Steffan King | Staff Writer
Photo credit: Julie Ostler | Assistant Photo Editor | @jules1lo
Betsy Montoya, assistant director for the leadership program at UVU, shared her story about choosing to remain positive in a negative world to the Center for the Advancement of Leadership (CAL) program at its monthly mastermind meeting in October.
Montoya is a native Utahn, raised in Minorsville. She continued her education at BYU-Idaho where she received her degree in Social Studies Education. She has worked with the CAL program since 2012. Montoya shared many experiences in her life where she could have succumbed to negativity but made the choice to remain positive.
“Positivity isn’t about being naive about the realities of life or ignoring what is true. It’s having a can-do attitude with whatever comes your way,” she said.
Montoya gave several tips on how to identify negative tendencies and their effects on a person’s life. She advised all to pay attention to see if these traits appeared in their lives, and offered ways to promote a more positive attitude.
Montoya encouraged the audience to live a healthy life. “If you’re not taking care of yourself you will not have the energy to have a positive life,” she said.
Montoya also teaches a course on positivity here on campus where she encourages her students to ask themselves, “What do I stand for?”
“Accept that you can’t control others; instead focus on your own positivity,” she said. “It’s up to us if we want to accept that negativity in the world, or put out your own positivity.”
A few students were asked to stand up and tell their own examples of how they chose positivity in their lives.
Devin Perasso spoke about choosing to be happy after his parents divorced. He talked about choosing to believe in himself and choosing happiness through every trial that life had to throw at him.
Liz Woolf spoke about the difficulties of being a mother to disabled children, a full-time student, a wife and active member of her community. She chooses to focus on the things that she does accomplish on a day-to-day basis instead of the things that get neglected, such as housework.
Montoya also invited her husband, Jonathan Montoya, to speak about their struggle on becoming first-time parents. As a young man Jonathan was diagnosed and treated for testicular cancer, and, after their marriage, soon discovered that he was infertile. Jonathan said that there were a number of ways he could have handled the news. He could have gotten angry or depressed, but instead used the information to propel him towards a solution.
“Its all your choice what you allow into your life. Life isn’t perfect but it doesn’t have to stay negative.”
Betsy and Jonathan are now expecting their first baby.