Jump back in time with me to 30 days ago: it was the night before the 95th Oregon FFA State Convention started, and I was nervously preparing. Tomorrow would be a day full of interviews, connections, and long-lasting memories. Fast forward to the end of convention: I couldn’t stop thinking about how this seemed unreal and how excited I was. But through those four days, I was starting to forget about all the little, special moments. One of the most common questions I would get is “What are you most looking forward to?” Now, this isn’t a bad question, but I realized I had started focusing on what was to come and forgetting about the present. I wasn’t appreciating every moment as much as I should have.

During spring break we had onboarding, which was our first state officer training. The first night Kylie, Ryan, Camille, Alicia, Mary, and I were talking about what we were all most excited for. We were mentioning events like National Convention, Leadership Camps, and State Fair. What we failed to mention were the little things. During our training we were reminded how we need to focus on living in the moment. At first, this sounded easy. But then I realized that so many times we start dreaming about the future and we forget about the meaningful car conversation we just had or that person we just met.

Oregon FFA, I challenge you to focus on the now instead of the future. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not bad to look forward to what’s to come as long as we aren’t too focused on it. Don’t forget about those personal or team goals because you are thinking about what’s to come. So, when people ask you “What are you most looking forward to”, don’t forget about the powerful, small significant moments.

With love and excitement,
Jael Cruikshank, State President