The T in L.E.G.I.T. is what I needed to bring my summer to a close and transition back into what I love professionally and personally. The T stands for Together. When it comes down to it, we are all better together. Time to revisit trust! To create opportunities. To feel confident. To own my summer. To be the best version of my vision. To open my eyes, my arms, and my heart… to find that place that I strive to be. To Be ME! But this could not be done alone… I needed my people and together we built a better me for a greater tomorrow!
I find that when I am on a specific journey in life that I have a tendency to walk alone. Not because others are not there for me. It is more like me being me… I go back to my childhood instincts. My survival mode. My way of fixing things… on my own. I admit, this is not the best laid plan. But that is an issue in itself. When was the last time I created a plan for me? Not me the teacher. Not me the wife or the mother. Not me that others need in their world. Me. Simply Me.
It’s not easy to do… to take time for yourself. We often tell ourselves that there is “No I in TEAM” and when do we really allow ourselves to be anything but a team player? I am built to take care of myself so that I can serve others. I just forget along the way that I need others too. Others help to create a better me. Others push back on my ideas and help to grow them into something larger than I could have dreamed. Others add their perspective to remind me that mine is simply that… mine. My guard goes up… my heart tends to fight the sensible understanding that I can lean on others, but then comes the jolt…
The jolt of reality that I can be me, broken me, put together me, flawed, imperfect, risk-taker, and at times too much me and yet I will always be better when I am TOGETHER with others.
To be a better me definitely means being with others. Crazy, but true. Being with others that pour goodness into my life the way I try to do to theirs. Here are 4 ways that I made sure I was intentional about putting myself out there with others when my instinct said otherwise.
- Put it on the calendar! There is something about putting a date on a calendar that tells the brain don’t you dare break that plan. I was raised that when you make a commitment you fulfill it. End of story. So I did just that. Bike ride with my son… on calendar. Lunch with good friends… on calendar. Read a book that I had been waiting for the release date for over a year… put it on calendar. Stop into a friend’s office to see what his new job is about… calendar. Jump into a teacher Twitter chat that threw unfamiliar questions at me… calendar. Dinner with hubby… calendar. This is how I became intentional about being with others that filled my heart, fueled my soul, and rekindled the fire that burns inside me.
- Say yes! Often I tell myself to say no in order to not add too much to my world that I continuously strive to balance. But this summer I wanted to say yes. Not the easy yes, when my make-up is on and I am feeling fabulous. I am talking about the times I am being reclusive, not feeling like getting ready, or do not want others to see inside my heart when I am not completely put together. The times that I may not be able to help them or be my bubbly self. So I did just that… yes, I will go to the museum even though my heart is beating out of my chest and I feel like I am going to cry. Yes, I will meet you at the pool even though I don’t know if I am ready to be seen by others who will ask me if I am okay yet with the passing of mom. Yes, I will leave my house a mess so that I can grab a few hours of catch up with a colleague. Yes… the kind you say when it is not comfortable. The kind that puts you together with others and sends you home a better you.
- Sit On Your Thoughts! I use this with my students and my own children, but somehow it slipped my brain to use myself. I could be surrounded by 50 people, but when I was too busy chatting up a storm it felt like I was alone. One isolated point of view… one long winded rambling sentence. Then I would walk away no better than when I entered the conversation. Now, I am intentional about sitting on my thoughts so that I can hear those of others. Together we create a vision of what life really looks like from different perspectives. When you have a spunky, outgoing spirit it takes some getting used to… not only for yourself, but for others. We all become accustomed to what we know. Others were used to me being a chatterbox (and still am, ha!) so at times I would get the question of, “Are you okay? or is something wrong?” Nope… I am just realizing I talk too much! haha! I look at it like I am passionate and it exudes from my being. Yes, that is true, but others are passionate too and if I don’t stop and let them in I will be alone…. alone in my own thoughts. I prefer together.
Here I am ready for the new school year. I am filled with hope, love, excitement, joy, curiosity, and so much more. I have a support system of pure goodness around me on every side. I am loved, supported, pushed, and believed in. I have my family, my friends, my faith, my colleagues and my #PLN (that is growing by the day) that are in this with me… the kind of support circle that only happens together. #BetterTogether