I Love My First English Teacher. But He Didn’t Teach Me Verbs

I Love My First English Teacher. But He Didn’t Teach Me Verbs


What is the difference between a house and a home?

This question has a special place in my becoming who I am.

Our guardian angel, Sethi uncle, our father’s friend, repeatedly asked us (me and my siblings) this question. He is my first English teacher, my first role model.

During all those childhood flashes that I remember, his question stayed the same, though my answer developed.

When I was learning the language, my answer to his question was that house and home start with the same letter but have a different logography.

When I was learning to make meanings of my thoughts and putting stories, my answer was that the house is made up of bricks, walls and has a ceiling, and home is where my family live.

Later, when my answer shifted from the description of a house and home to the feeling: any place becomes the home when common values connect everyone living in it, and all enhance part of each other’s life journey, bitter or sweet, Sethi uncle stopped asking that question.

Any place becomes the home when common values connect everyone living in it, and all enhance part of each other’s life journey, bitter or sweet.

I thought that he had stopped asking the “house and home” question because I am now grown up, until the recent past when I found the verb in the party of the loud nouns.

A role model is not a noun; it is a verb. It is a living and breathing track you chose to become who you want to be.

Having a good role model is very important. Role models inspire us to work harder on our goals and become successful.

It is easier to follow the goals when we know how someone else achieved them. When we chose a role model, it usually means that they have succeeded in a specific field.

But isn’t the term “success” entirely subjective? It has different meanings for different people at different times.

Each one of us has personal values & intentions.

I am happy to offer the tool that I use to discern the real from projected and define intentions.

Teachings from experts make us self-confident and encourage us to set bigger goals. To achieve the big goals, we tend to emulate another person’s actions and values.

A role model is a verb, not a noun

No one person or personality type can be a role model. The approach they took, the behavior they demonstrated, the value they lived is role modelling. Finding who we follow to learn what we need to know to reach where we want to go is the starting point. It’s important not to get obsessed with them.

Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken. ~Oscar Wilde

We all face obstacles in our lives. Successful people, who we role model, have their share of hurdles to overcome and mistakes to learn from. Different people may discover different lessons from the same mistakes.

Include the role model in you

We are unique, and so is our skills, experience and approach to achieve our goals. To acquire what we strive for, we don’t necessarily have to follow the whole of our role model, but role model (verb) the part of them.

Speaking to oneself and reflecting helps us see the path we have tracked until now and feel pride and self-compassion. Introspection also helps us not feel upset with the people around us and see everyone as discoveries-in-progress.

Be the role model

With developed stamina of not giving up on obstacles, respecting self and others, we develop the capacity to see the truth, beauty and goodness in others.

No one in the world is perfect. We all are part of living and breathing space and finding our path forward.

Role modelling opens the pathway to new experiences, ideas, opportunities, and victories for ourselves and those around us.

Yes, the sweet victories are often hard. The real role models take the hard out and leave us with precious lessons and fond memories, like Sethi uncle.

Summing up

People seldom improve when they have no other role model but themselves to copy. ~ Oliver Goldsmith.

The real role model knows that role modelling is a verb. They act as the coach, enable us to practice compassion and see our growth. They train us until we learn what they are role modelling in the most natural ways. Like Sethi Uncle.

Like Charles Barkley.

I’m not a role model… Just because I dunk a basketball doesn’t mean I should raise your kids. ~ Charles Barkley.

The feeling of being around them is one of the profound feelings, like finding oneself.

We usually know when we see the person who is role modelling. But there are some observations we can make to discern well:

  • We can look for the people who achieved similar results as what we are going after.
  • We can look for people who struggled with similar problems in their journey as we are facing.


We can try these questions too

  • What kind of person do I want to be?
  • What do I want to achieve, and find the circles of people who have achieved that?
  • Who empowers me with their words, vision, qualities?


Everything starts with knowing what we are looking for and in what aspect we need empowerment, guidance, direction, and inspiration.

Who is this strange woman doing the talking? I am a DIP, aka. Discoveries-in-Progress. I care for doing my bit in creating an inclusive world where we all role model. You can follow my work here.

Join me in the Garden with other courageous garden sisters who care for each other and role model deliberately.

This post was previously published on medium.com.


Photo credit:  Lea Böhm on Unsplash


The post I Love My First English Teacher. But He Didn’t Teach Me Verbs appeared first on The Good Men Project.

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