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Tuesday, Jan 22nd

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Ants work, a short story

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When my son Johannes was between two and three years of age I would put him in our wheelbarrow and give him rides around our property at Apple Valley Ranch in Tijeras New Mexico.  One of my favorite things to do with my son was to stop and watch ants busy at work. As Johannes and I would watch the busy ant activity I would point to the ants and say “ants work.” I knew that as a two-to-three year old my son didn’t know what I was talking about but I kept up the practice until he could repeat it himself.  Over time I would explain to my son what I meant by saying ants work.

Ants are some of the smallest life forms on earth but their collective accomplishments are legendary across the planet.  What the individual ant lacks in size is overcome through caring, cooperation and community. The ant colony is the epitome of what it means to have a shared vision.

Right now as Gallup prepares for its local elections the example of the cooperative ant colony is appropriate.  With more than 75,000 visitors moving through Gallup annually, some traveling from as far away as Europe and Asia, it’s clear that the world knows there is something special about Gallup and the surrounding communities, but there is also a need for healing.  The city desperately needs more infrastructures.  However, infrastructure doesn’t occur without the participation and contribution of qualified individuals, who in turn require proper education and incentives that provides the city with its own return on investment.

As we prepare to elect our next officials it’s important to keep in mind that those we elect have critical roles in the health of our community. Gallup and the surrounding reservations are more than a small town and places on the map but instead a series of colonies that require total caring, cooperation and community to obtain the vision we all have for them.

After Johannes’ fifth birthday I asked, “So what is that ants do and what can we learn from them son?” He said proudly, “That ants work to build a strong community so they can survive.”

Through caring and cooperation we grow and succeed. Ants work.

Coach G

Greg McNeil is a StrongFirst Instructor, Professional Strength & Conditioning coach, Licensed Clinical Counselor (LPCC), Life Coach, Author, and the owner of Gallup School of Strength (www.gallupschoolofstrength.com).

By Gregg McNeil
For the Sun