Box Out

How many of you are familiar with the basketball phrase “Box Out?” 🏀 Growing up, my older brother played basketball and was positioned as the Center and since a large part of his role was to protect the paint and get rebounds we constantly chanted “box out, box out” during the games. As it relates to basketball “boxing out” means guard your opponent and keep them from the basket to prevent them from getting the inside position for the rebound. However, as it relates to what I’m experiencing right now “boxing out” means guarding my heart and my interests, and preventing others who may have an inside position from making me choose one path to take over another.🔑

Personal Update

Currently I am preparing to execute my research study and collect data for my dissertation. In addition to this, I am searching for job positions to kick start my career post graduation. As my research interests revolve around addressing disparities in education, my educational background in Social Work (BSW and MSW), Education-Curriculum and Instruction, Supporting High Needs Populations (M.Ed), and Public Affairs (Ph.D.) creates a wide window of opportunity for me. However, I have found that when searching for job positions they are often tailored to one specific area or box 📦(social work, education, or public affairs), and to apply I must select one. 💡As a scholar who has been trained to approach social justice issues from an interdisciplinary and holistic perspective, this boxed in approach to job searching has lead to me partially feeling confined, but also challenged to market my multipotentiality clearly within all three fields.

Multipotentiality- (1) an educational and psychological term referring to the ability and preference of a person, particularly one of strong intellectual or artistic curiosity, to excel in two or more different fields. (2) the ability to select and develop any number of career options because of a wide variety of interests, aptitude’s, and abilities.

In a recent conversation with a colleague, multipotentiality was mentioned and I have come to realize that it may be a staple concept that allows me to “BOX OUT” and secure a position that is tailored to me, not simply one that I fit into or am rebounded into as a secondary option 🔑. As my educational background supports my ability to and passion for making education equitable for all students from a micro, mezzo, and macro approach, I realize that this is an added benefit to who I am as a candidate for any position, and that I must highlight this. I realize that I am one “product” and instead of diving my abilities into categories for each box, I must own who I am collectively as it relates to my interests, abilities, and aptitude and ultimately BOX OUT‼️

Lessons Learned

  1. Sometimes you have to adjust your approach…it’s not only about what the position is searching for, but also what you bring to the table.
  2. It’s ok to brag on yourself…identify what sets you apart and what makes you unique by highlighting your skills and abilities.

Parting Note

Always BOX OUT…do not grant your opponent or the individual(s) with the inside position the honor of dictating your direction. Take on an unconquerable spirit and adjust your position, highlight your skills, and take your shot!💫

Motivational Scripture 🙏🏽

Joshua 1:7- “Be strong and courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go.”




  1. ROZ
    October 23, 2019 / 3:44 pm

    I really love and value that statement , why fit in when you were born to stand out. You just giving me insight into how to help my grandson Aiden. He really is different. Thank you Ms. Mack great job.

    • rachaeldmack
      November 6, 2019 / 2:24 pm

      Hi Auntie Roz, thank you so much for reading and commenting. Aiden is a gem, and don’t you ever let anyone tell you differently!

  2. Gina Mack
    October 23, 2019 / 7:24 pm

    You’re well qualified so by all means box out.
    Love you❤️

  3. Carl Marc
    November 21, 2019 / 10:44 pm

    Multi potentiality is interesting phenomenon because it seems to have different emotional attributes associated with each skill set.
    I think our hyper social society sometimes makes it hard to appreciate multi potentiality

    • rachaeldmack
      November 22, 2019 / 7:27 am

      Hi Carl,
      Thank you for your comment. I completely agree, and think that as millennials society often paints the picture that we are “scatter brained” and don’t know exactly what we want to do. However, times have changed and instead of having one “box” that we fit into, we have realized that we can be in multiple “boxes” simultaneously that are representative of our various interests and passions.

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