Connect with us
Advertisement

Entertainment

9 Life Lessons From Prince For Social Workers

Published

on

9 Life Lessons From Prince For Social Workers

I’ve been a little obsessive this week. This is apparently how I mourn when one of my favorite musicians of all time dies: I listen to their music. On repeat. Nonstop.

My Four Year Old Daughter: Daddy, is that a Prince song…again?

Me: Yes, sweetie, Daddy needs to listen to “Sometimes It Snows In April” one more time. (Nice tribute D’Angelo.)

Since Prince’s sudden death last week, I’ve thought a lot about his life and career. Then it hit me like a bucket of “Purple Rain”, we could all learn lessons from Prince’s life. Today, I’m going to share nine life lessons social workers can learn from how Prince styled his life.

Lesson 1: Create your own path

Prince style: Prince’s career was known for a lot of things: his music, his attitude, and his eccentric style. He was naturally influenced by musicians and artists who came before him, but he didn’t seek to copy anyone person.

Your style: Talk to other social workers and professionals whose lives and careers you respect. Resist the urge to try to follow exactly in their footsteps. It just doesn’t work. What does work, is taking the best parts from your mentors and influences.

Lesson 2: Develop more than one skill

Prince style: It didn’t matter the instrument: lead guitar, bass, drums, or piano, all were in Prince’s wheelhouse. On his first album For You, Prince played every instrument in each song.

Your style: You may not be a multi-talented musician, but you still need to have a variety of skills at your disposal. Be ready to “play” all of them at once when needed: be an active and empathic listener, a human Wikipedia of community-based resources, and a tireless advocate for your client.

Lesson 3: Advocate for yourself

Prince style: He famously (and legally) changed his name to a symbol a.k.a. The Artist Formerly Known as Prince. His reasons for the name change, in part, were to protest Warner Brothers unfair contract withholding the master copies of his music.

Your style: Social workers are charged to advocate for underserved and disenfranchised populations. But don’t forget about yourself. Example: If you think social workers are undervalued, disrespected, or underpaid… Do Something About It.

Lesson 4: Share some of your best stuff

Prince style: One of the most famous songs of the 1990s was Sinead O’Connor’s “Nothing Compares To You”, written by Prince. He didn’t keep that remarkable gem of a song to himself, he shared it and it benefited, even more, people.

Your style: Be as generous with your abilities. Your influence on the world moves beyond your circle of influence when you teach and share your talents. Teach and share with other social work colleagues where you are skilled, so that they may, in turn, help others.

Lesson 5: Find your confidence

Prince style: Prince may have been only 5’2” tall, but he wasn’t short on confidence. His strut was legendary.

Your style: Develop confidence in your skill as a social worker. Your opinion matters. Your perspective matters. Your professional judgment matters. Find your professional “strut” and own it.

Lesson 6: Stay connected

Prince style: Prince traveled the world playing his music, but always returned to his home base. Prince was born and died living in the great state of Minnesota. He was deeply connected with the residents there and the state loved him for it.

Your style: Whether you are living in the same place you grew up or you have moved off, stay connected with the people and community that helped shape who you are today. For example, go back and talk to students from your high school about how to become a rockstar social worker.

Lesson 7: Embrace diversity

Prince style: Prince could command a stage solo like few others. But he was perhaps at his best when collaborating with other musicians. He was intentional about having diverse bands, especially using female musicians. His concerts were no different. Old and young, black and white, gay and straight…people from all backgrounds came together for Prince.

Your style: Don’t be a lone wolf social worker. Find colleagues in other disciplines who share your perspective and passion for helping others. Identify ways to collaborate with those professionals.

Lesson 8: Find your “thing”

Prince style: Be known for something. It’s hard to see a deep purple color and not think of Prince. 

He had his own color . . . who has their own color? He owns purple. – Jimmy Fallon

Your style: You may not be able to call dibs on a color of the rainbow, but you can brand yourself in other ways. For example, Brené Brown is known for her books and research on shame and vulnerability; that’s her thing. Find your “thing”and be known for it.

Lesson 9: Create a will

Prince style: As I’m writing this article, news outlets are reporting Prince neglected to create a will for his estate. (Jaw drops, face meets palm). This is what you would call a teachable moment.

Your Style: You may not have millions of dollars of assets like Prince, but you still need a plan for your stuff when you’re gone. A legal will isn’t about you, but rather the people that are left to sort through your affairs. Do them a favor.

Summary

Whether you are a fan of Prince’s music or not, you have to respect his creativity, boldness, and authenticity. His life and music clearly impacted many people, myself included. We may not make a Prince-sized impact on the world, but we can learn from his example in how we leave our own legacy. So dearly beloved social workers, let’s get through this thing called life together.

Nate Crowell is the founder of SocialWorkerSuccess.com where he writes useful (and occasionally amusing) articles to help social workers find the career and life they want. Sign up for his free newsletter to find out how to build your ideal career and start loving Mondays again.

2 Comments

Culture

Why We Are Just Learning About Harvey Weinstein?

blank

Published

on

Photo Credit: People Magazine – Courtney Love and Harvey Weinstein Taylor Hill/FilmMagic; Venturelli/WireImage

Why has it taken almost three decades for Harvey Weinstein’s absurdities and gross sexual misconduct to come to light? He was a champion of women’s rights, an avid supporter of the progressive movement and a sought-after democratic donor. How did the people not know? Was there some oath of silence friends, colleagues, and staff members took which protected this man for so long?

While some may plead the fifth, it is clear that sexual harassment and discrimination against women is commonplace in Hollywood and unfortunately throughout mainstream and greater society, but it still doesn’t answer the question of why it took so damn long for the public to learn about Weinstein’s behavior. Sure there were non-disclosure agreements and possible gag orders that were strategically attached to pitiful sums of money to hush Weinstein’s multiple victims, but even still the question remains, Why?

Some believe that the answer is simple, misogyny. The misogynistic views that have been embedded in the very fabric of this countries DNA and have been allowed to permeate throughout American culture since this nation’s founding is definitely a good starting point. This misogynistic culture has caused many to turn a blind eye when they see it happen or remain silent when they encounter it themselves. The real kicker is that holding misogynistic views isn’t just a male-only issue.

Women perpetuate these views too which is evidenced by how many women voted for Trump despite the Access Hollywood tapes. Not that it is right, but perhaps the culture of misogyny that has persisted over the years has made it okay for both men and women to perpetuate and accept less than ethical and violent behavior against women.

With a long history of disrespect, disregard, and marginalization of women in this country, it would be ludicrous to ignore the influence that this attitude towards women has had within families, communities, and society as a whole. Despite the historical context that helps explain the 20+ years of silence, the question of why still remains. There have been many strides towards inclusion and improved parity for women. Women have continued to evolve and remain outspoken in various efforts to advocate for themselves and close disparity gaps, so again, why was this allowed to continue for so long?

Outside of the obvious cover-up and threat to one’s reputation; undoubtedly there is a certain intimidation that comes with “going public” about issues like this, especially when your livelihood, reputation, and in extreme cases, your life, is on the line. A victim is even more subdued when the perpetrator holds clout such as Weinstein, Cosby, and others who have been ousted for similar acts.

Arguably so, the tolerance for this type of behavior and misconduct is steadily dwindling and is a strong indicator as to why the people are just now learning about Weinstein’s gross behavior. Still, look at how long it has taken to get here. The tolerance for this type of behavior has to be high, for goodness sake, Trump was recorded on tape bragging about grabbing women by their meow’s, yet he was still elected the leader of the free world. This seemingly renewed assault on women has resulted in a call to action for individuals to protect rights that were hard-fought for and losing them would be a detriment.

This new movement of resistance has definitely brought light to the multiple injustices experienced by women as well as exposed several high-powered individuals and corporations for their unscrupulous behavior. However, as with any major change, hitting people in their pockets have always garnered both attention and change when all other forms of advocacy and protesting have been exhausted.

The threat of bad publicity and potential boycotts has been the impetus for many public apologizes, forced resignations/terminations, policy changes, and organizational change and perhaps is the reason why we are just learning about Weinstein’s actions. The Weinstein Company has since fired Mr. Weinstein in an effort to save face.

While the power of the purse has definitely seen many individuals stand on the side of “right” and condemn the actions of Weinstein in an effort to save face and maintain their bottom line, many of these same individuals such as Ben Affleck has been ousted for being perpetrators of illicit behavior against women themselves. So not only does the question of why still linger, but the question of what does it really take to resolve these kinds of issues arises as well? Perhaps no one at all really gave a damn about Weinstein’s actions outside of his victims and a small group of their supporters consisting of friends, family, and loved ones. For those A-list celebrities, writers, and producers who were fortunate to ”

So not only does the question of why these allegations lingered for so long is burned into our minds, but the question of what will it really take to resolve and address these kinds of issues in today’s society remains? Perhaps no one at all really gave a damn about Weinstein’s actions outside of his victims and a small group of their supporters consisting of friends, family, and loved ones.

For those A-list celebrities, writers, and producers who were fortunate to “make it” but were victimized, perhaps some made peace with their new-found success and opportunities and chose to put the Weinstein experience behind them. Either way, it’s good that the skeletons are no longer in the closet.

Continue Reading

Entertainment

Actor Terry Crews Comes Forward About Being Sexually Assaulted by Hollywood Exec

blank

Published

on

Actor Terry Crews takes to Twitter to discuss being sexually assaulted by a Hollywood Executive in the wake of the firing of Harvey Weinstein for sexual assault after years of accusations.

Actor Terry Crews

Did you hear the Expendables star say last year?

How is it the criminal justice system doesn’t seem to be able to touch these folks?

Power and privilege keep a lot of people silent.

He just validated a whole lot of women who deal with this on the regular. It’s not easy to come forward.

There is strength in numbers and knowing you are not alone.

Both men and women are affected by sexual assault and rape culture, and it will take more men becoming advocates as well as coming forward to tell their stories because they have stories too.

Reactions from Twitter

Continue Reading

Entertainment

The Y Wants Everyone to Take a #SelfieWithSomeoneNew

blank

Published

on

Today, the YMCA of the USA (Y-USA) is launching a new social media campaign, #SelfieWithSomeoneNew. Inspired by the Y’s new “Us” national campaign creative, #SelfieWithSomeoneNew is an opportunity to highlight how the Y uniquely brings people together. To help raise awareness for the campaign, the Y will partner with long-time member and supporter, actor Ethan Hawke.

Photo Credit: (YMCA of the USA)

The Y is encouraging people to meet someone new, strike up a conversation and discover what they have in common, then, take a selfie and post it to Facebook, Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #SelfieWithSomeoneNew and tag @YMCA.

Whether it’s a new neighbor down the street, a parent at your child’s school or a person you see every day on your commute home, the Y hopes people will take a few extra moments to get to know one another in order to build a stronger, more connected community.

To encourage participation, the Y is partnering with Oscar-nominated actor, Ethan Hawke, a long-time Y member and former Y camper. To help drive momentum, Hawke will be taking a selfie with someone new at his local Y while encouraging others to do the same.

“I am excited to support the Y and help shine a light on the work they do,” said Hawke. “They are so much more than a gym. They create community. I started going to the Y as kid when my parents didn’t know what to do with me all summer. Since then, the Y has been a staple in my life; my refuge when I am an out of work actor, or the place that has taught my children to swim. I hope we can raise awareness about everything the Y does in communities all over the country.”

Because of the Y, people who may not have met otherwise, come together, whether they are kids in an afterschool enrichment program, adults in a cancer survivorship group or families volunteering. These are natural and easy ways for people to find commonality and even unity among perceived differences.

“For more than 160 years, the Y has brought people together – no matter their differences – and helped build stronger, more connected communities,” said Kevin Washington, President and CEO, Y-USA. “#SelfieWithSomeoneNew is a great way to illustrate how we can all take small, but meaningful steps towards unity with something as simple as a photo.”

The Y is one of the nation’s leading nonprofits strengthening communities through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. Across the U.S., 2,700 Ys engage 22 million men, women and children – regardless of age, income or background – to nurture the potential of children and teens, improve the nation’s health and well-being, and provide opportunities to give back and support neighbors. Anchored in more than 10,000 communities, the Y has the long-standing relationships and physical presence not just to promise, but to deliver, lasting personal and social change. ymca.net

For more information on how to participate in the Y’s #SelfieWithSomeoneNew campaign and to learn more about the Y’s “For a better us.” campaign, visit ymca.net/forabetterus.

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Advertisement

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

swhelperlogo

Enter your email below to subscribe to the Daily Helper delivered to your inbox once a day.

Advertisement

Trending

Trending

SUBSCRIBE TO THE DAILY HELPER
Sign up.....It's free! Get the latest news article delivered directly to your inbox once a day from Social Work Helper. We promise not to spam you!

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.

Close