Category: Micro (life) Lessons

Telling the truth with The Breakfast Club


The seminal scene in The Breakfast Club occurs when the five students are sitting in a loose circle sharing the truths of their lives. For the first time in the film, each character exhibits the courage to be vulnerable and truthful with their peers, with themselves. And for that, each character matures and becomes a better […]

I once had a supervisor I disagreed with.


I’m sure you can relate. During a performance review, my supervisor told me that my teaching style,  a fusion of storytelling and instruction, was not practical and measurable on state exams. “You’re job is to teach reading and writing skills not to tell bedtime stories.” At the time of our meeting, I’d been teaching for […]

How to Save a Life


Better pass boldly into that other world, in the full glory of some passion, than fade and wither dismally with age.” ― James Joyce, The Dead Five years ago I was farting my way through grad school. The plan was to graduate with a Master’s degree in educational administration and become a principal. I didn’t really want […]

Dealing with Daily Frustrations


How many times today were you frustrated by something you could not control? Traffic. Rain. Your stubborn 4 year old. I recently overheard a student venting about assignments her teachers gave her, “I’m so frustrated. If I get one more assignment, I might scream. No, I will scream.” But the student’s reaction is not just […]

Always do the heavy lifting first, kid. A lesson from my father


Just as we develop our physical muscles through overcoming opposition – such as lifting weights – we develop our character muscles by overcoming challenges and adversity.– Stephen Covey As a teenager, I spent the summers working for my father’s business. Bell Pallet would remove and repair a company’s unwanted pallets for resale. It was dirty, […]

How do people read you?


Show don’t tell is a well-proven writing technique. As Russian writer Anton Chekhov once famously wrote, “Don’t tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass.” This technique is also applicable to life. It’s easy to tell. Easy to issue orders. Easy to instruct others, inform them what they […]

It’s National Decision Day


May 1st is National Decision Day, the deadline for high school seniors to decide which school they will attend in the fall. For college-bound seniors this is an important day. It represents the first of many, many major choices and changes they will experience as an adult. But for those of who are older, whose […]

These are better days What is the one thing you can do right now to find happiness?


Originally published on April 30, 2018 “Better Days” is one of Bruce Springsteen’s most underrated songs. At the beginning of the song, Springsteen sings about “sitting around” and “waiting for life to beginning.” A position I’m sure we’re both  familiar with. Yet as the song continues, a rock transformation happens. He acknowledges that every “fool’s […]

Saturdays are for seizing


Someone once told me Saturdays are for sleeping. At 22 I agreed. At 38,  I couldn’t disagree more. You aren’t going to work. You aren’t going to school. You have a few errands to do. Maybe your children have soccer games this afternoon. Besides that, Saturdays are for seizing. For seizing all the reading, writing, […]

The smartest student I ever taught was also the dumbest


This is a Micro (life) Lesson. Micro (life) Lessons are simple, compressed stories (under 250 words) that, like good teachers, continue to teach long after graduation. If you are the smartest person in the room, then you are in the wrong room. – Confucius I once taught a student who turned down scholarships from several […]