My mom had a friend that I really looked up to. She was the regional manager of Macy's, and had it going on to me. As a child, there weren't many role models or "boss chicks" to model behind, but she was one of them. She always had her hair done, she was married to a African American history buff so their house was pro black and seemed powerful with the artifacts and statues they had.
Right when I got old enough and was on my own, I started hearing rumors about her on drugs.
I didn't want to believe it and it made me upset because my image of her was shattering. Sure enough, she was doing drugs. And not only doing drugs, but fell all the way off and was doing unspeakable things. That taught me to never be like her.
Never be someone that little girls look up to and then fall off after kids are grown! No way!!
I still have an anger toward her for letting me down. I never ever want any young girl who looks up to me to feel the way I do about me as I do about her.
I was a dancer. A stripper for money. I interacted with thousands of people. I learned something from all of them. They were investment brokers, insurance agents, soldiers, athletes, celebrities, terrorist, drug dealers, single mothers, daughters, wives, prostitutes, drug addicts.
My interaction was intimate enough to learn what it took to be each one of them. What factors created these circumstances and people. Each and everyone of them taught me something extremely valuable, and I know they've all learned something from me as well.
I've used and continue to use and grow my knowledge of interaction with individuals in my real estate business, when I speak to audiences, raise my children, helping others, and plan my future.
That's how the universe is set up. It is a constant learning ground, a school for the soul. If you are in someone's presence for a few seconds and make eye contact, there is an opportunity for a teaching moment.
If you're alive, you're armed with a wealth of knowledge that can work for your benefit. Experience and observations of others experiences help shape our thoughts and ultimately our actions and governs our behavior.