I recently sent this announcement out to my students about the importance of "Showing Up." I think this is a good lesson not just for my students, but for myself, and for people in general.
I have observed many students arriving late, leaving early, missing class, coming to class unprepared, and not participating in class discussions. This is bad.
Participation is 10% of your grade. Will you earn participation points if you frequently arrive late, leave early, miss class, come to class unprepared, or don't participate in class discussions? No.
But the main reason you should avoid these behaviors has nothing to do with participation points. The main reason you should avoid them is because of the kind of person you should strive to be.
You should strive to be a person who Shows Up. A person who Shows Up is someone who fulfills his commitments and takes care of his responsibilities. This is true both in school and outside of school.
Sure, there are extrinsic benefits to Showing Up. Professors will recommend you for scholarships, internships, awards, and other opportunities. Employers will promote you and give you greater income and authority. Family members and friends will look up to and admire you.
But the most important benefit to Showing Up is intrinsic. You will have the authentic sense of pride and self-worth that comes from consistently honoring your commitments. You will have the satisfaction that comes from knowing you are a person who Shows Up.
So start Showing Up, both in this class and in your other classes, and both in school and outside of school.
That is all.