5 things Students can Learn from the Wisdom of Yoda
Awaken the FORCE within you.
Trill or Not Trill?


Childlike Innocence
Have you ever been around a younger sibling or little kids (around  5 or under) andyoda child noticed that no matter where they go, if there are other little kids around their age present…it’s on!  They couldn’t possibly be bored because they openly and freely just want to interact with and get to know who their peers are.  The dark side cynicism of adulthood, judgement, biases have yet to take hold and they just see another kid like them that would otherwise be bored on their own.

As a young adult, especially in a new environment we sometimes let the dark side take hold and fear sets in.  Embrace your inner child and allow yourself to embrace the force and all its glory.  There is an entire universe of possibilities that open up to you when you are open to receive them.  So go ahead, introduce yourself.  Get past appearances.  Let go of preconceived notions.  Be you and let that light shine.

I Can’t Believe it. That is Why You Fail.
yoda failureThere are 2 key concepts that students leaders must understand when attempting to digest this little light saber of wisdom.  The first being perception is reality.  If you believe that you can’t, the probability of your ability to succeed is greatly diminished.   Douglas Adams said ““Everything you see or hear or experience in any way at all is specific to you. You create a universe by perceiving it, so everything in the universe you perceive is specific to you.”   That being said… Another key concept that a Padawan student leader should embrace is the concept of Manifest Destiny.  This concept states that a future outcome is sure to happen. That the destiny created in the mind and believed in the heart can be clearly seen as coming to fruition.   This is all well and good but it won’t happen unless the conviction of your beliefs is mirrored by the ethic of your work.  If that is the case… succeed, you will!

The Concept of Trying
The Little Green bunny as my 7 year old daughter calls Yoda, is akin to a Samurai yoda tryingmaster dropping knowledge like shooting starts onto his reluctant young Jedi and this leads us to these simplistic but impactful 10 words.  Try not.  Do, or do not. There is not try. Let’s break it down.  To say “I am trying” usually leaves the door open to the excuses that sometimes follow failure.  This is not to say that there is no room for failure but rather, that if you approach a task with an eye on the obstacles rather than the prize you may succumb to a self-fulfilling prophesy.  Rather than embracing all of the ’cons’ or what ifs , why not become your own biggest fan and remove the self doubt associated with trying and instead…DO.  Or do not!  As a student leader you must learn what is or is not realistic and or worth your time and effort.  There are times that you must prioritize and make a decision based on what it is you can give your all to and represent yourself in a manner worthy of a Jedi effort.

Playing it Safe
yoda mistakeAre you the type of student leader that always plays it safe?  Do you breeze through every battle unscathed and not even break a sweat?  Maybe, it’s not that you have mastered the force and nothing is hard for you.  If that is the case than great!  More power to you BUT… perhaps you aren’t challenging yourself.  Perhaps you are still on the JarJar Binks Jedi Mind Trick level when you should be moving on to the Yoda mental budokan challenges.

When you look to the top of the mountain and you see someone there looking back down at you, it should come to reason that they did not simply land there.  Leaders need to constantly challenge themselves and never fall victim to contentment because there is always room to improve.  Unless you push yourself beyond that which you have already mastered…grow you won’t.

Fearing Failure
Truman Capote said “Failure is the condiment that gives success its flavor”.  Living ayoda master life in fear of failing is like not even making an attempt to truly live.  Being a student leader means to go out on a limb.  You must put yourself out there. One has to bravely take chances where others might not be so bold. The fuel that powers that bravery is the passion behind your purpose.  If you believe in what it is you are attempting to achieve the authenticity and passion of your purpose shines through and produces the admiration and respect of your peers and in many cases inspires them to follow you.

In order to become that master, a student leader has to face the fear of failure time and time again.  In the face of failure that student must learn from the mistakes within their efforts, adjust their approach and allow start again more intelligently with the same passion, fervor, and determination all over again until their goals are realized.  Jedi student leaders are not born…they are self-made.  Determined, they are.  Persistent, they are.  Focused, they are.   May the Leadership Force be with you.


img_6485Rob Roqu Quinones is a 16 year grizzled student Affairs Professional who has dedicated his life to aspiring to inspire students to recognize their own greatness and pay it forward to future generations. He is a dedicated father, educator, mentor, professional photographer, coach and friend.

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