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 differnce 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 acknowledgement 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 acknowledgement 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 the gift of the blue
ribbon and would he give him permission 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 favour? 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 people."
That night the boss came home to his 14-year-old son and sat
down. 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 a blue ribbon for being a creative
genius. Imagine. He thinks I'm a creative geenius. Then he
put his 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
by: (Helice Bridges)
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