Learning from Koko

We can believe what we choose. We are responsible for what we choose to believe. Cardinal John Newman 1801 – 1890 Are you good at deflecting blame? Do you act like Koko? Koko is a very famous gorilla. Her most notable claim to fame is the fact that she has mastered over 1,000 words in American Sign Language: in other words, she has the ability to communicate with humans using sign language. One day she accidentally broke one of her toys. The incident was captured on videotape, so there was no question what had occurred. The next day, when her …
Continue reading…

My fourth grade teacher

The human animal lives usually far within its limits; he possesses powers of various sorts which he habitually fails to use. He energizes below his maximum, and he behaves below his optimum. William James 1842 – 1910 Do you remember your fourth grade teacher? The other day I was thinking about mine. You might well wonder why, given that it’s been over fifty years since I was in that grade. My teacher was middle aged and rather bland, and she didn’t inspire me to learn new and exciting things. Here’s why she stood out:┬áher class was the first time I …
Continue reading…

Do you hate deadlines?

Our chief want (need) in life is somebody who shall make us do what we can. Ralph Waldo Emerson 1803 – 1882 When I was in school, I dreaded and feared deadlines: the term paper due in two weeks, the book report due on Monday. Most of us probably felt that dread early on and carried that negative association into our adult lives. But I came to realize that my thinking about deadlines was wrong. Hating deadlines was actually hindering my ability to have the life I truly wanted. Because of my belief about deadlines, I was reluctant to set …
Continue reading…