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Blog #28: An Educators New Years Resolution

It is now officially 2019. A number that I thought by now we would’ve found ourselves living in space, flying through the sky to our houses in the air, or at the very least, have shoes that would lace themselves. But alas the cartoon and pop culture version of myself is let down again by reality. But that leaves me with some things to resolve within myself since society isn’t going to do it for me. I especially am in need of some things to resolve or some might say, create a few resolutions as an educator for the next year. And just like a Southern Baptist preacher, I am going to make three points.


#1: Learn and Read More


Now I realize that I am cheating here by putting two things together, but for me, reading has always been a struggle for me in terms of actually taking the time to read. As a child it took a lot for me to get into a book. It had to be the right book and nothing else needed to be going on in my life. As an adult, I find myself thirsting for all of the knowledge that is available to me, but I don’t want to learn it in some passive way. I want to struggle through new and strange texts to learn how things work and how to weave stories together. Last year, I may have read half a dozen books, give or take, in their entirety. It’s not because I find text to be useless, it’s quite the opposite. It’s that I find what I am reading to be so valuable, that nothing else should stand in my way when it comes to the reading I want to take place. This year however, I have committed myself to read 26 books, and I have an app on my phone installed to keep my accountable (Ya know, since I don’t want to let our computer overlords down). I am going to read for fun, for education, and gain perspective on the way other people think, in hopes that I can help us all find a consensus in a world that only separates itself from the other half more and more every year.


#2: Love More


Now I know what you advocates for S.M.A.R.T. goals are thinking. That goal is not specific, nor is it measurable. You’re right. But it is attainable, relevant, and time sensitive (since I limited it to this year). I have always found myself more of an abstract or ARTistic thinker anyways. So, A.R.T. it is then. But what I mean my love is to not just feel compassion for a student or colleague or family member, but to live it out daily through that old phrase “one random act of kindness at a time.” But while it will sometimes be random, I hope to demonstrate through action, some time this year, to show somebody that is going through something hard, true empathy, compassion, and love. I am not sure what that looks like, but I am sure I will know it when I see it.


#3: Slow Down


I think this one is going to be the hardest for me. I think because I feel that if I have idle time I must be missing out on doing some work that is essential to the survival of mankind. I overvalue myself too much. I need to realize that I don’t need to say yes to everything because eventually it will leave me empty and grumpy.


I also need to slow down so that I can see my family more. I feel like I see my children for maybe 15 hours during the week between getting ready for school, picking up from school, eating dinner, bedtime prep, and finally sleep time. Some days I don’t even get to participate in those things because I have to work on the podcast. I am missing out on my boys growing up. It’s time to slow down and enjoy them.


I feel like with all of these things we can take something and do it every day. We can take an amount to appreciate the job we do without rushing around. We can spend time talking to students instead of hurrying them out the door to get ready for our next class. And we can find the time to appreciate the things in life we have neglected due to busyness of our own making.


Whatever it is, resolve to be better this year than you were the year before.


Thanks for reading,


Seth Tripp