What My World's Like

move your body.

Feb
17

PE isn't important? Physical inactivity costs 2 times the federal budget for the Dept. of Education

This generation of children growing up today are expected to die five years younger than their parents. Why? Because of inactivity. The benefits of exercise are so many that it seems silly not to. Yet, so many of us still don’t. I haven’t been to the gym since October.

Don’t judge me.

Still, movement is fundamental. An organization called Designed To Move has created “a physical action agenda”. Check it out here. We have to model healthy behavior for the youngsters to pick it up.

While I’ve fallen off my beloved fitness game for a while, I’m committed to getting back on track, not just for myself but because I want to be in the population of people that’s a part of the solution. Growing up, my mother used to say, “if you aren’t a part of the solution, you’re a part of the problem.” It annoyed me when she said it then, but it’s true.

The children are the future. Let’s teach them well.

join the think tank!

Sep
25

The BMW Guggenheim Lab, currently featured in New York City, ends in three weeks. It’s been here since August 3rd, so I’m a little bothered it’s taken me so long to get over there. But…better late than never, right?

What is it? In a word, awesome. In a few, The BMW Guggenheim Lab is a mobile laboratory traveling to nine major cities worldwide over six years. Led by international, interdisciplinary teams of emerging talents in the areas of urbanism, architecture, art, design, science, technology, education, and sustainability, the Lab addresses issues of contemporary urban life through programs and public discourse. Its goal is the exploration of new ideas, experimentation, and ultimately the creation of forward-thinking solutions for city life.

It’s a pretty awesome idea and all the events they feature are free, prohibiting no socioeconomic group from attendance. Fun and free is always fantastic. It ends on October 16th, so head over while you can, before it travels to Berlin and Mumbai. In 2013, there will be an exhibition at the Guggenheim before completing two more 3-city cycles.

ending the war: “i love you still.”

Mar
24

Recently, I asked “do you talk about things that matter?” and today I experienced one of the most emotionally honest conversations I’ve ever had. Topics ranged from absentee fathers, sex, eating disorders, rape, molestation, relationships, education, socialization, etc. It was genuine, cathartic, comforting, inspiring and beautiful. So many times throughout the evening, I found myself smiling, feeling connected and understood as we discussed highly privatized events and feelings.

Sitting with this beautiful woman who spoke so candidly about her life, I felt inspired and reinvigorated, reminded that neither our stories nor our struggles are our own. We will all experience trials, intense pain, and loss. We will all walk with fears, insecurities, and moments of doubt. We will all struggle with some degree of feeling fragmented. These are inextricable parts of the human experience, but if you let pain harden your heart instead of soften it, you’ve missed the point.

As of two days ago, I made an important decision based upon a startling revelation. I’m ending the war with myself.

My #notetoself yesterday was:

“stop waging war with the one person who will always be there for you: yourself.
love is accepting, patient, and kind.”

(more…)

What’s your guiding question?

Oct
27

When creating a curriculum, the education field uses something called a guiding question. According to Educational Leadership, “A guiding question is the fundamental query that directs the search for understanding. Everything in the curriculum is studied for the purpose of answering it.”

In striving to be the best version of myself possible, I’ve decided on the following:

Am I living in love and light?

Asking myself this throughout the day should keep me focused on being who I want to be and not who I’ve reflexively been. It’s time for a change.

Do you have a guiding question? Do you think there’s value in creating one? If so, can you challenge yourself to create one? What’s yours?

Go to jail or get a degree?

Feb
06

Being as rich as he is, Bill Gates can definitely effect great change. He spoke at TED this year on how he’s trying to change the world right now. During his 20 minute talk, he asked how do we stop malaria and how do we improve education.

I truly enjoyed this speech in its entirety, but the highlights were at 5:05 – 5:30 and generally everything after 7:57 when he starts talking about education. He provides some startling statistics at 9:51 – 10:50.

According to the research Gates references, if you’re low income, you have less than a 25% chance of finishing college should you not drop out in high school. Over 30% of students entering high school in this country never finish. In some areas, the drop out rate is over 50%. I think it’s 40% here in Bexar County.

Everyone’s not built to be a teacher, and definitely not a good one. While effective teachers are certainly a large part of the solution, so are tutors and mentors. Get involved however you can. I recently signed up to mentor a high schooler since there’s one right across the street. One hour a week. Such a small commitment that can make a huge difference. Really, I wish I’d thought of it sooner. Yet and still…it’s never too late.

Communities In Schools is a nationwide nonprofit focused on preventing kids from dropping out. Sign up to tutor or mentor an elementary, middle, or high school student. Mentor multiple students…whatever your time permits. Call your nearest school and see how you can get involved to help. Let’s all do our part because none of us are disconnected from this phenomenon. None of us.