We've all been there, done that . . . [Submitted image]

We’ve all been there, done that . . . [Submitted image]

I recently took an online course in social media to learn what all the twitter was about.

I still don’t understand it all.  Some parts of it I simply don’t want to understand.

Anyway, my mentor (I was assigned a mentor in case I choose to continue my education via online learning) asked me to do some writing.  As a writer, I am up to the task.  Here’s what she wrote me:

Please complete and submit the following Writing Task. The results of this Writing Task will be included in your Learner Plan.  

We all face different challenging roles and tasks in our lives and we all want to be successful. Choose ONE of the challenging roles listed below, or select one of your own choosing, and in several paragraphs, explain what is necessary to be: 

    a good parent


    a healthy person


    a successful student 

I did not choose “a good parent”.  Too late for that.

I did not choose “a healthy person”.  I know that you can live as healthful a life as all the health freaks prescribe and still drop dead at age thirty-two while taking your healthful morning jog.  I had a chat yesterday with a man who mused that he was now seventy-one and had to cut down on his physical regimen.  I told him I was soon turning seventy-three and knew what he meant, for now I accept I shall never climb Mt. Everest.   At age seventy-two, and contemplating a week-long canoe expedition this summer, I still have no idea how to be a successfully healthy person.

So I chose the third topic.  Here is my response:


First, it is necessary to feel the necessity of being a student.

Let me go back a bit:  Everyone is a student to begin with, and we all concede that learning is a necessity, whether that first lesson involves one’s first step, or one’s first date, or one’s first job.

However, there are situations in which a person chooses not to be a student.  He (or she) may feel he (or she) knows it all anyway, so why bother switching to study mode.  Or one may not recognize that a study mode would be useful to achieve one’s goals.  Or one may simply not be interested in acquiring certain knowledge or skills.

But, when one arrives at the point where one feels the necessity of being a student, he is on the way to being successful.

Yes, once the motivation is there, the rest is a cake walk.

Well, sorta.  There is still the necessity of one’s perseverance, endurance, openness to new ideas, trust in one’s mentors (and in some cases, questioning of one’s mentors), self-confidence, sweat, blood (a minimum, we hope), tears, hopefulness, determination, and – and this is particularly important – frequent trips to the wells of aspiration and inspiration.  Supply your own buckets.

Third step:  hard work.

And last of all:  some fun.  If some of it ain’t fun, you haven’t succeeded.”


About EJ Lavoie

Writer and independent publisher with website
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  1. Great post! In the social media marketing world there are so many ‘shiny objects’ that people get hung up on because they try to learn everything and never see any measurable results. They spread themselves too thin and get frustrated. My advice is to pick 1 or 2 strategies and become very good at that skill set. It’s still the old 80-20 rule 🙂

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