By Joan Marlow

Be what? you might ask.  That’s the question that can be answered in a number of ways.

How do you respond to the question, what do you want ‘to be’?

Typically your answer probably refers to a job or a profession.  You might want ‘to be’ a teacher, film producer, doctor, IT specialist, hairdresser, mechanic, etc….

But when I ask, what do you want ‘to be’ known for in people’s minds over time, what would your answer be?  How do you want ‘to be’ seen today on a day-in-day-out basis and remembered when people speak about you with others or when they write a recommendation for your college applications or as a reference for a job?  Now that’s a different story completely.  The answer to that is a bit more difficult because it takes reflection and thought.  Answering that ‘to be’ question might now include:  loyal, trustworthy, positive, confident, smart, funny, polite, and so on…you fill in the blank.

The story behind the ‘BE’ question came about from a recent visit to Tamarindo, Costa Rica.  ‘El Be’ Club was right down the beach from where I was staying and not only is the atmosphere very lighthearted, but the wait staff had shirts with ‘Be Happy’ on the back, which is what so many of us strive ‘to be.’ ‘El Be’ means:

Be Happy
Be Fun
Be Chill
Be Easy
Be Yourself
Be Pura Vida (the simple life…the way of life in Costa Rica…the country’s national slogan)
Be whoever you want

This is our mood.
We are waiting for you.

These are words that I use to define who I am, how I live and how I present myself to the world in most situations…especially on vacation!!  As I’ve learned and you are learning, there will be many ‘adjectives’ that define who we are in the many facets or situations of our lives.  You might ‘be’ more playful with long-time friends and possibly ‘be’ more subdued with folks you don’t know.  Bottom line we have a great number of ‘be’s.

Observe yourself over the next few days and think about how many times you change your ‘be’ (your attitude, your presence, your responses) to fit a situation.  Check in to see how many of your ‘be’s are positive, powerful, dynamic (demonstrating personal strength) vs. negative, defeating, pessimistic (demonstrating personal weakness).  Remember that what you think or say about yourself attracts the same ‘energy’ to you.  So if you’re ‘being’ moody, insensitive, angry with the world, you’re going to get the same type of attitude coming from others.

The Rest of My ‘BE’ Story….One day I entered the restaurant from the street and stopped in my tracks when I saw their sidewalk…talk about inspiration…

Sooooo, who or what do you want ‘to be’ for all the world to see and experience? What adjectives do you want to ‘be’ used as others choose to introduce you, talk about you, write about you in reference letters and more.  Ultimately this is a great way to consider what you want your legacy to ‘be.’  If these are the positive, empowering words you can live by, I can almost guarantee you’ll have a very rewarding life.  As you compile your words telling about the many ways you are (positive tense of ‘to be’), be proud to….



Strive ‘to be’ the best version of ‘yourself.’