You are the Author of Your Own Story: 2/7/2021

This past week, I participated in Lindsay Titus' Mastering Me Master Class. This free three day experience was truly transformational, which made it perfect for my #oneword2021. If you can't tell, I am a huge Lindsay Titus fan. In a world where negativity abounds every time you turn on the TV, all of us need to focus on loving ourselves more and making sure our actions align with our beliefs. Participating in this three day class helped me supercharge this mission.

What is Your Foundation?

In my #oneword2021, I focus on TRANSFORMATION, being the best ME I can BE. But in order to do that, I need to truly understand who I am and find ways to BE an even stronger ME. We began this on Day 1 by exploring the foundation of ourselves. We asked how we described ourselves, Many words came to mind as I did this:

innovator, educator, presenter, mom, wife, blogger, author, creative, lifelong learner, risk taker, focused, collaborative, grateful

At first, I wanted to write words like runner, healthy and active, but I stopped myself. Those were things I wanted to be, but didn't feel like I deserved to write them yet. As these self limiting beliefs rang in my head, I realized that if these descriptions were things I valued then, I should include them.

I run 3x a week using C25K. I am healthy and track my food. I am active and aim for 45 minutes of physical activity each day.

Expanding Who You Are

After we came up with these descriptors, we discussed that these descriptors are truly unique to us and our beliefs hold them together. Many times, if our beliefs are self limiting, it can make it hard for our identity to come through. I love when Lindsay shared this:

Our INNER thoughts become our OUTER reality!

Who are we capable of being? What can we do to be the person that we want to be? We can figure out what is serving us and what isn't? This rang very true for me. In the last year plus, as I started to take risks. I figured if I didn't at least try, nothing would change.

To begin with, I wanted to present at conferences to share my ideas with other educators, so I submitted proposals for conferences. In 2020, I presented at 10 conferences and have 6 conferences scheduled in 2021. In addition, I wanted to write a book, so I started writing each day. Pages became chapters and in January 2021, I not only finished my book, but I submitted it to several publishers. Now, I am an author with a book coming out this spring!

Not all these thoughts became reality right away, but as I examined them, I realized that my thoughts were limiting me. I wanted to get back in shape in 2020, but as I examined this, I realized it was all routed in what I wasn't doing, rather than what I am doing. This needed to change for 2021.

Align and Anchor Into Abundance

In our second session, we focused on align and anchoring ourselves into abundance. In this session, we discussed the difference between a scarcity perspective and an abundance perspective. A scarcity perspective focuses on the negative- what we don't have, what is missing, while an abundance perspective focuses on declaring who we are and love ourselves. This approach opens us up to everything that is available to us. We need to stop waiting to some signal to get started to live our lives, and just start. Make today the day to start!

This really resonated with me. I definitely grew up with a scarcity perspective. Everything was "bad" and "worry" was a daily ritual. It was a miserable place to be and I always felt like I needed to be the "fixer." In this session, Lindsay shared that our perspectives shift when we allow them to shift. This awareness is key. We get to decide who we are and declare it. No one else gets to write our story. We are the authors of our lives. We write what we desire into existence. To do this, we need to be proud of who we are and train our brains to find meaning even in challenging times. Challenges give us opportunities to grow or level up, Lindsay explained.

After class, I thought a lot about this idea. The day before this class, I was disappointed to find that my session proposal for ISTE21 had not been accepted. Could I find the meaning in that challenge? Earlier in the year, when I hadn't been selected as a Google Innovator, I realized that it was not the right time for me to participate as the demands on my time as a tech coach during virtual learning were intense. Having one less thing gave me more time to help my colleagues and school family.

So I reflected on my ISTE challenge. I thought about how when I applied to present at ISTE, publishing a book was a dream. Now, I am going to be a published author this spring. Could I take the time that I would have dedicated to my ISTE presentation and repurpose it for good? Maybe I could use that time to work on work on preparing my first keynote. Maybe, I could use that time to do something special with my husband on our anniversary on June 22nd. The possibilities were endless and exciting:)

Focusing on Growth, not the Gap

The last class began by Lindsay sharing her vision of goals as habits that will get us to our future versions of ourselves. If we want something different, we need to be something different. As I looked at my #oneword2021 again, TRANSFORMATION, and my underlying goals, I was pleased to see that I had focused on habits that will take me to my future version, transform me. These habits focus on growth and gratitude.

I love waking up every morning reading to continue by pursuit of lifelong learning and writing to continue to reflect and grow. Afterwards, I love doing either C25K or taking a walk as I focus on being active. Then, I follow this with a healthy breakfast, making sure I commit to being healthy. I start every day with these habits and continue these thoughts as the day goes on by adding 3 Gratitude Notes and a Daily Reflection throughout the day.

I am the expert of ME!

We all have strengths, things that we are great at. These are things that other people come to you for. I know that I am an expert at finding innovative ways to integrate technology into instruction. When someone at school has a question about technology, I am their go to. I love that and enjoy helping others discover best practices. But there are also things that I am not an expert in. In our final class, Lindsay discussed this idea and how we should not let what we can't do become obstacles instead of asking for help. This resonated with me. It is one of the reasons that I love being part of a PLN. I know that I can reach out to them and find experts on things that I don't know yet and learn from them. The Teach Better Administrator Mastermind has been instrumental in helping me with this in the past two months.

Yes, I am an expert in some things and I am THE expert of ME! No one knows ME better than myself. I know my strengths and also know where I need to grow, I know what I desire most- what's on my heart and on my mind. I need to make decisions that align with this. I need to determine what actions are serving me and which actions are not.

I am the author of my story and I get to write it every day. How can I work to make sure that my values align better with my actions? How can I focus on abundance and growth over scarcity and the gap? There are no right or wrong answers in this pursuit, it's a journey and I plan to take each day as an opportunity to grow, get better, be better, live better than I did the day before.!

Thank you Lindsay and the group who completed Mastering Me with me. I loved our 3 day journey and can't wait to start writing the next chapter of the story of ME as I begin to IGNITE MY LEGACY today:)