(Issue #568) Community As A Pathway To Dreams


One’s dreams, goals, desires, and vision, connect to one’s overall journey.

NOTE: Below is an excerpt from my book Community as a Safe Place to Land (2019, pp. 85-87). As an example of finding pathways and agency to a goal, it references the Atlantic Beach (Florida) Songwriters Night. For the past year, this monthly event has been placed on hold due to the pandemic. But it is making it’s way back to the stage—if only virtually for the time being. A community awaits to re-embrace this treasure of social capital.

Now for the excerpt:

Research tells us that hope requires three ingredients: goals + pathways + agency.

*The goal that attracts and draws your attention must be valuable to you and/or your community.

*A pathway—a plausible route to the goal—must be present.

*And, you intuit that you have the ability, the power, and the talent to reach that goal.

Mentors can assist along the pathway. They can help us discover the agency we have not yet recognized in ourselves. We may 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 has provided since 2003.

From the beginning, we (the organizers) hoped to be a pathway for our community members.  A pathway for songwriters to share their talents, gain confidence, and connect with like-minded creative types.  It would also be a pathway for the audience. Neighbors entertaining neighbors while enjoying the company of other neighbors. And for some of the performers, SWN has become one step toward a larger goal related to music, songwriting, and performing.

Over the years, 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.

For the audience, the event exemplifies the concept of social capital. It serves as a community laboratory to help all ages, of varying abilities, to chase down 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 have occurred as well.

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

And hope lives. When people take time to listen to and give gratitude for the gifts of others, community strengthens. 



Video recommendation for the Week:

Rather than a video this week, how about a podcast recommendation?

This podcast episode accompanied the release of my book. You will hear Mike Shackelford (the host-musician-songwriter-face-of-SWN) and one of the young artists speak of the power of goals, pathways, and agency.



Make it a great week and HTRB has needed.

My latest book can be found in
eBook ($2.99) and paperback ($9.99) format. Click here
.

Well, actually, my dog Roxie gets top billing on the author page for this work. Without her, there would be no story.

Click here for more information about the book. In the meantime, check out her blog.

And you can still order:

  • Community as a Safe Place to Land (2019print and e-book). Available on Amazon. More information (including seven free podcast episodes that spotlight the seven core values highlighted in the book) at the above link.
  • Stories about Teaching: No Need to be an Island (2017, print and e-book)Available on Amazon. One college’s new faculty onboarding program uses the scenarios in this book. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same. The accompanying videos (see the link above) would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

My podcasts (all 50 episodes) can be found here.

You will find more about what I do at www.stevepiscitelli.com.


©2021. Steve Piscitelli
The Growth and Resilience Network®

Posted in Community, Dreams, Goals, resilience | Leave a comment

(Issue #567) Purpose: Collecting or Connecting Dots?


None of us knows for sure where we will be in 10 years or 10 days.
Are you marking time or making a difference with your time?

We all have a purpose. Sometimes, though, we might have a difficult time defining it, seeing it, or appreciating it. Purpose can seem illusory, frustrating, changing, remote, and too much work to figure out.

In a commencement address delivered to the graduating class of Florida State College at Jacksonville on May 11, 2017, I encouraged the graduates to focus on three aspects of life: Rainbows, Relationships, and Resilience.  Each is part of our purpose.

I encouraged them to never stop asking intentional and meaningful questions about things that matter—about their purpose. Even when that proved difficult—in fact, especially when it proves difficult. 

Here (in part) is what I said about their Rainbows (goals and dreams) that day in the Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Maybe it can provide a jumpstart for any of us who may be searching. The Video of the Week below features my entire address.

“…Consider how you will stay relevant. What got you here will not be enough to get you there. How will you continue to develop the skills needed to work with multiple generational attitudes in the workplace where you will find differing perspectives when it comes to purpose, place, and people?  How will you remain open to and find life-growing possibilities? ….

“Over the course of your lifetime you have done a lot, seen a lot, gathered a lot, read a lot, worked a lot, written a lot, planned a lot, talked a lot, tweeted a lot, posted a lot, Instagrammed a lot, and ____ (you fill in the blank) a lot.  Each one of those experiences represents a dot on your lifeline. You have gathered thousands of dots on your journey. And you will gather thousands more. What do you do with those dots? A colleague of mine from California reminded me that we might spend too much time collecting dots and not enough time connecting those dots. Are the dots in your life meaningful? Do you savor and appreciate them? Or do you just collect them like tally marks on a scoreboard? …

“In the 1950s, Casey Stengel managed the New York Yankees.  One day as he looked out on the field, he told a coach next to him, ‘You see that young fella over there? He’s 20 year’s old. In 10 years he’s going to be an All Star.’ And then he pointed to another place on the field, ‘You see that other young man out there. He’s also 20 years old…and in 10 years…he’ll be 30.’

“None of us knows for sure where we will be in 10 years or 10 days. The difference, like those two ball players:  Are you just marking time or making a difference with your time? What are you doing with your time? Just collecting dots?….”

I left the graduates with a quote from R.D. Laing:

The range of what we think and do is limited by what we fail to notice.
And because we fail to notice that we fail to notice, there is little we can do to change.
Until we notice how failing to notice shapes our thoughts and deeds.


Video recommendation for the Week:

Here is my complete commencement address (less than 12 minutes).


Make it a great week and HTRB has needed.

My latest book can be found in
eBook ($2.99) and paperback ($9.99) format. Click 
here.

Roxie Looks for Purpose Beyond the Biscuit.

Well, actually, my dog Roxie gets top billing on the author page for this work. Without her, there would be no story.

Click here for more information about the book. In the meantime, check out her blog.

And you can still order:

  • Community as a Safe Place to Land (2019print and e-book). Available on Amazon. More information (including seven free podcast episodes that spotlight the seven core values highlighted in the book) at the above link.
  • Stories about Teaching: No Need to be an Island (2017, print and e-book)Available on Amazon. One college’s new faculty onboarding program uses the scenarios in this book. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same. The accompanying videos (see the link above) would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

My podcasts (all 50 episodes) can be found here.

You will find more about what I do at www.stevepiscitelli.com.


©2021. Steve Piscitelli
The Growth and Resilience Network®

Posted in Dreams, Life's purpose, relevance | Leave a comment

(Issue #566) I Will


Seventy years ago, Marie and Dominic had dreams.
One reaching beyond and the other attempting to create a comfort zone.

As you read the beginning of this post, you might think it is a sad and dreary remembrance. It isn’t.

If my parents were still alive they’d be celebrating their 70th anniversary this month. But they aren’t.

My dad died when I was 16. A few months earlier, they had celebrated their 18th wedding anniversary. Eighteen years to a sophomore in high school seemed like an eternity. Like they had been married, you know, for seventy years or so. They were married longer than I had been alive, and it seemed they’d be married for another 18 and then another 18 and …. But they weren’t.

My father, an 8th-grade dropout during the Great Depression, had two qualities I remember: The ability to connect with people and his penchant to dream. As I think back at how he lived and the things he did (and did not do), he was motivated to create and live within a vision of a world bigger than he had been born into. But he got sidetracked and his dreams were always just out of reach. In short, when it came to where he wanted to go, he didn’t.

My mother was a hard-working operations manager at a trucking company. A high school graduate, she was the breadwinner in our family. The one who paid attention to the needed details.  She did not take many risks. Possibly over compensating for my dad’s penchant for high stakes, she held her cards close. My mother helped me to understand that little steps are important. In fact, over the years I came to realize a larger lesson that no matter how small (or maybe even insignificant) a step might seem, it isn’t.

Seventy years ago, Marie and Dominic had dreams of their own. One reaching beyond a comfort zone, the other attempting to maintain a comfort zone. Each step they took represented, to them, an important movement toward a larger goal. I learned from them that achievement of large goals (dreams) requires consistent effort over the long haul. My life is the sum of the small and consistent choices I make and do each day. If I fail to pay attention and act with intention each day, then, as for those dreams reaching fruition, they won’t.

Thanks, Mom and Dad. Because of you, I will.

Happy anniversary!



Video recommendation for the Week:

In this video clip from a presentation I delivered in Portland, OR, I make the argument for understanding what is non-negotiable in our lives. And I make the point that, “When the negotiables start taking control of your life, guess what they have become. Non-negotiable.”  Thus derailing your dreams.



Make it a great week and HTRB has needed.

My latest book can be found in
eBook ($2.99) and paperback ($9.99) format. Click here.

Roxie Looks for Purpose Beyond the Biscuit.

Well, actually, my dog Roxie gets top billing on the author page for this work. Without her, there would be no story.

Click here for more information about the book. In the meantime, check out her blog.

And you can still order:

  • Community as a Safe Place to Land (2019print and e-book). Available on Amazon. More information (including seven free podcast episodes that spotlight the seven core values highlighted in the book) at the above link.
  • Stories about Teaching: No Need to be an Island (2017, print and e-book)Available on Amazon. One college’s new faculty onboarding program uses the scenarios in this book. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same. The accompanying videos (see the link above) would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

My podcasts (all 50 episodes) can be found here.

You will find more about what I do at www.stevepiscitelli.com.


©2021. Steve Piscitelli
The Growth and Resilience Network®

Posted in Dreams, parental guidance, Priority management | 2 Comments

(Issue #565) Offering A Hand Or An Opinion?


At that moment they might not need to know how much I know
but, rather, how much I care.

The conclusion of a recent letter to the editor in the local paper caught my attention: “So I ask, if you see a person in need, do you offer a hand or an opinion?”

When someone or some group reaches out for assistance, how do we respond? With compassion and non-judgment. Or do we have to opine about what is wrong with that person or group—especially if our background and experiences do not match what they have encountered? We can become tribe-centric.

Maybe the person in need does, in fact, require some readjustment and realignment. Perhaps they need an ear to listen. Or an empathetic being to help him or her navigate the rocky shoals.

Photo by Steve Piscitelli ©2019

During my classroom teaching years I recall many knocks on my office door by students in need. Sometimes they had academic questions; often they confronted crippling personal dilemmas. And many times those issues were beyond what I had experienced in my life. Like the young women who shared they had been abused by a significant other. My duty in those moments was to get them connected with a counselor who could help—a person trained in such situations.  It was not the time or place to share my opinions about how to pick a partner.  That was not the need for the person in front of me.

Less dramatic or trauma-inducing, think of the friend who shares ideas she wants to share on her next office Zoom meeting. You hear something that might present a problem for her. Maybe it is the manner in which she is presenting or the order of her presentation or the depth or …. Do you offer your opinion about what she is doing wrong or do you offer a hand by sharing some authentic observations? Feedback that she can use—or not—to tweak her delivery.

It might help to ask ourselves, “What does this person need right now? My opinion or my hand? A talking head or someone to lean on?”

I thank the letter writer (above) for reminding me that it’s not about me, it’s about the person in front of me. At that moment they might not need to know how much I know but, rather, how much I care.



Video recommendation for the Week:

Bill Withers and “Lean on Me.”    




Make it a great week and HTRB has needed.

My latest book can be found in
eBook ($2.99) and paperback ($9.99) format. Click here.

Roxie Looks for Purpose Beyond the Biscuit.

Well, actually, my dog Roxie gets top billing on the author page for this work. Without her, there would be no story.
Click here for more information about the book.

In the meantime, check out her blog.

And you can still order:

  • My book, Community as a Safe Place to Land (2019)(print and e-book) is available on Amazon. More information (including seven free podcast episodes that spotlight the seven core values highlighted in the book) at the above link.
  • Check out my book Stories about Teaching: No Need to be an Island (2017). One college’s new faculty onboarding program uses the scenarios in this book. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same. The accompanying videos (see the link above) would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

My podcasts (all 50 episodes) can be found here.

The Growth and Resilience Network®.

You will find more about what I do at www.stevepiscitelli.com.

©2021. Steve Piscitelli
The Growth and Resilience Network®

Posted in Life lessons | Leave a comment

(Issue #564) Perspective


A change in perspective might help us see variety, beauty, glory, and hope.

“Not quite as vibrant this morning, was it? But it is always great to see.  Never tire of it.”

The observation came from a Parks and Recreation official Roxie and I see from time to time on our sunrise beach walks.  Some mornings the clouds add various textures, levels, and vibrancy to the colors as the sun pops out from the water. Other days, what the clear blue sky may lack in variety of hues it gives back with a brilliant glow that bounces off the waves crashing to the shore.

2018-12-19 07.08.26

Photo by Steve Piscitelli

That is when I look for a different perspective. It might be shadows cast by the sea oats or the reflections off beachfront homes. Or I might catch the morning light as it gives a luminous glow to a darkened patio light.

DSC03895

Photo by Steve Piscitelli

Each day brings something new. Sometimes we have to search a bit harder to find that offering. It’s too easy to say, “Oh, seen it before. Nothing new here.”

As I took the photo of that light above, two thoughts—metaphors—came to mind.

  • On days that seem to be filled with anything but clearness and brightness, the clouds give texture to our life. They may be there to force us to look at the unfolding day with different eyeglasses.
  • On days that may not seem as vibrant and exciting as we would like, a change in perspective might help us see variety, beauty, glory, and hope.

We have to be willing to change our perspective.


Video recommendation for the Week:

Speaking of sunrise…a video I shot a few years ago and the different perspectives that it offered as the day dawned.


Make it a great week and HTRB has needed.

My latest book can be found in
eBook ($2.99) and paperback ($9.99) format. Click here.

Roxie Looks for Purpose Beyond the Biscuit.

Well, actually, my dog Roxie gets top billing on the author page for this work. Without her, there would be no story.
Click here for more information about the book.

In the meantime, check out her blog.

And you can still order:

  • My book, Community as a Safe Place to Land (2019)(print and e-book) is available on Amazon. More information (including seven free podcast episodes that spotlight the seven core values highlighted in the book) at the above link.
  • Check out my book Stories about Teaching: No Need to be an Island (2017). One college’s new faculty onboarding program uses the scenarios in this book. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same. The accompanying videos (see the link above) would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

My podcasts (all 50 episodes) can be found here.

The Growth and Resilience Network®.

You will find more about what I do at www.stevepiscitelli.com.

©2021. Steve Piscitelli
The Growth and Resilience Network®

Posted in Life lessons | Tagged | Leave a comment

(Issue #563) Your Future Self


What do you want to say to your Future Self?

In 2012 I discovered a tool to help my students challenge themselves and then hold themselves accountable for that challenge. The site: FutureMe.

In short, FutureMe allows users to craft and send emails (today) to themselves that will arrive in the future. Type an email to the future, set a date for delivery, and on that date it will pop up in your Inbox. Or as the site described it at that time:

Send your future self some words of inspiration. Or maybe give ’em swift kick in the pants. Or just share some thoughts on where you’ll or what you’ll be up to in a year, three years…more? And then we’ll do some time travel magic and deliver the letter to you. FutureYou, that is. Getting a surprise from the past is actually kind of an amazing thing….

I had used an analog version that my students filled out in class, placed it in a self-addressed envelope, and then I mailed it to them in a  few weeks.  A reminder of what they said they would do.

The beauty of FutureMe (the site) is that it allows the user to pick any date in the future.  I asked my students to set a goal (or multiple goals) for the semester, enter those goals into FutureMe, and then set the date to receive that email to coincide with the last week or so of the semester. It became a reality check. What worked and what did not? Where did they fall short? Where did they succeed beyond their expectations?  What steps did they need to take heading into the next semester?

Image: Laurie Piscitelli

As Seth Godin wrote in a recent post, … Maybe you’d express some optimism that you could turn into action. And maybe you’d develop some empathy for your past self, who was just doing the best you could.”

What do you want to say to your Future Self? Type it, send it, and it see what your Current Self had to say about your Future Self. Maybe this feedback will help you develop the next challenge to your Future Self.


Video recommendation for the Week:

Can your FutureMe peek through the clouds and rain? Listen to James Fortune and Fiya.


Make it a great week and HTRB has needed.

My latest book can be found in
eBook ($2.99) and paperback ($9.99) format. Click here.

Roxie Looks for Purpose Beyond the Biscuit.

Well, actually, my dog Roxie gets top billing on the author page for this work. Without her, there would be no story.
Click here for more information about the book.

In the meantime, check out her blog.

And you can still order:

  • My book, Community as a Safe Place to Land (2019), (print and e-book) is available on Amazon. More information (including seven free podcast episodes that spotlight the seven core values highlighted in the book) at the above link.
  • Check out my book Stories about Teaching: No Need to be an Island (2017). One college’s new faculty onboarding program uses the scenarios in this book. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same. The accompanying videos (see the link above) would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

My podcasts (all 50 episodes) can be found here.

The Growth and Resilience Network®.

You will find more about what I do at www.stevepiscitelli.com.

©2021. Steve Piscitelli
The Growth and Resilience Network®

 

Posted in Life lessons | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

(Issue #562) Sacrificing Self For Space?


Do we have encouragement to be bigger, bolder, brighter, and better?

Perhaps you have heard reports (like this one) of one COVID consequence: People looking for bigger homes. They no longer feel they can fit into their space. So they hunt for appropriate room.

Reminds me of a quote, “Stop shrinking to fit places you’ve outgrown.” In this case, we are not considering housing and property. Rather, the emphasis rests on personal growth. (I’m not sure who is the originator as I’ve seen many posts, posters, photos, water bottles and the like with the inscription urging us to “stop shrinking.” For instance, here.)

Like the family that evaluates its space needs for work, living, leisure, and storage, we would do well to pause and evaluate the space—physical, emotional, cognitive, spiritual—we inhabit and determine if it is encouraging or stifling.

When I look back at my teaching career, I am thankful that I found myself in a space (many spaces, in fact) that never smothered or suppressed me. I had mentors, colleagues, and students who encouraged me to stretch and be more. I was fortunate.

When I got into publishing, one of my editors listened, pushed, and pulled so that I would grow. The same with speaking engagements.

In those cases the space was never restricted (or at least not unreasonably so) and I did not have to settle for something less.

Again, I was fortunate.

This short post is a reminder for us to look at the space (personal and professional) in which we exist. Who and what inhabits the space with us? Why? Do we have encouragement to be bigger, bolder, brighter, and better? Or do we feel shut down and confined as our dreams and talents slowly become a memory?

How does your space look? What is your next step?


Video recommendation for the Week:

I came across this scene on one of my beach walks. The sea turtle hatchling reminds us that some beings will not be deterred from finding that larger space to grow. Even against overwhelming odds.


Make it a great week and HTRB has needed.

My latest book can be found in
eBook ($2.99) and paperback ($9.99) format. Click here.

Roxie Looks for Purpose Beyond the Biscuit.

Well, actually, my dog Roxie gets top billing on the author page for this work. Without her, there would be no story.
Click here for more information about the book.

In the meantime, check out her blog.

And you can still order:

  • My book, Community as a Safe Place to Land (2019), (print and e-book) is available on Amazon. More information (including seven free podcast episodes that spotlight the seven core values highlighted in the book) at the above link.
  • Check out my book Stories about Teaching: No Need to be an Island (2017). One college’s new faculty onboarding program uses the scenarios in this book. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same. The accompanying videos (see the link above) would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

My podcasts (all 50 episodes) can be found here.

The Growth and Resilience Network®.

You will find more about what I do at www.stevepiscitelli.com.

©2021. Steve Piscitelli
The Growth and Resilience Network®

Posted in Life lessons | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

(Issue #561) Age and Wisdom: Questions For Your Consideration


Circumstances change.
Does wisdom and the vessel of that wisdom change as well?

Katherine Esty’s EightySomethings: A Practical Guide to Letting Go, Aging Well, and Finding Unexpected Happiness and  John Leland’s Happiness is a Choice You Make: Lessons from a Year Among the Oldest Old inspired me initially to think about wisdom and how it is passed along.  “Of course,” I thought, “wisdom comes from experience. Lots of experience. It is passed down to us by the elders of the community.”

Wisdom is typically associated with experience, knowledge and sound judgment. But is it a trait held only by the old? Does wisdom have an age threshold?  That is, do we have to reach a certain age before we can “have” wisdom? Is wisdom about telling, asking, and/or listening?

Can a twenty year-old and a fifty year-old experience job loss? Of course they can and do. Are the perceptions of the experience the same? Can the younger have wisdom to pass along to the elder in such a situation?

I once read about an official who served during the Clinton administration. Referencing domestic threats he reportedly said, “You have to be careful about always fighting the last war, because the next one is going to be different.”

Perhaps it is the same with wisdom. If we have been brought up that age bestows wisdom because that’s how it has always been, do we risk missing a wealth of wisdom from our younger generations?

Years ago I came to know an octogenarian who worked out in the gym most mornings.  He often said, “You are where I was. And I am where you will be.” True enough.

One of the subjects of Leland’s noted book above had a similar saying: “I was once your age but you were never my age.”

Perhaps we can riff on this looking backward. At times an elder might dismiss a younger because of lack of experience. Maybe the younger should say/could say, “Yes, you were once my age and I was never your age. But perhaps you have forgotten what it was like to experience my age.  Or perhaps my age is not the same as it was when you were my age.”

Wisdom comes in statements, reflections, and questions.

Circumstances change. Does wisdom and the vessel of that wisdom change as well?

I’d love your thoughts.


Video recommendation for the Week. Actually two this week.

First, one I shared with my students often. From the mouths of the elders.

Second, a thought to change perspective about age and wisdom from philosopher Alan Watts.


Make it a great week and HTRB has needed.

My latest book can be found in
eBook ($2.99)  and paperback ($9.99) format. Click here.

Roxie Looks for Purpose Beyond the Biscuit.

Well, actually, my dog Roxie gets top billing on the author page for this work. Without her, there would be no story.
Click here for more information about the book.

In the meantime, check out her blog.

And you can still order:

  • My book, Community as a Safe Place to Land (2019), (print and e-book) is available on Amazon. More information (including seven free podcast episodes that spotlight the seven core values highlighted in the book) at the above link.
  • Check out my book Stories about Teaching: No Need to be an Island (2017).  One college’s new faculty onboarding program uses the scenarios in this book. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same. The accompanying videos (see the link above) would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

My podcasts (all 50 episodes) can be found here.

The Growth and Resilience Network®.

You will find more about what I do at www.stevepiscitelli.com.

©2021. Steve Piscitelli
The Growth and Resilience Network®

Posted in Life lessons | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

(Issue #560) Renewal Of Vows


A reminder that it can become too easy to say,
“Oh, I said that. She/He knows it.”

NOTE: The annual Renewal of Vows ceremony in Savannah, Georgia
will be virtual this year.  See the end of this post for a news clip and link to the event.

The year was 1976. Our nation celebrated its bicentennial. Pittsburg beat Dallas in Super Bowl X. A new figure on the national political scene won the Democratic Caucus in Iowa—and eventually the presidency. The Toronto Blue Jays baseball team came into existence Steve Jobs created Apple Computer Company. The Ramones released their first album. The Cincinnati Reds swept the New York Yankees in the World Series.

And Valentine’s Day 1976 Laurie and I said our wedding vows for the first time.

I say first time because since that day, we have repeated those vows somewhere in the vicinity of twenty times.

In 1997, Laurie and I were in Savanah, Georgia for our anniversary. On our way to dinner in the City Market, we stumbled on and participated in a Renewal of Vows ceremony. Total serendipity. We fell in love (pun intended) with the ceremony and the officiating couple, The Reverend Billy Hester and his wife, Cheri Hester. Whenever possible, we have returned each Valentine’s Day.

On February 14, 2003, The Savannah Morning News published my article “Love and Marriage in City Market” about the event.

Renewal of vows. “Why do that?” you may ask.  “I said them once. Don’t need to repeat them.” Maybe the idea of renewing marriage vows seems redundant, overly sentimental, or awkward. Initially, the same thoughts crossed my mind. But over time I came to consider (and appreciate) the need for repetition.

From experience I can tell you it is sentimental to stand there holding hands with your partner, gazing into her eyes, and recommitting in public.  Touching, tender, sweet, nostalgic. And the first time we renewed our vows I did feel awkward standing in a crowd of strangers as we reaffirmed our love.

I’ve come to see this ceremony as anything but redundant. Consider the following, if you will.

  • “Well, I’ve said that prayer once. No need to say it again.” Or,
  • “I said that meditation mantra/affirmation once. No need to repeat it.” Or,
  • “I’ve cheered the school fight song once. No need to repeat it.” Or,
  • “I’ve done crunches and stretches. No need to repeat that.” Or,
  • “I’ve heard that wonderful song/poem/sermon/speech. No need to do that again.”

And perhaps for you, renewal is redundant and you do not need to ever repeat anything.

For us (and that is all we can speak for), renewal has become a reminder about what and who is important in our lives.

A reminder to remember.

A reminder to recommit.

A reminder that it can become too easy to say, “Oh, I said that. She/He knows it.”

A reminder that I need us; that we need us.

A reminder that all the trials, challenges, stumbles, faux pas, heartaches, not-so-bright spots, bright spots, laughter, hugs, and morning kisses represent learning points. They present stepping stones.

In “Remember When,” Alan Jackson sings:

 Remember when thirty seemed so old
Now looking back, it’s just a stepping stone
To where we are to where we’ve been
Said we’d do it all again…Remember when….

My second CD includes my first stab at a love song. While it is not Alan Jackson quality by a longshot, “Coffee and Candles” does have a turn on words that I am proud of:

 When young turns to old
And fast becomes slow
No matter the pace
Together we’ll go…..

Photo by (c) Steve Piscitelli

Video recommendation for the Week:

Savannah, Georgia’s WTOC did a piece about this year’s renewal of vows ceremony. They journalist interviewed Laurie and me for the segment. Here is the brief piece (https://www.wtoc.com/2021/02/11/savannah-keeps-valentines-day-tradition-going-with-virtual-vow-renewal-ceremony/)  that appeared on Thursday, February 11, 2021.

This year’s Renewal of Vows ceremony will be virtual due to COVID-19 precautions and protocols. For those who may be reticent to renew vows in public, this might be a way to renew in private. Who knows, it might become a tradition for you as well.  The link to the event can be found in the above article. Or click here at 7 pm tonight.

Make it a great week and HTRB has needed.

My newest book can be found in
eBook ($2.99) and in paperback ($9.99). Click here.

Roxie Looks for Purpose Beyond the Biscuit.

Well, actually, my dog Roxie gets top billing on the author page for this work. Without her, there would be no story.
Click here for more information about the book.

In the meantime, check out her blog.

And you can still order:

  • My book, Community as a Safe Place to Land (2019), (print and e-book) is available on Amazon. More information (including seven free podcast episodes that spotlight the seven core values highlighted in the book) at the above link.
  • Check out my book Stories about Teaching, Learning, and Resilience: No Need to be an Island (2017). It has been adopted for teaching, learning, and coaching purposes. I conducted a half-day workshop for a community college’s new faculty onboarding program using the scenarios in this book. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same. The accompanying videos would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

My podcasts can be found at The Growth and Resilience Network®.

You will find more about what I do at www.stevepiscitelli.com.

©2021. Steve Piscitelli
The Growth and Resilience Network®

 

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(Issue #559) Who Me? Write A Book?


Why not you?

One of my previous posts encouraged readers to consider the statement, “Geez, I could write a book!” Let’s dive a little deeper and assume you really want to write that book. What I offer comes from experience I’ve had, mistakes I’ve made, and great mentors I have followed. I offer the following as thought developers for you. This is one writer’s view of moving from the thought process to the action process.  Got to do that before you get to the publishing part of the endeavor.*

Each of my first 13 books developed from curiosity.

Each time I have started a writing project I have had to identify my inner desires, strengths, and challenges. Before I began each book I had to identify what I wanted to share with the greater community.

Maybe by the end of this post, rather than saying, “Who am I kidding? I’m not a writer!” you will begin to consider and take steps to act upon, “Me, write a book? Why not me?”

A Few Starting Questions. I suggest you write the answers to these questions. Note: There is another list of questions to consider once you decide your work is ready for publishing. That could be the subject of another post.

  • WHAT will I write about?
    • What’s the idea I have and need to share?
  • WHY do I want to write a book?
    • Is it career related?
    • Is it related to a personal passion?
    • Does the community need it?
    • Do I want to make money?
    • Other reasons?
  • WHO cares about my work—and why should they care?
    • When the book is published, who will want to read it?
  • HOW do I develop a supportive learning community of colleagues to develop my writing talents?
    • Who will help me critique my work?

And the final question, WHEN will you start? After all, if you are going to write….you have to write!

Best wishes. Let me know when your book is released.

A few resources to consider:

*Disclaimer: This is not legal advice. Rather, consider this a reminder to ask yourself the question: “What are the important questions I should be asking when I consider writing?

Video recommendation for the Week:

Rather than a video, enjoy this podcast I recorded with Shawn Eager about creative spark and spirit; importance of teachers; connection of art and creativity; listening to the internal dialogue; and mental locks and schooling.

Want more? Got to Episode 5 with Shawn. Topics include: inspiration; completing the process; importance of story; confidence; persistence; criticism and feedback.


Make it a great week and HTRB has needed.

My new book has been released.
eBook ($2.99) Paperback ($9.99). Click here.

Roxie Looks for Purpose Beyond the Biscuit.

Well, actually, my dog Roxie gets top billing on the author page for this work. Without her, there would be no story.
Click here for more information about the book.

In the meantime, check out her blog.

And you can still order:

  • My book, Community as a Safe Place to Land (2019), (print and e-book) is available on Amazon. More information (including seven free podcast episodes that spotlight the seven core values highlighted in the book) at the above link.
  • Check out my book Stories about Teaching, Learning, and Resilience: No Need to be an Island (2017). It has been adopted for teaching, learning, and coaching purposes. I conducted a half-day workshop for a community college’s new faculty onboarding program using the scenarios in this book. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same. The accompanying videos would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

My podcasts can be found at The Growth and Resilience Network®.

You will find more about what I do at www.stevepiscitelli.com.

©2021. Steve Piscitelli
The Growth and Resilience Network®

 

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