I Am …

April 14, 2014 at 7:25 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

This past week I watched the documentary ‘I Am’ by Tom Shadyac. The film was a thought provoking journey, one that saw Tom explain the accident that turned his life upside down and then documented the unravelling exploration of connection to self, others and the world around us. The thing that strikes me most when you watch or hear about life changing moments in peoples lives is a realignment of identity, worth and value from the external (title, power, profession, money, possessions, etc.) to an openness to discovery and deepening connection (the internal).

It is so easy to get caught up in all the ‘stuff’, ‘competition’ and ‘noise’. There could be many words that we as individuals insert to finish the line, ‘I Am …’ It could be our gender, nationality, sexuality, profession, etc. All these could be true reflections of various parts of us but can never fully encompass the wholeness and value of who we are, the depth of connection possible to others and the world around us, and our ability to make a difference through empowered daily thoughts, words and actions. This is why I am reminded of the power of Malala Yousafzai’s statement and the title of her book, ‘I Am Malala’.

“Who is Malala? I am Malala and this is my story.” – Malala Yousafzai

We each have an unfolding story within our journeys of potential, one that is layered and complex, involving both successes and challenges. Honouring this story involves courageously showing up in our interactions, which can be challenging when we consider all the vulnerability and influences on our lives. The quote below from Malala shows an example of how this can unfold within our journeys.

“My mother always told me, ‘Hide your face – people are looking at you’. I would reply, ‘It does not matter; I am also looking at them’.” – Malala Yousafzai

Watch the interview linked below and consider what themes jump out to you. I hear courage is open to us all in the choices we make but we need to practise it daily and appreciate we will not always think, speak or act as we would hope to. Each new interaction though provides another opportunity and as Malala explains so eloquently, authentically make a difference for self and others, not waiting for others to do it for you.

Working in education I too believe that, “One child, one teacher, one book, one pen can change the world” (Malala Yousafzai). I also believe that this process of ‘being the change’ is influenced by having the courage to place our name at the end of the statement, ‘I Am …’ with a sense of identity, worth and value coming from within, not the external in our lives.


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