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Tactics for Success, No. 8: Read, meditate and think, manage your thoughts.

In her book, The Immigrant’s Way, available in the downloadable Kindle format, or paperbackMargaret W. Wong describes twenty-two tactics the foreign born person can use to ensure her stay in the USA is as long as she wants it to be. We will present for you one of her strategies every week in this space.

8. Read, meditate and think, manage your thoughts.

Just because we do not have permanent status does not mean that we should lose ourselves to the panic and depression and forget to live our lives. If we are constantly worried about the federal government picking us up and jailing us even though we may never have been ordered deported, or about some overzealous police officer calling ICE, we will lose sight of who we really are and where we want to go from here.

We need to clear our minds to focus on what will empower us so that we can improve ourselves and become stronger. We need to control our minds and our attitudes. We are not going to leave our home here anyway, so why drive ourselves nuts just thinking about it? We are all scared of something. As foreign-borns in this country, we are always scared of the police, and because of this we often forget why we are here in this beautiful country in the first place – to raise our children and give them the dignity that they would never get in our countries of birth; to learn English; to be able to walk into a beautiful hotel and have tea in their restaurants like everyone else, which is often not possible in our countries of origin; to be free from harassment and kidnapping; to become the best we can be; and for some, to be the first in our families who came to America, and be the trailblazer. Of course, we love this country even if some of the locally-born residents harbor resentment towards us. All we want is to stay here, make a quiet living, and live here to support our families.