I Will Truly CONNECT – My #OneWord2016

One can really smile when they experience those few moments in life when that feeling of everything syncing in perfect harmony happens.  I slept peacefully last night because of this Zen moment. 🙂

When Jon Gordon sent a tweet about finding your One Word instead of New Year’s resolutions I thought, I can do that!  I love January 1st.  I love the new, fresh start feeling I get every year. Side note: I also get this feeling in August when school starts. 🙂 I will completely support setting ourselves up for success for once, right!?

And so began the contemplating about what my one word will be. I ran through a million of them: Patience, Intentional, Focused, Peace, Positivity, Loving, Listen, Supportive…..and then it hit me! (Well, really it was more like three nudges within a day’s time!)

I participated in a chat awhile back where people were talking about LaVonna Roth’s Ignite Your S.H.I.N.E. bracelets.  I LOVE the amazing meaning behind them.  I went online yesterday morning and purchased two, one for my daughter and one for myself.  What really stuck with me was the idea that the spoke represents

Later that afternoon I was talking with my mom and she asked about a childhood friend that lives in my area. I gave her a brief, “She is good.  We haven’t really seen each other in forever.”  Then I thought…Really, we haven’t talked in months, but according to FB she seems good.  My mom said, “That’s okay, honey.  That is how life goes.  It doesn’t mean that your friendship is not there still, it just means life gets in the way sometimes.”  So true. But there was this nagging question inside me wondering, does it really have to be like this? Have I really done my part in making time and taking that extra step?  As I began thinking about this on the way home from yoga I said to myself, “I really want to connect more with her this year.”

(One might think it would have hit me by these two things, but it took one more nudge!)

As we sat down for our family D.E.A.R. that night, I picked up a new book called The Zen Teacher by Dan Tricarico.  The first two chapters discussed being in that Zen moment, that “zone” that we all have had and we feel awesome when we find it! He tells us we can intentionally create that Zen moment for ourselves. I have highlighted many parts in this book so far, but the big one that stuck last night was this:

That’s when I felt it!  CONNECT.  Everything goes back to Connecting.  I already know relationships are the heart of everything!  I focus so much of my energy on building relationships with my students and their families because it is important to me.  I strongly feel THIS is what makes my classroom community so special!

The deciding nudge to name my word came from the next question I asked myself,  “Have I focused this much energy on continuing to develop new friendships and connect with ones I already have?
Maybe friends I have lost touch with? My own family members? My coworkers? 

The scary truth and answer that hit me hard was, No.  I think sometimes we work so hard to make those connections with new situations (students, families, communities, coworkers, etc.) that we do not realize the importance of continuing to truly connect with the ones we already have.

To truly CONNECT with someone you must be present, mindful, intentional, deliberate, and all of those other words that were in the front running for my #OneWord2016.  There are many ways this can happen, and they differ for each person.

A few of my ways will be:
1. Stop what I am doing to make eye contact every time someone is speaking to me.
    (That’s a hard one for this multi-task queen.)
2. Reach out and make the extra effort – because it matters.
3. Make someone smile everyday.

Go CONNECT and continue to build those relationships!

Author: Bridget Visser

I am a passionate educator advocating for ALL Children! Love all things around Student Voice, Literacy, Technology, Innovation, Student Design, and Empowering Others in positive ways! I am a learner, energized by connecting with other educators sharing their learning!