What's your agenda?

My opinion doesn't matter and will not change the world.
My friend shared a very personal experience from high school on social media yesterday. The update bugged me a lot and not because of what happened, but the context she presented along with i her story.
I will try to be discreet because it's her personal experience and the topic is a "hot button" topic right now.
She shared her frightening experience with a political agenda.
I think she is very brave to share her experience, especially in a social media setting. I just don't believe it should have been shared with an agenda. My personal experiences do not impact large scale political decisions or law making. It felt manipulative and hollow when the two are paired.
In a social media setting it's like she stood on a wall and shouted about something happening that is sure to draw reaction from everyone and then tacking on a demand, "THIS HAPPENED TO ME, this horrible, awful thing... So, go vote for this person/law."
It made me think about my own social media posts. Do I have an agenda when I post updates? What's my agenda? So I'm going to flip it for the few readers out there, what's your agenda?


Let's drive in my automobile

According to this article, 35% of the world drives on the left side of the road. America joins in with the majority for driving on the right side.
A few years ago, I took on a bunch of temporary jobs during the Recession of 2008. I couldn't get a full time job, so I picked up whatever I could find.
One temp job, I worked as a glorified janitor for the now South Town Expo Center during the Car Show.
It was there I met Shane, a 50 something Scottish stereotype. He had a shoulder length graying beard that sat perfectly on his giant barreled chest (I could easily see him tossing various heavy items in the Highland Games). He also had a heavy accented voice that sounded like he was shouting all the time.
Many of the temp workers didn't speak very good English, so those of us who did (including Shane) sad together for breaks and lunches.
One lunch Shane stops eating and land back in his chair, "Do ya know why we drive on the other side of the road in Scotland?"
He said it so serious and it was sure to be good trivia, but I missed the initial sarcasm.
Shane swung his right arm wide, "So we can punch other shitty drivers in the face."


Lessons from 9/11

Nearly everyone in America can tell you what they were doing when the Twin Towers fell. I'm no different, but I'm not going to talk about that now. I'm going to tell you how this huge historical tragedy affected 14 year old Michelle. I learned four lessons because of that day.
1. Fear: I was 14 years old when terrorists struck an American icon. I lived in suburban Utah, where the scariest things were the mundane worries of early teens everywhere (forgetting my locker combination, missing the bus or talking to cute boys).
After the planes crashed, the buildings fell and lives were lost; the footage replayed in all of my classes and all class work was related to terrorism.
Terrorism was a new concept for me. In my mind there was no reason for anyone to fight anyone else, let alone kill . The world became a lot bigger and more terrifying.
2. War: In my English class that year, we studied a lot about World War II. The classroom discussions changed pretty quick.
I remember one of my teachers standing in front of the class, talking about the military draft and she told us to look around our class and pointed out the boys. She said in the next few years, we could be looking at a draft for our generation.
I looked at a few guys in my class; nerdy "Stephen" or rebellious "Lyle". The idea of these people my own age being drafted seemed so ludicrous, but if a draft happened, it would be in my generation.
There was no draft mandated my the government, but many of my graduating class joined the military and faced the face of terrorism in Iraq and Afghanistan. Those fresh-faced boys watched a lot of death on both sides and felt the damage in more ways than one.
3. United: The weeks following the attack were difficult to see from a quiet, young teenage point of view. It felt like so much waiting. Waiting for reaction or for something to happen.
I saw some things change in the people around me. People were angry and itching for war, but there was a softer side that many Americans hid that started sneaking out. It was a the sense of being connected to others, a community mind, or a United State.
I collected all the newspapers related to 9/11. The progression from disaster to fear to action and community was noticeable. We banded together as a nation. It didn't matter if the war was right or wrong, just that we were all affected and we were together.
4. Pride: The biggest change for me was the sense of national pride. Sure America is a flawed nation. You don't need to go fast to see corruption and greed, but one thing this nation does well is defend itself and overcome the difficulties in one way or another. 
I'm glad to live in this nation and I'm so glad to be an American in an imperfect United States.

9/11 is a tragic event in American history. That day won't ever be forgotten and i will try to pass the lessons I learned to my children because we're American's and products of history.


Be the Change

Jumping back into a full-time job after staying home is a lot harder than it sounds. I was sure it would be okay, my job didn't change while I was fine and my co workers were also the same.
I was very wrong.
We're all human. Humans are not static. Dynamics in a work environment change.
In my role there is a fine line you have to walk between ownership and team work. I have my cases to complete every day, but I also have a responsibility within our team and their individual case loads. It can create quite the internal and sometimes external battle.
My personal upbringing in a very Christian environment tends to push my work focus on the team and their needs. It makes me mad when I see people slacking or not getting stuff done. I tried to say I was concerned about patient's testing and getting things started, but I really just needed a wake up call.
I felt really yucky about the whole thing this weekend, my anger and frustration was out of control. I tried all weekend to brain storm ideas to create a better team environment among my team members, but I came up with nothing.
So I asked Dave if he had any ideas. He was a supervisor and was bound to have some drama in his previous teams.
When I asked him, he didn't even look up from his cell phone, "You have to be the change you want to see."
It's such a simple thing. Stop trying to change everyone else, just do your best and recognize others for their achievements.
Two days into "the change" and things are noticeably different for me. My team is doing whatever they do and I'm doing my best with a reminder sticky note on my computer to see the good in everyone.
The best part is that I'm happy.
All we can really do in this life is change and grow within ourselves. We can't change others in any way. I can be the best me and cheer on others in their achievements. What a positive thing to infuse in this world!