(#429) Everything Is Up for Revision


Considered evaluation can alter, broaden, and strengthen our belief system.

My wife and I recently heard several teens deliver a Sunday message at their church. Their individual messages struck common chords about compassion, acceptance, and communal growth. One of the young speakers urged the congregants to view life from the perspective that everything is up for revision.

Consider that for a moment. Rather than believing and acting indiscriminately based on habit, we pause and think critically. How can we appreciate a situation from a different lens?

Everything. Is. Up. For. Revision.

How we view one another. The way we speak. What we read. Where we worship—and why we worship in the manner we do. Our fitness routine. The lack of a fitness routine. What we eat. Who we socialize with. Social media connections.  Our job trajectory. Financial planning.  Sweat equity in our community. Our news sources. How we give back. Our self-talk. What else….?

Considered evaluation can alter, broaden, and strengthen our belief system.    We gather evidence and remain vigilant for the need to shift direction.

Examine the Six Fs of your life. Where is revision needed? What small step can you take this week? Perhaps you can embrace an “ooch” or this strategy.

Everything is up for revision.


Video Recommendation of the Week:

Sometimes we can get overwhelmed. Curly suggests the “One Thing” strategy.


For more about community building and sustainability,
look for my new book due out the beginning of 2019. More information to come.


Make it an inspiring and grateful week and H.T.R.B. as needed.

For information about and to order my most recent book, Stories about Teaching, Learning, and Resilience: No Need to be an Island, click here. A few colleges and one state-wide agency have adopted it for training and coaching purposes. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same.

The paperback price on Amazon is now $14.99 and the Kindle version stands at $5.99. Consider it for a faculty orientation or a mentoring program. The accompanying videos would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.


My podcasts: The Growth and Resilience Network® (http://stevepiscitelli.com/media-broadcast/podcast).


My programs and webinars: website (http://stevepiscitelli.com/programs/what-i-do) and (http://stevepiscitelli.com/programs/webinars).


Pearson Education publishes my student textbooks for life success—Choices for College Success (3rd edition) and Study Skills: Do I Really Need This Stuff? (3rd edition).

(c) 2018. Steve Piscitelli. All rights reserved.


 

Posted in Appreciation, assumptions, authenticity, awareness, focus, generativity, Gratitude, growth, Integrity, Life lessons, resilience | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

(#428) What Does Success Look Like To You?


Is success a noun? A verb? An adjective?
Does it have to be connected to the common good?

Last week, in a local shop at the beach, I spied the photo below. Th caption caught my attention: “Success is knowing when to stop and play.”

It reminded me of a conversation I had with film producer, Pepper Lindsey.  She posed the question, “What does success look like to you?”

Often, I see “success” linked with “failure.”  Thomas J. Watson, founder of IBM, said “If you want to increase your success rate, double your failure rate”  and Winston Churchill told us that “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.”

When one fails, one needs the discipline—the “oomph”—to continue forward. Success connects to perseverance.

Legendary football coach, Vince Lombardi, reminded us that “The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather in a lack of will.”

W.C. Fields took a contrary view when he quipped, “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again. Then quit. No use being a damn fool about it.”  He had a point. Coco Chanel said, “Don’t spend time beating on a wall, hoping to transform it into a door.”

While a “stick-to-it-at-all-costs” mindset might remind us not to quit at the first obstacle, success also can arise from knowing when to change course or maybe totally get off the course. Consider these seven questions.

What does success look like to you?  Maybe it involves money, fame, title. joy, love, community outreach, difference making, family, spirituality, physical fitness, emotional balance, inner peace, or learning something new every day. Whatever success looks like to you, the person next to you probably has a different rubric. I do not believe I can tell you what success will (or should) look like for you. Nor can you tell me.  

Is success a noun? A verb? An adjective? Does it have to be connected to the common good?

At times, “success” gets trivialized with clichéd-bumper-sticker throwaways.  Or, connected to what a celebrity does, says, wears, or drives.

For me, success has been tied to purpose, fulfillment, relationships, learning, searching, questioning, listening, and making a positive difference. I have attached it more to a feeling than to a thing, possession, or act. How it actually “looked” changed during my life’s journey. Success, itself, remains for me a continual journey, not one end.

I posed the question “What is success” on social media. Responses included that success is:

  • different for everyone. I find peace in simplicity.
  • always successful when love surrounds your success.
  • when you have good physical, mental, and emotional health. You are doing what you want in life and finding joy in all of it!
  • when you do not need anything else and you are happy with what you have.
  • when you never stop trying.
  • when you do good for others.
  • when you learn from your mistakes.

A community might talk about what success looks like. It might even help you sort through your thoughts. You can help me. I can help you. But success must be self-defined. If not, we could end up being successful by another standard and at the same time not be a success in our mind.  Does your goal match your inner self?


Video Recommendation of the Week:

Wherever or whatever your rainbow may be, does it add up to a wonderful life? If it does, is that life a success?



For more about community building and sustainability,
look for my new book due out the beginning of 2019.
More information to come.


Make it an inspiring and grateful week and H.T.R.B. as needed.

For information about and to order my most recent book, Stories about Teaching, Learning, and Resilience: No Need to be an Island, click here. A few colleges and one state-wide agency have adopted it for training and coaching purposes. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same.

The paperback price on Amazon is now $14.99 and the Kindle version stands at $5.99. Consider it for a faculty orientation or a mentoring program. The accompanying videos would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

My podcasts: The Growth and Resilience Network® (http://stevepiscitelli.com/media-broadcast/podcast).

My programs and webinars: website (http://stevepiscitelli.com/programs/what-i-do) and (http://stevepiscitelli.com/programs/webinars).

Pearson Education publishes my student textbooks for life success—Choices for College Success (3rd edition) and Study Skills: Do I Really Need This Stuff? (3rd edition).

(c) 2018. Steve Piscitelli. All rights reserved.


 

Posted in authenticity, awareness, Goals, Integrity, resilience | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

(#427) Someone Must be the Grown-Up in the Room


The leader helps us see what is possible,
especially when we do not have that vision in our experience.

Transformation does not just appear. It requires vision, thought, communication, respect, difficult questioning, and better listening. Transformational leaders help orchestrate that communal dance. They recognize that establishing a “shared vision” requires tough conversations. Everyone around the table (typically) sees his or her agenda item as the most important. They struggle to understand what “community” means beyond their narrow framework. Intentions may be good, but attention may not stray far from an individual agenda. The bigger picture can get lost in collective monologues.

One day in the gym, my personal trainer posed a question about mind-body discipline and fitness: “How do people walk around in something they were born with and not know anything about it or not be aware of what affects it?”

The same can be said for community leadership: “How do you lead a community if you do not take time to understand what affects it? How do you live or work in a place and not know anything about it or not be aware of what affects it?”

Two long-time community activists and leaders shared a few leadership skills and strategies with me on a mid-summer visit to their home. When I sat down with Linda and Michael Lanier, I wanted to learn how leaders get people to engage in reflective practice.

Linda Lanier’s storied leadership career included having served as the head of the Jacksonville affiliate of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, the Executive Director of the Sulzbacher Center for the Homeless, and head of the Jacksonville (Florida) Children’s Commission. She said effective leaders understand that they must say what everybody knows but few want to own. The leader sets the tone by “speaking truth to power and saying the unspeakable.”

That is, the leader must provide the safe, yet possibly uncomfortable, means for an open and honest discussion about tough issues.

Michael, a former behavioral therapist and recently retired as a hospital vice president for community outreach, said the leader needs to help his team move beyond passivity, navigate through emotion and upset, and be real by explaining the situation. He must help the parties at the table see a higher sense. They must keep their higher calling in mind.
“In the hospital,” he said, “I always went back to our mission. We had to help those whose lives had been interrupted by illness or injury.” He always kept that mission front and center for his staff and himself.

Michael and Linda believe that leaders need to tune into the vulnerabilities of the people sitting around the table. Ask them to help you (the leader) to understand the issue at hand by drawing on their wisdom.

Linda said effective leaders, “Draw out rather than pump in. They help people discover what they already know. And to do this you have to start with assumptions—do not start with the solutions. Always remember that all of us are smarter than anyone of us.”
But what about the defenses and walls people bring to the table. Don’t we have to deconstruct those before we build for the future?

“Those defenses present themselves for a reason,” Michael said. “And we must respect them and be mindful not to trip on them as we move forward.”

Linda was more direct, “Someone must be the grown-up in the room. The leader sets the tone.”

How can a reflective leader help her team set the tone, especially in a highly charged conversation? How can she be the grown up in the room? The Lanier’s strategies include:

• Reflect on what you (the leader) will say. Provide insights with transparency and support.
• Work diligently to make sure the people in front of you believe they are seen and heard.
• Take risks. Reveal your concerns while avoiding a “know-it-all” demeanor. In fact, at the beginning of meetings, Michael often wrote a one-word reminder across the top of his copy of the agenda: “Humble.”
• Be realistic about your expectations.
• Kindness is always better than righteousness.

Finally, Linda shared that leaders need to move beyond “hope.” While hoping for a better outcome is laudable, it will come up short if the people you work with (team members as well as clients) have no reference point for the vision. The leader needs to help us see what is possible, especially when we do not have that vision in our experience.

Once that vision of what we desire comes into focus, we then need to hold a belief we can access that pathway—that we have the wherewithal to accomplish the envisioned goal. But, if cause and effect are broken, it becomes difficult to move forward. That can stymie any community.

Reflective leaders help place cause and effect in proper perspective. And then they guide their team forward with consideration, conversation, and collaboration.

Tough? You bet.

Worth it? Definitely.


Video Recommendation of the Week:


For more about community building and sustainability,
look for my new book due out the beginning of 2019.
More information to come.


Make it an inspiring and grateful week and H.T.R.B. as needed.

For information about and to order my most recent book, Stories about Teaching, Learning, and Resilience: No Need to be an Island, click here. A few colleges and one state-wide agency have adopted it for training and coaching purposes. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same.

The paperback price on Amazon is now $14.99 and the Kindle version stands at $5.99. Consider it for a faculty orientation or a mentoring program. The accompanying videos would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

My podcasts: The Growth and Resilience Network® (http://stevepiscitelli.com/media-broadcast/podcast).

My programs and webinars: website (http://stevepiscitelli.com/programs/what-i-do) and (http://stevepiscitelli.com/programs/webinars).

Pearson Education publishes my student textbooks for life success—Choices for College Success (3rd edition) and Study Skills: Do I Really Need This Stuff? (3rd edition).

(c) 2018. Steve Piscitelli. All rights reserved.


 

Posted in action, amplifying, assumptions, awareness, Being REMARKABLE, change management, Civility, coaching, collaboration, Communication, Community, community development, consideration, conversation, Critical Thinking, Integrity, leadership, legacy, Life lessons, resilience, transformational leadership, vulnerability, wellbeing | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

(#426) It’s Easy to be Left Behind


“Aging in place” may describe what the residents were doing
but not who they wanted to be.

In the mid-1990s,  the Walt Disney Company brought the principles of new urbanism to life when it broke ground on Celebration, Florida. Located minutes from Disney’s Orlando theme parks, Celebration was planned to be a “complete diverse, walkable, compact, and vibrant place to live, learn, work, and play. This created community would be a traditional American town built anew.”

While visitors may focus on the architecture, mixed use zoning, mansions, townhouses, greenspace, cozy shops and bistros, Celebration is more than brick, mortar, and homeowner association covenants.  Look deeper—just like any vibrant community—and we are reminded that people live in those houses, traverse the streets, and patronize the shops.  Old and young, they need more than quaint streets and manufactured snowflakes during the holiday season. They want a sense of belonging and meaning.

Enter the Celebration Foundation,  a curator of resources for the community.  Its board members recognized early on that their best resource-the biggest asset-was the residents of the community. They must tap into those people. Without them, there would be no community.

When the Foundation came to life in 1996, it brought together the community gatekeepers who helped identify and assess needs of the greater community. Over the years, it has reached out to the homeless in need of a meal, to young girls searching for positive role models, and high school students looking for post-secondary direction.

In 2015, the Foundation launched Thriving In Place, a resource program for the “mature” Celebration population.  From conversations with Celebration residents, it became clear neighbors aged 55 and older were facing challenging situations to remain in their homes. Some needed assistance with basic home maintenance, while others required transportation to and from doctors, hospitals, the grocery store, special events, or places of worship. A few had to confront the difficult situation to give up their homes and independent life style. You could say these older residents (and some with disabilities) had trouble “aging in place.” Foundation board member Eileen Crawford, however, saw this from another perspective.

She said that “aging in place” may describe what the residents were doing but not who they wanted to be.  They did not want to merely survive. They may have been aging individuals, but they most definitely were not decrepit people waiting to be warehoused. They wanted to thrive.



On July 13, 2018, I had the opportunity to speak with members of Thriving In Place as well as record a conversation with Gloria, Eileen, and Mary Pat at the Foundation headquarters.


Executive Director Gloria Niec credits the organic growth of Thriving In Place to a methodical process.  As a skilled facilitator and leader, she knew you do not develop a resource without meaningful input from and deep conversation with those who would use that resource.

It took two years to gather the research needed to understand what the program had to provide, what the program needed to look like, who would participate, and how it would be supported and funded.  Not a minor undertaking.

Today, its mission states,

Thriving In Place is a community-based membership program designed to help residents stay in their home and the community they love. If you are at least 55 years old or a person with a disability of any age, you are eligible to become a member of our program. It enables residents to live in their own homes leading healthy, safe, independent and productive lives.

Starting with a pioneer group of 20, membership has more than quintupled.


Video Recommendation for the Week

This classic song (paired with world-class international performers) reminds us that “no matter who you are, no matter where you go in your life, at some point you gonna need somebody to stand by you.” Thriving In Place understands and lives that truth.


What do members get for their yearly membership of $1/day (or $520 for a couple)? At one of their weekly Friday luncheons (July of 2018), the assembled program members provided unscripted testimony. For them, the program

  • Establishes community—caring for one another;
  • Relieves loneliness;
  • Builds friendships;
  • Includes opportunities for the disabled;
  • Offers the ability to volunteer—to give back to their community;
  • Provides transportation to events or to and from medical appointments;
  • Creates stay-in-touch phone calling which, in turn, provides assurances to long-distance family members that their elderly parents are doing well.

One member stood and shared that the program is a reminder to “be as kind and loving to everyone you meet. Because, everyone is fighting a battle.”

Another poignantly stated, “We are slowing down, as people around us are moving faster. It’s easy to be left behind.”  Thriving In Place provides access to resources, so they will not be left behind.

Social capital helps create a full life. Research tells us if we can move beyond weak social ties to more meaningful and authentic connections, our chances for longer life expand.

And, according to program manager Mary Pat Rosenthal, socialization continues to be the common denominator—the glue—for the Thriving In Place members. The activities, events, excursions, and the intergenerational volunteer opportunities allow the members to be involved, active, and contributing community resources themselves.  They still have talents and gifts to grow and to share.  Remember, as board member Crawford first stated, these folks are doing anything but “aging in place!”

When we speak of resources, “things” and “services” may come to mind. Do not, however, forget the relationships. Relationships remain the secret sauce. Without them what do we have? Connected people create, nurture, and sustain the best resource a community has to offer.

Thriving In Place proves a home is more than the sum of its architectural codes, zoning requirements, and pedestrian friendly streets. Home is a feeling of comfort, peace, and community.

When I asked Rosenthal, the program manager, what kept her coming back to the program each day she smiled and said, “It’s about the people.”

Resources take on many forms.  Beyond material things, healthy relationships offer a powerful foundation that, really, supports all others.


For more about community building and sustainability, look for my new book due out the beginning of 2019. More information to come.

Make it an inspiring and grateful week and H.T.R.B. as needed.

For information about and to order my most recent book, Stories about Teaching, Learning, and Resilience: No Need to be an Island, click here. A few colleges and one state-wide agency have adopted it for training and coaching purposes. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same.

The paperback price on Amazon is now $14.99 and the Kindle version stands at $5.99. Consider it for a faculty orientation or a mentoring program. The accompanying videos would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

My podcasts: The Growth and Resilience Network® (http://stevepiscitelli.com/media-broadcast/podcast).

My programs and webinars: website (http://stevepiscitelli.com/programs/what-i-do) and (http://stevepiscitelli.com/programs/webinars).

Pearson Education publishes my student textbooks for life success—Choices for College Success (3rd edition) and Study Skills: Do I Really Need This Stuff? (3rd edition).

(c) 2018. Steve Piscitelli. All rights reserved.


 

Posted in aging, authenticity, awareness, change, change management, Community, community development, dignity, Life lessons, resilience, social capital | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

(#425) A Community of Mentors for Music, Hope, and Rainbows


Neighbors entertaining neighbors while enjoying
the company of other neighbors.

Research tells us that “hope” requires three ingredients: Goals + Pathways + Agency. Our goal—a rainbow that attracts and draws our attention—must be valuable to us and/or our community.  A pathway—a plausible route to the goal—must be present. And, we intuit (in some way or another) we have the ability (at some level), the power, and the talent to reach that goal.

Mentors assist along the pathway. They help us discover the agency we have not yet recognized. We typically think of mentors as solo entities; individuals sharing expertise. If one mentor can change a life, think what a community of mentors can do.  That’s what the Atlantic Beach, Florida Songwriters’ Night provides.

As cliché as it might sound, Songwriters’ Night (SWN) started on the back of a cocktail napkin.  In 2003 I served on the Atlantic Beach Cultural Arts and Recreation Advisory Committee. That body approved my suggestion for the city to sponsor an outdoor music event for our community.   I went to the best person I knew who could deliver as both the MC and musical muse for the event, Mike “Shack” Shackelford. As a singer-songwriter, Shack brought the musical chops needed to produce a professional event. He could mentor me (the promoter) and the stage performers (the talent).

At the time, Shack’s band was playing at a lounge in Atlantic Beach.  I met him there one night and our plan came together in a matter of minutes. With the backing of our city government, we would provide a free, family-friendly music event for our community. It would be for amateurs and professionals alike. No auditions required. All welcomed. Respectful performances (read: G-rated; family-oriented) only.

We hoped to provide a musical pathway for our community.  An opportunity for songwriters to share their talents, gain confidence, connect with like-minded creative types, and entertain community members.  Neighbors entertaining neighbors while enjoying the company of other neighbors.

Over the years the adults have shared the stage with children of the community. These young artists test and hone their musical skills in a true listening room environment.

One such aspiring singer-songwriter shared her experiences with me.  Twelve-year old Izzy Moon Mayforth told me she likes that people listen to her music—and that she gets to listen to others and learn from them for her songwriting and performing. When she hears the heart-felt applause after her performances she says to herself, “Glad that I did it!” She gains confidence—and that strengthens the agency needed to move toward goal completion.

Shack (who, BTW, is a few years older than 12) believes one of the most beautiful results of the monthly events is to see people, who were petrified at first, come back as part of the regular rotation of artists. One who helped me perform (singing and with a tasteful lead guitar) one of my songs when he was about 10 years old, now records and acts in Los Angeles.

For the audience, the event builds the community’s “social capital.” It serves as a community laboratory to help young and not-so-young, of varying musical abilities, wing toward their dreams. In between songs, before the event, or after the lights go dark, the audience talks about things other than music like neighborhood schools, workplace opportunities, home improvement projects, or important community issues. Spin-off events to other parts of the county have occurred as well.

A beach venue for dreams helps create a pathway for other venues.

And hope lives. When people take time to listen to, and give gratitude for the gifts of others, respect builds, and community strengthens.  As Izzy sings in one of her original compositions, “You’re my friend, and I love you.”


Video recommendation for the week.

Izzy will be a part of a podcast on The Growth and Resilience Network podcast channel later this fall. When we spoke, she graciously agreed to perform her song “It Rained Today.”


For more about community building and sustainability, look for my new book due out the end of 2018.  More information to come.

Make it an inspiring and grateful week and H.T.R.B. as needed.

For information about and to order my 2017 book, Stories about Teaching, Learning, and Resilience: No Need to be an Island, click here. A few colleges and one state-wide agency have adopted it for training and coaching purposes. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same.

The paperback price on Amazon is now $14.99 and the Kindle version stands at $5.99. Consider it for a faculty orientation or a mentoring program. The accompanying videos would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

My podcasts: The Growth and Resilience Network® (http://stevepiscitelli.com/media-broadcast/podcast).

My programs and webinars: website (http://stevepiscitelli.com/programs/what-i-do) and (http://stevepiscitelli.com/programs/webinars).

Pearson Education publishes my student textbooks for life success—Choices for College Success (3rd edition) and Study Skills: Do I Really Need This Stuff? (3rd edition).

(c) 2018. Steve Piscitelli. All rights reserved.

Posted in acceptance, amplifying, Appreciation, authenticity, awareness, Being REMARKABLE, Community, community development, confidence, core values, creating your future, Creativity, Friendship, listening, mentoring, Mindfulness, mindset, Motivation, Personal growth, Personal Wellbeing, Relationship, resilience, respect | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

(#424) Connections


Marriage has no guarantees.
If that’s what you’re looking for, go live with a car battery.”
– Erma Bombeck –

Random thoughts about the power of connections.

  • On those times when we take chances, when we risk stepping outside of the comfort zone, an encouraging voice or smile can be the difference between moving forward or retreating. As one blogger put it, when we play on the “skinny branches of life”—we need support.
  • How often do we stop to remember the grace others have added to our lives? One author reminds us “that a grateful outlook produces emotional prosperity, whereas failing to live gratefully leads to emotional poverty.”

  • A neighbor who graciously accepted the invitation to review one section of my new book, shared an ageless quote:

No man is an island,
entire of itself;
every man is a piece of the continent,
a part of the main.
If a clod be washed away by the sea,
Europe is the less,
as well as if a promontory were,
as well as if a manor of thy friend’s
or of thine own were.
Any man’s death diminishes me,
because I am involved in mankind;
and therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls;
it tolls for thee.
John Dunne’s Meditation 17 –

  • Martin Luther King, Jr. reminded us that “It really boils down to this: that all life is interrelated. We are all caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied into a single garment of destiny.”
  • One Buddhists meditation technique, Naikan, guides us to ask three questions about our relationships:
    • What have I received from ________?
    • What have I given to ________?
    • What troubles and difficulty have I caused ________?
  • Relationships can be messy. Or as Erma Bombeck has said, “”Marriage has no guarantees. If that’s what you’re looking for, go live with a car battery.”

Video recommendation for the week.

Tenth Avenue North sings that there “ain’t no life outside each other…we are not meant to live this life alone.”


Make it an inspiring and grateful week and H.T.R.B. as needed.

For information about and to order my book, Stories about Teaching, Learning, and Resilience: No Need to be an Island, click here. A few colleges and one state-wide agency have adopted it for training and coaching purposes. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same.

The paperback price on Amazon is now $14.99 and the Kindle version stands at $5.99. Consider it for a faculty orientation or a mentoring program. The accompanying videos would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

My podcasts: The Growth and Resilience Network® (http://stevepiscitelli.com/media-broadcast/podcast).

My programs and webinars: website (http://stevepiscitelli.com/programs/what-i-do) and (http://stevepiscitelli.com/programs/webinars).

Pearson Education publishes my student textbooks for life success—Choices for College Success (3rd edition) and Study Skills: Do I Really Need This Stuff? (3rd edition).

(c) 2018. Steve Piscitelli. All rights reserved.

Posted in amplifying, Appreciation, assumptions, authenticity, awareness, Community, Connection-Disconnection, family, fortitude, Friendship, growth, happiness, health, humor, Integrity, Life lessons, listening, love, Reflective practice, Relationship | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

(#423) Poverty


When communities build walls to separate their people
(due to a poverty of understanding or compassion), the lack can seem insurmountable.

 “The world tends to define poverty and riches simply in terms of economics. But poverty has many faces—weakness, dependence, and many forms of humiliation. Essentially, poverty is a lack of means to accomplish what one desires or needs, be it lack of money, relationships, influence, power, intellectual ability, physical strength, freedom, or dignity.”Richard Rohr.

Rohr’s words convey that the concept of poverty goes beyond dollars and cents. At its heart, poverty is a lack of something—something that is crucial to humanness.

You know people (or you may have experienced it yourself) who have the dollars and cents but are poor (lack) in:

  • acceptance
  • authenticity
  • calm
  • clarity
  • critical thinking
  • discipline
  • education
  • evidence
  • health
  • hope
  • humor
  • inspiration
  • love
  • opportunity
  • peace
  • purpose
  • relationships
  • resilience
  • respect for others
  • respect for selves
  • security
  • spirituality
  • virtuous action
  • vision

When we experience poverty we feel, in that space, a separation from those who have what we do not.  It could be ego-based, or it could just as well be survival-oriented. Whatever its roots, it is real to us.

When communities build walls to separate their people (due to a poverty of understanding or compassion), the lack can seem insurmountable.  When those barriers are breached by humanity—kindness, understanding, assistance, education, nourishment on physical, spiritual, and emotional levels—we have a chance to address poverty.

When we continue to separate, demonize, fail to understand, or do not even attempt to communicate, poverty deepens.


Video recommendation for the week:

One view of poverty.


Make it an inspiring and grateful week and H.T.R.B. as needed.

For information about and to order my book, Stories about Teaching, Learning, and Resilience: No Need to be an Island, click here. A few colleges and one state-wide agency have adopted it for training and coaching purposes. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same.

The paperback price on Amazon is now $14.99 and the Kindle version stands at $5.99. Consider it for a faculty orientation or a mentoring program. The accompanying videos would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

My podcasts: The Growth and Resilience Network® (http://stevepiscitelli.com/media-broadcast/podcast).

My programs and webinars: website (http://stevepiscitelli.com/programs/what-i-do) and (http://stevepiscitelli.com/programs/webinars).

Pearson Education publishes my student textbooks for life success—Choices for College Success (3rd edition) and Study Skills: Do I Really Need This Stuff? (3rd edition).

(c) 2018. Steve Piscitelli. All rights reserved.

Posted in accountability, action, assumptions, authenticity, awareness, Being REMARKABLE, change, change management, Choice, Civility, collaboration, Critical Thinking, Life lessons, respect, responsibility, risk-taking | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment