“Be Yourself Because You Are YOU!!”

Happy Friday, Y’all!  So let’s show some gratitude right about now!!  TGIF to keep it movin’ this mornin’!  Don’t let the haters make you hate!!  Be YOURSELF!  And the best version of you that you can be!!

Most of us have had “parents” though I am sure in many places on the Earth, like the Gaza Strip, the situation requires quite a bit of flexibility and human resilience …  I was fortunate and I like to be a light of hope for those less fortunate.  This world seems to have literally become a battleground for “the good” vs. “the evil”.  It has become a world in which it is not only paramount to “know thyself” but to BE YOURSELF!  How comfortable is it for a human to be told over and over to “be like so and so”!  Growing up in The Projects was interesting because one had so many choices!  Yet, my Father who never graduated from high school raised a family in New York after escaping the harshness of the “Dirty South” and a raw brand of racism that we can FINALLY SEE today … with your OWN EYES !!  Still, keep in mind that there are some of “us” who are fit to lead and be great examples, perhaps, for others to follow …

Here at Educational Excellence, I encourage folks to “be yourself”.  Find out who you are and as I mentioned before … what makes you “tick”, so to speak.  I have exposed MYSELF to different things and situations so I can learn MORE about myself and share that “goodness” with others.  While I don’t mention my Father “Big Ike” aka Isaac Henry Cook often, he was the family’s advocate for “being who you are”!  He would always tell me as I was growing up in the Winbrook Apartment Complex, “Don’t follow people around, boy!”  He would continue, “Get a hobby or something and stay out of trouble!”  His tough love advice was something I carry with me to this very day.  I know after so many “dress rehearsals” that I have a sound mind, a great heart and an ability to perceive and understand things and lead!!  So, why would I “follow” just anyone who attempts to make me follow THEM?!?  It’s the kind of thing that makes me wonder …

Trust YOURSELF!  Be YOURSELF …  And finish that thought however you wish!  Find your “motivation” to live a great life!


John I. Cook, Director

Truth And Communication

Happy Friday, y’all yeah!  It’s that time again!!  Let’s put together a big “TGIF” for “the Universe” then!!  TGIF!!  There you have it!!

Sometimes in our lives, we come across that “moment” when communication with someone “close” to us is difficult.  It’s even more challenging when that “someone” is NOT so dear to us … like a co-worker or someone we met “in passing” or just “hanging out”!  Why?  Because it’s that much MORE difficult trying to communicate well with someone who “doesn’t have your (or their own!) best interest in mind”.  In other words, “they” may just be “acting” difficult towards your attempts to communicate with them just to get a “rise” or reaction out of you!!  Enter “action mode” … don’t simply “react” … and think through your options first!  It’s a similar thought process as used when playing chess!  This is why we here at Educational Excellence advocate “knowing thyself”!  Know what makes you “sick” as well as what makes you “tick”!  For example, lies are tiresome to keep up with and make me sick.  On the contrary, “love” and kindness attracts me and makes me blossom to the point where I want to share it …

About twenty years ago, Educational Excellence was born.  After overcoming a few challenges, I got enrolled in a course at “Nova Southeastern University” at the campus in Davie, FL.  The course was designed to help participants in setting up their own “small business”.  The course introduced us to the various forms that a small business could take, be it an “LLC”, a non-profit 501(c)3, or even a not for profit sole proprietorship like my little” business”!  I had also looked at getting involved in another “self-help” program in Broward County that coached its participants through the process of buying their first home!  If “one” completed THAT “course”, a local bank would deposit like $2,000.00 into an account that they set up to help towards the purchase of that first home.  I chose the first option which waived the cost of the course for each of us that completed the classes, activities, trips, and workshops.

Once getting “on my feet” with “EE” and working a few jobs, I began to actually “knock on doors” of the colleges and universities located on Las Olas Boulevard in Ft. Lauderdale to inquire about the possibility of me working with them as a tutor, motivational speaker, and a resource person.  I got my “feet wet” by volunteering services for organizations like The Urban League of Broward County, The Boys and Girls Club of Broward in Lauderhill, FL, a Big Brothers Big Sisters Program in Miami, and several other opportunities to market my first book and EE with The Brahma Kumaris in Miami and the African American Research Library and Cultural Center there on historic Sistrunk Boulevard named after the first Black doctor in the FTL.  My first book was released and my Mother was with me there at the AARLCC at my very first “book signing”.  I am EE and EE is me … and this is the blog for Educational Excellence!  We focus on learning and communicating the truth about ourselves and others.  I know, I know … it’s a tall order and I’ve been on this particular journey for 20 years now!  Happy Birthday Educational Excellence!

Thanks for reading …


John I. Cook, Director

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