Making the Grade
It is better to conquer yourself than to win a thousand battles. Then the victory is yours. It cannot be taken from you, not by angels or by demons, heaven or hell. « Gautama Buddha
The news this month has been filled with journalists, news personalities, politicos and average Joes alike grading President Obama and his first 100 days in office. My personal opinion is it’s too early to tell. This is a class with a midterm and a final only. However, as proof that this makes for interesting news stories, blogs and those popular live political roundtables, I listened, watched and read along with everyone else.
As the grades poured in from all corners of the nation, I thought, “Why aren’t we grading ourselves?” Surely, with all the editorialized A’s, B’s, C’s, D’s and F’s being so nonchalantly tossed about, shouldn’t we be applying this standard to our own performances?
If each one of us took the time to judge our own contributions in a challenging era, it would give us all personal goals to work toward and, as an offshoot, improvements to society as a whole would be forthcoming. So, I decided to grade myself on my last 100 days. But first, I had to tally which parts of my life should be up for evaluation—my efforts in business, as a mother, spouse, daughter, friend and as a citizen of my community, country and on Earth. As far as work and family go, I have fared well, however I am so focused on these two areas that my community and Earth-focused efforts have fallen a bit short. Now that I recognize this clearly, perhaps there are ways I can include community and Earth-friendly efforts in my day-to-day life within my work and with my family.
When I go through my own personal scorecard I can see areas where I have excelled and a few where more efforts toward improvement are in order, and I have begun to look into opportunities to enrich those lagging behind. I, like President Obama, can say, “I am proud but not content.”