When you hear the words professional development your face may look differently at different phases in your teaching career. I admit I feel professionally developed after 22 years of teaching.
A few weeks ago I walked into professional development with an open mind. It is always a scramble for me when the kids don’t have school but I have to work. This is when I wish my kids had a step daddy.
I made it on time and that was a blessing. I sat in the cafeteria and tried my best to relax and turn off my mind from wandering to a million other things happening in my life at the moment. The valentine candy in the middle of the table had my attention and was definitely a bonus. Sitting with colleagues that I don’t normally see during the day was really a special treat.
The professional development was a part of the Leader in Me training. The presenter was great and made us feel comfortable to share our thoughts. I think that my focus was supposed to be on my teaching career and my students. But I found that the mini activities really made me focus more on my personal life, and my ability or lack of ability to trust.
There was one activity called Who Would Follow You? This really spoke to my soul. I began to reflect on leaders. The first person I thought of was Moses leading the people out of Egypt. Watching The Ten Commandments over and over with Sydney might have a little to do with that choice.
Then I thought of Jim Jones and all of the people who followed him and drank the kool aid. It reminded me that you need to be careful about who you choose to follow.
I listed four groups of people who would follow me in no particular order.
-believers of Christ
Next, I had to reflect on why they would follow me. Well, I love my wine and I tend to make friends with those who enjoy the same pleasures that I do. Autism changed my life and taught me that I wasn’t built to break. My faith in God gave me the ability to overcome many challenges. I would hope that other people might see my struggles as a testimony and not a burden.
I realized early on that if I kept complaining about my circumstances to every person I saw. I was going to alone and struggling all by myself.
What makes a good leader? Do you have leadership qualities ? Are you a leader or a follower?
I don’t see myself as a leader. I believe I have some leadership qualities. But I can be wishy-washy! And I don’t think that I can make a decision on the spot. I have to analyze and go in my prayer closet before I can decide.
This professional development helped me to realize why I followed certain people in the past. It made me think that some really weren’t the best leaders. They were smooth operators that Sade sings about in her song.
I want to invite people on a journey with me. I may not lead them all of the way. But we can all go in the same direction and enjoy the view.
Who would you follow?