Friday, January 22, 2016

Be Present.


Often we find ourselves thinking ahead about "what's next" and we lose our focus on the "what's now". Our intentions are good. However, it is our actions that can become overwhelming.

Recently I had the opportunity to listen to colleagues talk about their work with Growth Mindset. What they shared was validating and engaging. Great stuff to say the least. As they were presenting I was able to make connections across the board. We were of the same mold. And having read Carol Dweck's work a while back and having been implementing some of the strategies and supporting my colleagues, I realized the need for me to reflect even more so.

I fully engrossed myself in the moment and I became the student during their lesson. It was now my role to gain knowledge from this unique opportunity and to embrace this time. For much of the conversation I could nod in affirmation that I had been, and was continuing to bring, the concepts of growth mindset to my staff. I even believe and am fully aware of the word (and the meaning) of "yet" and each day find an opportunity to apply that word to my work.

What I also discovered during this time and within this lesson was that I have spent a good bit of time thinking ahead and not always keeping grounded to what is happening currently. Like many of you, it is common. I began to realize that there needs to be two lists during my day. They shared their experience with "To Do" and "To Be". And with that, I was hooked.

By no means has has it been a negative experience that I have been working ahead in my professional goals and ideas in supporting teaching and learning. In fact I am often motivated and excited about coming to work each morning because of those very goals and aspirations. Instead, today was a reminder of the importance of being present in what is already being accomplished and celebrating the now. I engulfed myself in the notion of what needs to be done. That is the "To Do's" we each face. And the compliment to that which is the "To Be". That is where my feet are today.

There is a balance between then and now. We have to be reflective but not stagnant. Teachers are yearning for more yet need to be encouraged to embrace the lessons of the day. We have to look ahead, that is what keeps us the innovative educators that we are. Yet at the same time we have to be mindful of the present. We will always have work to do, but we also have to remember where we are.