Casey Grisez

November 1, 2022

Sticky Notes Lesson #1 - Yoda Moment

I signed up for a month-long, email-based writing course from Cole Schafer of Sticky Notes, Honey Copy, and Chasing Hemingway fame.

He sends a lesson and prompt every day. I’ll have 10 minutes to read and consider the prompt, 40 minutes to write, and 10 minutes to edit before posting publicly.

I’m posting here to not drown my Casey's Notes content. On to day 1...


Through school and sports as a kid and in high school, my time college, good and bad relationships, new and old friendships, and every step career, I’ve been thirsty for feedback. The type of feedback you see in movies and TV shows where the protagonist has the come-to-Jesus moment and he’s never the same again.

I’ve never had that moment.

Today’s prompt in the Cole Schafer writing course is, “…describe your ‘Yoda Moment’. You're a young Luke Skywalker brimming with potential but you're in desperate need of direction. One day, Yoda steps onto the scene and gives you some unsolicited advice.”

I’m writing this the morning after the assignment because I’ve wracked my brain to come up with my Yoda Moment. I got nothing.

I’m not sure if others view me as unable to accept feedback or if I just haven’t done anything dumb enough to warrant a Yoda Moment, but I’m coming up empty.

Sure, I’ve had some course correction moments — the time I bladed a flop shot on a practice green and my high school golf coach told me I could’ve killed somebody (he wasn’t wrong and I was lucky). Bad breakups where I learned hard lessons that I went ahead and didn’t apply to the next relationship. Hard conversations with my parents where we just didn’t see eye-to-eye.

But I’ve never had the moment that changed my life.

As I write this, I realize maybe I’ve been resistant to receiving feedback. Maybe Yoda Moments are less about the one giving the feedback and more about the one receiving the feedback. In the writing prompt, Cole talks about his Yoda Moment where a middle-aged, potbellied, balding guy runs circles around him while doing basketball drills. Maybe Cole was just at the point in life where he needed the feedback, where he subconsciously knew that he was half-assing his drills (and other parts of his life) and was ready for his Yoda.

I think a part of a Yoda Moment is awareness of the world around you. A humility to realize you don’t know all the answers and appreciation for humanity’s shared intelligence. You never really know where you’ll find your Yoda Moment.

One of my weird pet peeves is when people wear AirPods in a grocery store. I’m not the type to chat someone up while looking at the 87 different types of cheap coffee, but I think openness to the old lady asking for help to reach the top shelf or the shared misery of finding the dry parmesan cheese (is it by the cheese or the pasta? I always guess wrong) is part of the human experience. When someone has in their AirPods, my read, fair or not, is that they see themselves as too important to join the rest of us in the experience of being annoyed in the grocery store.

But maybe I’m wearing proverbial AirPods as I go through life. Had I been open to it, maybe I would have had my Yoda Moment in school or at work or in the grocery store. Maybe Cole had a hundred other possible Yoda Moments in his life, but he didn’t see them because he wasn’t open to them. Maybe it wasn’t until that day in the gym that he allowed himself to see the world around him, hear the feedback that he was half-assing his drills, and learn the lesson he needed.

Maybe I’ve had a hundred opportunities for my Yoda Moment and haven’t had the humility to see them.

AirPods you must take off, and Yoda Moment you will have.