Putting Yourself in New Rooms
I went to ten schools in twelve grade years. Yes, you read that right. I went to ten schools in twelve grade years. I lived with my mother, father, and younger brother. I wasn’t a military brat. We simply had life challenges and moved around to find better situations. My grade school experience was a gift and a curse. I wouldn’t appreciate the gift until I had my daughter though. I couldn’t handle the curse aspect of always being the new kid. I grew up quiet, shy, unconfident, and lacking direction. I withdrew after being uprooted a couple of times. I pass no blame on my childhood trajectory. I simply didn’t cope well with losing familiarity and starting over from scratch.
In my young adulthood, all the bad traits carried over. I went to prison right after high school for robbery. I failed to say no when I was proposed with the senseless idea. I knew better, that’s the sad part. After ten months of incarceration, I came home to my mother’s house at 19. I stared at four years of supervised probation. The next eight years of my life were filled with lack of drive, Newports, alcohol, marijuana, and cocaine. I was on the verge of homelessness twice. I didn’t finish anything I started. I took a long, hard look in the mirror one morning and I cried my eyes out. I’d had enough. My spirit was crushed. My soul couldn’t take anymore sub-par living. I was walking all over my purpose with muddy shoes. That awakening happened over five years ago.
Now, I have an Associate’s degree in Global Logistics. I’ve written a fictional novel, called Dance Up Out Of Here. I’ve spoken at schools and recreation centers. I operate a blog and feature all kinds of leaders and innovators. I’m involved in Toastmasters, Winston-Salem Writers, and the Fortitude mentoring program. My childhood taught me a wise lesson about putting yourself in new rooms. Growth is only achieved through extending yourself and learning new things. New situations are a must if you want to shed skin and become 1% better every day. Muscles are strengthened by tearing and resting. It takes putting yourself in new rooms to meet new people and make opportunities. It’s second nature to me now to put myself in new rooms. My whole grade school experience conditioned me for it. I know how to respond negatively to change. That came easy to me. Now, it’s me going out and CREATING the change. I shed my skin everyday and put myself in new rooms for the sake of growth. Kill comfort and put yourself in new rooms. Your future self depends on it.
Donald Sawyer III