I started my new job approximately a month ago. I am energized, excited, happy, and hopeful. These are positive feelings which bode well for my new start. This is my 22nd year in secondary education. It is my first year as principal. During the summer, my friend, fitness and leadership guru @dymeetworld (find her on Instagram!) posted that “the grass is greener under me.” I really liked that post and idea. So often, when we change jobs, end relationships or move locations, we do so out of the feeling that the grass will be greener in a different situation. The grass can be green, yellow, or non-existent, no matter where you go.
My mindset is what I bring to every experience I have. I go into a new situation with an open mind and hopeful heart. To be happy is an action, not a feeling. It’s not about feeling bitterness and resentment about the past; it’s about challenging me to take new opportunities. I consistently aim to be my best self. The grass is always going to be greener because I’m always looking for the best in even the darkest situation. I feel lighter. I feel free. I feel younger. My last experience prepared me well for the job I now hold. No hay mal que por bien no venga. All experiences are for my growth and progress. Change moves me forward. The grass is green underneath me.
*Thanks, dear friend, for sharing your positivity and wisdom with us. You will continue to inspire me in this new phase of my career.
Every four years or so, I go through a change. This isn’t only career changes. (The 3.5 year itch) It also has to do with the creative communities in which I participate. The longer I am with an activity or community, the more familiar I become with it. The stars fall out of my eyes. Familiarity allows me to see the reality of the people around me and whether or not the activity or community is contributing to my growth.
I used to be on a TV show. The first year I was in star-in-my-eyes newbie. I thought it was the greatest thing I had done. I was happy to meet new people, to have a new social network, and to have a new creative outlet. It was fun, positive, even with the complicated and tedious logistics of being on TV. My second year went well as I expanded my social network. I had gotten my bearings as I knew what was going on. But I began to experience interpersonal drama. As with any close-knit community that spends lots of time working together, conflicts arose. Within the social circle, hierarchies and cliques formed. People expressed their affinities towards one group over another. The group became divided into factions along various lines. So being on the show began to go sour. By the end of my time on the show, I had cut back on the time I gave. I no longer made an extra effort to appear on the show. I had severed ties with several people with whom I had socialized. I moved on at a point when being on the show was still fun. I knew its time had ended.
Years before that experience, I was a club kid for years. I hung with the same group of fellow dancers and followed the same DJs for nearly a decade. Of course, my life went through many changes, both personal and professional. While there were moments of drama, we were able to move past those. I have been friends with some of those people for over twenty years. Whenever we reunite, we recreate the best of those times. Our bonds are still intact. The love that was fostered has transcended time. As I compare both these experiences, it could be that my time on the TV show wasn’t about fostering love.
As I grow within a community, my thinking begins to shift after the second year and definitely during the third year. I see this as positive as it allows me to reflect. I evaluate whether my participation is worthwhile. When I’m no longer being the best version of myself within that social circle or if I feel that my creativity is being stifled by my own lack of effort, by social circumstances, or due to the leadership, it is time for me to move on. I understand when I have completed my growth cycle through a community and outlet.
Creative communities are called to foster love. Where there is genuine respect and love, problems can be resolved. But it’s important for me to recognize when an activity or community has served its purpose. I have grown and accomplished some goals. I am ready to move on to the next project or experience.
Me moving on to new opportunities