The Journey Has Begun

My first blog post published, but not my first blog post written. I have written and deleted at least 4 parts or complete posts. I have been indifferent, afraid, and generally lacking confidence in myself when it came to publishing a post. This has also been an apt description of my first couple weeks as an assistant principal. What has changed? A realization this is just not going to work.

I started off my first couple weeks as assistant principal hesitant, doubting my abilities and self deprecating in conversation with staff, all the time feeling uneasy and out of place. This translated into stress-filled decisions and worry-filled nights as I reflected each day on what had transpired. I found I was beating myself up over what should have been clear paths to take, and missed opportunities for successful interactions with students, parents and colleagues. I knew the right answer when I reflected, why didn’t I see it in the moment? I was discovering the power of doubt.

In the last week I realized I needed to make a change. I needed to believe in my abilities and do what I was capable of. I needed to remember that if I made decisions based on a principle I believed in, “What was best for our students?” (Covey of course) I would most likely be making the right call. That decision, along with all the inspirational stories and articles I have heard/read thanks to my developing PLN, and some very effective mentoring from administrators in my division (yes I get to work with George Couros, I know I am lucky), have helped me turn the first corner in my administrative career. It feels great!

So the journey has begun, and I feel better with each passing day. I have found the time to get into classrooms and interact with students, I have done my best to support my colleagues and I have had great conversations with parents.

I have also made my first blog post… That wasn’t so hard.

6 thoughts on “The Journey Has Begun

  1. Jesse,

    Congratulations on your first post. I appreciate the kind words although they are unnecessary 🙂 If you always focus on what you said, in every conversation, you will have many successful years of administration ahead of you. Great job to you taking the leap into starting a blog. If you continue on with it, you will find the reward you receive from the conversation will be so beneficial to your own practice. Looking forward to more posts 🙂

  2. As a new teacher I have also found the power of doubt very influential. Fortunately, I have colleagues and administrators reminding me that outstanding assessment, innovative lesson plans and brilliant classroom management will come with time and experience. The most important aspect of teaching is developing relationships with students and creating an environment where they are comfortable being themselves and are not afraid to take risks. It is easy to get caught up in the day-to-day struggles and begin to doubt your abilities. I agree, you must ask yourself “Did I do what was best for my students today?” If not, take a deep breath and start again tomorrow. Great first blog Jesse.

  3. I often refer to those moments of enlightenment after the fact as delayed intelligence. I am not sure if there will ever be the time where you will think every decision in hindsight was a brilliant one. The key is going to be your moral compass. Was the decision you made the one that you felt at the time in the best interest of the kids? Sometimes you have time to think before having to give an answer and sometimes you won’t. As a new adminstrator I bear myself up fairly regularly, but I am a life-long learner and once I accepted that fact things became much easier. If you are not reflecting you are not growing.

  4. Excellent first blog post and honest reflection. In a funny way it is comforting to know that everyone deals with doses of self doubt, often we forget that we aren’t the only ones.

  5. Welcome to the blogosphere! I love this, “I needed to believe in my abilities and do what I was capable of.” I think many of us experience this feeling. I can’t wait to read more!

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