Applying Emerson’s Acuity to my Life

I did not want to waste the day sitting around watching movies. So, I sat down with some quotes from my favorite writer (Ralph Waldo Emerson) and related them to photos of my life in a collage’esk fashion, while watching movies 😉 I never planned for them to be shared with the world, just for them to be printed for inspiration, but im bored and I love writing. They are in no particular order, just know I did this to relate wisdom to my life, while inspiring me to chase my dreams. I hope you enjoy:

This photo was taken by a friend of mine, Jeremiah Johnson, during our pre-service training. This was a small creek in our small training village. It captured the simplicity of the village and serves as a perfect example for how far our team has gone down the road less taken. I related this picture to the quote to remind myself that it is okay to walk on a path alone. One thing that is not taken into account is the fact that Jeremiah was walking behind us alone, and even though we are a team, it would be okay if he took a different route to get to where we were all going. In fact, if he did, it would make that action much more unique than our collectives.

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A photo of the women in my office, granted they do not all work with us now, but there is a simple joy knowing that these women have made a great impact in my life. No matter what my problems are in life, these women are always there to brighten my day. Granted, we do not always have the best days, but we make the most out of the days we have.

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This photo was taken during our first Leadership Development Program, it was the analysis phase of our 6 part series. In Ukraine, inspiration comes from all angles. The people in this photo inspire me each and every day. I am more and more aware of my capabilities each day. These people are a shining example of how far we can go, if people believe in us. A reminder to anyone in a leadership role. No matter how minimal the control you have over another person’s perception of reality or their capabilities, understand that your belief in their greatness can inspire them to do great works.

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I would never be the man I am today without the people who helped me grow. My Mother (left) and Ukrainian Host-mother (right) have made a significant impact on my life. Any amount of great actions in my life are in direct reflection of their impact on me, a truth which goes for all those who have helped me throughout my life. Not many people know this, but until the age of 13, my mom cleaned homes to support 3 children. She is the embodiment of a Wonder Woman and the cause of most of what is good in me.

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A photo of our team at Mistevsko (this name is probably off, but close enough) in Lutsk. The ambition of the Leadership Development Program spawned in a small meeting in our office shortly after my arrival in Kovel. The work from our team made it possible and successful. A prize from this project is the small impact made on our 30 participants. It may not have been a life changing experience for all or fed the hungry, but this project is one big win, a win that continued the cycle, and led to the installation of ambition.

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I do not think of myself as an expert, in fact, I am still somewhat an amateaur. But, I barely remember the boy in this picture, a reminder of how far I have come over the past 2 and a half years. Also, inspiration for the future, it makes me ponder how I will see the moments of tomorrow, in ten years.

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First of all, how cute are my niece and nephews? Without the quote, this picture alone has the capacity to catch even the most inattentive mind. The quote, a reminder, I should always remember that the lack of my presence in their life should not take away form the impact that my actions can have on their lives. Even though they cannot hear my voice in any meaningful way, my actions can ripple and guide their lives towards prosperity.

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The person on the left is one of the most famous corporate lawyers in Fresno, next to him, the most famous defense lawyer in Fresno. To their right a young boy, who was acting campaign manager for one of their political campaign, with no idea what the heck he was doing. My biggest failure, this campaign. I won’t let this loss define me, I will let my actions after define me.

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For this one, I really wish I could have meshed a bunch of photos into a collage of all those I consider to be my friends. As I have said in previous blogs, I strive to make deep impacts in people’s lives, and truly feel that this is the way to be a success in relationship building and networking. A heart to heart connection.I may comes off a little forward and strong to some at first, but others understand my intentions and heart, most people understand that I am coming from a place of love. I am not one for small talk, but I am one for being there for those I consider to be my friends, and trust the fact they will always be there for me.

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This is a picture of my brother and mom on a vacation a few years ago. Our family has gone through many ups and downs, but we have always stuck together. We all have very different personalities, but our faith in our creator which was instilled by our mother’s guidance, has bonded us for life. There is no telling where are lives will lead, however, we will continue to trust our creator along the way.

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Since this photo was taken, my dream has been to be behind that podium, actually representing the United States of America in a legitimate position (in photo, a prestigious peanut sweeping intern). It is up to me, if I will take the steps forward, to make this dream a reality. Imagine, 10 years from now, if I could compare this photo to a photo of a balder version of myself representing the USA. A possibility which will take daring courage to dream big.

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This may sound repetitive, however, my family is a very important part of my life. They have the possibility to make the biggest impact on my life, because of the deep connection we share. This connections comes with costs, including trust, compassion and tolerance. A small example of currency behind making deep connections in the lives of those we love.

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Funny story from my mom’s 50th birthday, you cannot really tell, but in our background is an old folks home. I blindfolded my mom and told her I was taking her somewhere special for her 50th birthday party. Little did she know, my brother and his family were waiting for us outside the home with a sign which said (as you can see) “Welcome Home.” A silly moment, with a hint of honesty. And, the night ended with kindness, as we took her to a party where her friends were waiting to celebrate. Later that night, a brief cameo of the three amigos dress in funny cloths lip sang her favorite songs. Always save time to be silly.

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A photo taken in a small building which housed the victims of the holocaust. Outside the window, I was looking at the rubbles of what once was the building used to commit genocide. No matter how hard we may think life is and no matter what trials get in our way, there are always examples of people who were able to endure more. Take time on a daily basis to appreciate life, live it to its fullest.

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One of my goals in life is to live a life worth replication. It is not so much that I want to be better than other people, more of the fact that I want to impact people with my actions. These are my friends and family. I hope to prove myself useful in some small way throughout my life as I continually seek deep connections with those I love and love me.

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As alluded to earlier, actions speak louder than words. This is the view from the most popular eclipse pool in Singapore, and probably the world. On this trip, maybe at this moment, the greatest gift was given to me. I figured out who I wanted to be and what I wanted to do with my life. I am destined to represent America abroad, because I chose that was what I was destined to do. Who, what and why we are, is dependant on who, what and why we chose be.

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*These are the thoughts of Richard J. Roman and are not affiliated to the Peace Corps or its affiliates.

 

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