My word for 2017 is very simple-
In 2017 I hope to slow down, breathe, and let things "be"; to step back and observe things as they are, without judgement or trying to fix it, which is particularly challenging in this line of work. It is funny how as leaders we preach often but sometimes do not practice what we preach. I am guilty of this, as I often stress to my staff and students to be more mindful, to take in the moments, and to take care of themselves. In a typical day, though, you will find me moving from one thing to the next, hoping to check things off the list that never ends. There are times of quiet when I actually catch myself running out of breath and my heart racing, thinking about what is the next fire is that I need to put out. Getting ready for work in the morning sometimes feel like a race to beat the clock, though I don't even know why I am hurrying. My days typically end exhausted and wondering how long I can keep up this lifestyle, tending to my school community as well as my family of 5.
So as I enter the new year, I hope to "be" the husband, father, leader, and colleague that doesn't just talk the talk but walks the walk. To be more present in the moment, to take time for those who need me most, and to let be what is right and also what is not. Most of all, I am going to be kinder to myself, be the leader that I want to be, and not apologize for it. What else can I "be" but me?