As the new school year approaches, you might be stressing about some of last years problems like student behavior, lack of support, and too much paperwork. Guess what? These thoughts are already setting you up for a bad school year, so stop! Jen Sincero says often in her books, “What you choose to focus on becomes your reality,” and right now, your reality is overwhelmed and stressed for no reason. Instead of focusing on these potential problems, start thinking about what great things you want from this school year.
I know, it seems easier said than done, but you do have control. In order to start refocusing your thoughts and actions to the awesome reality you want, you need to recognize what you’re currently focusing on. To do this, I recommend spending at least 5+ minutes writing down the recurring thoughts you have noticed spending the most time thinking about recently. If you have more time, spending an entire day writing down thoughts as they pop into your head will be even more insightful. Once you finish take the time to reflect on the questions below:
- Are a majority of your thoughts about the things you want or about what you don’t want?
- Are a majority of your thoughts about putting time into things that make you happy and help you grow or about things that stress you out?
- Do your thoughts reflect the reality you want? Why or why not?
After you figure out where your current focus is, you can take control and make the decision to shift your focus. Write down what you want to focus on and what you want your reality to be. I recommend thinking of your ideal classroom and school year. Focus on what things will make this a reality, and what will make you happy this school year. Do NOT let any negative thoughts creep in. Put your new focus somewhere easily accessible so you can refer to it daily as a reminder.
After you finish writing down your refocused thoughts, embrace this new reality fully. When you feel one of those old thought starting to form, stop it. Re-read your new reality and take 30 seconds solely thinking about it. Try starting your day by reading over your new focus for 30 days. Make it apart of your life, because it’s what you want your life to be.
I won’t lie to you and say this is easy. It will take some time to be fully in your new reality and there will be days that you’ll stressed and overwhelmed still. It’s about sticking to it and reminding yourself that you do have control over what you focus on, and that you’re choosing to focus on the good things that you want. When you do that, I guarantee you’ll see more of those good things in your life and less of the negative. Remember, “What you choose to focus on becomes your reality.”
**Note: This is a great PD activity to do with staff to start the school year with some positivity (and you know I’m all about the positivity). I have created a PDF version to download and print. If you like the activity, please share or comment below!