This week, Mr. Pong shared with us his insights in understanding “Family Spirit”, one of the 5 core values in all Marist schools. This Family Spirit has something to do with the feeling of belonging to the brotherhood, a feeling we all share strongly when we sing the school anthem or shout three cheers at the end of big events. Family Spirit also encompasses the feeling of “being at home”, which, according to St. Marcellin Champagnat, is a feeling of being welcomed, accepted and valued by members of the school community. Mr. Pong encouraged us to look at each other through the eyes of the “father” in Jesus’ parable – the Prodigal Son. Of course, not all of us are prodigal sons, but we certainly have rough edges that are not welcome in the eyes of others. If we cultivate this “family Spirit” envisioned by St. Marcellin Champagnat in our campus, we will definitely make this school a place where all Xaverians call home.
Mr. Leung shared with us an important insight today – self-discipline is an important ingredient for success. Unfortunately, while many acknowledge its importance, few actually work on it. It is a skill that helps us to follow through our plans, to persist in pursuing our goals and to persevere in the face of adversity. Mr. Leung gave us some useful tips on how to build up our “self-discipline muscles”, such as accepting the 3-day-no-playing-mobile-phone challenge. With self-discipline, we will be catapulted towards success; without it, we are prone to fail due to our lazy human nature. So let us take today’s message to our hearts and acquire self-discipline, one of the most signifying Xavieran character.
Today, Brother John gave us a message based on Philippians 4:8. We are all urged to dwell on “whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, (and) whatever is commendable”. Sadly, we tend to deviate from God’s wonderful intention, which is for us to experience happiness and abundance every day, and “allow our thoughts to be hijacked by negativity that seems to dominate our troubled world”. As our attitudes and thoughts can drastically change our course of action and even destiny, let us listen to the word of God and focus our thoughts on the positive things. Count our blessings, not our troubles!
We have been told numerous stories about famous athletes and how they became successful through setting goals SMARTly. Here, SMART stands for Specific (S), Measureable (M), Attainable (A), Realistic (R) and Timely (T). Mr. Pong reminded us that setting SMART goals was not the end of the successful stories. In order to achieve these goals, one has to persevere in working towards them one by one. We were advised to look to our school motto, “Resolute in Action”, for wisdom. Resolute means determined and unwavering, which captures the spirit of perseverance in face of difficulties. So if you have not yet set your term goals SMARTly, do so without delay. For those who already have clear goals, do not quit them easily. Persevere in attaining your goals and with each little step you take, you are on your way towards being successful.
This week, Mr. IU told us the story about a young man who wanted to be successful. The man claimed that he wanted it very badly but he did not know what it meant to yearn for something until the moment he realised he was drowning and struggling to survive. Mr. IU’s speech reminded us that we are not fully engaged with our learning because we did not want to be successful badly enough. We want it but we did not want it badly to the extent that we would be willing to give up our leisure activities or make some sacrifices. It has been more than a month since the beginning of the school term and we are that much closer to success or failure. If you want to be successful badly just as much as you want to breathe, you will be successful.