wonder awaiting the other side of this dirty work is what transports us into living out the innermost truths that beckon to us in our dreams, speak to us in the words between words, remind us of a universe stashed away–a universe so much closer to us than we think.

Integration of the unconscious is the transportation from our “shoulds” and “should nots”, to living in alignment with the euphoria that comes with surrendering to something we feel, and allowing all logical voices to squabble until they jump on board to enjoy the ecstacy of letting go.

“Integration is a relinquishing and disposal of parts of ourselves we cling to for comfort and safety. And letting these anchors go feels like death…”

Integration is a relinquishing and disposal of parts of ourselves we cling to for comfort and safety. And letting these anchors go feels like death–death of what you clung onto as part of your identity, and all of the despair and adjusting that comes with dying. People check off boxes and keep up with their routines every day while the unconscious is unseen, yet more awake than we would like to admit.

A man who has the best of the best of everything according to his standards, yet is constantly dreaming of soil and storm, a pang of hollow he cannot rationalize. A person who spends years harboring memories of abuse and unjustice in the name of surviving wakes up in a cold sweat, unable to escape the visiting aftermath of trauma. An artist disguised as a cashier at the grocery store is saying for the third year in a row that they’re going to move away and go to the school in the city of their dreams soon.

It can be as subtle as the sighs in your sleep wondering if someone longs for you in the same way you long for them, the symbol of their affection representing a part of you wanting to be unhinged. It’s the dream you had of your bare feet on wet grass, sensing a divine tranquility in the presence of those who embody more than they explain. It’s the unshakeable sensation of something trying to be said, laying in the undercoat of what is said. It’s the way you crave a song, a movie or any work of art that provokes and allows those unspoken and un-lived tremors to have an outlet.

Identifying where integration is needed means peering into the vast, the murky, the alluring, the forbidden and the tumultuous places that call to you. There is no step-by-step or one size fits all procedure to rid you of all impeding structures that keep you from feeling the calibration of the unconscious and conscious. Willing yourself to ask for answers, to look and let yourself see, to listen and really take the time to hear, and then allowing yourself to be open to what presents itself, is where the unfolding can truly begin.

What Does Integration Look Like?

Integration is not being driven by a recklessness that knocks over the pillars of truth we value which promote harmony in the world. Integration is not running over the livelihood or peace within another.

“…until we give our unconscious an outlet of expression, it will find its way into our environments, and express itself through the people and situations in our lives.”

While the decision to do what is liberating for your spirit may cause another discomfort, it does not mean your choice is wrong. But until we give our unconscious an outlet of expression, it will find its way into our environments, and express itself through the people and situations in our lives.

“Healing old wounds” does not mean the memories vanish, the pain is forgotten, or that patterns set in motion because of hurts do not need to be looked at and cradled. The resurfacing of energy dynamics which are typically eerily similar to our first scars in life, is more prominent and recurring when we do not take the time to integrate.

It is when we shove the memories of our parent’s cold shoulders, or the time we lashed out at a stranger into a corner of the cupboard in our minds. It is when we refuse to question and take responsibility for the impulses we have–to trivialize and denigrate another, to immediately take defense when feeling criticism, to stop a project when it is close to being complete, that we fail to take our shadows and hold them against the light and ask them where they originated.

The choice to keep your eyes wide open and stare all of yourself in the face–not just the acceptable and the radiant bits, but the shame, the fear, the meanness too–is where the keys to breathing in an open sky lay waiting. The ripple effects of going against what we know to be true, or denying the yearnings we feel in our system, return and present themselves in our waking and conscious lives.

The longer you shove, gloss over, turn a cheek and make excuses for what presents itself time and time again, the longer you are keeping yourself from your own calibration–calibration of your innermost truths and the words and actions you emit in the light of day.

The coalescence of masks we keep in boxes, with the masks we exhibit does not look the same for everyone and there is not a simple answer as to how to maneuver through reality with all that we harbor. It takes repetition, asking for help, utilizing the tools you have and adopting new ones. It requires offering the entirety of your human experience to sit face-up on an alter under the sun–the stench and the dust and the puss transpicuous.

It could mean taking risks that leave you without. It could mean developing a habit each morning and night where you have a conversation with yourself. It could mean writing a letter you send, or burn, or bottle, or turn into a song. And if you were hoping for this to lead you to a step 1, 2 and 3, or a tincture, or a course, or a name drop of a book, a religion, a guru, then you might feel disappointed.

Not only is there no “right” way to integrate, it also does not end. We are always in the midst of duality and are made out of both the light and the dark. Our consciousness of ourselves, the world, the universe, of the past and of the future holds very little weight over the vast mystery of our unconscious. What we see in our waking day and what humanity has the ability to categorize, define and explain does not hold a candle to the wisdom of the invisible. We only have the here and now, what is within and what is in front of us. We have the choice in every moment to listen, or dismiss, feel our way through, or depend on the safety nets that keep us from unfolding.

Sources

Bargh, J. A., & Morsella, E. (2008). The Unconscious Mind. Perspectives on psychological science : a journal of the Association for Psychological Science3(1), 73–79. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1745-6916.2008.00064.x

The Science Behind Tarot

The Tarot of The Old Path Deck, by Sylvia Gainsford,
a member of The Fellowship of Isis, with the assistance of a coven of 8 witches
[Image Description: The Sun card from The Tarot of The Old Path deck laid face-up on the grass next to a citrine crystal]

All things occult are trending, and tarot has continuously been taking flight, with fresh gusts of wind propelling its utilization from all corners of the earth. Regardless of one’s religion, spiritual practices, or cultural background, tarot is a psychical tool gaining more and more utilization with every passing year. Industry trends in the US report an annual increase of 2.6% growth in the year 2021 alone, with no signs of slowing down any time soon.

Tarot is used for guidance, like an extra set of eyes giving insight into a situation, connection, conflict, exchange, relationship–any and every setting in our inner and outer worlds can be reflected upon. Within a single deck there is the totality and complexity of the human experience, and our specific place in the cosmos. As more people are benefitting from and taking delight in the addition of tarot to their spiritual practices and routines, let us take a moment to peak into its emergence, and first, its birth.

The Scattered-Seedling Start of Tarot

Tarot has its origins in what we know as the standard sold-at-the-corner-store deck of 52 four-suited playing cards. With time it became a divination tool, much like the way figurines, birds, stones, words on pages, dreams and sounds have been used for prophetic insight and spiritual symbolism across cultures and religions throughout the span of human history. Card games evolved into fate and destiny games, similar to MASH, the who-will-you-marry game played at recess, (where you end up divorced with a Cadillac, a tree-house for shelter, and 23 children).

Despite it’s start as a playful pastime, tarot gradually became fused with more characters, ancient symbols, and religious ideograms specific to the time and place of each deck’s creation. Tarot took shape and was added to by way of whatever existing beliefs, materials and symbols were swimming in the air.

Multiple Independent Discovery is the phenomenon of multiple individuals on earth, completely independent of one another, discovering and/or inventing the same thing, at the same time. This concept is parallel to and much like the origins of tarot. Robert M. Place, in his book, The Tarot: History, Symbolism, and Divination, eloquently unravels the path of its genesis, and seamlessly reveals that its dawning is not from one particular time or place, but rather an entity in and of itself, being birthed in waves across continents.

Wealthy noblemen, and high members of societies across Italy and France, commissioned artists to create elaborate decks made just for them, based on specific roles and people they live under, amongst, and above. All classes in society used 52 cards of 4 suits and a 5th suit created by their own means, or created for them, but in decades to follow the Renaissance there were tides of lent and periods of scrutiny by the ruling class where many decks were destroyed. The particular deck that was produced and dispersed the most was the Tarot of Marseilles, by French manufacturer Grimaud, which is still the number one, as well as original producer of this deck today.

Today there is an endless array of choice and preference available for us, catering to our precise interests, aesthetic likings, beliefs and cultures. From Gummy Bear Tarot, to Cat Tarot, then all the way to Neoconservative Tarot, really nobody is being left out of the practice of tarot.

Tarot as Therapy–Why It Works

As human beings we have been applying meaning to the world around us, creating stories and symbols to make sense of and connect ourselves to existence, for a very long time. Navigating matters of the heart and spirit–what is right, what is harmful, whether to stay, go, say yes, sit still–has always been on the human experience agenda, and there are endless schools of thought to help steer us into places of emotional, mental and spiritual fulfillment. Tarot is just one of an infinite amount of instruments we have at our fingertips.

Sharing and listening to stories is the way we create meaning in the world, and differentiate between what feels right, and what we are doubtful of. Stories in the world tell us about ourselves, mirroring to us what we are more of, and showing us where we possess all that what we think we do not. Every character we have ever read or heard of, whether fiction or non-fiction, comes with clues as to who we are. In this way, the archetypes and images reflected back to us in tarot reveal where that particular energy lies in ourselves, allowing us to participate, or step away from that force. The same way our favorite childhood stories tell of heroes, and racing rabbits, and generous fairies–all in the name of planting morals in our hearts, oftentimes tarot calls us to rise to our truths, and step up in ways we have been downplaying our abilities. Then other times we draw cards telling us to be humble, to remember a higher purpose, to call upon help.

Then there is the mystical aspect, the mysteriousness of why it is, that in the entire deck of 78 cards, we draw the same 1-3 cards in rotation, sometimes those particular cards even falling out into your lap face-up. While many are understandable skeptical of the validity of tarot, we can liken its positive effects to many researched-based theories. Psychoanalyst Carl Jung explains that archetypes that come up in our dreams and waking world as a collective, circulate and pop up in our culture, from art to politics to world-wide movements, likes and dislikes. Projective tests, used in both the clinical and forensic world today, use images to bring out the unconscious emotions, desires and fears of individuals. Since they are not able to spend time thinking of what to say with their conscious mind, this is the most effective way for the assessor to extract truth from the querent. In this way, tarot reveals to us that which is hard to look at, often times opening the floor for us to confront that which we bury.

I believe that whether we have a tarot deck, a book of poems we received as a gift in the 8th grade, a collection of rocks, a playlist on shuffle, or we get out in a canoe and paddle into the horizon every morning, the world is teeming with tools available for us to listen to, observe and connect to our inner worlds. We are able to navigate by way of spirit, or you can call it intuition, or your inner compass, or whatever you want really, because no matter what the tool, language, activity, the truths that sweep over our lives will continuously reveal themselves to us, no matter how hard we try to shove them into a corner. That being said, as the truth-seekers we are, we might as well enjoy ourselves as we bloom and unfurl from these shadows! I recently received my first deck, as shown above, from my sister and have been using it for 2 months as means of reflection and guidance, and it has been extremely enriching as I embark on new ventures of every kind imaginable. I cannot think of a better time than now for me to have received one of the most delightful tools to draw inspiration and insight from, and I hope you enjoyed reading about some of the wonder I am diving into!

Thank you for reading if you made it this far, and remember to subscribe if you feel it!

Educating with Mindfulness in Hawai’i

I no longer say “Micronesian” when referring to any group in anyway; I list Chuukese, Marshallese, Kosraean, Yapese, Pohnpeian, Palauan, Woleaian, and there are probably more I’m missing. These are different languages, customs, traditions, and even dialects within the languages that sometimes don’t understand one another. As educators in Hawai’i we need to be more mindful and aware of the way we talk to, refer to, and handle decisions which affect students from these islands. We have to be careful we are not putting them al into the same “box”. We have to be careful about how we are making them feel about themselves. These kids are hurting for various reasons, from being separated from family members, being homesick and feeling suddenly deprived of all familiarity, then being mistaken for an identity they don’t understand. Some say they’d rather be referred to and thought of as “Polynesian” than openly share they are anything “Micronesian”. We have to take the time to learn about their thoughts. There are students who were raised here and speak English perfectly fine, yet they’re assumed to speak no English and are not called upon in class, or even challenged to rise to the occasion. I have had students tell me that upon arriving to their schools, their counselors immediately placed them into ESL classes without talking to them to find out if that was even needed. Students have shared that counselors question whether they passed classes in previous schools, and gave lower levels of math and science based on assumptions. Most students just let these kinds of things slide, eager to get by and not bring any attention to themselves. We have to take time to connect and get to know people we are handling and working amongst, despite the deadlines and procedures that surround us. The connection is what we are here for. When some first arrive, they are the kind of pure spirit that smiles and dances upon impulse, without shame or hesitation. They often love fishing, dancing and singing, and if you tell them to sit and work on something, it won’t be long before they’re looking out the window into the beautiful trees and at the birds. When they learn how to study for something, or understand a math concept for the first time, you’d be surprised at how they take that new understanding and run with it, excelling farther than you imagined. The structure of school does not allow them to show you everything they’ve got. Let’s change the way we lift them up and help them in a world they’re unfamiliar, (yet sometimes very familiar) with. Let’s let them be themselves and let them be proud of where they’re from. Let’s say their names right and over-applaud every small and big thing they accomplish. Let’s let them teach us. Let’s be real with them. Let’s simply love them and allow their innate desire to learn, express and excel simply be, without testing them with empty standards within a system which have no sincere meaning.

The above text was written after a particularly challenging week, and with a heavy heart about the way my students viewed themselves, and how many are being treated in and out of school. The following are links to articles with more information and depth into the issues they are facing in Hawaii.

This first link is from an article written in 2014 on Marshallese activist and poet, Kathy Jetnil-Kijiner, expressing views of being from these many islands of Micronesia, and growing up in Hawaii. 

Kathy Jetnil-Kijiner

The second link is one I shared with my students, because I feel she is an excellent role model and example. It is her WordPress site, which includes her reciting her poem for environmental justice at the United Nations Climate Summit.

Kathy Jetnil-Kijiner at UN Climate Change Summit

The third link is an article written by Civil Beat on the history, and complexity of their situations for leaving their homes and coming to Hawaii. 

Civil Beat on Civil Rights of Micronesian Immigration in Hawaii

This fourth and final link is revealing just how open the public seems to be about their disapproval and racist remarks, to where at one point it was openly shared on the radio. I still hear comments and jokes made like this today, sometimes in the fun way we joke about ourselves here in Hawaii, but sometimes with intentions of being vicious, whether conscious or subconscious… It just needs to stop. 

Racism in HI

 

Care: The Seed

“I tried, but he just doesn’t care!” Statements surrounding student achievement that revolve around the student(s) having no concern or care for their success always sting the space between my chest and pit of my stomach, where anger comes from. It is usually the kind of sting that results in frantic collections of things I could say in defense. I could say “Yes, they do care!” which needs to be followed by justification, and which in my first years of teaching I have had nothing to say. Recently, as I have been more vocal and defensive in conversations around the motivation kids do/do not have, then also because of more experiences with students, I have come up with a solid defense. This defense either sparks a fueled and solution-based discussion, or it is what stops the discussion entirely. Depending on the nature of the meeting and who is present, I have said it in different ways, but it is more or less the simple statement:

We need to show them they do care, and then what their individual reasons are for caring. 

Any business trying to sell something will do their absolute best to show you why you need their product. Television commercials are manipulated to seep into your psyche and tell you you are not complete, without this one material, that you have the opportunity to buy. Insurance companies will instill fear in your mind in order for you to feel that you need their policy. Boutiques will hand you a basket and welcome you into their store, sometimes even complimenting you, in order to make you feel like you belong there. Travel agencies will choose the best images and people to model the luxury you could experience in a place other than your own, flashing a price at the very end of the advertisement, after your desire for that experience is strongly in place. These tactics are used in attempts to stir your emotions up, and they often become driving forces in people’s lives, altering and forming decisions people make with their money, and ultimately, their time.

Alongside the stream of blaring ads, and subtle yet sneaky commercials, there is also a blatant interweaving of corporations using social media, music and television shows targeted at youth which enhance the aspirations to escape. Escape your natural image, and escape your surroundings. There is hardly a promotion of education, and oftentimes more disenchantment than enthusiasm for learning.

These are things we are up against as educators, particularly public educators. It is our responsibility to mold the intrinsic passion, which is apparent in everyone, and on an individual basis show them they do care, what their reasons are for caring, and what they can do with that care. The reasons are not the same for everyone, which is why we don’t reach every single student. Equally so, the things they do with the care are not the same for everyone. As we are entering into this new era of technology, ease of communication, and accessible information, the fusion of career pathways and skills will be employed more and more. Individuals have unique skills that they can use for distinctive positions.

The first step of any endeavor is activating that place that causes us to take action with intention of performing at 100%. A leader wanting to move people into action will prepare a speech, have people look it over, then practice. The speech is intended to stir people, and transfer the amount of care the leader has, to the audience. The root of consistently doing something well, is always care. If you are a company looking to hire a new employee, and have two candidates, you would hire the one most passionate about the field–one with the drive to carry out the lengthiest of tasks, over the candidate with more experience, yet no passion. You want your business to move, grow, and expand, with precision and attention to detail. This kind of consistent work ethic requires a high level of care.

What if educators had this business standpoint about selling education to our students? What if we had to market our classes to students in order for them to buy in? Would we then go to great lengths, and stir up the enthusiasm of our clientele? What if the first couple of weeks of class were spent showing and instilling the care levels, on individual basis’? Like a football team preparing for their last game of the season, which would mean a championship, what if we reached their hearts and filled them with the kind of momentum that would make them stop at nothing until they had their goal? What if we spent time learning what made each of our kids tick instead of immediately assuming they all did for the same reasons?

Also, what if we all revisited our drive to become educators, and examine our own desires, our own care. Education for all, and bridging the achievement gap, largely depends on this root driving force of care. We need to have gallon sizes of love and care for our professions, and with that we can pass it on to our kids. We can try all the tactics in the world, and then continuously strive to “sell” education to our kids with the overflowing amount of care we nourish within us.