Growing up, you will discover through my published works, that I had a bit of a problem with sharing. My unwillingness to share wasn’t widespread. It was limited to not wanting to share my grandmother and my stuff with anyone. My grandparent’s rules taught me any number of lessons to deal with life in the most favorable way for me, and my internal issues (because all my harm was not from the outside), by showing me the power of living blessed to be a blessing for someone else’s good before my own, on purpose. My grandmother actually tricked me into thinking I was getting a deal by not having to be responsible for learning and living all 10 commandments. She told me I could begin with the second one, and once I perfected it, I could move on to learning and living any other one. A large part of every lesson taught to my students is ingrained in GOD’s will that I love my neighbor as myself.
The Pro ME is Not Anti YOU™ Compendium! was created because so many students are experiencing more of the difficult aspects of life without the benefit of an external support system showing them the power of living beyond their circumstances, and into the person they are most supposed to be. Love In Abundance, Inc. the nonprofit founded 13 years ago, has allowed me to experience the hurt in children as young as 10, and as old as 30 because of the shortcomings, insecurities, limitations, or hatefulness of their own parents. As a result, we had a great deal of students existing in all portions of their lives in self-protect mode, which left no room or consideration for the thought of respecting anyone perceived to be willing to violate them in any way.
In the spirit of sharing and modeling behaviors every willing student can use to create the life and future most desired or in alignment with their innate gifts, talents, and repertoires of greatness; students will be loaned life lessons capable of empowering them beyond any circumstance, and into the truest version of who they have to be for self. The idea is not to hold these students accountable to or responsible for life lessons of advancement not taught or consistently modeled before them; but instead provide an avenue for each willing to learn every lesson desired on their own terms until trust of adults can be formed or restored.
Students in the Title I schools served by Love In Abundance, Inc. showed us many of our students were unaware of the often unwavering, or ever changing social etiquette’s of life (that have a higher probability of changing when your pigments make you Black), capable of opening the door of opportunities to them, based on their modeled possibilities. As a result, and to prohibit any student from feeling as if he or she is left to fall through the proverbial cracks of life; my fore-parents will provide already proven insight to help them masterfully excel beyond every hindrance perceived to be setting them up for failure, spoken from adults many are scolded for not instinctively respecting.
Love In Abundance has taken on the charge of teaching our students how to respectfully live with herself as the priority, without disrespecting adults. When the idea was first introduced, attitudes and heads began to roll because many did not believe they had an adult they could trust. But once the intricacies of living with self as the priority were rightly defined and discussed; many students were more willing to try it before dismissing it.
When people on the outside looking in viewed our methodologies and our approach; grown people wanted to stand strong on a child being a child. Every one of them selectively modeled old school attributes themselves, but they were willing to hold our students to old school mandates many of them had not even heard of. As we ignored their comments and continued to focus on each student will to work in her best interest; common ground was found and change began to happen. After nine weeks of activities connected to Who Am I To Me™, students were ready to adhere to the power attached to following the rules of life expected, to gain the power capable of opening doors of opportunity in her mind first, and then in her favor. So let’s begin with four of my grandmother’s tweaked, but simplest rules that may or may not seem so simple at first glance.
The first three rules are crucial for each student’s life advancement, because they will dictate (for each student) the effort needed for their life to advance. The fourth is pivotal for any other life lesson learned and rests in each student’s masterful comprehension of it:
- Avoid indolence (laziness) because this deters the ambition necessary to achieve the level of zealot for your envisioned success.
- Understand that respect is earned and not freely given even if you feel you are not being offered the same degree of respect, because if you don’t; some things you want in life won’t either.
- Get in the habit of looking for the positive in every situation entered even when it appears that the intention was/is to shake you off your game by creating a mental stumbling block of fear, intimidation, or frustration; or get in the habit of playing a role in some of the preferred breaks missed because focusing on the negatives placed you in alignment with the person intending to set you up for failure.
- Because each student has the capability of learning anything they put their mind to like understanding and appreciating the lyrics to rap, country, hip hop, gospel, blue grass, pop, jazz, heavy metal, classical, gospel rap, reggae, blues, or hard rock music, etc.; most of your dance steps; creating your own language via texting; and mastering any level of video games; words, thoughts or expressions should not intentionally be brought down to any lower level for like student’s comprehension.
And just as I sat there trying to figure out how these lessons connected to a previous conversation had, my grandmother would come right back and hit me with something like:
- You have to master your education instead of barely making it through it. Being Black in America means you have to insist on doing your best in each class and be willing to ask for help in the classes you know you need help. Your education is beneath that offered to the same grade level White child, so you have to do more to be considered as good as they are.
- You have to read any and everything distantly and closely connected to that dream you may not have even spoken about publicly yet. Your job, duty, and responsibility to yourself is make sure your focus moves beyond every person telling you what you cannot do and on to how to master your gifts and talents (to one day own your own business-if you so desire) instead of merely loaning out your gifts (by becoming and remaining an employee-which is a viable option if there are awesome raises and bonuses continually offered).
- You have to be an active member in every club and organization that you can because you’ll get information America may not have wanted you to have. We live in a “who you know” not “what you deserve” society, which adds some extra steps just because of being Black in America. America acts like being Black is bad; but this would not be the time to begin going along with their philosophy. Being Black is not a crutch, hindrance, or a handicap regardless of anyone else’s plans for you or their intent. Being Black just means you have the added responsibility of always providing yourself an extra advantage by instinctively modeling your varying repertoires of greatness, and what better way than by gaining access to skills capable of heightening the core of your internal Superhero, via information provided in clubs and organizations that may not have been established to help you.
- You have to be the person presenting such an incredible array of positive visual images of who you are presently (which includes increasing your lexicon and regularly articulating superlative communication skills) because you are the most informed person who knows who you have a desire to become in your future. The goal should be to show yourself as such a great student that opportunities come to you instead of you having to seek them out. You have to be the person working to prove how great you are simply because you are Black, but never allow yourself to be defined by the limitations of just being Black.
- You have to make the choice to live like you are the most important person in the world according to your grand scheme of things, because doing so will prohibit you from feeling stifled by every person seeking to denounce whom you have every right to become, based on your pigmentation. Respect must always be given to be received, so we don’t need to talk about that. But if you are not willing to show how very gifted, talented, and great you are in the first place, most people won’t take the time to try and figure out how smart, brilliant, gifted, or talented you are in the second place.
- No one should ever work harder on your life than you are willing to work on your own! You are the person who has grand plans for your future, so you are the person who has to have some idea of how to use your gifts and talents to create an incredible life and future for you. You are responsible for being sure about who you are and where you are trying to go, because some in society don’t think that much of you and will create plans seeking to limit the expansion of your gifts and your talents.
- If you refuse to reveal how very powerful and important you are to your grand scheme of things in the first place, sit down and rest in someone else’s place for your life because you will be telling them their plans for you are more important than you own in the second place. If you want to be somebody important in the place you are supposed to be, you have to get up and do what you have to do to show others you fit exactly where you’re working to be!
LOVE BREAK! After you put in all the work to become who you were created to be, it is extremely important to give yourself permission to take some time and have a small celebrations for the accomplishments made each time a major feat has been accomplished. Please review the operational definition of a “small celebration” for clarity, individual empowerment, and solidarity. Number one says,
- A celebration is a short break from regular activities that can be internally expressed, because everyone does not need to know “a celebrate” (in Brown’s voice) is going on. This should be no more than two minutes.
Pro ME is Not Anti YOU™ Compendium
- As a result of and for those prone to think negatively first about some people, the primary reason for the Pro ME is Not Anti YOU™ Compendium is to provide a set of tools modeling the ease with which positivity, kindness, and equality can become instinctive norms, for every person’s sake and benefit.
- The secondary reason for this Compendium is to offer the true meaning of a village member, allowing any student to know how to position themselves as a viable candidate masterfully prepared and ready for opportunities, while aiding single and blended parents who may feel overwhelmed by all their new responsibilities by showing them our desire to help them empower their children.
Since adding confusion is not an option, everything with the probability of being unclear will be defined in some capacity. Using a respected source to begin the process of equal footing; oxforddictionaries.com defines a compendium as:
- Acollection of concise but detailed information about a particular subject, especially in a book or other publication:
- The Pro ME is Not Anti YOU™ Compendium is a means to establish a better meaning of some common words and phrases from the onset, for each willing student’s sake and benefit.
The goal is for each person to accept the responsibility of living with themselves as their priority, mastering their gifts and talents without taking away the same right due others of living with themselves as their priority, mastering their gifts and talents.
The objective is for each person to grant him or herself permission to use the definitions included to act as a reminder to treat others as they expect to be treated, instead of based on any innate or inbred hostilities, feelings of being unenlightened, or innate insecurities.
- As an action of establishing the foundation for a long-term, mutually beneficial relationship; no child, student, or person will ever be bullied, talked down to, told how they should live or how they should behave in anything offered by this author. All information must be thought of as a part of a collaborative participation project, with each person having specific responsibilities to assure long-term above temporary help, support, and success.
Five years of research was dedicated to addressing pertinent issues of the past, present, and future. Love In Abundance College Must Begin in 8th Grade™ Live and Pre-College Preparatory program teaches our students the top six deficits of a group of surveyed college and university professors; the social etiquette’s offered from the late Dr, Pierre Bourdieu; and behavior modification and character development competencies using an inside out concentration. We welcome the opportunity to empower a group of Student Ambassador, and open doors of opportunity to and for them. All we need is for each person to refer students to submit a query letter describing the change they want to see in the world to firstname.lastname@example.org. Be sure to remind to say you referred them, because we are very into reward and reciprocity.