At this spring’s National Conference: Guiding Girl Greatness, four girl members spoke to delegates about their own personal experiences with our Mission keys – confidence, courage, resourcefulness and making a difference – and how they have incorporated them into their lives. Below is an excerpt of one of those speeches. We dare you not to be impressed.
Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon.com, once said, “Life’s too short to hangout with people who aren’t resourceful.” This made me wonder, How am I resourceful? In trying to come up with a list of things I’ve done that I thought were resourceful, the two experiences that came to mind were when I went to Peru with Girl Guides, and when I started my school’s art club.
The day I found out I was chosen as an alternate for the Peru trip, I immediately downloaded Duolingo, an app that helps you learn a foreign language. (To be 100 per cent honest, that wasn’t exactly what I did immediately – I may have shed a tear and called my mom.) I practiced Spanish every week and when I found out I was actually going on the trip, I was ecstatic, shed another tear and called my mom again.
Fast-forward, five months later… Despite all my preparations and learning the Spanish words for probably a hundred different fruits and vegetables, as well as basic phrases, I quickly realized after the first 10 minutes with my host family that I would not be as eloquent at speaking Spanish as I had imagined. So I was forced to find a solution; what I came up with was lugging my Spanish-English dictionary to meals, speaking a combination of French and Spanish while smiling, and the complex usage of gestures. I was able to find a semi-effective way of communicating with my host family that finally put 16 years of charades at Christmas to good use.
The second time I showed resourcefulness was when I started my school’s art club. Earlier this year, I realized that my school has many extra curricular opportunities but few that are related to the arts. I was really motivated to start this art club because as a Girl Assistant in Guiding, I had seen how important it is for kids to have a creative outlet and to make art in a supportive environment. I started out by recruiting a few classmates from art class to help, and getting the support of the art teachers at my school.
In many ways the process was like a Ranger challenge: I first had to make a plan, prepare to take action, and proceed with the plan. In the end, my principal was impressed with the plan and gave the go-ahead!
When the club was having its first meeting, I sat in the art room for 20 minutes without a single person coming by. Then all of a sudden 35 kids flooded in so excited and interested in joining. It was then and there that I knew this club would be successful.
Resourcefulness is being able to deal well with new or difficult situations and finding solutions to problems. We all have the ability to be resourceful – to do what you set your mind to, to come up with new ideas, to do what you think is impossible.
One of my favourite quotes is: “Aerodynamically, the bumble bee shouldn’t be able to fly, but the bumble bee doesn’t know it so it goes on flying anyway.” If you don’t limit yourself, you will continue to soar into the sky of success, and being resourceful is a step that gets you closer.
By guest blogger Amanda Kivlichan. Amanda is a Ranger, plays field hockey, soccer and softball, and likes to sew, make media art projects, and create art whenever she can.
Be sure to check out our previous posts on how girl members are living our Mission: Small Things Really do Make a Difference; 17 Things I would tell my Future 17-year-old Daughter; Finding Your Courage.