“I’d like to help out…” I wonder what I could do to be helpful?

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Compassionate action ram dass what can i do to be helpful

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I’ve been looking around for places that I might be able to  “help out” in the communities near my home.  As part of that exploration, I started  taking a UC Berkeley class, Engaging with Life, at OLLI, Osher Lifelong Learning Institute.   (The class has an amazing syllabus with links to interesting articles and videos: syllabus ) The professor of the class provides a warm, supportive environment, with contacts to a variety of  remarkable local agencies that welcome volunteers.

I was a “Resource Specialist” in elementary school for many years, so figured that I might have some experience that could be helpful in classrooms where adults are learning English.

So…. I signed up to volunteer at Refuge Transitions, in some adult English language classes for refugees and immigrants from various countries of the world.

 

But…then…some doubts started popping into my mind … “what if….???”  ….”what if….???”

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Compassionate Action like to help out but....what if..

 

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I was amazed!!!  I’ve had lots of experience teaching English reading and speaking to children who are second language learners…and yet…the doubts continued to pop up!  Isn’t that amazing?

So… I went back to reminding myself of the “steps” from a post I made in July… “Compassion In Action”   The actual steps are from a book called Compassion in Action, by Ram Dass and Mirabai Bush.

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Compassionate Action ram dass steps and i would like to help out

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I thought lots more about each of those steps!  I wanted to think of specific ideas I might “say” to myself for reassurance and encouragement.

Perhaps, some of these ideas might be useful for others to use,  too….

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Be brave…..

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Compassionate Action steps ram dass be brave

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Start small….

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Compassionate Action steps ram dass start small

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Use what you’ve got….

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Compassionate Action steps ram dass use what you've got

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Do something you enjoy….

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Compassionate Action steps ram dass do what you enjoy

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Don’t overcommit….

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Compassionate Action steps ram dass don't overcommit

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And…
ideas about those “5 steps” together on one page,
a “menu” of ideas for each of us to choose from,
a variety of potentially reassuring and encouraging ideas

(link: pdf copy of the page below Compassionate Action Steps and Explanations)

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Compassionate Action steps ram dass explanation of each step 22

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Last week, I did start volunteering in a beginning adult English class and had a wonderful time!  The people in the class that day were immigrants or refugees from  Eritrea, Ethiopia, Yemen, Afghanistan, Guatemala and Myanmar and a few other countries! All of the students were warm, friendly, cheerful and willing to try hard!  And, to think, I was concerned about having courage to help out???   (Ah ha!  That’s suggestion #4 under “Be brave”….. “Focus on others needing help or support, not oneself” )

Compassionate Action ram dass steps focus on others be brave
What remarkable courage ALL of the people in that class have….new country, new language, new customs….new everything….all day, every day….new, unfamiliar and potentially confusing!  And I was worried? Wow!

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So…
reminding myself and others….

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Compassionate Action ram dass steps and i would like to help out

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We all have so many skills and talents that might be helpful to others!

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Compassionate action ram dass what can i do to be helpful

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About Pocket Perspectives

A blog about shifting perspectives...
This entry was posted in Encouragement, Inspiration and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to “I’d like to help out…” I wonder what I could do to be helpful?

  1. Mother Hen says:

    You have very much to offer children, teens and adults..All of us!

    Like

  2. sufilight says:

    Kathy, 🙂 How awesome you are using your teaching skills to help out immigrants learn English. without mastering the language, opportunities for self-sufficiency become limited. I am always wondering how I can help so your post is very useful for me. I like the reminder to start small and not over commit.

    Like

    • Hi Marie, 🙂 I really enjoyed helping out last week! I’ll continue and maybe help out more days. I was surprised how several of the volunteers, myself included, were lacking confidence in ourselves….so I think the Ram Dass ideas are potentially helpful…. especially the ones you mention!

      Like

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