Today I started a new volunteer opportunity — a 7 week stint with the Louisville Junior Achievement organization. Every week for the next 7 weeks, I am in a high school class for 45 minutes to teach the JA’s Success Skills module. There were actually 13 business/community volunteers and we all spent time in class today teaching our different classes. It was very different than my normal day and it provided me a unique view into today’s public school teenagers that I don’t normally have.

What it also gave me was a reflection opportunity — if I could convey to those students what I know now, what would be the most important salient points?

  • Learning never stops – it is a lifelong process. School does not define learning and learning does not define school.
  • If you continue an open learning attitude, that alone will catapult you towards success.
  • Attitude determines your altitude.
  • Your youthful outlook, hopefulness and energy can compensate for lack of experience and naivety.
  • Your hair, your clothes, your trends and your accessories don’t matter at all and don’t make you cool.
  • Cool is fleeting. Knowledge is not.
  • Look around at the folks around you. If they aren’t family, you probably won’t see them in 10 years.
  • Trust the wisdom of those older than you but also don’t let them tell you it can’t be done (these are parts of the same coin like heads is to tails).
  • Cherish the time you have — with youth, with family, with friends, with events. It might seem like time is creeping by, but it continues to accelerate until you can’t remember what’s going on.
  • Don’t hang on to anything negative too long (emotions, grudges, friends, thoughts, the past).
  • Nothing, absolutely nothing, beats the combination of a good attitude and hard work.
  • Start your true relationship with Jesus sooner rather than later. Parents dragging you to church doesn’t count. You are now old enough to own it yourself.

I’m sure there are more but those are what came to mind. It made for an interesting exercise. I wonder if I would share this with them next week.

…..Dan at aslowerpace dot net