Cutbacks, more work, and many challenges for educators students across the country. Teachers are great. They do their best with what they have and sometimes their job can be overwhelming. A teacher spoke of her perception that kids aren’t motivated. Can we all relate as teachers and parents? I have used “the work” of Byron Katie for the last few years, it has helped me deal with my stressful thoughts. Because, what we believe, becomes our reality. So I took this teacher through the four questions that Byron Katie developed, I asked her:
“Students are not motivated, is that true?” “Yes,” she said. Question two: “Students are unmotivated, can you absolutely know that is true?”, she paused, and said, “Yea, sure”.
Next question. “How do you react when you believe the thought, students are not motivated?” (This is the question, if we stay with it and really look at what happens when we believe this thought, will bring insight.) She responded, “I get mad, I get frustrated, I feel like I’m spinning my wheels, I feel like who cares if they don’t care,” then she said “I LOOSE MY MOTIVATION TO TEACH”. A good insight to see. When she believes the thought Students aren’t motivated, she becomes unmotivated. Then I asked her the last question,
“Who would you be without the thought?” She paused and said, “Peaceful”. Then I asked her to close her eyes and visualize her class of students without the thought they are unmotivated, and what do you see? “Great kids, that I really care about”. In that moment, she shifted her perspective and actually became motivated to motivate them. She questioned the thought that was making her unmotivated. Check out www.thework.com to learn the process.
I see how I can judge the judgmental people, get angry at people who are angry, and pick on the pick on-ers and when I can see it, I can make another choice.
I was present at the conference Craig was describing in this blog entry. A lot of the ideas he brought us that day have hit home for me. Since I work with students in in school detention, I could really relate to this line of inquiry. I know for sure I felt unmotivated to continue working with at risk students. I needed to find a way to carry on. Throughout Craig’s talk and the remainder of the conference, ideas kept popping into my head. I wrote them down as fast as they came. I decided I needed to “be completely open” with my supervisors, and open a line of communication. I was very careful about how I worded things. It was well received. I think they were frustrated too.
I have always been reluctant to give unsolicited advice. It’s usually unwelcome. Our dean of students called me in to talk. He began by saying, “I hear what you are saying. Tell me your vision of what ISD should be.” I could not articulate anything great without giving it some thought. I promised to do some research on what will work, and get back to him. I have my enthusiasm back. I know there is a “want to” here, and we can look for a ‘how to” together.
wayne, glad you got so much from our time together. I really like the “want-to” vs. “how-to” distinction. (see more at my friend Steve Chandlers http://www.clubfearless.net) I look forward to hearing how it goes with the ISD and how you keep your enthusiasm going. (Enthusiasm is contagious) thanks craig
OMG! What a impact you had on me this last week in Lafayette, LA! Not only was I burned out at home and the office, I feel revived totally in just the short amount spent listening to your insight on life itself in general…. don’t take it too seriously..! WOW! WHAT A GREAT SPEAKER YOU ARE!