“When you know better you do better.” ― Maya Angelou

I was watching the program Oprah's Life Stories last night, but not the live show she had on. Instead I watched an episode I had taped where she had brought back some former white supremacists that had been on her show in 1989 and had changed their beliefs and opinions over the years.

She led off the show talking about her relationship with Maya Angelou, someone she admired as a young girl and then got to meet because of the show, and how even as she saw her as a mentor she saw her as a friend. She talked about things that happened in her early life when she was a teenager and how she hated that part of her life, and how Angelou had said the phrase above to her as part of some counseling and mentoring.

You know, everyone has made some kind of mistake in their lives. Some mistakes are big, some not so big. I'm lucky in being able to say that I've never made any big mistakes in my life, but I could have easily gone another way. But there was always something in me that said I had a better purpose in life, and that it wasn't really only about me.

I've had some ups and downs and that's also to be expected. All of us get to have the opportunity to figure out what we want to do in our lives. I usually state two phrases over and over. The first is kind of based on the Nike phrase, although I really wasn't thinking of it when I started saying it: "Just do something." The second phrase I believe is purely mine, but if someone comes up with it elsewhere let me know, and if I've never heard of that source before then I'm still claiming credit for it: "Every day you have another chance to start again."

None of us have to be what we were or are if it's something we don't like. We all have the ability to change and get better and be better and have greater lives. And something amazing happens; when we get better we make those around us better and happier. No one grows without making others better, and no one grows fast without making others happy in some way either. It's all about keeping the faith in yourself and giving others the chance to have faith in you as well.

Keep The Faith; yup, we need a little Michael Jackson in our lives today.