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Self- Love

I am a trainer with Bully Free Schools, have had personal instructions from Stan Davis, author of “Schools Where Everyone Belongs”. I have studied the work of Shad Helmstetter, “The Self-Talk Solution” and the works of Gershen Kaufman, PHD, Lev Raphael, PHD and Pamela Espeland and their outstanding book “Stick Up For Yourself!” and many more.

One common thread to everything I have read and learned is the need for students as individuals to love and respect themselves. The problem is we can all talk about it and put up some posters on the wall but I believe in a perfect world there should be classes and or more instruction on the subject.


This crazy fast pace world seems to focus more on the outer world and forget the need for personal inner work. The more we come to understand and respect who we are the more likely we will love and respect others too.

I believe the key is to share with the students the true meaning of the word LOVE. They in turn will come to understand that it is not being conceited to pat yourself on the back when you do something right, but rather a step toward a positive self-image and positive behavior skills.


I was and still am a fan of the “Dr. Love”, the late Leo Buscaglia PhD, author, speaker, teacher and professor at the University of Southern California.  Here is a guy that not only walked the talk. He shared the message, he had the vision, he saw the need for self-love and love for others and mankind. He even convinced the university to offer up a class on it.

My programs implements all these elements listed above. The students come to understand the need for self-love, self-respect and why it is ok to peacefully stick up for yourself.

One of my favorite Dr. Love quotes seems to say it all: “Love is life. And if you miss Love, you miss Life”.

Puerto Rico Stress Reduction Speech


I had the opportunity to speak to a group of surgical tech instructors at a conference in Puerto Rico.

They are a team of dedicated, caring professionals that deal with and work through many daily stressful tasks. It is their job to teach the students what they need to know to pass the certification testing and what is needed to do to become a competent surgical tech professional.

One of the instructors I spoke to prior to the event said, “I do everything but underwater basket weaving.”

I was their opening keynote speaker sharing several tools on how to work through stress in the workplace.

We discussed what stress is and why some stress is good for you.  We shared stress reduction tips including healthy breathing techniques, daily practical fun activities they can easily implement and why humor and laughter is a healthy way to reduce stress.

Here are some pictures from the event and all the fun we had sharing and learning how to work through workplace stress.


Port1 Port2 Port3 Port3 Port5 Port6 Port7





Letters from Students

I presented a program in North Dakota and the students sent me some letters following the presentation.

“I learned that it is not alright to make fun of people.

Your message touched the hearts of many mine included!”  – Rosie


“I learned how to not pick on someone.

I think other people learned that too.” – Josephine

Self Esteem

“I learned how to peacefully stick up for myself and how to stick up for others when they are getting bullied.”- Nairah


“I didn’t think your hand was weird, I thought it was cool, I mean I have a best friend that doesn’t have her right hand.” – Molly


“You thought us to do different stuff when you are about to confront a bully

Give them eye contact:

  1. Say STOP IT!
  2. Stand 2 feet away

“Thank you for coming to our school,” -Donna


“I learned mostly everything you taught and yes the school is better, you changed it. There is still a little bullying but we now know how to peacefully work through it.” -Justin

“I used to be a bully but not that bad. Then when I saw your program you changed my mind. I did you get to own your company? Did you start it yourself? I think when you came to the school the students here learned to stop the bullying.” –Kyle

“The one thing I learned is to give the person that is bullying eye contact. The way to stop bullying is to step up and report it. School is going to be better because people are going to work together to make sure there is no bullying.” –Avery

“You taught me that I’m not perfect and that is ok. No matter what I think by us doing what you taught us we can become better students and I can become a better person. I think what you taught me will make life easier.” –Scrah

“I learned things I didn’t know about bullying. I also learned that when you’re talking to someone look them in the eyes and not their feet. When you look at their feet and talk it makes them feel bad. I want to make this school a bully free place.” -Kimberly

“You inspired me to make a Stop the Bullying poster and it looks cool in the school.” –Parke

“I’ve been through a lot of things this past week and I’d think of what you would say and it helps. Thanks for that! Keep doing what you’re doing.” – Anjeni

I learned there is a reason when are here. We just got to keep doing what we’re doing because we are all awesome. We all have something to share.” -Chance



Many years ago I heard a story from motivational speaker Les Brown, he told of a minister by the name of Jack Boland who started a church to help and welcome people from all walks of life. They started in a small house in Detroit and grew to become this iconic church in Warren, Michigan.

I never had the opportunity to meet Jack, but from talking to the many people who knew him, he was a positive and optimistic person. Couple of my close friends who were experiencing drug and alcohol additions attended his classes, meeting and church services. They have told me more than once, “Jack saved my life”.

“Jack’s steadfast teaching of spiritual principle has had a dramatic impact on my life. Hearing an inspiring teacher of impeccable character moves me to live a better life, to be a better person and to try and make the world a better place.” Nola Drazdolf

 I am sure you have met someone in your life that has inspired you to be better, someone who saw something in you, which you could not see for yourself, someone who may have reminded you over and over again to march forth. From what I have heard, Jack was one of those people. He was a minister, a mentor, and a friend to all who knew him.

Many have said that even in death, Jack was inspiring and motivating people to live. He died on March 4, 1992.  Jack’s closest friends believe it was his way of reminding us all to MARCH FORTH.

Richard Paul

Copyright Richard Paul 2015