by Leigh Perry, Upsilon Lambda (The University of Texas – San Antonio), Rituals, Traditions, and Jewelry Committee
Be awake. Be present. Listen.
The Founders are talking to you… And you can hear if you listen. You will hear Ritual paraphrased in the most unusual places. Like being homesick, it will come out of nowhere and grab your attention. It will surprise you and then tug on your heartstrings – bittersweet and maybe a little melancholy. It is a simple, quick reminder that strong women have your back and are empowering you with inspiring words. Words that you sometimes forget about altogether and sometimes just forget to take the time to apply them in your daily life.
It might be a billboard, a pop song, a post on Facebook, or even a trainer at a business meeting that calls to mind parts of our Ritual
One of the major tenets of the company I represent is personal development. At one of our monthly training meetings, the speaker said we only need two things to be truly successful: self-love and discipline. Self-love is the belief we are worthy and deserving of achieving great success. Discipline is doing what you know you should do even when you don’t feel like it.
It hit me like a lightning bolt that this was paraphrasing our Ritual: how we are supposed to guide our own lives by holding ourselves accountable, but with a gentle spirit.
A few weeks later, I saw this post by a friend on Facebook:
“…Kindness shows great self-discipline and strong self-esteem. Being kind is not always easy when dealing with rude people. Kindness is a sign of a person who has done a lot of personal work and has come to a great self-understanding and wisdom. Choose to be kind over being right, and you will be right every time because kindness is a sign of STRENGTH.”
As this post indicates, it’s easy to be kind to the ones we love and agree with. It’s really hard to practice it with the ones who seem to need it the most. The Founders were firm that our keystone is to show kindness to all AND not to brag about it.
The billboard was waiting for me at the intersection. I was running a little behind schedule and the light caught me. I took a deep breath when I saw what the billboard said, “You can’t change what’s going on around you until you change what’s going on within you.” Our Founders admonished us when we have an issue or concern to think before we speak, and to do it with grace and love while dealing directly with the appropriate individuals.
It’s amazing that our Founders were such incredible visionaries and the language they chose to share their values and rules for living is still fresh enough for it to be applicable more than 125 years later!
Thank you Stella, Bess, Jessie and Helen!