Kansas FFA Blog

Catch Phrase

During my week at home over the Thanksgiving holiday, I had the chance to spend some time with my younger cousins. Like usual, the time we spent together was full of laughter and a little bit of wrestling. My cousin Brice-keep in mind he is three-has started doing this new thing where he ends almost every sentence with “All day long, E-I-E-I-O.” I do not really understand why he feels the need to do this, but I do know that every time Brice would shout these words, I laughed.

After thinking about this for a little while, I realized that “All day long, E-I-E-I-O” is Brice’s catch phrase.  These words are what he is going to end every conversation with; they’re what people are going to remember about their interaction with Brice.  I have no clue what this is supposed to mean, but I remember Brice made me laugh.  His catch phrase enables him to make people feel happy.

The idea of a catch phrase applies to all of us too!  However, our catch phrase is identified by more than just what we say.  What message are we leaving people?  Through every interaction, what are we really saying?  How do people feel when they walk away from our conversation?

When it comes to advocating for the agriculture industry, we should leave people feeling informed, welcomed and included.  This can be a hard topic to discuss, but we must express our message in an effective way.  That way does not include being defensive and argumentative.

Think about your role as a leader, or maybe even just as a decent human being.  What kind of message do you give to people?  Do you make others feel empowered, accepted and positive?  Do you leave people feeling saddened, attacked and hopeless?  If the latter is true, it is probably time to find a new catch phrase.

Maya Angelou told us, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”  As we go through this week, let’s remember this with every conversation we have.

How we make people feel is ultimately more important than the words we say.  I don’t have a clue what “All day long, E-I-E-I-O” means, but I will not forget how I felt when I left Brice’s house.  His catch phrase made me feel happy and light-hearted.  How do people feel when they hear your catch phrase?

Living To Serve,

Trenton Smedley

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