An Entire Life’s Mission in ONE Sentence

My grandpa, bless his heart, really stepped up to the plate and became the stable father figure in my life that I needed growing up. Only living a block away from my home, I could literally throw a softball into my grandparents’ yard from my front porch. That is, once I grew up and became more serious about the sport and was able to throw long distances with ease. I remember spending long summer evenings tossing a ball around the yard with my grandpa only resting for a quick popsicle break. He was my first teacher, my first role model, my first friend. I was his student in everything from softball, to math homework, to climbing trees. He picked me up from school each day while my grandma would start preparing dinner for the three of us.

Reflecting upon the years that I spent growing up and essentially learning everything I know about life, I’ve come to realize that the person that I’ve become is the person that my grandpa taught me to be. I strive every day to empower others around me and see the good in them just like he does. I would consider my top three strengths to be ones that I learned from him: creativity, innovation, and the ability to think outside the box. While these skills were learned and more outwardly visible in his more simple activities of yester-year, I see myself proving these strengths as my own in my day to day life as a Millennial immersed in a digital world. I am seeing more and more that these strengths are timeless and can be applied to things past and present.

Above all, my biggest values always have and always will be honesty and integrity. These are things that my grandpa drilled into my head from a young age. During my grandpa’s years as a United States Marine, he learned these core values as well as his life motto: Semper Fidelis, meaning ‘always faithful.’ I can never think of a time when he wasn’t faithful to a person, commitment, or his relationship with God.

So with that, I’ve decided to create my own personal mission statement. This is a statement of all that I have learned to do and all that I strive to be because of my grandpa:

I hope to infuse passion and drive into those I’m surrounded by, to be creative, pioneering, and innovative, to be honest and uphold the highest integrity, to work hard and stick faithfully to commitments, to enjoy life, and to, “Go forth and set the world on fire.” 

I chose to end it with a quote from St. Ignatius because I truly believe that this quote encompasses all that I hope to do in the future. I want to take the world by storm, just as my most important role model did. Now I urge you, no mater how old, young, tired, or energized you are, think about your sentence. What defines you as a person and what do you want others to remember you by?

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A Millenial’s Testimony to Social Media

Everyone remembers their first email address. You know, the one they created in 7th grade without their parents permission in order to create an MSN messenger account and MySpace profile? Mine was softball.lova12@live.com. I feel like you can tell a lot about a person by examining their first email account. Some people used kitty_luver95 or soccerroxmysox.36, but whatever it might have been, that was the beginning of it all.

I’ve had a variety of social media accounts throughout the last 7 years; Bebo, MSN Messenger, Myspace, Google+, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr, LinkedIn, Snapchat, etc. I seem to go through ebbs and flows with each site. In middle school I was that rebellious pre-teen who got a Bebo and eventually Myspace without her mom’s permission and spent hours each night chatting with classmates using God awful acronyms such as ROFL, G2G, BRB, and TTYL. Eventually I grew out of that phase and officially switched to the “dark side” and became a Facebook user. Originally, I got a Facebook account because I kept getting Farmville requests from my friends. After months of using Facebook I decided to delete my Myspace account in 2009 because I thought it was too difficult trying to keep up with 2 social media sites. Boy, I wish I still had that mentality! 

Today I use multiple social media outlets AND have access to all of them at my fingertips all hours of the day. Long gone are the days that I only had a pink Motorola razor phone and limitedIMG_0976 access to the family computer each night. I am completely immersed in a digital world all of the time and I cannot imagine even looking back for a split-second. Here you can see a screenshot of my iPhone6 and the social media apps I use on a daily basis:

I use social media for all aspects of my life. Whether it’s to make plans with friends, inform others of cool events coming up, express myself through artsy pictures, get ideas for projects, read news articles, stay in touch with family across the country, or promote myself professionally, social media has so many more applicable uses to my life today than it did just 5 short years ago. It is a little concerning that social media is literally tied to almost every aspect of my life but I kind of like that. I feel as if I wouldn’t be as informed of things going on around the world or in people who are important to me’s lives if I took myself off the grid.

I am excited for this JRM327 class to learn about all of the positive benefits to social media in promoting business or my “personal brand.” Social media is the future and it is refreshing to take a course that is so relevant to the now.