Thursday, November 8, 2012

Pick an Issue for the Silver

"Dissatisfaction is a great starting point,
for it is right there that we have
the most power, strength, and energy
to push change through."
                                - David DeNotaris, motivational speake

I'm thinking about our Silver Award Training tonight, and came across this quote in my inbox. (Thank you Rick Ruiz!)  And it seems a good one for the day.

We have a piece in the training about, "what's the issue?"  And we talk about how the girls need to look around themselves to see what's in their community.  Maybe another way to express that is to find where they are not comfortable? or where they aren't satisfied with the way things are going.  It's that dissatisfaction that could lead to investigating an issue and learning more about it.

As the quote says, identifying that "thing" that makes the girl uneasy, dissatisfied or plain angry is a GREAT starting point for coming up with a Silver Award Take Action Project.  Remember, 65% of this aged girl, nationally, is likely to speak up and just know that she is correct.  She holds strong values and opinions, and she doesn't mind sharing them.

That's a very powerful position to be in!  Our job as advisors is to guide the girl to harness all that certainty and power, identify what she wants to change, and then let her go do it!  If she has the passion for her issue, she will be more likely to succeed than if she is just going along with someone else's idea.

At training last week, we had a leader talk about how she thought three girls were going to do a group project...until she heard them talking about how diverse their interests really were. So now, she has three projects!  The first thing we all encouraged her to do was to GET HELP!  Enlist parents and other project advisors!  Spread the wealth around!

These girls can do it! We may have to nudge, okay nag, to get them started, but with their certainty and abilities, they are poised to do wonderful things!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Go vote!

Exercise your right as a US citizen and cast your ballot, today!  Let your voice be heard!

Hurray for the democratic process!!!!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Girl Scouts are EVERYwhere!

Just got this in my in-box this morning from a GS friend of a GS friend. "Squeaky" was a counselor at Skyland Ranch in the 70's with me.  She has retired, and now she and her husband are traveling the US. This pic came from Starved Rock State Park in Illinois.

What a great thing!  The first words of the Girl Scout Promise for everyone to see!  It truly is an iconic symbol of Girl Scouting.

Big words for our girls.  They are "on their honor" to do the work for their Journeys, and "on their honor" to do the work for the Silver Award.  Sure, we leaders/advisors will see some of it first hand, but not everything.  The girls are "on their honor" to do the work.

And the result? Girls of courage, confidence and character who make the world a better place.  It's a good thing.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Working Towards the Goal

"By recording your dreams and goals on paper, you set in motion the process of becoming the person you most want to be."  -Mark Victor Hansen, author Chicken Soup for the Soul

We have Gold Award Interviews the end of this month, and I'm looking forward to seeing what great Take Action Projects the girls will have chosen.  

And I'm hoping to see some great paperwork come through!  I'm hoping to see applications that show that the girl has put time and thought into her project planning,   And I'm hoping that her Advisor/troop leader/parent has worked with her, and given her good feedback, so the plan is clear and easily understood.

Truly, I'm hoping for word processed pages that make sense!  I'm also hoping for clear issue definition and an understanding of what the root cause is of the issue that is being addressed.  Yep, I'm pretty hopeful!

And in the same breath, fearful!  Fearful that the girls are rushing through the application to "get it done and submitted" and that the advisors are merely rubberstamping mediocrity!  I think Mark Victor Hansen had it right, when he said to record dreams and goals on paper.  By putting the Gold Award plan into writing, stepping back, looking at it again, and then realizing it's a great plan, it truly does set the tone for the whole project.

Committing to a project verbally is not quite as meaty as committing to it to paper.  Paper commitment requires thought processing, critical thinking, some linear thinking, and letting passion leak through.  That's what's going to make a GREAT Gold Award Project!  Having the passion, committing to change and creating a plan to make it happen.

It's the Discovery of an issue,  the Connecting to a community group to work through, the gathering of a team, and then the Taking Action that will make all the difference.  It's about working toward a goal, as a leader of a team. Making a difference in a local community.  Inspiring others to succeed.  Leaving a sustainable plan behind.

All the pieces of a great proposal and project.  Hoping that's what I find on December 1st, to be sure.