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September 2019 - Posts
John Maxwell, a noted author and leadership coach, said," People who add value to others do so intentionally. I say that because to add value, leaders must give of themselves, and rarely that occurs by accident."

One simple way to add value to others is by lifting people up with your words. Your words have the power to raise people up or tear them down. Most people to some extent struggle with self-esteem. Use kind, encouraging, and uplifting words when speaking with others. You never know in what moment those words will be just what they need. 
Posted by cestevens@hcps.us  On Sep 29, 2019 at 5:56 PM
  
I completed a book in early August entitled The Slight Edge by Jeff Olson. One comment that stuck out to me was, "Simple daily disciplines - little productive actions, repeated consistently over time - add up to the difference between failure and success."

We are all creatures of habit. Some habits are good for us. Some are not so good for us. For instance, I had gotten into the habit of not getting physical activity every day. So I made a commitment to walk at least one intentional mile every day. Since Aug. 2 when I made the decision to do this, I have walked at least 1.5 miles daily and as much as 5 on some occasions. For real change to happen for me, I had to make it one of my daily disciplines or habits. 

Now this is not earth-shattering as there are people out there who exercise way more than I do. However, over the course of time this one action will greatly benefit my physical and mental health. 

I encourage you to take an inventory of what your daily habits are and determine which ones you should keep and which ones need to change. 
Posted by cestevens@hcps.us  On Sep 22, 2019 at 9:12 AM
  
Being kind is an intentional act that adds value to the life of other people.

The following is an excerpt from The Portable Pep Talk by Alexander Lockhart that "speaks" to the heart of kindness.

Wouldn't it be a different world if we could learn to become more caring and more unselfish. If someone were to pay you ten cents for every kind word or act that you said or did and collect five cents for every kind word or act, would you be rich or poor? Sharing kindness with others is the most rewarding and fulfilling act you can do. 

Kindness is always returned to the one who sends it out. You reap just what you sow. What you do to and for others tends to come back to you. It has been said that kindness is a hard thing to give away because it keeps coming back to the giver. By helping other people and by doing kind things for them, you will experience an inward satisfaction and joy that is immeasurable. 

There is nothing more comforting, more gratifying than knowing that through a kind word or act you made someone else's day a little brighter or someone else's life a little easier. A kind and generous act will go further, last longer, and be remembered long after the prism of politeness or the complexion of courtesy has faded away.


Check out this one minute video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bNXkV1UkGkE, We Rise by Lifting Others.
Posted by cestevens@hcps.us  On Sep 15, 2019 at 1:20 PM
  
We are typically motivated by what we "get to do," because they are desired opportunities. We get to watch our favorite shows on cable, NetFlix, or YouTube. We get to hang out with friends. We get to take a nap on a Sunday afternoon. Things that we "get to do" often make us happy.

In an Aug. 2, 2018 article of Business Insider, 17 Seriously Disturbing Facts about Your Job, the author wrote that 80% of US workers were dissatisfied with their jobs. Translation: Something they "have to do" versus something they "get to do." 

When you "have to do" something, there is less motivation and desire toward the task at hand. However, it really comes down to your perspective. Check out and share this video with your students, The Power of Perception - Change Your Perspective Change Your Life.

The more our students develop the perspective that learning is something they "get to do," the more impact the learning will have on their lives.
Posted by cestevens@hcps.us  On Sep 08, 2019 at 4:51 PM
  
In 1990, tennis champion Andre Agassi was the face of Canon digital cameras as the company coined the phrase Image is Everything

While that phrase popularized the digital camera of that time, I would like to popularize that Perspective is Everything. Perspective is the way in you see something. Perspective drives your outlook which drives your thoughts, your decisions, and ultimately your actions. How you interpret what you see determines the manner in which you respond to what you see.

I had the privilege of hearing Dr. Adolph Brown (@docspeaks) on August 8 at our Hanover County Public Schools Equity Day professional development. His message about how kids carry around two backpacks solidified for me that Perspective is Everything when it comes to working with students. 

The first backpack is everything visible a kid brings to school in a "backpack," notebooks, pens or pencils, textbooks, etc. The second backpack is what we don't see; what's happening with them on the inside. We don't always know what life challenges each kid may have which why it is so important for us as adults to help them unpack that second backpack. The more we help each kid get through life's challenges, the more each kid becomes empowered to get more out of the tools in the first backpack.

At Lee-Davis, our goal is to maintain perspective on our mission: To empower all learners to be successful. A perspective where ALL means ALL.
 
Posted by cestevens@hcps.us  On Sep 02, 2019 at 10:17 AM
  
 
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