May “The Fourth” Be with You!

This post appears simultaneously on LinkedIn…….

“You have your moments. Not many of them, but you do have them.”

“Hope is not lost today. It is found.”

— Princess Leia, Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back

“Truly wonderful the mind of a child is.”

“Do or do not. There is no try.”

— Master Yoda, Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back

This week many people in the USA, including myself, will proudly “fly the geek flag” and wish others tongue in cheek albeit wholeheartedly that the “force be with them”. We will collectively rewatch and requote our favorite scenes, players, and quotes. We will collectively take to social media in support of  Star Wars and its forward thinking universe and characters. Thursday, May 4th is Star Wars Day and I’m counting down. Especially since this year marks the passing of the uber-insightful and talented Carrie Fisher, who has immortalized beloved Princess Leia for generations to come.

Star Wars Day is a day of widespread fond, avid, and vocal commemoration of a cultural touchstone which has universally affected the Theory of Mind i.e. the “inner landscape” of people from different generations and different parts of world. It is a non-denomination day that should make us think seriously about ourselves and others. It should make us hit our inner “pause” button and take stock of our values and ambitions; especially as professional women in the iEra i.e. the age of the startup and mass networking thanks to our growing symbiotic relationship with technology. Star Wars provides a relatable story regarding The Hero’s Journey , famous quotes inspiring one to hone their own communication and artistry, lessons in creativity and productivity, and takeaways regarding mentorship and one’s career and career goals.

Is it any wonder May 4th is on my blogger radar?

To date, this diverse, deceptively simple interwoven and ongoing saga has provided much fodder for academics, “growth-hackers“, ethicists,  and behavioral psychologists,  as well as those in business and the entrepreneurship arena. This powerful, moving  tale of taking sides in the war of Good vs. Evil, and the pursuit of Answers, Truth, and Personal Growth, has been instrumental to many of us trying to pursue purpose not just profit, maintain a sense of humor in the midst of challenge and adversity, and hone our skill set to foster our own  empowerment and  leadership acumen.

So what have I learned from Star Wars? 

A lot actually, beginning with the complex, nuanced, and wonderfully depicted relationships between Leia and Han Solo, Luke and Yoda, Padme and Anakin, Rey and Finn (A Force Awakens),  and Imwe and Malbus (Rogue One).

I also learned all about the 3 Es….

I learned all about the importance of the 3 Es; something I keep in mind when I’m writing, speaking, and working with children with Autism/special needs and their families/service providers:

  • Educate others using your own talents and trials by fire
  • Entertain others while providing necessary takeaways and constructive criticism
  • Encourage change in yourself before demanding it of others, and be patient and unafraid to fail along the way

What additional 4 takeaways can I share in honor of 5/4/17?

  1. We are all interconnected. We all have opportunities in our personal and professional lives to think “We” instead of “Me” and act on it. To create a seamless, user-friendly, collaborative and self-sustaining ecosystem that benefits others; economically, educationally, physically, emotionally, and geographically. Cross-pollination collaboration and cultural shifts at the workplace are happening, need to happen more, and need to happen right now. So get out there in real space and cyberspace and connect more meaningfully and authentically! 
  2. We are all storytellers and characters in someone’s story, and our Story is fluid and ongoing. We all have opportunities in our personal and professional lives to create our Story, reverse engineer it,  and ensure that the information is made readily and unobtrusively accessible. We are all in the “driver’s seat” of our own Millenium Falcon– our Story; how it proceeds; its wording shared with others, its chapters, its routines, breaks from said routines, attempts to reboot them, and recollections of lessons and interactions from those we meet along the way. So make it a good one, and keep moving forward to add pages!
  3. We are all able to better harness time, to create a better workflow, a better balance at home/work between Process and Outcome. We all have the opportunity to reduce our multi-tasking to truly  “live in the moment” and honor the Journey, not just the End Destination, should we so choose. We all have an “inner time clock” allowing us to transition as needed, and intuitively understand the importance of breaking down every process into three components; beginning, middle, and end. This is an area of difficulty for children with Autism; something I wrote about previously here and here.  We all have innate strengths and skills we can harness, to better harness time. To better harness outcomes for the greater good, and contribute to the process of improving problem-solving en masse. Collaboration re: problem-solving and innovation, and subsequently getting your “fifteen minutes of fame” for your cause has never been easier.  Thanks to our myriad social media feeds and global connectivity, we can more efficiently and effectively identify and connect with our “tribe”. Know your place and time. Timing is everything as they say. Not all trends and/or current events are “triggers” for you to change trajectory, or branding of self/service for that matter. So don’t just say– do, and stay on your time-table! Make sure you are being productive, not just busy!
  4. We are all indebted to a power greater than ourselves, and we need to honor that. How? By living with integrity. By living in passion of our beliefs. By striving towards the ability to independently “connect the dots” for greater self-awareness and growth; personally and professionally. We live in an age of instant gratification and reinvention on so many levels, where we change our minds, our circle of friends and “influencers”, our geographical location, careers, and even marriage partners, much more frequently and nonchalantly than our parents did. Getting bogged down in the “change the channel” mindset and minutiae of our daily lives can lead us to myopic thinking contributing to “tunnel-vision” beliefs about our own achievements. We often forget the Big Picture, including those who helped us along the way. So retain your core mission and values, be mindful that nothing is coincidental– not even those who cross your path, and be grateful for what you have been given. 

May “The Fourth” Be with You!

Best,

Penina

 

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About penina4niceinitiative

Penina Rybak MA/CCC-SLP, TSHH, CEO of Socially Speaking LLC, is the author of "The NICE Reboot: A Guide to Becoming a Better Female Entrepreneur". She is an Autism specialist and educational technology consultant turned social entrepreneur. She is also a pediatric speech therapist and the creator of the Socially Speaking™ Program & iPad App. Her second book, "Autism Intervention in the iEra" was published in 2015. Since 2010, Penina has been a national/international speaker about social communication development, balancing humanity and technology, and best practices re: mobile and social technology. Connect with her on LinkedIn to learn more. You can also find her on Twitter: @PopGoesPenina, Facebook: Socially Speaking LLC, Google+ at The NICE Initiative for Female Entrepreneurship, and Pinterest and YouTube as well.
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