Experiencing my own passion

How is what you learned in this class unique to you?

Well, I really didn’t know anything before this class.  We have talked about what the class would be like for someone who didn’t have any background in social innovation.  And every time we do, I want to raise my hand and be like, “Are you guys talking about me in front of me again?”  I have taken a few International Development classes, but that’s it.  All I have is the passion – very little actual working knowledge or experience.  So for me, I think it is different and special because I came in with a disability of sorts.  A lot of people discovered passion they didn’t know they had, but I discovered capacity I didn’t know I had.  I feel like I have been given permission to do good in ways i wouldn’t have allowed myself to think of.

That passion I came into class with is simply that I believe very strongly that each person has worth, and everyone deserves to know that.  I honest-to-goodness believe that if everyone knew what they were capable of, the world’s problems would literally take care of themselves.  If every person knew and believed that they could and would create positive worth on this world, then for the most part, they would.  I held on to this throughout the class.  But I didn’t know how that applied to social innovation.  I didn’t think I had a spot within that world, so I spent a lot of time thinking about how to change my passion.  But that is I think one of the biggest things I learned in this class:  You make yourself a spot.  I have been applying that in more realms in my life.  It’s like, I am taking charge of my life.  It’s not about finding your spot in the world, it’s about creating your spot.

So that is how this class has been unique for me – I have discovered in my life what I have been wishing for others.   I am more aware of my capabilities.  I know what I want the ultimate end goal of my life to be.  And though I am pretty sure that I will never be super clear about exactly how I will get there, I will be able to recognize the steps I need to take.  And my passion I feel for the forementioned belief in people really is worthwhile.  Understanding my potential is intimidating, yes.  But oh so worth it.

How will you continue this process of self-reflection and layered learning?

I really want to be better at all times in my life.  I try to strive to be better on a frequent basis.  Sometimes it really is hard to see improvements that need to be made though.  So this is something I do: The happiness check.  When I am walking down the street by myself, am I smiling?  Am I seeing the trees and the people passing me?  Am I feeling grateful for the things around me or am I concerned about and blowing my problems out of proportion?  When I am not that happy, I have found that it’s because I am not doing something I should be doing.  Then I know it’s time to really delve in and see what’s missing.  That process isn’t always super easy, but it works for me.  It’s like a permanent self-examination cycle.   Am I happy?  If yes, keep walking sister.  If no, figure out what I need to be doing better.

Journal Writing has been a huge thing in my life that has helped with my learning process.  If you write something down, then you don’t have to keep re-learning it.  I have realized that when I go a while without writing in my journal, I feel like I’m not progressing.

Lastly, I hereby swear to surround myself with people who make me better.  The people who challenge me and who want to go with me to take old people to see Christmas lights and who buoy me when I am feeling not so high.  Those people will keep me both aware and progressing.  Peeps like you guys.  Thanks for being those people for me and with me.  Love you.