Monday, November 18, 2013

Seeking Genius

My social media colleagues Angela Maiers and Mark Moran started an organization and movement, Choose2Matter.

I've long admired Mark Moran and his work with Finding Dulcinea. Seriously, you need to check out that site. It's one of my favorite resources to share and I've been more evangelistic about it in the past several weeks. Educators looking for well-curated and student-safe resources must use this resource. I'm thrilled that Angela Maiers has recently agreed to be a keynote speaker for the June National Conference on College & Career Readiness.

Anyway, because of their work with Choose2Matter, this idea of everyone being a genius has been rumbling around in my brain. Most of us think of "genius" in terms of intellectual prowess. The definition reinforces that thinking, and with good reason. But look at the second definition: "A strong natural talent, aptitude, or inclination."

If we acknowledge that as a reasonable definition and if we acknowledge that every individual has potential and possibilities, that every individual should be given the opportunity to discover our passions, that every individual should be enabled to discover the essence that defines who he or she is.

There are numerous stories of individuals who started marching down one path for very legitimate reasons, but then arrived at a crossroads or a moment of epiphany and started dancing down another path, the right path, the better path.

So many circumstances often prevent or district us from doing what we love, from what we believe can enable us to make a difference in this world. When we are enabled to do even a little of what drives us, when we have a glimpse of the possibilities of that path, we need to seize on those moments.

And when we see others who are struggling to find that equilibrium or seem to have lost sight of it, we should encourage them to discover and do their best to pursue that which enables them to be their very best selves.

By the way, that's what teachers often do. Every. Single. Day.

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