The older we get the harder it is to change our ways. Our ways form mental habits complete with brain circuitry, like roads which facilitate our thinking patterns. These can be changed and the younger we are, the more apt our mental flexibility is, allowing us to change the course of our habits like pivoting on a dime.
Setbacks on the road to bring about real change in our life can stem from lack of clarity of purpose, low physical energy, inadequate support by family and community and a non-serving attitude which toughens our hearts against instilling lasting positive changes.
Recently, I have been asked what I do for a living many times. I give my generic, surface answers… I am a Special Educator, I am an artist, an Executive Function Skills Coach and co-founder and teacher in a skateboard company start-up. I am then asked what kind of art I make, to which I reply, I create dance videos which are focused at changing the way special education is practiced. It is part of my constant goal to be positively disruptive. To change old systems and ways which simply are not effective or as effective as can be in the life of the people I service. My work with individuals who are on the autism spectrum, with Downs Syndrome, various special needs and behavioral concerns is close to my heart and my various forms of artistry coalesce in purpose towards endeavoring to empower the learners I teach and also learn from.
With the focus of expanding my professional effectiveness and efficiency, reaching hearts faster and facilitating shifts from the inside out, I aim to serve my fellow brothers and sisters. Of course, I don’t say all this in a superficial conversation. I don’t say that I am focused on leading through valuable service to others, or that I am a spiritual warrior balking the apathy. I don’t say that God has turned my life from the inside out, or that my real job is to aid the empowerment of hearts and minds, regardless of their abilities or disabilities. I don’t say that my ‘story dancing’ is aimed at just instilling new thought and feeling in how educators approach the educative process, but also aimed at conveying that it is time to up the ante by bringing our passion forth as teachers into the learning environment.
Passion can fuel a clear purpose, physical exercise can give us the real-time energy to move towards our goals day in and day out and crafting our life into serving each other can fulfill the human heart which thrives on genuineness and altruism. These together set the platform for a positive attitude that springs forth from a sound mind, body and spirit and it is in such ways that we form new mental habits, complete with newly-fashioned brain circuitry.