[Own Your Life Wed] Make It Happen ’17-’18

Dear Difference Maker,

I’m going to be straight with you today about what really needs to happen to make things better and make it happen now.

The stories in this week’s blog beautifully illustrate how anyone can make a positive difference that has an exponential reach and it only requires something as simple as a preference. What if acknowledgment really could make it completely better in an instant?  It’s my hope you are intrigued enough to take a hot second to find out!

Reaching out …
0000 mary-3
MaryReynolds.com

Make It So ’17-’18:  Acknowledgment Works!
Excerpt from Make A Difference Power of Acknowledgment UTrain Curriculum  

Recently I spoke at an association who is at the forefront of creating and sustaining innovative and intellectually challenging schools.  

But before I get into what happened, let me preface this by saying that I’ve traveled the country speaking to over 20,000 people in a two year period.  I received evaluations at the end of every day and so I’ve gotten a lot of positive feedback over the years about my audience engagement.  

I’m not telling you this to impress you but to give you a frame of reference about what I am going to share.   Advanced as we are technologically we are still inclined to approach the problematic areas in our schools today from a place of waiting on someone else to fix it.  The #1 issue being the social-emotional problems that need to be, must be, solved beginning with the adults in charge – that is if you want to see those test scores go up.

Back to my experience with an organization whose mission statement is to be the forefront of change in schools.

I opened with one of my most engaging activities to get audience involvement right away. It is something I do deliberately to get a feel for what they already know so I don’t take them down a road they’ve already traveled.

As an educator, I always have a Plan A, B, C etc. depending on what an audience reveals about themselves within the first 10 minutes of our time together.

This activity is designed to get people to think beyond their current situations into the future they’d like to find long term solutions for.   In fact Step 2 of this process is to identify “How they’s prefer that it be” within each of the problematic areas they’ve already identified in Step 1.

When we got to this question, “How would you prefer that it be?” it was like looking at deer in the headlight.  No one raised their hand with a preference.  I encouraged them to reach for it in their minds.  I instructed them to think beyond what they thought was possible or realistic and get to the heart of what they’d really like to see happen in education.

Tick-tock-tick-tock.  Nothing. I waited much longer than I normally would need to with a business or entrepreneurial group. Finally a young woman with really bright eyes raised her hand and said how she’d prefer that it be in one of the identified problem areas.  Excellent!  We wrote it up on the board.

Next, a more mature woman who was a Principal, offered her preference.  Excellent.  It went up on the board.  Silence.  I leaned in and waited for it.  Then a middle aged man offered his.  Again, an excellent preference which I was able to segue into the next Step with.

My point in sharing this with you today is to address a limiting paradigm in education that is pervasive – even with 75 of the most innovative teachers in the United States attending my session – and that is our willingness to wait on someone else to tell us what we should be doing and how.

The big problem with this paradigm is that rarely does it spark real, life changing action.  People walk out the door and do things exactly the way they have been because they were not part of the collective solution gathering, goal setting, step building experience.

paradigm

It is because of this old paradigm that I designed a series of UTrain Programs. They are DIYDO IT YOURSELF programs that can help any one who really wants to be making a difference.  Any one who is done waiting on someone else to fix things that is.

I designed it with YOU in mind. The one I’m featuring today is an easy to follow and implement. It has a straightforward step-by-step “flexible” curriculum that will help you uplift and unify the community you are feeling the most strife in.

YOU CAN DO THIS!  I’ve done all the heavy lifting and now all that is needed is people who care enough to just do it.

If you are like me, then you get really antsy waiting on others to step up do something that will make things better.

Now, you don’t have to wait on the powers that be to help people feel better so they can do better.  You don’t have to sit by and let things escalate any more than they already are. Dig into your own entrepreneurial spirit and DO IT YOURSELF.

Because it’s that time of year when leaders are thinking about their THEME for the fall and winter seasons just ahead, today I’d like to do something I haven’t done before and that is lay out what a 12 month Make A Difference YEAR can look like with just doing 2 a Quarter:

August:  Kick off In-Service with your top tier leaders setting the theme of Making A Difference with the Power of Acknowledgment Movie and “I Make A Difference” Ceremony.   Your leaders then take the session you just did with them out to their people and they take this session out to their people, etc…

September:  Make A Difference with the Power of Connecting Personality Styles with Grades K-4, Grades 5-12 & Teachers Styles.
October:  Make A Difference with the Power of Owning Your Greatness.

November:  Make A Difference with the Power of Compassion with the Teddy Stallard Story:  both in English and in Española.
December:  Make A Difference with the Power of Positive Self-Talk.

January:  Make A Difference with the Power of the Simple Gesture.
February:  Make A Difference with the Power of the Made Up Mind.

March: Make A Difference with the Power of Your Dreams in Action.
April:  Make A Difference with the Power of Making Your Own Luck.

May:  Make A Difference with the Power of Goal Setting.
June:  Make A Difference with the Power of Peace Today.

July:  Make A Difference with the Power of Giving Back.

=> Each Session has it’s own movie, discussion and building community (team) activities all laid out for you step by step.

=> You don’t even have to prepare ahead of time (I would but that’s just me).

=> You open up the designated Lesson and play the movie and follow directions.

=> When time has run out, you wrap it up and save back whatever you haven’t used for another In-service when you need it.

No Program Police!

Now, let’s say for example you want to Kick-Off your Make A Difference Year with the Teddy Stallard Story Movie instead of the Acknowledgment Movie.

Then you get to decide!  Move it up into your first Session and go ahead and launch.

Then you can move the Acknowledgment Movie back to September which will coincide with National Suicide Prevention Month. This movie is a true story about how a very simple and heartfelt Acknowledgment Ceremony caused the actions of one teacher to dramatically altered the life a business man and his 14-year old son.

YES!  You Can Do This …

MDPA ED

Click here to see how you can make it so ’16-’17.

step 1

Hello, fellow PTA Members, School Faculty and Staff,

As the former PTA President of Ford Middle School in Allen, Texas and the initiator of the “Make A Difference Week” concept two years ago, I can tell you the activities during this week altered the energy in the school, as random acts of kindness filled the halls and expressions of appreciation and acknowledgement were the priority.

The inspirational videos (one of which was Mary’s Acknowledgment Movie ) that the students silently watched with emotion, made a huge impact, and the stories related directly to the activities that were asked of the students throughout the week.

I have observed troubled students transformed from the power of “Make A Difference Week” as they came to life by the simplest acknowledgement of their good nature from their teachers.

The purpose of this week is to demonstrate to the students new ways of making a difference in our world. These next generations are our future leaders, and the world is greatly depending on them to create a more peaceful coexistence for humanity. It’s crucial for kids to understand the important role they play in the world, and it’s up to us to remind them. “Make A Difference Week” is a fun-filled week that encourages students to be the “highest vision they have of themselves,” to bring out the good in others, and to practice the power of acknowledgement, appreciation and kindness.

One week can truly make the difference in our world by impacting the lives of our children, as we empower them to be the positive role models and community heroes for the generations that follow.

Now this amazing, nationally-recognized educator – Mary Robinson Reynolds – has taken “Make A Difference Week” to the next level.

I highly recommend her Make A Difference with the Power of Acknowledgment Week Program for the upcoming year as a way to create a tradition in building a caring and compassionate community of young adults in your school.

Please pass this email along to your Programs chairpersons.

Angel Carlton
PTA President, Ford M.S., Allen, TX

step 2

step 4 step 3

TOTALLY FLEXIBLE PROGRAM

The activities can be adapted to a One-Day, a Week a Month or a YEAR-long Program. For the greatest impact, the Month-long model offers one week of daily activities followed by 3 weeks of weekly activity-based learning. The Year long program is as described above. In all of the variations, this program will help each student develop a strong Sense of “self” and “purpose,” and provide the motivation for developing positive Life Skills.

Is today the day that you just own it and get out there and do it?

 

530677_10151333084944909_1120763158_nMaster’s in Educational Psychology Counseling and Development K-12 from the University of Nebraska; demonstrated expertise with every imaginable label awarded childhood behaviors, physical attributes and learning styles. This includes: Youth At-Risk, Substance Abuse, EBD, Suicide Prevention, GT, ADD, Special Ed, i.e. Intensity, Academic and Behavioral. Extensive experience teaching educators the key to “connecting” with students and adults based on their attitudinal energy, labels and expressed (as well as non-verbal) expectations.

PS … Do-It-Yourself with UTrain OR bring me in to speak and train for your team! Questions? Just call. Heart Productions & Publishing 603-382-8848

PPS … Let’s not forget that if you have been feeling like there’s something more that you want to do, you can take this program beyond where you currently work by becoming a Certified Make A Difference Facilitator.  For those who feel the pull to make a difference and a living at this, I will give you 1:1 time every step a long the way.

MDPA 1

Heart Productions & Publishing, Greater Boston Area

[Own Your Life Wed] Only You Can Do This!

Dear Difference Maker,

I never asked my kids if they wanted to brush their teeth.  I directed them to just do it when it was time to get ready for bed and so they did!

When I first started my own business over twenty-five years ago I did not apply the same directives with my employees.  Having worked with thousands of other people’s children I knew how to lead and call the best out of them. With adults I had a mental block.  I was surprised at how I did not seem to be able to simply lead and create team synergy like I had when I was a winning championships as a volleyball and basketball coach.

I was much more concerned with their buy in than the greater vision I was intending to build with them.

When I’d spent all of my own money to get my endeavor off the ground and had not succeeded at being able to support myself or my young son as a single mother, I started bridging what I already knew to do with children with the adults working along side of me.

That’s when things changed for the better.  There are just times when you take charge and direct people and there are times when you encourage them to brainstorm and participate in the direction you will all be taking together.

Reaching out …
0000 mary-3
MaryReynolds.com

Only You Can Make This Happen! 
Excerpt from Make A Difference Power of Acknowledgment UTrain Curriculum 
 

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I’m not the only person who struggles with this.  Whether it be in Business, Education, Organization or Church leadership I’ve coached gifted people in leadership positions over the years and the one area where many of them miss the mark of what’s truly possible is inadvertently being afraid of their people. That instead of making the decision to go forward with what they know will be best and just do it as the Nike slogan says, they acquiesce.

22

Here we are.   I don’t know about you, but I don’t even want to turn the TV on at the end of the day.  As you well know, things are reaching an epic proportion: violence, drug addiction, suicide etc.  Hurting others and ourselves all because we are not hammering the fundamentals of creating deep, meaningful and emotionally uplifting connections within our communities.

I’m going to be honest with you.  I’ve talked with many a leader who is excited about my Make A Difference Power of Acknowledgment UTrain Program. They know they need to put an end to the energy robbing undercurrents among certain factions of their staff because they know just how much this negativity can trickle down throughout an entire organization and therefore generate more of the same.

Their excitement and complete understanding of what positive change it will bring inspires me.  I can already see through their eyes what an enormous difference they are going to be making throughout their entire organization with this program.

And then they say, “Of course, I will need to take this to my top tier team and get their buy in before investing and moving forward with the logistics.”

So you know what happens next.  I am told that their top tier team thought it was going to be too much additional work to their already maxed out work load and they were going to pass for now. Translation: change must be hard so let’s keep doing the same thing expecting different results.

This is a truly a defining moment for any leader in the face of resistance …

shutterstock_4663819-Better-Way-Tie-1940x1293

I’m very curious and so I ask, “Did you enthusiastically share with them how taking this program in bite size – doable pieces – will create a deep meaningful sense of community for them to work in and actually save them time?  Did you take them through step by step how getting the social emotional issues and unnecessary drama dissolved once and for all will get them 5-10xs the energy and productivity that they are currently losing now?”

“Is there any way you can make an executive decision and … just do it?”

23

I understand that there are those who are concerned that an HOURDAY, WEEK, MONTH or YEAR long program may seem overwhelming initially. As an educator and business woman I can tell you that this is exactly why I designed Make A Difference with the Power of Acknowledgment UTrain Program the way that I did.

It is an extremely flexible program with a simple system that you can bring to your people one of many ways for your theme:

Make A Difference HOUR
Make A Difference DAY
Make A Difference WEEK
Make A Difference MONTH
Make A Difference YEAR

Now, you can take my ideas and create your own program which will cost you a lot of time and energy that you could be putting toward the other demands coming at you at this time of year OR you can grab a cup of coffee, sit back and relax.  I’ve got this covered.  I’ve done all of the heavy lifting for you.

MDPA ED

Because it’s that time of year when leaders are thinking about their THEME for the seasons just ahead, today I’d like to do something I haven’t done before and that is lay out what a 12 month Make A Difference YEAR can look like 

August:  Kick off In-Service with your top tier leaders setting the theme of Making A Difference with the Power of Acknowledgment Movie and I Make A Difference Ceremony.   Your leaders then take the session you just did with them out to their people and they take this session out to their people, etc…

September:  Make A Difference with the Power of Connecting Personality Styles with Grades K-4, Grades 5-12 & Teachers Styles.
October:  Make A Difference with the Power of Owning Your Greatness.

November:  Make A Difference with the Power of Compassion with the Teddy Stallard Story:  both in English and in Española.
December:  Make A Difference with the Power of Positive Self-Talk.

January:  Make A Difference with the Power of the Simple Gesture.
February:  Make A Difference with the Power of the Made Up Mind.

March: Make A Difference with the Power of Your Dreams in Action.
April:  Make A Difference with the Power of Making Your Own Luck.

May:  Make A Difference with the Power of Goal Setting.
June:  Make A Difference with the Power of Peace Today.

July:  Make A Difference with the Power of Giving Back.

=> Each Lesson has it’s own movie, discussion and building community (team) activities all laid out for you step by step.

=> You don’t even have to prepare ahead of time (I would but that’s just me).

=> You open up the designated Lesson and play the movie and follow my directions.

=> When time has run out, you wrap it up and save back whatever you haven’t used for another In-service when you need it.

Now, let’s say for example you want to Kick-Off your Make A Difference Year with the Teddy Stallard Story Movie instead of the Acknowledgment Movie.

You get to decide!  Move it up into your first Lesson and go ahead and launch.

Then you can move the Acknowledgment Movie back to September which will coincide with National Suicide Prevention Month.  May is also Mental Health Awareness Month. This movie is a true story about how a very simple and heartfelt Acknowledgment Ceremony caused the actions of one teacher to dramatically altered the life a business man and his 14-year old son.

YES!  You Can Do This …

You will see that this program …

– Increases EQ – (Emotional Quotient) & IQ for ALL students K-12.
– Reduces the discipline issues by getting disconnected students CONNECTED within a compassionate community of their peers.
– Increases academic productivity, performance and test results
– Creates the type of “safe to connect” school wide learning environment in which ALL students will THRIVE.
– Shifts perceptions and creates innovative solutions for problematic behaviors.
– Engages a diverse group of students in thinking, understanding and developing compassion and extending it out to others as well as themselves.
– Get’s students to make the 12 inch move from the heads to their hearts to better understand their impact on one another and that they DO Matter and the DO Make A Difference.
– Helps students take more ownership over their choices in every area of their developing lives.
– Increases an inner sense of one’s life purpose, one’s connection to others and one’s sense of purpose in the world to be reaching to make a difference each and every day.
– Develops highly empowering LISTENING skills.
– Encourages students to embrace their dreams and become self-motivated and collaborative in their academic endeavors.
– Greatly improves internal self-talk, motivation and communication with disgruntled students, faculty and staff.
– Helps students “find their voice” in ways that they can be heard.

3-Students high-five Edward Hashey - Wilkinson Elem 2-5-15

Is today the day you really grab a hold of your life and own it!?

 

530677_10151333084944909_1120763158_nMary Robinson Reynolds, Master’s in Educational Psychology Counseling and Development K-12 from the University of Nebraska; demonstrated expertise with every imaginable label awarded childhood behaviors, physical attributes and learning styles. This includes: Youth At-Risk, Substance Abuse, EBD, Suicide Prevention, GT, ADD, ADHD, Special Ed, i.e. Intensity, Academic and Behavioral. Extensive experience teaching educators the key to “connecting” with students and adults based on their attitudinal energy, labels and expressed (as well as non-verbal) expectations. Author and Producer of the world renowned videos – MakeADifferenceMovie.com – and AcknowledgmentMovie.com – both amassing over 10 million views within a few short months of their releases.

PS … Do-It-Yourself with UTrain OR bring me in to speak and train for your team!  Questions? Just call. Heart Productions & Publishing 603-382-8848

PPS … Let’s not forget that if you have been feeling like there’s something more that you want to do, you can take this program beyond where you currently work by becoming a Certified Make A Difference Facilitator.  For those who feel the pull to make a difference and a living at this, I will give you 1:1 time every step a long the way.

BecomeFacilitator_730x213