Saturday, February 15, 2014

Finding Balance


The past few weeks I have found myself focusing on finding balance. Since we started this school year back in August we have been working ourselves harder than ever in the changing world of education. Whether as administrators or teachers, each of us have given countless hours to our classrooms, our staff's and our own professional growth.

You are an example of your commitment to your own career more than ever. You have the foresight to know that growing yourself as a learner and leader is essential to your survival in this industry.  And with your passion to learn and your desire to guide others you will be able to help others on this path as well.

For us, the learners, social media has enhanced our work ten fold. We have taken to the internet to seek out the guidance and expertise that at one time in our careers was only delivered in the "library's" of our buildings.  What was once a district initiative to create PLC's through the work of Rick and Becky DeFour, we have multiplied our contacts exponentially with the growth of our Professional Learning Networks, our PLN's.  We can now seek out experts by simply sending a tweet or reading a blog.  And who those "experts" are has increased multiple times over as well.  And with this ability to be connected all of the time comes a risk that many times we don't even recognize. We begin to lose that balance.

With resources at our fingertips and the internet connecting learners and leaders at lightening speed, we still have to ensure ourselves that we find our balance. This year I have made it a priority to find focus on not just my professional growth but also ensuring that I give as much to my family, my faith and my friends.  With that commitment, I have enjoyed a few new adventures. As an avid runner I have joined a challenge, #500in2014, in which other runners across the world have set a goal for the group.  My family has embraced the cinema and have been checking off the movies leading up to the Oscars. And I write. That itself has been as therapeutic as anything I could have hoped for in my career.

And finally this morning. I woke up and grabbed a cup of coffee and settled into a hockey game.  Not quite the same as the Miracle from 1980, however the atmosphere in Sochi was electric and I could sense the excitement through the television. For the better part of two hours I sat on the edge of my seat, kids joining me as they awoke, and I simply enjoyed the time.  

Today, like other days, I took time out for me, my family and my friends.  I am continuing my commitment to finding the balance.  I would challenge you to do the same.