Connections Conference 2k14


After being a participant last year and going through multiple trainings to prepare for this years Connections Conference at Great Wolf Lodge from November 8th-9th, I was so excited to put everything to action on the committee side. Getting to see the behind the scenes of an event is always interesting and informative of how much work isn’t always seen or appreciated.

I still feel so blessed to of been apart of the committee and to have the privilege to help others connect with CMU students that could change their lives or connect them to future RSO’s and committees. I met so many inspiring and potential future leaders that could really make an impact on the community. I had the responsibility of room captain where I counted and made sure the capacity of the room didn’t overfill, introduced and made sure the room was ready for the facilitator, presented the gifts and thank you notes to the facilitators, changed the signs of who was presenting at what time, and helped direct the students to where each session was.  I also got to listen in to each presentation and learn some new leadership ideas. One of the most influential sessions was with Harley Blake “Eat That Frog” which covered procrastination. He touched base on making a visible scorecard of what you need to do per day because visually seeing your goals will help accomplish them. He said to only set a few attainable goals that need to be done first because the more you have, the less chances of it actually being accomplished. When setting goals, to always use the SMART acronym and to put them in order from absolutely need to do to not too important where they could be illuminated. Using his example of a dog who will go and catch the one ball every time but when 3 are thrown at once, he didn’t catch any of them. Why? Because there was too many things being thrown at the dog at once. When the dog had one thing to FOCUS on, he achieved it. Harley finished by talking about color coding everything or even just highlighting the most important things throughout the week. To finish the studying or projects first, then moving on to the less important things.

Another one of my favorite and most influential sessions was the “Tapped Into Awareness” with Shannon Joliff-Dettore and Jon Humiston. They laid down 5 rules; first rule was don’t cheat, second rule was to stand with your eyes closed and arms straight out, third rule was if you are tapped once you say don’t cheat, fourth rule was if you are tapped twice you can open your eyes, and the fifth rule was if you are tapped three times you can do whatever you want. We all got into a circle and closed our eyes with our arms straight out. Slowly but surely, my arms and shoulders were hurting and getting tired of fighting gravity. I could hear people saying don’t cheat which kept my eyes shut. I didn’t know who had the ability to do whatever or have their eyes open which made me weary and curious the whole time. After about 15-30 minutes, they let everyone open their eyes. The point of the activity was they were waiting for someone to take the initiative to either tap themselves 3 times or wait to get tapped 3 times to then tap everyone else to help them hurt less. They were also waiting for someone to just speak because they never said you couldn’t. This was proving and showing us that we don’t have to wait for the “higher authority” to tell us what to do. We are setting limits on ourselves mostly because of how we grew up with always having rules. Constantly hearing don’t cheat hesitated everyone from letting their creativity decide what they could do. We need to just take the situation at hand and do what is right in our mind. We can break the norm and fix or help others. Its all up to you.

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