My 1000 Small Steps – June 20, 2018

Posted on: June 16th, 2018 by Kathie England | Time for Success No Comments

Commit to Making Change

By Kathie England, inspired by Barack Obama

At the end of the Obama Foundation Summit late last year, President Obama closed the event by holding up a commitment card and asking attendees to answer this question:

What action are you going to take to make concrete local change in the next few months?

Obama explained, “The simple act of writing something down and saying you’re going to do it makes you more likely to take action and make it happen. The change you commit to doesn’t have to be huge – in fact, it shouldn’t be. It should be something you can do in the next few months, something that will make a positive change where you live – something you can lean on your friends and neighbors to help with.”

He invited the attendees to fill out a commitment card and share with the summit what change they planned to make in their community in the next few months.

In the spirit of the Obama Foundation Summit, I invite each person who reads this blog or receives this email to post their answer to President Obama’s question:

What action are you going to take to make concrete local change in the next few months?

Though you may be discouraged by recent events, I invite us all to remember the words of Winston Churchill:

“Success is not final, failure is not fatal. It is the courage to continue that counts.”

 

My 1000 Small Steps – May 20, 2018

Posted on: May 19th, 2018 by Kathie England | Time for Success No Comments

Truth and Trust

By Kathie England

“Ranting is not journalism!”

Those were the words of Ann Curry, an American journalist for the past 30 years and the final speaker at TEDx Portland on April 21, 2018.

Journalism, described by Curry as a “noble calling,” is about truth and trust. The motive of journalism is the public good.

An informed citizen has the responsibility to seek truth.

Curry invited us to ask ourselves, as informed citizens, whether the stories we hear and read are real. She offered seven questions for us to ask ourselves in determining whether a story is real.

  • Are no other news organizations reporting the same thing?
  • Is this being reported by an organization you don’t know?
  • Does the article lack a publication date?
  • Is it billed as a “must read” in the headline?
  • Does the story confirm your opinion neatly?
  • Is it in all caps? Are there a lot of exclamation marks?
  • Does it make you angry?

I just started reading We Were Eight Years in Power by Ta-Nehisi Coates. In the introduction to this book, Coates notes that when President Obama left office, “a majority of the opposition party did not believe he was a citizen.”

One of my favorite coaching questions is “What if…?”

What if those people who did not believe that President Obama is a citizen had asked themselves the questions Ann Curry posed?

What if we all took those small steps of asking ourselves Curry’s questions before we believe what we are reading and hearing is the truth?

“Ranting is not journalism!”

My 1000 Small Steps – April 20, 2018

Posted on: April 14th, 2018 by Kathie England | Time for Success 1 Comment

“Revitalize Citizenship”

By Kathie England

What does it mean to be an American?

Eric Liu, who served as speechwriter for President Clinton and was nominated by President Obama to serve on the board of directors of the federal Corporation for National and Community Service, asked that question.

In 2014 Liu launched the Aspen Institute Program on Citizenship and American Identity to advance the conversation about the nature of American national identity. Today Liu is the CEO of Citizen University, a non-profit organization that promotes what it calls “powerful citizenship.”

Sworn-Again America is a program that is part of the effort of Citizen University to revitalize citizenship. Inspired by the naturalization process for immigrants to become American citizens, Sworn-Again America invites citizens to renew their civic vows.

One step in this process is to take the Sworn-Again Oath:

I pledge to be an active American

to show up for others

to govern myself

to help govern my community

I recommit myself to my country’s creed

to cherish liberty

as a responsibility

 

I pledge to serve

and to push my country:

when right, to be kept right;

when wrong, to be set right

Wherever my ancestors and I were born,

I claim America

and I pledge to live like a citizen

Citizen University wants to “spark a movement that will inspire Americans to become more engaged in civic life, more connected to people from all walks of life, more grateful for the opportunities and freedoms that come with citizenship, and more willing to show up and take on the responsibilities of citizenship.”

https://www.citizenuniversity.us/programs/

Whether “in ceremonies at dinner tables, schools, block parties, or town squares, with five or five thousand,” Citizen University invites us all to take the oath to become a Sworn-Again American.

Would you be willing to take this small step?

My 1000 Small Steps – March 20, 2018

Posted on: March 17th, 2018 by Kathie England | Time for Success 1 Comment

“Stand Up for Something”

By Kathie England

“I’ve always believed that I wanted my political representatives to have been the ‘smartest kid in the class.’ And Bryan was! You see I was his fourth-grade teacher, and I have that rather unique perspective.”

These are the words my sister, Judy Caforio, recently wrote to celebrate the 35th birthday of her son, Bryan Caforio. Judy wrote these words in the letter she sent to family, friends, and acquaintances asking for their financial support in Bryan’s campaign for California’s 25th Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives.

She explained more: “Watching Bryan in his high school, college, and law school Mock Trial and Moot Court rounds, observing how he has approached the issues in CA 25, has exemplified his intelligence, his critical thinking skills, his powerful ability to research a problem and solutions, combined with his compassion for humanity make him the Congressman we want solving problems in Washington, D.C.”

Judy recounted a few memorable moments in Bryan’s life:

  • Selection as outstanding attorney of the year in Fountain Valley High School’s (FVHS) Mock Trial victory at the Orange County championship tournament
  • Receiving highest honors when he graduated from FVHS and winning a full academic scholarship to UCLA
  • His UCLA Mock Trial team winning the national tournament two years in a row
  • His delivering the graduation address for the Political Science department at UCLA in Pauley Pavilion
  • His perfect LSAT score that pretty much assured he could attend the number one law school in the country
  • His graduation from Yale Law School and then his clerkship for the Ninth Circuit in Montana

One of the proudest moments was watching Lisa and Bryan express their beautiful vows to each other on their wedding day. “At that moment they became a team!”

“The challenges this strong couple has undertaken with this Congressional run are Herculean! Their strength as individuals and as a couple, their commitment to doing the right thing, their integrity in their approach to life, their unwavering belief that they can make a difference is inspirational to all who know them.”

Participating in the Women’s March on January 20, 2017 helped Bryan and Lisa decide they had to “stand up for something” and run for Congress again. This march and the one on January 21 this year has helped millions of women and men find their voices.

There is no stronger voice for women than Bryan Caforio! One of Bryan’s supporters in the district even stated that she’d “never met a finer feminist than Bryan Caforio.”

Bryan is in a mighty battle this election! He’s up against some serious money, and unfortunately, money matters. Judy stated, “If you’ve ever considered supporting Bryan in this Congressional race, now is the time.”

I’m making this same request. (So far, Judy’s letter has raised more than $2000 for Bryan’s campaign.)

There are two ways to contribute:

Checks payable to:

Bryan Caforio for Congress

24307 Magic Mountain Parkway #548

Valencia, CA 91355

or

http://bryancaforio.com

As further inspiration, I invite you to watch the performance of “Stand Up for Something” by Andra Day and Common on the Late Show with Stephen Colbert. This amazing song is from the film “Marshall” about Thurgood Marshall, the first Black person to become a justice of the U.S. Supreme Court.

http://www.cbs.com/shows/the-late-show-with-stephen-colbert/video/8D5B817E-1101-B63B-A499-D8DF17313A82/andra-day-and-common-perform-stand-up-for-something-/

Now more than ever, stand up for something and support Bryan Caforio for Congress!

My 1000 Small Steps – February 20, 2018

Posted on: February 18th, 2018 by Kathie England | Time for Success No Comments

Be Bold, Be Brave, and Raise Your Hand

By Kathie England

“I’m 10. And I Want Girls to Raise Their Hands.”

That’s the title of the October 31, 2017 op-ed piece in The New York Times by Alice Paul Tapper. When she was on a fourth grade field trip, Alice noticed that all the boys stood in the front and raised their hands while most of the girls stayed quietly in the back.

Troubled by what she observed, Alice talked with her mom and they decided to bring this issue to her Girl Scout troop. She discovered that other girls had observed the same reluctance of girls to raise their hands in class.

Alice did more than just discuss this issue with her mom and her Girl Scouts friends. With their help, she created a new Girl Scout badge called Raise Your Hand. Girls are invited to take the Raise Your Hand Pledge that includes the following commitments:

  1. Raising her hand in class
  2. Recruiting three other girls to take the pledge (they don’t have to be Girl Scouts)
  3. Sharing how raising her hand makes a girl feel and posting of picture of herself raising her hand on Facebook
  4. Purchasing a Raise Your Hand participation patch

Alice’s action is a great example of taking a small step! I encourage you to read all about this movement started by a 10-year-old in The New York Times link below.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/31/opinion/im-10-and-i-want-girls-to-raise-their-hands.html

Then look at the link on the Girl Scout website that describes how to get involved.

http://www.gscnc.org/raiseyourhand

You can even see the pledge in this link.

http://www.gscnc.org/content/dam/girlscouts-gscnc/documents/Our-Council/RaiseYourHandPledge.pdf

And most important – How are you showing up and how are you raising your hand in 2018?

Visit http://bryancaforio.com/ and raise your hand to help elect Bryan Caforio for Congress in California’s 25th Congressional District!