In my past posts, I have talked about how I take some time over the summer to dive into learning things I want to know about. Many times that includes books. I am a book lover; I buy books that look interesting to me, and then they sit on my shelf, collecting dust and looking like I am more intellectual than I really am. Many of these books are on subjects I want to deepen my understanding to include the information in my keynote speeches and training. This summer is the summer of deepening my knowledge of trauma-informed work.Continue reading
This time of the year is for traditions, celebrations, and community. It’s also a time for rest, darkness, and solitude. In some ways, this time of the year is a paradox for me. How can I be both happy and sad at the same time? Can I be in the dark area of my soul and then see the light?
As I have aged, I believe that I have felt this paradox more strongly than ever. I see both sides of the story. I want to be with family and friends, yet at times I just want to sit on my bed by myself. The paradox is confusing. Life isn’t as cut and dried as we sometimes think it needs to be.
I want you to know that if you feel the push and the pull of the season, that is perfect. You are feeling, aware, and knowing that most people’s lives are not like the family photo on the Facebook page.
I work with a small school that I am lucky enough to support with staff professional development working on resilience skills. The resource we use is a book written by Elena Aguilar, Onward Cultivating Emotional Resilience in Educators. It is a wonderful resource, and I have used it for the past two years.
I was first privileged to be part of a small group that read several chapters in the book; there are twelve for each month. However, we had started the book later in the year. Now I am part of an online book club that is reading and discussing the book, plus I am co-facilitating a local book study group of educators and community members at school.
There are three needs that I am currently seeing addressed through both groups:
- The need for community and support. We need to know that we are in this together. The feelings coming up, especially this time of the year, can be confusing. Knowing I am not alone in that feeling makes it okay. Giving voice to what you feel is a path to self-awareness and self-management.
- Learning skills that can be used to build our own resilience. Onward and many other resources are full of skills to develop our resilience. Knowing and implementing those skills can be a way for adults in the school or organization to regulate their nervous system (calm brain and body). There are many ways to regulate, and you can pick and choose what will work for you.
- Stress relief is huge and needed! One of the ways the groups relieve stress for me is through authentic connection. At the beginning of our sessions, we have a set of norms. We talk about having confidentiality within the group. This norm helps to give people a safe space to be authentic and vulnerable. When we feel safe in a relationship, growth and learning can happen.
In my last post, I wrote
“Even when I know better, I don’t do better.”
We go for the immediate rewards of the short sprint when we really need the consistency of the long haul. Building resilience, emotional intelligence, and ways to relieve stress, plus doing it with the support of a community, is the life preserver that we all need. I hope you find that group of compassionate adults who can support you in 2022.
Wishing you all the best in 2022!!
If you want to know more about the upcoming classes in 2022 for Strength-Based Resilience, click here!
Rain, Rain, GO AWAY! That’s the chant we are saying in northern Minnesota. The cloudy skies and the drizzle over the last two weeks have put a damper on my mood.
I decided that the best way to handle the gray skies and the gray mood is to have a little fun with it. In my most recent video, I demonstrate the five competencies of Social and Emotional Learning with a little Minnesota humor.
I hope you enjoy it and please help me reach my goal of 100 subscribers by clicking on the red subscribe button to receive notification of new videos.
A “chatterbox” child can sometimes be viewed as a distraction in a classroom.
However, what would happen if that negative behavior was reframed as a potential strength?
How would your attitude towards the child change?
Spotting strengths in a child or youth can be easy when you use the three suggestions in the video.
Strengths spotting can be one tool you use to bring personal learning to yourself and the children you interact with.