Throughout my life, as a child, a teenager, a young adult, and as a professional, I continue to rely greatly on my resiliency. Resilience is such an important factor that allows me to continue to be a positive person and not overwhelmed by negativity or disappointing situations. For those of you who may be unsure, resilience is defined below:
Resiliency is essential for professionals in leadership positions. According to Dan Holland in his blog post entitled, The Importance of Resilience in Leadership, Dan says:
“Change in the workplace is inevitable, and it can knock even the most seasoned leader off their feet. But leaders who are determined to bounce back after a setback and deal effectively with the changes are the leaders that inspire team loyalty.”
As leaders in education, resilience if important in everything we do.
We often take risks that may or may not work out. We are actually leaders in risk-taking and if we are not, we should be! If we want our educators to take risks in what they do within their classrooms, then we must model this. Along with risks though, sometimes comes failure. But, as a resilient person, this “failure” is actually a learning experience. We learn from all our mistakes and failures. As a resilient person, we get up, dust ourselves off, reflect, change, and start again.
As educators, we often willingly hand out trust to people others may not. This is a big part of our job. We need to trust that our parents are doing the best they can to support their children. We trust that our teachers are positively influencing each student in their class. We trust that they are doing their best to meet develop relationships and meet the individual needs of their students. We trust that our students are doing their best with what they know and the abilities they have. We trust people. We trust the agencies who deal with our families. We trust. That is our job. Sometimes, our trust is broken. Often our trust is tested. We must not, however, let that impact us in our future actions. We must continue to be trusting of all. Our trust must be resilient.
Disappointment and Rejection
At times, we work hard and in trying to best meet the needs of our students, we put ourselves out there in different ways. We may try to have vulnerable conversations which may or may not be well received. We may ask for help from others who give us not so good advice. We may complete different grant applications, grant proposals, or even job applications which may or may not be successful. We often put our heart and soul into our work as leaders in education. It is a big part of what we do. It is an important part of who we are. In doing so, however, we can feel deep disappointment and rejection when things do not go the way we hope. We must be resilient in these situations. We must rise above these times and know that these things happen for a reason and that it is all okay. Resiliency.
As educators, we often hear the very sad stories of many of our families. Stories of abuse. Stories of rejection and abandonment. Stories of neglect. Those stories are very difficult to hear and to witness. Each and every one of those stories break our fragile heart that cares so much. Each of those stories though, renews the need for us to be resilient and to model and teach this resilience to others.
As leaders in education, a big part of our job involves our ability to be resilient. Our ability to stay positive and move forward is essential to our effectiveness as leaders and educators. So, when you find yourself in a position where you feel overwhelmed, hurt, frustrated, and you might just feel like throwing in the towel, remember you have students and other educators relying on you. They are relying on your leadership and ability to move them forward in the face of challenge.
How resilient are you?
How do you maintain your resilience?
How do you model resiliency?
How do you teach others to be more resilient?