I don’t have any letters behind my name. Nothing to let others know about the training I’ve had and all the things I have learned. I’ve always felt a bit uncomfortable about letters behind people’s names, but I’ve never been able to accurately put into words what I was feeling or way.
Interesting. All of a sudden as I looked at the notebook with the name of the instructor of the 6 month class I’m taking to help me build my business, with all those letters behind him name, and this is what came into words.
In many ways in our society those letters behind someone’s name have served as a way to divide and separate certain people from other people. They have served to put distance in-between people much the same way as money has often been used to separate people rather than bring them together.
In many respects the two things go together because letters behind a name usually means that person has paid lots of money to get other people to approve of him and tell him he is valuable and worthy because he has learned things that group of people believes is valuable and important.
I always knew I had no desire to get letters behind my name. Somehow I also knew that getting those letters actually has little to do with learning. I have had very little formal schooling (I dropped out of high school in 10th grade), yet I have learned more than most people I know or have met, about what gives meaning to life and brings happiness to people, simply by observing myself and others in relationship to each other and life.
I’ve chosen again and again to step out of a victim role and take responsibility in understanding what is happening in my life and how I can work with it to bring me the experiences I want. What I notice is just because someone has letters behind their name doesn’t necessarily mean they have learned how to be happy in their life!
Each person has such an interesting mix of qualities! As I listen to the instructor of my class, who has a PH.D., M.A. after his name, I can feel that in some areas I have much more confidence in myself than he has in himself. He is charging lots of money for his services because he feels what he offers is worth lots because he spent so much learning it.
Well, I spent lots learning what I’ve learned too, but not money. I spent tears and countless lonely, painful nights by myself. I’ve ready books, asked questions, worked endless hours in my garden, raised two children mostly as a single parent and given up a third child for adoption. I’ve been in relationships and learned from each one. In many ways I know more about life than my instructor does. What are the letters behind one’s name worth? I guess each person can answer that for themselves. I know what the answer is for me.