I have always been a helper. A fixer. A leader.
Someone people turn to for answers.
The young guy with the “old head”.
The vast majority of the folks I’ve ever had the privilege of serving, all share that common trait: they are all looking for answers, guidance, help.
The advice I’ve always tried to impart on my players, my students, my learners, and my families is to BE YOUR OWN BEST FRIEND.
The best help you will ever have in this entire world is looking back at you from the mirror. That’s the person that can change your whole world. No one else – but you – is in control of your daily thoughts and actions.
In our world too many folks attach their happiness to objects or other people. Trading daily happiness and contentment for the instant gratification of screen time or destructive relationships. It is usually late in the game when they finally wake up.
Even the great John Wooden – one of the most selfless humans to ever live – knew that you have to look out for NUMBER 1.
The first point in Coach Wooden’s famous 7-point creed for life:
TO THINE OWN SELF BE TRUE
It may sound cliché, but it is much easier said than done. I’ve seen first-hand how many folks and their negative thought processes can become their own worst enemy. Sabotaging themselves at every turn.
We all know many people like this. They just can’t seem to get out of their own way long enough to have a happier or better life.
They are typically negative. Hopeless. Always feeling out of control of their own lives. Looking for someone or something to blame for their unhappiness.
All the while the answer to everything they are looking for is right in the bathroom mirror.
The answer to what most of them seek, it’s simple.
Be a friend to yourself first. Be your own best friend.
Throughout college I kept one of my favorite poems framed in the bathroom as a daily reminder to always look out for Number 1:
The Guy in the Glass
By: Dale Wimbrow
When you get what you want in your struggle for pelf,
And the world makes you King for a day,
Then go to the mirror and look at yourself,
And see what that guy has to say.
For it isn’t your Father, or Mother, or Wife,
Who judgement upon you must pass.
The feller whose verdict counts most in your life
Is the guy staring back from the glass.
He’s the feller to please, never mind all the rest,
For he’s with you clear up to the end,
And you’ve passed your most dangerous, difficult test
If the guy in the glass is your friend.
You may be like Jack Horner and “chisel” a plum,
And think you’re a wonderful guy,
But the man in the glass says you’re only a bum
If you can’t look him straight in the eye.
You can fool the whole world down the pathway of years,
And get pats on the back as you pass,
But your final reward will be heartaches and tears
If you’ve cheated the guy in the glass.
When is the last time you have looked in the mirror?
Brett Blevins, M.Ed, BCBA, LBA, is Owner and Executive Director of Bluegrass Behavioral Health Group headquartered in the Northern Kentucky area. He has over 18 years of experience working with all ages and abilities in a variety of settings. Brett began his professional career in education as a Behavioral Consultant specializing in school-wide discipline, classroom management, alternative school programming, and individual behavior intervention with the EBD and ASD populations. He has experience training school district staff in the areas of Positive Behavior Intervention and Supports (PBIS). During his time in education, he also helped found and develop the Boys’ Basketball Program at Randall K. Cooper High School. Currently, Brett has developed a model of practice at Bluegrass Behavioral Health Group that emphasizes a mixture of ABA, mental health counseling, and skill-based learning.
Brett’s personal philosophy is centered around building lasting relationships and putting people first. His professional goal is to help his community, by helping the families and individuals he serves improve their lives. Brett has many other business interests and passions including entrepreneurship, sports performance and psychology, employee wellness, and servant leadership. You can contact him at email@example.com