“When is the last time you said, thought or felt I love my work? What were you doing? Who were you with? What was the context?” Bev Kaye
Got it? How long ago was it?
Now let’s go deeper. Analyse that memory. Break it down in terms of ‘Care‘ and ‘Competence.’ Was it balanced? If not and, if you could go back to that moment, what would you do differently to make it even better? Think about your work today. How balanced was that?
The ‘Care/Competence Polarity is yet another lens through which we can, and should, view our work. Interestingly, too much in one column can negatively impact the other. Even the most caring teacher or principal, in the absence of constantly improving their professional practice, can, and will eventually work in a way that is less than optimal and ‘anything below optimal performance negatively impacts on our kids!’
“Care” comes from your ‘WHY.’ If you don’t have, or are not aware of, your theory of action that drives what you do, you are floating without a foundation and susceptible to the next gust of wind that comes along. This may be that feeling of anxiety you have in making a decision or in dealing with a problem that confronts you. The worst thing that educational professionals can do is rely on rules or protocols. I don’t think you can defend them. I do believe emphatically, however, that a decision made from a core value or belief that is clearly articulated is easily defended.
“Competence” comes from the work.
If you haven’t yet, click on the picture above to check out the video.
“What have I done in the last week to improve so that I am better this week than I was a week ago?” Jim Kouzes
We cannot count on serendipity to bring about improvement in any facet of our lives, especially our professional work. Intentionality is critical. What is the specific thing you can do right now to get you there?
Another consideration in the next (process) step to get to balance and to better, is the Skill / Challenge Ratio.
In my intentional efforts I look for opportunities to S T R E T C H. If I play it safe and allow myself to fall in love with my own work I risk falling prey to irrelevance and illegitimacy. ‘Pride precedes the fall!‘
So, after doing the math, what’s your remainder??? Are you maintaining a healthy balance as the ONE that drives the change? The measure of ‘health’ or ‘wellness’ should come in terms of your own and those who you serve. Are the students leaving better off than when they came in? Are your colleagues? How was the conversation you had with yourself on the way home?