|Who You Are Makes A Difference...|
A teacher in New York decided to honor each of her seniors in
high school by telling them the difference they each made. Using
a process developed by Helice Bridges of Del Mar, California, she
called each student to the front of the class, one at a time.
First she told them how the student made a difference to her and
the class. Then she presented each of them with a blue ribbon
imprinted with gold letters which read, "Who I Am Makes a
Afterwards the teacher decided to do a class project to see what
kind of impact recognition would have on a community. She gave each
of the students three more ribbons and instructed them to go out and
spread this acknowledgment ceremony. Then they were to follow up on
the results, see who honored whom and report back to the class in
about a week.
One of the boys in the class went to a junior executive in a
nearby company and honored him for helping him with his career
planning. He gave him a blue ribbon and put it on his shirt. Then he
gave him two extra ribbons, and said, "We're doing a class project on
recognition, and we'd like you to go out, find somebody to honor, give
them a blue ribbon, then give them the extra blue ribbon so they can
acknowledge a third person to keep this acknowledgment ceremony going.
Then please report back to me and tell me what happened."
Later that day the junior executive went in to see his boss, who
had been noted, by the way, as being kind of a grouchy fellow. He
sat his boss down and he told him that he deeply admired him for being
a creative genius.
The boss seemed very surprised. The junior executive asked him if he
would accept he gift of the blue ribbon and would he give him
permisson to put it on him. His surprised boss said, "Well, sure."
The junior executive took the blue ribbon and placed it right on
his boss's jacket above his heart. As he gave him the last extra
ribbon, he said, "Would you do me a favor? Would you take this extra
ribbon and pass it on by honoring somebody else? The young boy who
first gave me the ribbons is doing a project in school and we want to
keep this recognition ceremony going and find out how it affects
That night the boss came home to his 14-year-old son and sat him
He said, "The most incredible thing happened to me today. I was in my
office and one of the junior executives came in and told me he admired
me and gave me a blue ribbon for being a creative genius. Imagine. He
thinks I'm a creative genius. Then he put this blue ribbon that says
'Who I Am Makes A Difference' on my jacket above my heart. He gave me
an extra ribbon and asked me to find somebody else to honor. As I
was driving home tonight, I started thinking about whom I would honor
with this ribbon and I thought about you. I want to honor you. "My
days are really hectic and when I come home I don't pay a lot of
attention to you. Sometimes I scream at you for not getting good
enough grades in school and for your bedroom being a mess, but somehow
tonight, I just wanted to sit here and, well, just let you know that
you do make a difference to me. Besides your mother, you are the most
important person in my life. You're a great kid and I love you!"
The startled boy started to sob and sob, and he couldn't stop
crying. His whole body shook. He looked up at his father and said
through his tears, "I was planning on committing suicide tomorrow,
Dad, because I didn't think you loved me. Now I don't need to."
You are under no obligation to send this on to two people or to
two hundred. As far as I am concerned, you can delete it and move
on to the next message. But if you have anyone who means a lot to
you, I encourage you to send them this message and let them know.
You never know what kind of difference a little encouragement
can make to a person. Send it to all of the people who mean anything
important to you, or send it to the one or two people who mean the
Or just smile and know that someone thinks that you are
important, or you wouldn't have received this in the first place.
I give you a blue ribbon. Who YOU are makes a difference!
And I wanted you to know you mean a lot to me!
You make a Difference!
Each and everyone one of you brings some joy into my life, and I just
hope that I can bring even a little bit of that joy back into your life.