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Stepping Out and Working Things Out: Part 1

Although students must be held accountable, as a facilitator, the success of my students is usually dependent on me. After discarding what some people would think, I went into the studio to voice a song- a tangible and practical motivation for my students, my clients, my family and me.

I had truly defined what success meant for me when I moved to Colombia for almost a year to teach native Spanish students.

Before you know it, reggaeton rhythms had a place in my heart, but I grew up in Jamaica hearing dancehall. It is no surprise that the motivation for my song came through Steven Singe’s reggaeton dancehall music.

Almost believing that I wouldn’t be able to take myself seriously, I got up early, spread my bed, and didn’t leave my room until the song was complete. I started to write the first verse:

Yeah, you want success

Trust the process

Have a back-up plan

Cope with stress

I see it all the time, where we, and no one else, stress ourselves out because we are too impatient or we strive on self-defeating thought patterns which should have stayed in childhood. We might hatch our eggs in one basket, and stubbornly not consider a back-up plan. Moreover, I love to teach stress management. I appreciate how the brain works because when we get too flustered ( a time to take a break), we may not make the most rational decisions when executing our goals. So, I continued to write the first verse:

You may fail the test

Prepare to make a mess

Step by step you’ll work it

You will progress

I didn’t understand failure until I reached Wolmers High School for Girls. I had left primary school as a valedictorian, recipient of the principal’s award and such. By the time I had reached Northern Caribbean University to pursue my psychology degree, I would truly appreciate who I am today because of multiple failures:

  1. Why did I fail Oral Communication even though I had perfect oral presentation grades?

  2. Why did I fail as a student custodian worker within less than a month, even though I really needed the funds?

  3. Why didn’t I turn in my practicum assignment on time?

  4. Why did I travel to North America one summer and not return with a sufficient funds to cover my tuition?

So, when I reached the chorus of the song, I needed to establish some key reminders, nothing too complicated. Before I threw in the towel, “step up and step out” were the phrases ringing out in my mind. I had a friend who used to call me for advice, and when I didn’t know what to say these words were buzzing.

  1. “Step up”: Execute an intentional action.

  2. “Check-up”: Don’t you need to follow-up on something that could change your life?

  3. “Step out”: Have you shown others what you are capable of?

  4. "No doubt, you'll work it out": Have you been practising to engage in positive self-talk?

  5. “Fill up your cup”: If your cup is empty, you won’t have anything to pour out to others.

  6. “No doubt, you’ll work it out: “Once you keep on moving, you will get to where you are going or rightly where you had needed to be all along.

May we put pen to paper and transform our thoughts into action. Keep your writing materials in a place very near, for journaling is a firm foundation for self-care.

Success may look different for each of us, so keep on daydreaming and acting on those ideas. Reggaeton and other Spanish music had really healed broken parts of me, even when I could not make out some of the words in Spanish, my spirit could relate to the vybe of the song.

It is my desire for you to relate to my presentation: “Step Up! Step Out!”

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