In the movie Karate Kid, Daniel Larusso needed the confidence to stand up to bullies, so he found Mr. Miyagi, a wise karate master who taught him the skills, the specific detailed moves.
Earlier this week I spent some time talking to Cynthia, a retired Filipino-American high school administrator and former biology teacher. One day her teaching partner left a rude note in her box.
She went to her boss and complained that this was inappropriate, in hopes that the boss would take action and reprimand the employee.
Instead, Cynthia’s boss told her to go to the other teacher and say, “I do not appreciate this note, and If you want to communicate with me, you need to change your tone.”
Cynthia have never talked like that to anybody before. She didn’t understand why her boss need just fixed the problem, but she follow her boss’ instructions and expressed these words which were completely foreign to her. She felt very uncomfortable.
Imagine her surprise when the other teacher responded well, and that was the beginning of a very good working relationship.
I love sharing that this was part of what made Cynthia so much stronger, and she even moved on to become principal of the school. She needed that boss to be a role model to her and to give her the tools to stand up for herself. That boss was her miyagi. That boss told her exactly what to say. There are great mentors who will tell you those assertive words, and when those words come out of your mouth, you will feel strange, but you will be victorious in that situation AND GROW STRONGER. Who do you know that could help you? We all need mentors. Who is your Miyagi?
Find your Miyagi and Shine Already!