Lessons from my Clients
Solomon (not his real name) reminded me that my efforts and the efforts of the team of people in his life are not in vain.
Solomon is a 26-year old young man, who watched his mother murdered in front of him when he was around 5 years old. She was beaten to death by a jealous boyfriend. Solomon bounced around in what has been called “foster-care drift” for the rest of his childhood. He was sexually abused by the two grown sons of one foster parent. He didn’t finish High School and spent 4 ½ years in jail and prison until they asked me to work with him a couple of years ago. His Case Manager, Abby, from Centerstone has been in court on every occasion and he’s now off probation. He had no ID and no Birth Certificate in order to get an ID. He was denied disability despite his Intellectual Disability. I could go on and on. I helped him order a Birth Certificate from Illinois and we got his ID. Abby has insured that he had a place to live and food every week and TARC tickets to get around town. Chris, from Centerstone is a Job Coach and has a job lined up for him. Mr. Williams from Goodwill is helping Solomon get his GED. Mr. Williams, noticed that Solomon has missed a couple of classes and called Solomon to make sure he didn’t miss any more.
I’ve seen him grow during these past two years. Really, I’ve seen him grow up.
We’ve become his family. Maybe the parents that he didn’t have. We care about him. I pick him up and we talk. I take him to Sunergos Coffee and get him a “fancy drink.”
It’s one of his favorite places.
Book I’m Reading
I continue to study, “A Guide to the Good Life,” by William Irvine. I decided that this would be my Holiday gift to family and friends.
The second Stoic Technique that Irvine shares is “The Dichotomy of Control.” The essence of this technique involves figuring out how much control you have over people, places, and things and then setting goals in your life that reflect the control that you have over those things. As an example, if you decide to play Tennis, it would be helpful to set goals that do not frustrate you and take away your tranquility. “Playing tennis” is an activity that you have some control, but not complete control (sooner or later you’re going to lose).
Instead of setting the unrealistic “external” goal of winning, Irvine suggests that you set an “internal” goal such as: To improve your tennis skills over the course of the next year. You have some control over that.
I encourage you to join me and study the book and begin practicing the Stoic Techniques that lead to the Good Life! More techniques are coming!!!