This school year has been a constant reminder to me of the need to look at the bigger picture…
Comparing myself to other teachers? Stop. What’s the bigger picture?
Not getting the job I thought I had? Stop. What’s the bigger picture?
Feeling stressed trying to balance life and work? Stop. What’s the bigger picture?
Jealous over other people’s travel plans? Stop. What’s the bigger picture?
And finally, this week I was told I wouldn’t be able to run in my half marathon I’ve been training for this weekend.
So I cried. And grumbled. And got frustrated. And tried to pretend I was healthy.
Why was this run feeling so important? I had finally started to see some improvement in my speed and the hard training I had done was really starting to pay off. That hard work will still pay off.
Why was I doing this run? To make sure that I continued my run training through the difficult winter months. I trained harder than ever before.
What is the bigger picture? I am training for my first full marathon in June. I wanted to be in half marathon shape when I start my marathon training. I wanted to work on my speed and get faster. I wanted to start running 5 days a week consistently.
And guess what? I did all of that and more! I run because of how it makes me feel. I run to keep my body and mind healthy. And I run because I love the adrenaline and accomplishment that I feel after all those runs – not just the races.
So maybe I won’t be out getting a PR this weekend in my race but the training I’ve put in is what is most important. (And that PR will be waiting for me when I’m healthy!)
What does any of this have to do with teaching?
I am slowly starting to look at the bigger picture. Maybe I didn’t get a full time contract this year like I’d wanted. Maybe I didn’t get to put all my wonderful units and projects into place with a class. Maybe I’ve had to struggle a little bit financially when subbing hasn’t come through
But what’s the bigger picture?
I’m learning and growing so much this year in a different way then I had planned. I am learning to make important professional (and personal) connections with people that support me. Time and time again I’m putting myself out of my comfort zone to be more outgoing and open.
Maybe taking the stress of full time work out of the picture has allowed me to grow more as a professional learner in this teaching community?
Life isn’t a race. Work isn’t a race.
I am happy and I couldn’t ask for anything better than that – The full time job will come when I’m ready for it.
And in the meantime I have some hours to clock in my running shoes.