Journal Your Way to Success

“Sometimes, I feel like I’m trying to empty an ocean with a teaspoon.”

This was part of a conversation I had with my principal yesterday.

It’s the end of the year. My people are tired. Kids, teachers, administrators, custodians, cafeteria workers, bus drivers. We are all incredibly tired. 

My comment wasn’t about teaching. It was about trying to help students who are struggling. Academically, behaviorally, home life, health, mental and physical.

Some of our kiddos struggle with multiple issues. While they are with us, we do our damnedest to make sure that we provide a safe, stable, nurturing environment for them.

But then they go home. And for some, that’s not a safe place. They will not get what they need while they are there. And some will get things that they don’t deserve.

“Sometimes, I feel like I’m trying to empty the ocean with a teaspoon.”

We all go through these seasons in life. The one where we feel like we are on a hamster wheel and where our efforts amount to nil.

It’s hard to maintain perspective and see the blessings that are around you when you are so focused on that one thing. That one thing that is not working. That one monumental thing. And when you try to move that mountain? Your legs give out.

Something that has helped me, when I start feeling my legs giving out, is a gratitude journal. My routine is to take ten minutes every morning to write down 5 things that I am grateful for. When I do it, it’s a positive start to my day and primes my brain to look for the good in every day. It gives me the energy I need to keep pushing.

Since I’ve been writing every morning (which I love to do), I’ve stopped writing in my journal. I felt like I didn’t have time to do it.

I’m going to make time. It’s an easy way to start the day counting my blessing. It’s an easy way to move past things I can’t change and look for ways to change what I can. It gives me a record of where I was and how far I’ve come. It gives me peace.

It doesn’t have to be a full blown leather bound journal. A spiral notebook or piece of paper works. Heck, put it into your phone. Science tells us that just writing down 3 things daily (you know I’m an overachiever 😁) positively impacts your levels of happiness.

I’m going to start today and see if it helps. I know, logically, there’s only so much you can do in a given situation. I will continue to make progress (not perfection–remember yesterday’s post?) and do the best I can to change the things I can. But while I’m waiting for results, I will give thanks for the blessings already in my life. For now, that’s going to have to be enough. #HappyFix #SelfCare #Gratitude