Why don’t we show up to our school everyday looking for opportunities to take care of each other? Why is it that people come to our campus every day and feel unimportant, unnoticed, or invisible? Why are we, sometimes, so cruel to each other? One of the most under-talked about things in our life is fear and the role it plays in shaping the way we treat ourselves or other people. Sometimes, fear protects us. Other times, it prevents us from connecting with each other. And, far too often, it disconnects us from compassion and causes us to say or do some really hurtful things. Fear is a really powerful feeling, but just because we FEEL afraid doesn’t mean we have to live our lives SCARED. Fear is a feeling, but Kindness and compassion is a choice - a choice we are capable of making even when we are uncomfortable, terrified, or hurt. And, sometimes, all it takes is one powerful, kind, courageous choice to change an entire community or culture.


The most successful teachers, students, and leaders are the one’s who people TRUST. We build trust by being consistent in our everyday, small actions. So many student leaders get so focused on their personality and putting on the “leadership show” that they forget that real change happens when we build our character. It’s easy to be a “popular” leader - it’s much harder to be a person who changes the culture around them by doing “unpopular” things. When we work hard to practice consistent, intentional acts of kindness, compassion, empathy, and love, then we not only make ourselves better people, but we enrich the community that we are practicing in. People see us as a person worth following and, along the way, we give permission for others to practice scary, counter-culture things like Love because we do them first. Building meaningful relationships and influence with the people around you is at the core of what it means to be a leader.