Good morning everyone and welcome to the 295th edition of Monday Moanin Thoughts. Over the weeks since spring break, I have met with several building administrators to listen and discuss the work they do. I have come away with many impressions and at the top of the list is that administrators are very good at identifying the challenges of their job. If you ask them how things are going, you will hear a steady stream of passion about the challenges they are facing. However, when the conversation shifts towards talking about their highlights, there is usually caution, apprehension, reflection, and then some reluctance to share. Why is it that challenges are easy to discuss and highlights are a struggle? Could it be that challenges tend to be more urgent? Continued focus on challenges and what is not going well can rob leaders of the positive influence they need to lead. It is important to recognize and validate all of the many highlights that occur daily. This spring, make a commitment to provide positive ENERGY and celebrate all of the good stuff happening in your organization.
To help with your focus, lets use the word ENERGY as a prompt for your work:
E is for expectations. As the year winds down many times so do the expectations. Reinforce good teaching and planning and hold staff and students accountable for staying focused on doing their best. Don’t coast and finish strong.
N is for names. Bring energy to you school by focusing on calling everyone by their name. Using names can help develop a culture of respect and acceptance. How many students do you know by name? Recommit and get to work on this, study your yearbooks and your grade level picture books. Everyone feels better and connections improve when their name is used.
E is for encourage. Ask yourself everyday, who did I encourage today? This time of year is ripe for students and staff to shut down. When you focus on encouragement, it is motivational, helps reduce shut down, and it helps enhance your building’s positive culture. Be intentional.
R is for respect. This time of year can be an emotional time for many people. It is the time where students tend to make more poor decisions and adults can overreact. It is critical not to make assumptions and quick judgments about individuals and their choices. Lead with compassion, patience, and balance. Everyone will take their cues from you. Respect everyone!
G is for gratitude. Mendler suggests keeping a “Three Good Things Journal”. Each day record three things that went well and what caused the positive experience. This strategy assists you on being thankful and focusing on the good things that are happening in your organization. It also is great modeling for your staff and students. Change your focus and start your journal!
Y is for you. The tone for the remainder of the year is set by you. Are you going to focus only on your challenges? At the end of the day you can only control your actions, attitude, and effort. What kind of ENERGY are you bringing daily to your community? Your leadership and positive influence is needed. Get to work!
Have a great week, keep leading, and find the good stuff.