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The Red Light Pursuit of Happiness

January 1st, 2013 · Comments Off on The Red Light Pursuit of Happiness

Once my dad asked, “when you leave the house for work in the morning, do you wait for all the lights to turn green before heading out?” As an image popped in my head of me sitting in my car literally waiting for every light to turn green within the 20-mile distance between my house and my job, I laughed at the absurdity of his question.

“Of course I don’t wait for all the lights to turn green before driving to work,” I replied.

He then followed up and asked me, “Well… how do you make your trip… how do you take on the drive knowing that you will encounter red lights?” Not sure where he was really going with his line of questioning, I just looked at him. After a brief moment of awkward silence, my dad finally said, “Don’t wait for all things to be perfect in life before you start enjoying it”.

In short, many people wait to start living. They wait to get the perfect job, to make more money, to lose weight, to buy their dream home, to get caught up on their bills, to send their kids to college… and then declare to live and have fun. And for many, we live in a culture that does not believe in fun and happiness… subscribing to a philosophy that life on earth is about storing up rewards for our afterlife. But for those of us who do believe that we can also have happiness and fun while on this side of heaven, we need to be challenged. We need to do a better job living and stop putting life off until all the pieces are in order.

Living and enjoying life in the now… in real time… in the midst of the red lights was the point of my dad’s message. As a person who is very driven in my career and very fulfilled by the pursuit of my professional goals, I found myself as a young adult putting off my fun until I had reached my destination. I had papers to grade, students to mentor, education and degrees to obtain, organizations to start, and books to write. I did not have time for fun… fun would just have to wait until I accomplished the things on my list.

But when I started facing 40 a few of years ago, I finally got it! I understood the red-light-drive-to-work metaphor that my dad tried to share. Life is always going to be filled with red lights…with things to do, with disappointments, with uncertainties. Waiting for life to clear out and make room for fun is like waiting for all the lights to turn green before driving to work in the morning. Those of you who know me from my 30s and now into my 40s can attest to my pursuit for life… for fun… for happiness… so much that I have very little tolerance for environments (professional or personal) that suppress my smile. I am not talking about red-light moments of discomfort… I am talking about situations that require extended periods of darkness and the suspension of my humanity. I prioritize my pursuit for fun just like I prioritize my work. I pursue happiness instead of waiting for happiness to one day show up after all of my work is complete. Each day I start my drive knowing full well that I will encounter some red lights on the way. And, when I get to a red light, I embrace it by sitting and singing with the radio, waiting only for a moment before continuing on in my drive.

I took time to share this story because I personally know there are people who want more out of life but they keep waiting. They keep waiting for all the lights to turn green before being happy, before having fun, before enjoying life. As we leave 2012 behind us, think about my father’s challenge… stop waiting for all of the lights to turn green. Get in the car, embrace the red lights, and drive!

Have fun and be happy in 2013! Make it truly a Happy New Year’s Day!!

Angela Dye
PBS Development, LLC.
#Empowerment Starts Here

Comments Off on The Red Light Pursuit of Happiness Tags: Personal Empowerment ·   · · ·

A National Moment of Silence for Sandy Hook Elementary School’s Victims

December 21st, 2012 · Comments Off on A National Moment of Silence for Sandy Hook Elementary School’s Victims

There is a national moment of silence scheduled by Connecticut Governor Malloy for 9:30 a.m EST in honor of the Sandy Hook victims. Please take 5 minutes to reflect and pray for this community and for the safety of all children, especially those communities where violence is an unfortunate regular fixture. As requested by Joanne Tosti-Vasey (12/21/12), please also “take a five minute pause from all online activity“.

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My Morning Prayer

December 17th, 2012 · Comments Off on My Morning Prayer

Good Monday Morning People…

My prayers are for all parents this morning who have to send their children to school. I pray for peace and assurance for safety. I pray for wisdom and heroism in spaces where safety does not abound. Parents, I truly pray for you because as a person who has been responsible for groups of children, adults, budgets, policies, systems and buildings… I think parenting is by far a greater responsibility!!! Your work is appreciated.

Parents, this morning I pray for you… I pray for your peace and guidance as you do the much needed work of grooming and protecting our future!

~Angela Dye, A Social Entrepreneur Who Embraces the Power of Prayer!

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Connecticut’s Tragedy: Tips to Help Your Children Cope

December 15th, 2012 · Comments Off on Connecticut’s Tragedy: Tips to Help Your Children Cope

According to CNN, it is better to give your children extra hugs than it is to keep asking them if they are alright.

Here are some other suggestions from ABC…
• Don’t over talk the situation.
• Keep children away from the media.
• Reassure them that they are safe.
• Do not pull them out of school.

In need of additional support? Please call the following distress hotline for counseling: 800-985-5990.

Comments Off on Connecticut’s Tragedy: Tips to Help Your Children Cope Tags: News ·   · ·

Seeking Young Men of Color: The Emma Bowen Foundation

November 26th, 2012 · Comments Off on Seeking Young Men of Color: The Emma Bowen Foundation

The Emma Bowen Foundation is actively seeking black male applicants for its paid internship work/study program with national media companies. Please see below info and circulate to your network. Thanks!


Any minority student (African American, Hispanic, Asian or Native American) who is a rising high school senior, graduating high school senior or college freshman, has a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0, is interested in pursuing a career in the media industry, and plans to attend a four-year accredited college or university is eligible to apply to the Emma L. Bowen Foundation work/study program. Eligible applicants must be U.S. citizens or legal residents of the United States, and speak and write English fluently to be considered. Your grade transcript, at least two (2) educational references from teachers and/or advisors, and a 500-to-1,000-word essay must accompany the application form.

Visit the company’s website for a more detailed description of the program and the application.

Comments Off on Seeking Young Men of Color: The Emma Bowen Foundation Tags: Jobs/Opportunities ·   · · · ·

House of Peace

November 19th, 2012 · Comments Off on House of Peace

I forgot to give a shout out to the House of Peace .   Earlier this month, I was invited to speak to their clients about Individual and Community Empowerment! Once there, I found out that 75% of the participants were also parents and they wanted me to speak about being parent instruments of change. Boy, did we have a good time talking about power as a socialization agent and the types of higher order learning that promote power and liberation. Yes, that’s right teachers… the parents and I talked about the upper levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy and the threat of worksheet-based teaching in the mission of empowerment. It was awesome taking the empowerment message outside of the school realm and right into the community!!!  Thanks Gerri and staff for having me!!    #empowerment starts here


For ideas on learning processes that promote student empowerment and achievement, please visit SBC Curriculum.  If you need a speaker to talk with your parents, please contact me on our website!!

Comments Off on House of Peace Tags: Media Presentations · Uncategorized ·   · · · · · · ·

Update on theTeachers’ Strike in Chicago

September 13th, 2012 · Comments Off on Update on theTeachers’ Strike in Chicago

District officials and teachers making progress in getting Chicago students back in school…,0,482612.story

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Report Says Charter Schools Fall Short on Students with Disabilities

June 20th, 2012 · Comments Off on Report Says Charter Schools Fall Short on Students with Disabilities

A valid response to this article (see link below) is to ask…how has the traditional school system done any better? The problem is that as a society, we have not chosen to promote the full development of children. Instead, we emphasize standardized testing which constitutes a limited construct (at best) of learning and development. Special ed and at-risk students don’t thrive in this model regardless of where it is housed… in a charter school or in a traditional public school. Let’s tell our lawmakers that we want schooling to be about human development and not limited to passing a state test!

To learn more about a model that pursues the full developmental needs of students, please go to

This post is in response to…
Resmovits, J. (6/19/12). Charter schools fall short on students with disabilities. Huffington Post. Retrieved from

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Words of Wisdom: May 3, 2012

May 4th, 2012 · Comments Off on Words of Wisdom: May 3, 2012

Cannot share power with students if you do not have power to share.

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School Violence: Are Students Disrespectful?

March 5th, 2012 · Comments Off on School Violence: Are Students Disrespectful?

I read a sad commentary about the condition of students in my hometown, Milwaukee, Wisconsin (

As I read these comments, I wondered about the level of training needed to charge students with a “lack of home training” and “lack of respect”. While there is no question that the behavior exhibited by many students is a far cry from being exemplary, it is critical to understand that how they “show up” in this world is the direct result of what they are taught. Parents, teachers, ministers, and neighbors all have the responsibility of providing opportunities for young people to develop into responsible individuals. Through modeling, resource sharing, discipline, and support, we can help students make good decisions about their academics and their behavior.

While Mr. Causey may think so, never should a child have to earn the respect that is owed to them! It is this misdirection of adulthood that is the problem (where adults try to GET from children instead of being available to GIVE to students). As parents, teachers, and leaders, we take children under our charge and we preach instead of teach. We yell instead of discuss. We neglect instead of nurture. The bottom line, when students misbehave, it is a direct indication that the entire community has failed to model, has failed to provide discipline, support and structure, and has failed to give respect.

As a licensed and experienced teacher/school principal, I did not have the student problems showcased by this video (referenced in article). Yes, I had the same students. And, yes, those students had a track record of being disorderly in other learning environments (before coming into my classroom or school). But, from the door, I made my expectations for greatness clear and then I supported these expectations with a system of structure, discipline, academic rigor, and LOVE. People always wanted to know why students in my care looked differently than they did when they were elsewhere. This difference was because I took responsibility for being the adult in charge… not as a tyrant but as person who could see a teen’s potential, who loved the challenge of working with them, and who took seriously the training I received for child psychology and human development!

Please do not blame children for acting in ways that have only been promoted by the adults around them. Please be willing to give them respect even when it looks as though they do not deserve it. Please be willing to model what you expect from students by spending quality time with them. I promise…when you are able to teach and lead… students will follow!

For more information on how to manage student behaviors…
1) Pick up your copy of “Empowerment Starts Here: Seven Principles for Empowering Urban Youth”:
2) Read about our P3 Advisory program:



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