Lately I have realized more and more how important it is to stop and take time to reflect. This is a habit that helps both personally and professionally, but I find that in our profession we do not build in that time often enough. We are so busy running from meeting to meeting, visiting classrooms, coaching teachers, that we rarely take time for something that can truly help us become stronger, more capable leaders. Reflection.
I myself struggle to slow down. Being from New Jersey I have always been teased because of how fast I talk. I do not have a natural habit of slowing down and thinking about my work. I am working on developing this habit. Sometimes I find that actually writing my thoughts down (in a journal, in a blog post, in comments to others’ blogs, in tweets) helps me reflect and walk away with new thoughts and ideas. Other times talking to my colleagues helps me gain a new perspective. Most often, my commute to and from work is where I do my best thinking and reflecting. But none of it is a consistent habit yet.
I believe that if we do not give ourselves time for reflection, it will not get done. In order to build this habit, I’m going to try to give myself more structured time in my daily schedule. I want to think about what is working, what is not working, what my future goals are, and what I’m doing to support the vision of our district as well as my own professional goals. I can only become a better, more focused leader by taking the time for reflection.
How do you take time to reflect on your work?