“Be Yourself … Because You Are YOU!”

It’s Friday, All!  Another fine opportunity to enjoy life and be the best that YOU can be.  It might take a bit o’ work sometimes but … TGIF!  Thanks again for your positivity.  Tomorrow, Saturday May 20, 1917, will be my Mother’s Birthday – Marietta Dolores!  Continue to rest in heavenly peace, Mom …

Have you ever heard people – church or non-church goers – speak of spiritual warfare?  It’s an interesting concept to wrap your head around but I’ve witnessed it in my life.  When things are going well for you … and you dare to say it (testify, they call it in church), more hostility, jealousy, envy and down right evilness will present itself to you over and over.  It’s a test!  In other words, I would ask myself, “How peaceful am I?”  “What will I do to protect my peace?”  You have to remain what you profess to be in light of omnipresent challenges.  Not a small order for anyone, especially someone whose life is and has been an example of “how to do …” things.  Humans never cease to amaze me during such moments and times.  I usually find my “peace” briefly interrupted and I must use some ingenuity to get it back … peacefully!

There are some people who DO NOT want to see others succeed or improve their lives.  These same people have “come up” with different reasons to excuse their wretched behavior in trying to sabotage, discourage, and if possible, curtail your progress as a “foe”.  They can be in your family.  At least, perhaps due to their low self-esteem and inability to find some “worth” in their own lives, such people cannot bear to see “one” be successful, at peace, happy, healthy or content even.  Why is that?!?  In my sociological studies in undergraduate school, I came across a concept of “the protean man”.  Such a person does not have to be a man yet must be able to adjust and adapt quickly to constantly changing and volatile circumstances or situations that she(he) may find themself.  This particular term stood out for me as I tried to handle everything I could successfully while keeping my academic/work-study scholarship at Princeton intact.  Neither of my parents had attended college/university but they had my back, so to speak.  There was a lot of pressure.  My grade point average HAD to remain at 3.5 in order for me to continue to receive my work/study package, which included a handsome scholarship and a job.  I was kind of poor; I went through the freshman year blues and even had a roommate who had decided that Princeton wasn’t for him and transferred. I even had an older girlfriend with a young son that I had acquired during my last year at St. Paul’s School in New Hampshire.  We eventually broke up because she wanted me to drop out of Princeton and … no, I had had enough!  Hasta la vista, Baby!!  And, no, it wasn’t easy.  Protean Man time!!  And to think that after so much was put into my life so I could succeed that I will let ANYONE change my lane is simply ludicrous.  Both parents tirelessly participated in their youngest offspring’s life as I went from boarding school to an Ivy League university on “academic scholarship” to a full-time teaching job in White Plains, NY.  If “you” want to stop my progress now, “forget about it”!!

What kind of person would NOT like you … or it … if you performed well or drastically improved something in your life?  Is that properly called a jealous, low self-esteemed hater?  It’s funny sometimes, I’m being sarcastic, when the “hater” complains about your response to their often-repeated abuse, hate and disrespect towards YOU!!  You may remember one of my survival skills that I shared with readers about “not stuffing my feelings” and standing up for myself and who I REALLY am!  There have been some longitudinal studies connecting verbal abuse and forcing someone NOT to state their feelings or views (stuffing) but be abused over and over to cases of various forms of cancer (throat, mouth, lung, and bone).  My Dad died of bone marrow cancer, and I know he HAD to keep his thoughts to himself many many times so that he could live and successfully raise his family alongside my Mom.  I’m his son and we both are no nonsense type of men (not boys).  This is why I am so intent on not only knowing myself, but also BEING myself … because I am me!  Those two people were (still are!) my celestial guard rails who were full of love and discipline to keep me on MY road. I do keep in mind that I am a work in progress but I’m not going backwards in my life’s direction nor make a complete imbecile change in my life to please ANY haters disguised as bullies and naysayers.  I’m good where I am, and progress is my only option right now.

Some of you readers may remember that I mentioned that I am NOT for everyone.  You might be looking for some conspiracy theories or someplace where one can vent their hostile feelings, know that here at Educational Excellence there is a professional platform which I use to express views contingent with my “not for profit business” values.  And, no I don’t do haters and naysayers!  Excellence and being the “best that you can be” are my goals and vision.  It’s not a place to look for “friendship” or “not feel uncomfortable” as I seek to expose various social ills that are destroying OUR civilization.  Is it time for a change?  Can we do it peacefully?  Or are we just going to throw our hands up … and go to “a party”?  Why not BOTH!!  Let’s get started!

As I mystically contemplate my Mother’s birthday tomorrow, I continue to give thanks to both her and my Dad … and Creation for keeping me “in my lane”.  If you “know thyself”, you’ll never be lonely.  “Be yourself, because you are YOU!”


John I. Cook, Director

Thank you for reading!

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