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    Spring backward. #photoaday #flowerstagram #firstdayofspring #spring #lastofwinter ❄️❤️ So yesterday, I ran a poetry workshop at a middle school and hearing the words from these youth, I feel a lot better about the world. One boy wrote a poem & was very shy about reading it. I offered to read it for him. To my surprise, he wrote about people wanting freedom and not being “illegal.” I hope he finds the courage some day to read the poem because these days, hate voices itself louder than love. Our kids deserve better role models. I didn’t grow up thinking about my immigration status, but I think many children have to now. 💔I’m at a very low point in my hope bank. I’m taking notes on how to say goodbye to a country. I think one way is love and one way is poetry.
#loveislouder #happyworldpoetryday This Sunday I made it to church at a Unitarian Universalist congregation. I arrived as a panelist for an immigration and human rights discussion. My audience was majority White. I started with a poem and then my college journey narrative. It is a heavy feeling to be a person who potentially faces deportation or undocumented status and to stand in front of an audience that though sympathetic, cannot imagine what your world is like. They listened to me and the other panelists very actively. One of the panelists, Klara Bilgin, showed us this poster-size cover of Time magazine’s March issue with her own addition “Why America?” At the end I was surprised that most people had comments rather than questions. When we say immigration is a controversial issue or a “hot topic,” it’s true. I got to see it today by people commenting on their experience traveling abroad without borders or their observations of how much labor is expected of undocumented immigrants. Many of them were proposing solutions. I wish Congress were as productive as these people were in their 15 or so minutes to comment and ask questions. #rageatCongress #votesmart #speakup Little sister poem. Be woke.❤️ #ajamonet #poem
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1,000 miles: step 11

I want to start this 2013 with concrete actions.

My first step was believing and unraveling the “21 days myth.” When you want to break or make a habit, it takes 21 days. Sounds legit, no?

“Let me use this as inspiration to become a morning person this month,” said Claudia yesterday. Just goes to show how absent-minded I am.

Who took psychology 101 her freshmen year of college? Right, me. One of our first assignments was a conditioning experiment, with a rewards and consequences system. See, dear-reader, the way we ever learn anything is through repetition and adoption. The time frame for learning or unlearning varies. It took months for me to learn basic swimming skills, but only a few burns when I was younger to stay away from boiled water.

The rewards and consequences system is a good start to changing a habit—like my constant glass-touching habit from last year. Minutes were added of Korean drama watching for every goal met, and minutes were taken off for every goal unmet. At least that’s how I choose to remember my self-chosen yay’s and man’s!

Needless to say, the system is not foolproof as I’ve had to fix my glasses for no reason many times before, including in these moments of post writing. “It’s a smart person thing,” said Claudia’s ego.

Okay, future Dr. Rojas probably should stay modest. And so, to let you in on other psychological truths, I want to share the following findings from a study summarized in the PsyBlog in 2009, under “How Long to Form a Habit?”

  1. Evidence shows that the average to establish a habit is 66 days and counting.
  2. Not all habits are easily manageable and not everyone manages a habit in the same way.
  3. The early bird meets the goal faster… obviously. Don’t you all know the Turtle and the Rabbit story?
  4. Not explicitly stated in the study: choose change and don’t turn around.

With that being said, good luck to all on your “21” days. May I find myself rising with the sun… or sooner.


Image of Day 1 of Rising with the Sun. I’ve chosen to showcase it from a new perspective.

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