School Beat: Everyone has a story

By SCOTT BECKMAN,
Director of Security

As we go about our day, we fall into a pattern of driving to school, walking in the front door, going to class and driving home at the end of our day. Repeat. Throw in the smart phone and social media, and now our heads are down and we miss what’s going on around us. People want to “post” their story on social media for all to see, but is that really interpersonal communication at its best? Some may debate that it is, but I would love to challenge people to do two things.

Put your phone in your locker, pocket or purse and resist the urge to check it to see what people are up to on social media. While walking in school, smile and say hello to someone you don’t know. Start watching facial expressions or reactions when you do this. You will notice brighter eyes and wider smiles when you interact with people on a personal level. I know you see it with your friends, now see if you can put a positive spin on someone else’s day.

Now comes the more difficult challenge. When is the last time you had a conversation with someone you didn’t really know, whether it was a stranger to you, or a person you saw regularly but never spoke with? Each person has a story; some positive and incredible, others difficult and emotional. Can you imagine what it would be like if we all tried to hear someone’s story each day? We would expand our social group; include those that may not have the same social skills and interpersonal communications skills as you; or unknowingly help someone get through their day. Simple questions and active listening, not talking, makes a person feel special in that moment.

Everyone has a story. What is yours?