This month here are Onward, we are focusing on the habit Celebrate and Appreciate to cultivate our resilience. We know how good appreciation feels, so we can’t forget to appreciate ourselves. I love this simple ways Elena shares in Chapter 12 of Onward:
- Think of Three Things: At the end of each day or week, select three things that went well, and describe your role in making that happen. Here is an example: My lesson on understanding character development in the novel we’re reading went really well, and Mica, who usually never talks, was really engaged. My role in making that happen was that I spent a lot of time planning this lesson and used a new discussion structure.
- Set an Alarm: Set an alarm a few times a day. When it goes off, take a moment to appreciate yourself for whatever you’re doing right then. You might be surprised to catch your- self doing something really valuable, for which you otherwise wouldn’t have taken stock.
- Write a Letter of Appreciation: At the end of each day or week, write yourself a letter of appreciation. Here are a couple sentences that I wrote to myself during a particularly difficult year teaching: “I appreciate that you weren’t really frustrated today with your first period. I know they are challenging and push your buttons, but you stayed calm and patient with them.” No one else could appreciate how hard it was for me to manage this group of students, but when I started appreciating myself, I felt different. These words were what I wished someone would say, but saying them to myself was cathartic.
- Send a Text-Message Appreciation: As you appreciate yourself, if you are compelled to appreciate others, go ahead and do so! Then you can also appreciate yourself for sending that quick email or text.
And remember that gratitude fuels more gratitude and well-being!!!