How to teach without stress
Is teaching a hard job? Does it require effort, long hours, struggles to balance the needs of the classroom with those of personal life? It has been so, but the planet is shifting, and the choice is ours.
I believe that life can be grace, and ease, and flow: effortless manifestation. This energy is strong within me when I am at home, when I meditate or walk the woods, or settle in my studio to write.
Effortlessness at work, however, feels like more of a challenge. What does flow look like from the office of a reading specialist? How can a classroom teacher balance lightly between herself and those she has agreed to teach?
I know that effortlessness can be achieved, and I am committed to reaching it. As I sit here in meditation, eyes closed or fingers flying across the keyboard, I look at the energy of my job. My to-do list flows into my head: curriculum, materials, ordering, mentoring, training; all these frogs which, apparently, I must devour at one and the same time. Gulp, and gone. If only it were so easy.
How do I make this job flow as balanced and grounded as the life I want?
The first answer that comes as I look at it is,
Take responsibility only for myself. Carry what is mine to carry; leave others with what is theirs.
This goes against the grain for so many teachers and other helpers. I know that when I first worked as a reading specialist, I tried to carry the whole school on my back. But I have learned since then that carrying others merely interferes with their own growth process, and can even send the message that I don’t believe they are capable of succeeding without my support. Therefore, it is for everyone’s highest good that I release what is not mine to do, carry, or fix.
I release the role of mediator between administration and staff.
I release the need to change how anyone teaches.
I release the need to convince anyone else to balance their life.
I release the need to be liked.
I release the need to be right.
I release the need to make my teachers’ lives easier. (Only they can do that!)
I release the need to control how reading is taught in this school.
I release the need to make it better.
Ahh, that feels lighter already! And I see that, instead of control and coercion, I may simply hold space for each and every person in this building to step into the power of their own grace.