Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Was I Snubbed?

Sometimes people don’t want to hang out with me. No worries. We can’t all be best buddies. We can’t all be the same, either. I feel this way about some folks, too. I think we all have times when people say or give the impression of “thanks, but no thanks”. It happens. 

Recently I was enthusiastically welcomed to participate in a group event. Then, I was told there could be an issue with my philosophies. (My business and blog are not strictly unschool related and this was a red flag for some folks. Guess what? My business will never be 100% unschool related because I have to relate to all school models and all family types in order to succeed even though my family unschools.) Then I did not hear back. It hasn’t been days, it’s been muuuuuch longer.  (I will not disclose which event or which group because I’m not here to sling the ‘ol mud. Plus, it is their group and they get to make the rules.) Now, technically they may have forgotten about me, but given the second response I am assuming I was snubbed. I would have appreciated an email saying they officially decline to have me, though. The way the email left it, they were going to set it up and let me know the schedule (even if I was not going to be invited).

At first I was taken aback because of the (first) enthusiastic response. I won’t lie, I was disappointed. But, I don’t want to go where I am not wanted. There are plenty of other groups and events that fit my family just fine. There are plenty of people who accept us for who we are. 

My only concern is that I did tell some friends about this group. I would feel like I let me friends down if they attended a group event and were treated poorly because they didn’t stack up to arbitrary expectations.

I am not here to fuss at anyone. I am cool with you as long as your harm none. I did, however, feel the need to reaffirm that we are all important and special. If one group doesn’t care for you, another will. 

Keep on keepin’.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Strive to Be a Mindful Reader

A few weeks ago I had a conversation with a friend about a fabulous new nonfiction book he read. I LOVE to read and I LOVE book referrals. My “To Read” list can never be too long. There was one thing that bothered me after our conversation, though. I have noticed that people are split in how they take in and use the information from sources like books, articles, and websites. Some people take the information with a grain of salt. They choose to read, then follow up with research and thoughtful reflection in order to take what makes sense and is correct while casting aside that which is not accurate. Other people read a text, then repeat the information without examining it closely and separately from the context of the book or article. I decided to make a list of questions to help me examine my thoughts after reading an article, book, or website. Information is only worthwhile if we know how to examine, research, and think through the topics at hand. It is important to discern correct from incorrect information. Yes, please read every chance you get, but also be sure to reflect on the information and examine it closely. I know I will be mindful of this as well.

  •  Who funded the book, website, or article? Why?
  • Who authored the information? Why?
  • What sources are cited in the writing? 
  •  Do other studies, texts, or common knowledge dispute this information?
  • Can some of the text be correct, with other parts being incorrect in this context?
  •  Do I rave about or downplay the text because my friends did the same or because I truly stand behind the information?     
  • Do I revere the information because an organization or movement suggests it as correct?            
  •  Am I open to change or resistant to change? 
  • Can I explain this information to another person, in detail, so that it is understood correctly?