What Is Your Idea Worth Spreading?

Twenty-nine speakers will convene, one week from today, at the World Café Live at The Queen to host a series of talks as a part of the 2015 Wilmington TEDx Conference, Pioneering & Innovating.

That’s super exciting right?  Well the most exciting part is,  I was selected to share the stage with some of the most phenomenal men and women and share my ‘idea worth spreading’!  When I received the email, to say I was stoked would be an understatement. I have literally dreamed about doing a TEDx Talk for years. I have even visualized and seen myself on stage presenting, but I must admit, coming up with my ‘idea worth spreading’, wasn’t as easy as I thought.

I had mulled over several ideas in my head, watched other TED Talks for inspiration, and jotted pages of notes. I had tons of things I could share, I mean I’m a transformational speaker. I share all the time, but I had to dig deep to realize what was my idea worth spreading?  Was it my story of redemption? Was it my idea for at risk youth? Was it my path to becoming a successful entrepreneur?  I reached out to two people for assistance. First, I called on Ajit Matthew George, TEDx Wilmington organizer. He assured me that my problem wasn’t coming up with the idea worth spreading, it was that I had so many things I could share, and wanted to share I just needed to choose one. Next I called Marla Blunt-Carter, Assistant Professor at the School of Social Work at Rutgers University.  Not only does she use TED Talks as a part of her curriculum, she knows what I want to share. She  helped me tie my ideas all together so that  it made sense; not just to me but to my soon to be global audience.

So what is my idea worth sharing? How to move beyond your past and create an extraordinary life.  There is this idea that when we are in a bad situation, we will do whatever it takes to escape it. I ask clients all the time, what are they willing to do to ‘escape’ their situation. “Whatever I can!” I found myself in bad situations practically my entire life and I used to believe the same thing.  The reality is, most want to, but are simply so programmed by past experiences, they eventually give up trying to escape.  Their inaction keeps them in an undesirable situation and they just choose to accept it. I want people to consider that the limitations of their past are self imposed and has them is a prison of their own making, thus living an ordinary life.  Once you acknowledge this programming, you can choose to take control of your destiny, refuse to give up and live a life of true freedom, the Extraordinary life. Do you wish you were further along in life? Are you living the life you’ve been ‘programmed’ to live?-The Ordinary; or are you living the live you were ‘created’ to live?; The Extraordinary! Come find out on Wednesday, October 28th. Its over 90% sold OUT!

To come hear my idea worth spreading and all of the other amazing ideas register at http://www.tedxwilmington.com

Please share!

tedx Allison T Moore

Do Prisons Reform Criminals?

Many people hold on to the expectation of prisoners being restored by some special class, some program, some psych doctor, or group therapy. A professional was to brief through an inmates file and decide what was necessary in order for the offender to be “changed or corrected.”

I myself was labeled as a habitual offender with an arrest record dating back to 1988, and was given “the” intervention plan. None. How was I to be committed to prison for 1 1/2 to 7 years, expecting to be rehabilitated without a design for treatment? With Delaware prison systems managing about 8,000 inmates in 12 prisons and facilities, Community Corrections supervising about 17,000 probationers and 535 parolees and a budget of about $200 million dollars a year, you have to ask yourself if what they are doing is working. Better yet, what are they doing? The crime rate in Delaware is 8% above the national average and violent crimes are about 32% higher than other states. The rate of adults under correctional supervision, including prisons, jails, probation, and parole is about 40% higher than the national rate. I believe these statistics are the catalyst for a different approach.

I’ve asked quite a few about their perspective of criminals, their behavior and the idea of prison as punishment and reform, and what many fail to realize is that the overcrowding prison system itself serves as fuel to the cycle it is created to cease. It is merely a holding place with little hope of being effective standing alone. The life typically hardens inmates who often leave worse than they were when they were first committed. The prison population forces long waiting lists and inapt programs with a quick fix approach to deep rooted problems. There is little focus on core criminal behavior which resides in the criminal mind, no focus on real life skills or the tools to cope with life after confinement.

“Three hots and a cot” is the term for prison, which suggests a lax environment, a place to sleep and three hot meals a day. Although confined, prisoners have little responsibility; they don’t wash their own clothes, cook their own meals and they take directions on what to do and when to do it., it is easier to live inside four prison walls than out in the community as a responsible citizen. It is training ground for dependence upon the system, while inside and upon release, that is why so many return. A prisoner released is no different at the end of the sentence without effective solutions during incarceration, pre-release, and post release.

What is needed is a comprehensive approach with more effective methods. The focus should be to put the $200 million where it counts, habilitating the offender. If rehabilitation means to restore formally to former capacity, standing, rank, rights or privileges, than habilitaion is what is needed. Most offenders have never lived a life desired to be restored. Habilitate-to equip, impart an ability, to qualify or entitle. They need vocational training, with job placement. They need employers to forgive them after their time has been served. I’m not sure that “Inmate at Cambridge Springs Correctional Institution” would impress an HR recruiter for any of the “Best Places To Work In America.” In other words, they need to be empowered.