The Reflection Pool

A Guaranteed Pick-Me-Up

Do you ever have those days at school or work where things just don’t go right? Where it seems like the world and her sister are against you? Where you feel pretty bleak?

Here’s something GUARANTEED to help you feel better:

Basket of cards

Yes, it’s a basket of cards. Let me explain.

A few years ago, when I was a beginning vice principal, a retired principal friend, Mary Johnson, offered this wise advice: “Start collecting all the cards and letters you get where people thank you or say nice things. Then, when you have a bad day, and those days will come, believe me, pull out the cards and read a few over.”

A simple yet brilliant idea. I’ve been collecting the cards ever since. Just like you, they come from colleagues, students and parents. Being a principal can be a lonely job. The cards help me remember connections, keep perspective and stay grounded.

What’s your pick-me-up?

3 thoughts on “A Guaranteed Pick-Me-Up

  1. I got the same advice early in my career. I’ve added a variation…I make sure I regularly write these notes for others. I’ve noticed, over 20 years of teaching, that it has become less common to receive a note of thanks, particularly from admin (just a sign of how busy the job’s gotten, I think). So, I try to remember to occasionally pop a note in a mailbox when somebody goes above and beyond, or just needs a boost.

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