Have you even been in a situation where your co-worker or your boss steps in on you without rhyme or reason, just to micro-manage the hell out of you? Like Lisa Nichols says, “Give me a YES,YES!” Well, my story starts with me teaching English to my Japanese junior high school students, when all of a sudden, the assistant vice principal Ms. O, yes they have assistant vice principals in Japan, as if one vice principal wasn’t enough, barges into the middle of my class to tell me something I was doing blatantly wrong. What was you ask?
“Lee Sensei, you’re using red chalk! Don’t use red chalk. Some students can’t see the red chalk on the board.”
I thought to myself, what the f$%king hell?! “She interrupted my class just to tell me not to use red chalk. Then why the heck do we even have red chalk in the first place and in EACH classroom?!” Funny thing is the next week she commented on how my fluorescent yellow undershirt was too bright underneath my white work-shirt. Wow! You have too much time or your life is sooooo boring that you have to find something to knit-pick about your F–KIN CO-WORKERS, not your STUDENTS Ms. O!! School or the concept of it is not a real place but actually a stage or contrived experiment in human socialization. It’s one I’d like to change, improve and to make it a more efficient well-spent six years of our lives.
Then I remembered the wisdom from all the great self-help gurus like Wayne Dyer, Lisa Nichols and Tony Robbins. Every and I mean every good or bad experience serves as a mini-lesson about something in life.
My lesson was to avoid wearing fluorescent undershirts to work and to ignore people who care too much about such things. Avoid psychopathic, power-control obsessed people because they are like vampires just waiting to feed on anyone who gives them an inch. Don’t be tomorrow’s lunch.
Two years. That was how long I was teaching at one of my favorite junior high schools. It all finished today.
Today answered the question (or questions), what if today were last moment on earth and you had to depart to heaven, what would it look like? I taught the song “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” by Bobby Mcferrin in my last two classes and I sang and poured my heart out with my students and I thanked them for trying so so hard to learn English this past year. I said as many thank yous and goodbyes in English and in Japanese as I could. All day, I was filled with a sense of happiness and deep deep gratitude for everyone around me. That is how I would like to leave this world, with a sense of happiness and gratitude for this amazing life that I have lived.
Now I’m not ready to move on to where my ancestors are yet, because I still have a lot to accomplish in this life and a whole lot of people I want to serve and help. If you’re feeling the same way I do, please leave me a comment or tell me how you feel. How would your last day on this beautiful plane we call earth? Who would be around you? What would you tell them and how will they remember you? Thank you. Thank you very much for this day.
So what does living everyday EXTRA-ordinarily look like? Is it jumping off a cliff and riding the wind currents in a wing suit or is it as humbling as helping someone in need, who really needs to talk?
Yesterday (March 15th) was one of those days. I had one of my last classes for my junior high school students, and yes I am proud of being a teac…, sorry a facilitator of learning commonly misunderstood as a “teacher”. It was a surreal moment, because I was saying goodbye to them for the last time and it was the last team-taught lesson for my Japanese English teacher and me. Now don’t get too agitated if I say this, but it was like I was saying goodbye on my last moments on this earth. I gave my best effort and energy to leave a lasting impression on my students. We learned and sang Bobby Mcferrin’s, ‘Don’t Worry, Be Happy”. It was really fun and much more than my normal conversation classes, dare I say a little… Extra-ordinary? It didn’t stop there, but I gave a rather expensive how-to-teach ESL to my team-teacher Mr. A. He was really grateful and cried at the conclusion of the class. It was unexpected and some of the students were looking and wondering why he was crying. Tears of gratitude and closure for our two years of hard work I gathered. His tears and yet another teacher’s tears humbled me when I told her that I was finishing at the end of this March. I am grateful to all my students and teachers that I worked with at my junior school. You have shown me how to live in gratefulness and how to be Extra-ordinary today.
Before I begin this post, I want to say thank you. Whoever you are, thank you. I don’t know who you are or where you might be in this amazing world thank you for you Being here today in my life.
Next I want to express my love and gratitude to my wife, children and loving family that I have in Japan, Korea, Hawaii and in various other points on this earth. You are the legs that keep me standing, keep me moving forward and keep me from lying down.
If you don’t know here already from her appearance on the DVD “the Secret,” produced by Ms. Rhonda Byrnes, Lisa Nichols is an amazing motivational speaker and an extra-ordinary, and I mean more-than-ordinary human being that I honor and respect. Having recently discovered her through the Secret and her various Youtube speeches and interviews, she speaks of thousands of ways to make and live your life better and the one that struck me the most was living every single day, extra-ordinary.
To get a better explanation of this, I’ll include a video link below to her speech below. But I digress.
So how will you live today? Will you live today the same as you have the past 10, 20, 30, or 40 years? Wake up, eat breakfast, go to work, work 9 to 5, finish work, veg out on the TV or Internet and then go to bed and do it all over again? I am not trying to step on anyone’s toes, but sometimes I fell like I am on that endless treadmill of being ORDINARY. “Oh, I can’t go there it’s too expensive, I don’t want to do this because I’ll be embarrassed, or It costs too much and I CAN’T afford it, or if I try to start my own business it’ll just fail or I’ll give up on it like I did the other five times.” In Japan they call these ‘Iiwake or ee-wahkay(言い訳),’ or to make excuses. We make excuses because we are afraid to fail, sorry let me correct that, we are afraid to go through the difficult process to SUCCEED in something. Notice in my previous sentence how I said giving up on a business five times. Five times! That many failures is so small that it doesn’t even count compared to the 10,000 times Thomas Edison failed before he made the light bulb or automobile maker Henry Ford going bankrupt twice before succeeding. How about James Altucher, who went have over a million dollars in his bank account twice in his life and lost all of it! But now he is back to that average again and doing twice as much business then and helping people to be successful to boot. So, the point of this post today is how to live an Extra-ordinary life today and to make that a habit everyday like Lisa Nichols says.
Well, my first step is thanking you, whoever you are and starting this day sharing amazing talks and stories with you. I don’t know where this is going to take me today, but it is EXTRA-ordinary for me. How about you?
Self-help definition according to dictionary.com goes something like this: