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There are many times in life when we are forced to step out of our comfort zone. For me, one of those moments came when my parents forced me to join JROTC at Leavenworth High school. The goal of the program is to help the cadets grow to be better citizens in the community. JROTC has not only helped me grow as a person but also has made me want to have a bigger impact on the people I meet during my lifetime. The program has helped me to understand what it means to help the community without expecting something in exchange. In general, JROTC has helped me desire to have an impact in the communities I live in.
Emotional intelligence is the “something” in each of us that is a bit unreal. It affects how we manage behavior, navigates social complexities, and make personal decisions that achieve positive results. Emotional intelligence is made up of four main skills that pair up under two main competencies: personal skill and social skill. Under the personal-skill category are self-awareness and self-management. Self-awareness is when you are able to know what your emotions are, and self-management is when you take your knowledge of your emotions and control them. In the social skill category, there is social-awareness and relationship management. Social- awareness being the capability to fully grasp others emotions and figure out what is happening in that situation, and relationship management are when you are able to discern what the other is feeling enabling your relationship with them to become stronger. A lesson we learned about in JROTC was about the “Winning Colors”, red, blue, brown, and green. During this lesson, I learned that my personality match the colors blue and green which means relater and planner. I’ve had many chances to build and shape my behaviors by being able to help my fellow classmates with things that might be bothering them, and by trying to do my best to help other company. My relater behavior has allowed me to get to know, and become closer to the cadets in my battalion. By becoming closer to them it has enabled me to help them with their needs.
I now know that I can help my town in ways I never knew I could. By knowing what my skills are, it has revealed to me all the things that I can do to help others in my community. Even the small act of waving to a person that might not be considered normal is helping that person out. Having the ability to see someone for who they really are and not for their differences, can make a person feel good about themselves. The tiny act of being friendly also has positive repercussions for the giver.
The great Saint Ignatius is quoted as saying “teach us to give and not count the cost”. I cannot begin to describe the gift I have been given in JROTC. Our leaders pour themselves into our lessons without asking anything in return from us. A common misconception is that if one goes through JROTC, they must then join the military. I now know this is true. The purpose of the program is to create better citizens, and teach us how to help the community. They also teach that to be a better citizen you have to give without asking for anything in return. That is the main lesson in the JROTC lesson.
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