Recently, I’ve been taking a social innovations class at BYU-I where we are encouraged to keep a journal of what we learn each week. Welcome to entry 12 of  said journal. I’ll be using Joseph Campbell’s theory of The Hero’s Journey as a framework for my posts, each week will be a different stage.

eyes

“The trick in returning is to retain the wisdom gained on the quest, to integrate that wisdom into a human life, and then maybe figure out how to share the wisdom with the rest of the world.” Read more here.

Today, I gave my final presentation. Due to the nature of the topic, it was emotionally difficult to give. I had to face the fear that people would view me as stupid, uneducated and or uncool. I shared experiences that had been tough lately, but that were a major part of who I’ve become and why I felt passionately about this topic, and what I’ve been able to learn in order to help others. If you would like more information about my project, watch the animated video I shared, click here.

i am in shock

As was talked about above, the most important part of our journey is to-not just grow in wisdom-but retain it. Ultimately, the greatest treasure any hero brings back from their journey is wisdom, and the greatest gift is being able to find a way to share that wisdom with others. Human beings are hardwired for learning, and I believe it is learning and sharing knowledge that helps form deep connections with one another. In class, this past week we talked a lot about self-sufficiency and the role self-efficacy plays in that. In class, one of my classmates shared a quote that is on a wall of a girls school in Kenya that she volunteered at.

“She believed she could so she did.”

 

Richard Branson talks a lot about the concept of self efficacy. He suggests that if someone asks you if you can do something, you say yes, and learn how to do it later! Never turn down an opportunity you are passionate about, because you CAN do it. Joseph Campbell says about this stage in The Hero’s Journey…

“The first problem of the returning hero is to accept as real, after an experience of the soul-satisfying vision of fulfillment, the passing joys and sorrows, banalities and noisy obscenities of life. Why re-enter such a world? Why attempt to make plausible, or even interesting, to men and women consumed with passion, the experience of transcendental bliss?”
fun
I can understand the above. As I talked about before, there is a sense of loss that comes from leaving your journey and returning home. You are giving up the fight, and returning to normalcy again which is no longer “normal” to you. You aren’t used to your homeland anymore. However, there is such a huge sense of relief and peace for me. I’m returning home from school in a little while, and I’m so excited to be able to be with so many people that I love and miss. I’m excited about the ways that I have changed, and that I have grown. I’m excited about the ways that I have learned to be myself, and I’m excited to share that with people, I’m excited to share my change.
smile
“I can do hard things.”
Brother Gwilliam talked about how the above is his family’s motto. I can testify of this. We truly can do hard things, we can especially do hard things through Christ who I KNOW will strengthen us. There were moments when I wanted to give up, and I was tired, and I was frustrated, but Christ would strengthen me, and give me rest, and I could continue on in the work he was asking me to do, and the changes he was asking me to make. This semester has been pretty crazy, scratch that, it’s been really crazy. However, I’m so much the better for it, and I am so happy! I’ve had an increase of joy even in my suffering, and I am so grateful for that.
QUESTIONS

1. How do microfinance and self-reliance relate?
Microfinance is a way to provide funding for everyday people to be able to start businesses and independently serve their family, in a way that doesn’t create a reliance, and isn’t a handout because it’s a very small loan to be paid back.

2. Why do you think the church, especially LDS charities, encourage self-reliance?
I believe that it’s because self-reliance is a principle of happiness. No one truly receives joy from being dependent on someone for their own survival. We want to be able to grow and self-actualize, and we want to be strong, and have to ability to support ourselves and our families.

fantastic