Our jobs have changed. We hear everyday how we are overworked and over stressed. I get it. Me too. There are weeks that I spend completing hundreds of tasks and taking care of many problems and issues. Some weeks I’m so exhausted I don’t think I can ever get through it all and I feel like the hecticness will never end.
Compounding our struggle is the changing world of education. Seems politians have an idea of what changes need to be made. Teachers need to be accountable. No student should be left behind. Teachers should expect great things from their students. All students should show growth. Well Duh. Yeah we all believe that, but creating mandates and laws enforcing ridiculous regulations is not working. Really. It is only discouraging our great teachers.
That is why I think Ashley Judd was a refreshing keynote for ISTE 2014 this year. She spoke about ‘hurting, healing and helping.’ It wasn’t depressing to me. It was inspirational. It speaks to the ‘light at the end of the tunnel.’ It speaks to hope. (And isn’t that what we all need. .. A little hope that things will get better?)
Yes. Yes I believe that is what we need. It is what teachers need. It is what administrators need. And it is what our students deserve. Hope.
So here are my takeaways from Ashley Judd’s keynote:
- You are a human being not a human doing. We will continue doing,doing,doing but we need to remember that we are a human being first. We can not be defined by our tasks but rather our impact on humanity.
- When you burnout it is a tragedy. She invited us to take care of ourselves. I see teachers and administrators all the time not taking care of themselves. They go on full speed until exhaustion sets in. It is ok to take time for family, friends and self growth. Really. It is ok and is so important.
What comes from the head goes over the headWhat comes from the heart goes into the heartThe heart. Yes. It all comes back to relationships. Ashley also said ‘technology cannot take the place of relationships.’We as educators have the ability to touch our students’ lives. We need to listen to them and let them know we care about their whole being not just their brain.I went into tonight’s keynote with the utmost respect for Ashley Judd. I left knowing even more about her and yes respecting her even more. She is right, our dark past can become our biggest asset. Of course that is only if we choose to grow from our past and not allow it to define us or destroy us.I choose to let my past be an asset. I also choose to lead from the heart. What do you choose?