I Can… You Can… We Can…

November 17, 2012 at 12:06 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

“We are all inventors, each sailing out on a voyage of discovery, guided each by a private chart, of which there is no duplicate. The world is all gates, all opportunities”.

– Ralph Waldo Emerson

Can vs Can’t. This is the age old communication juggle, especially witnessed between kids and adults that takes place around kitchen benches, on sporting fields, at music recitals, in the shopping centre, in school classrooms and everywhere in between. Sometimes the message is communicated through words. Clear and strong indications that something is or isn’t going to happen or the uncertainty of what’s possible in a given situation. While other times it is through non verbal communication. We may confidently apply positive thoughts and actions, or alternatively see body language, inaction or lack of commitment and effort that affects a particular task. Individual and collective beliefs and attitudes are developed and reinforced through the experiential nature of life, our connection to self, others and the world around us as we navigate life’s successes and challenges.

Like the quote at the beginning of this post says, ‘the world is all gates, all opportunities’. This is a belief and attitude that we may choose to focus on within our daily thoughts, words and actions. It provides connection to authentic, empowered engagement within our experiences, affecting positively not only our own lives but others within our interdependent global village, families, friendship networks, communities and all that we share this time and space with. It sees us being able to be resilient, courageously make a difference, sending out ripples of action, hope and the celebration of diversity within our spheres of influence. It is all about potential, an attitude of I Can… a belief in You Can… and inspiring We Can…

So much of what we do at Explore Discover Act relates to this theme. All of our programs integrate exploring the possibilities, discovering your potential and then acting authentically. We believe strongly in individual and shared potential, meaningful connection to action beyond our programs and empowering participants within their learning and leadership journey. This is why this TED Talk that I watched this week struck such a chord. A school that is designed around empowering children ‘to be the change they wish to see in the world’ is an inspiring example of building beliefs and attitudes that are built around individual and collective potential. Watch the video below to learn more about Kiran Bir Sethi and the Riverside School in India.

What we want for ourselves, others or the global village is not always communicated through the verbal and non verbal channels that we are exposed to within our lives. Not only what we receive directly from others that we are connected to but also the messages that are gained through the various technological devices that connect us to information and entertainment. Becoming mindful of what and why we think and believe can allow us to open pathways and opportunities to action change. Each of us can not only make a difference for ourselves but also empower and inspire others to do the same. The Design for Change competition that has evolved out of the Riverside School journey is now empowering students right around the world to feel, imagine, do and then share. Each of us can implement a similar reflection within our days to discover ways ‘to be the change you wish to see in the world’.

I’ll leave you with one last quote, one that I believe sums up the immense power and influence that the daily choices of what we think, say and do can have on ourselves and others.

“In the sky, there is no distinction of east and west; people create distinctions out of their own minds and then believe them to be true”.

– Buddha

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