Push the Envelope.

I’m definitely about to go all motivational speaker on you. I am apologizing now if by the end you think you have wings and can fly off into the sunset, lift a car over your head and throw it or even read people’s minds. Nope, I’m not that inspirational. 


Anyway! Today’s order of business is the coined term “stepping outside of your box.” It is probably one of the most frequently heard terms in all of my leadership classes I take. “Why would this be stressed?” you may ask. I believe it is very important and it is mentioned frequently because growth occurs when you are uncomfortable with a situation, you analyze the situation and develop a decision-making strategy to help you understand the situation. This process is how we learn how to deal with all different types of situations in life, causing growth through experience.


For a leadership class of mine, we were assigned a project where we had to pick something that would assist us in growing personally. Now, whoever might know me, you would understand my choice for my project. For for the ones that don’t, I am not crazy. 


I chose to twirl fire batons!



Growing up, I twirled for several years but forgot about the lost art in between FFA, basketball and  other extra-curricular activities. This opportunity gave me the chance to add danger into my life and take a risk.


Sure, I could have lit my hair on fire. I could have burned my hands. Fire isn’t very merciful. The hair on my arms because shorter and shorter as it singed with time and practice. It was interesting to see how with time I became more and more comfortable with the baton and learned how to handle it with grace and poise.


The same aspect can be applied to agriculture and journalism. If you never take a chance you won’t make any progress. I am not a risk taker and this was challenging for me to do. In agriculture, you take risks by planting a new kind of crop on your land or by giving you cattle a new ration of feed. You are not always sure how it will turn out but you learn and progress either way. In journalism, you won’t have quality stories, photos, or multimedia pieces if you don’t try to get up in what is really going on, empathize and then report an unbiased piece that shows how real and genuine the story is. When you do that as a journalist, it makes your work very rewarding because people enjoy these kinds of pieces.


In the end, make room for a few risks in your life. If I twirled fire batons, I’m sure you can set your mind to whatever goal you want to accomplish and follow through! You have the ability to do anything you want through hard work and persistence. It doesn’t apply to everything (lets just say I’m not a genie and you don’t have three wishes…) but it is important to stay optimistic and believe in yourself. You cannot accomplish anything without self confidence. 


I challenge you to try something you have always wanted to do. I promise you won’t regret it…I didn’t!




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