21 January 2009

Service Learning

What makes an idea take flight? What is it that causes a random thought or idea turn into something tangible? I don't know why it happens, it just does. Does it matter how or why it happens? No, not really. What matters is that it does happen.

Recently I've had the pleasure of experiencing the impact of small deeds turning into big deeds. It was fast and unexpected. I found these little African AIDS angels in a little boutique in Halifax and within 2 weeks, I bought and sold 300 of them raising $1500 for kids with AIDS or orphaned by AIDS in Sub-Saharan Africa. Now, a group of Students are getting together to make the Angels as a service learning project at the College.

I'm glad the small act turned into something special for others and can't wait to see how far it can go. The funny thing is that I never expected it. Why? Is it a lack of faith in people? Perhaps. But I learned a valuable lesson. Never doubt the power of one and never underestimate the kindness of others.

It's been a good lesson. It has renewed my faith in people. If I never make or sell another AIDS angel again, a spark has been lit and that is more than I ever expected.

What we need are more small acts. Around the world thousands of people are doing what seem to be small acts of kindness not knowing how they impact the lives of others. These acts require no rewards, no awards, no status, no fee. These acts occur simply because they're the right thing to do.

Now, back to the question of what makes an idea turn into an act. I think that it has to be something to do with allowing yourself to be open to new ideas, keeping an open mind and being willing to try new things...step into the unknown. I'm not talking about jumping off a cliff, just trying something new without knowing what will happen down the road. Some ideas will be good, some will be not so good. But so what? Doing nothing leads to nothing.

I will try to keep an open mind and be open to new ideas as they appear. No longer will I worry about success and failure. The world is a wonderfully surprising and fascinating place. It looks like it will be a very good year.

OMG...I just realized this is an example of Stimergy...cool!

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