I heard Veronica Lacey speak when I was a new teacher. At the time, she was Director of Education in North York and went on to become a very influential voice in Canadian education. That conference was a long time ago, but I remember her words so well: “It’s always about relationships.”
I was not particularly wise as a twenty something young woman. I didn’t really understand the importance of relationships and how they influence and determine the direction and content of so much of your life. In the classroom I enjoyed the students I taught, but I didn’t think too much about my lasting impact on them through all the everyday interactions we had.
Now I know better.
Maya Angelou said it so well:
“I have learned that people will forget what you said, they will forget what you did, but they will never forget how you made them feel.”
It’s so powerful! No matter how much time we spend preparing, emailing, reading, writing, or thinking, it will have no positive lasting difference if we can’t establish caring relationships with those around us. I have come to understand the importance of those moments of humanity when we connect with another person, whether student, colleague or friend. This has been my challenge throughout my career. I come from a background where emotions are to be hidden and judgment is everywhere. I’ve made progress, but still have some way to go. I find that smiling, laughter and trying to pay attention to the little things are the best ways for me to show my humanity and caring. I’m going to keep seeking out those moments.
“No one cares how much you know until they know how much you care.” Theodore Roosevelt
(Day 4 of #Aprilblogaday)