Change trains.

A morning conversation with a colleague centered on change. Life changes, work changes; changes comprise our life. How we react to these fluctuations is what allows us to make it through the day.
What happens when change does not come fast enough? On more occasions than I would like to admit, I have found myself lamenting the good fortune of others. “That should have been MY job.” “I was due for that raise.”
This “Why not me?” attitude is a heavy, messy piece of luggage to carry around. If these things did not happen for me, they were not mine to own. It’s time to shrug them off and take the next train.
Nothing ever is. Everything is becoming. ~Heraclitus
If a train doesn’t stop at your station, then it’s not your train. ~Marianne Williamson
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Another year past, some same, some different

If it’s my daughter’s half-birthday, it must be another anniversary for the eighteen and life blog. It’s been a very busy year and I hope to share more about this in the next few weeks. In the meanwhile, here’s some of the cool stuff I have been reading.
Do You Possess the Right Temperament?
Why Myers-Briggs Matters
Development of the Ten Positions in the Journey Toward Self-Authorship
Please Do Not Leave a Message: Why Millennials Hate Voice Mail
Bonus: I love these MBTI Type-Head Coffee Cups!

Algebra

Conversation between soccer players last weekend . . .
“What do you know about Jason Engles?”
Who’s Jason Engles?
“You know, Jason Engles, in Algebra.”
I don’t know Jason Engles.
“Jason Engles. Jason Engles!”
Aaahhh, adjacent angles.
“That’s what I said.”
The most important thing in communication is to hear what isn’t being said.  ~Peter Drucker

#SAreads: Practicing Perceiving

If you are familiar with psychological type and the MBTI®, you may recognize that type theory explains the random behavior of people’s lives as actually quite orderly and patterned. This is due to basic methods used by individuals to take in information and make decisions.
The last letter of the 4-letter MBTI code highlights the process one uses in dealing with the outer world. Do you prefer to plan ahead and get things decided (Judging) or do you prefer to remain flexible and open to new options (Perceiving)? Not to be confused with organization, as either preference can be organized, the J or P Preference indicates how we interact in our outer life, whether structured and decided (J) or curious and open-ended (P).
Which option would you choose?
Do you prefer to:
  1. Arrange lunch plans, events, parties, etc., well in advance, or
  2. Be free to spend your day doing whatever looks like fun?
In Building Momentum: The Unconventional Strengths of Perceiving College Students, Meri Beckham explores the successful practices of Perceiving college students including unconstrained time and working at the last minute. These methods are cited as the opposite of ideal strategies promoted in college success and study skills texts.
If you work in academic success, retention, first-year programming, or are interested in helping students make effective transitions to college, grab the article and join us Friday at 1PM EST for this week’s discussion on #SAreads.

Want to appear intelligent? Just smile.

There’s something in my pocket
it belongs across my face.
I keep it very close at hand
in a most convenient place.
~Brownie Smile
PsyBlog featured a new research study on facial evaluation and the power of a smile. The study found that when judging men just on their facial appearance, there was a relationship with actual intelligence. But when it came to judging women, there was no relationship between how intelligent they were perceived and their actual intelligence. The study suggested that this is because women are primarily judged on their attractiveness overruling perceptions about intelligence.
Interestingly, the study also found ‘high intelligence’ faces appear to be smiling more than the ‘low intelligence’ faces. A similar pattern was described for the perception of trustworthiness.” In the other words: frown to look more stupid and smile to look more intelligent.   ~Jeremy Dean, PsyBlog
Read the original study here.

The Rise of the College Graduate

mortar_board
In case there is still debate over the value of a college degree, the Pew Research Center is trying to put the argument to rest, once and for all, with a new report The Rising Cost of Not Going to College. Most convincing is the finding that when compared with previous generations, there is even more income disparity between college graduates and those with a high school diploma.
For those who question the value of college in this era of soaring student debt and high unemployment, the attitudes and experiences of today’s young adults—members of the so-called Millennial generation—provide a compelling answer. On virtually every measure of economic well-being and career attainment—from personal earnings to job satisfaction to the share employed full time—young college graduates are outperforming their peers with less education.    ~Pew Research Center

Creating Conditions for Good Company

Schwinn-Tango-Tandem-Unisex-Bicycle_20090621496

My opportunity to teach a graduate course in Student Development Theory has been incredibly rewarding. I have enjoyed exploring Erickson, Chickering, Baxter Magolda, and the other tenets of our work with an enthusiastic group of up and coming student affairs professionals. We will wrap up the semester with an intensive look at the journey of self-authorship. The student affairs role in this journey, of becoming good company in the transformation of our students, defines my own practice.
Peggy Meszaros shares this excerpt describing her Learning Partnerships Model:
It is important to have a good understanding of the model, and I offer a simple metaphor to help in visualizing it. To fully understand the Learning Partnerships Model [and the student affairs role in self-authorship], think about a journey you may be planning. You will need some form of transportation, a road map with signs along the way to guide your journey, and a final destination. Now visualize your mentoring transportation as a tandem bicycle. There is a rider on the front, the student, who decides the direction and is in charge of making decisions. The rider on the back is you, the teacher or student affairs professional, who stokes the bike, providing challenge and support for the student on the front. You provide the elements of challenge and support in your teaching and (you might picture them as the saddlebags for the journey). Keeping challenge and support in balance as the student heads in the direction of self-authorship is part of your role and a key element of the model. The guideposts are found as students move from absolute knowing, the first marker; through transitional or independent knowing, the second marker; to contextual knowing, the final destination.
How do you provide good company?

. . . . .

Meszaros, P. (2007). The journey of self-authorship: Why is it necessary? New Directions for Teaching and Learning, 109, p. 5-14. doi: 10.1002/tl.261