Dear Exchange Community,
Reflecting on this past year, I realized how much of it we’ve spent in crisis mode. We’re not out of the woods with the pandemic yet, but maybe we can see the light at the end of the tunnel (to badly mix metaphors).
Perhaps it’s time to ask ourselves what is most important in our lives. Even pre-pandemic, we early childhood professionals could easily become consumed by our work. Margie Carter, writing in a pre-pandemic Exchange Essentials article collection, “Build Your Leadership Capacity,” declared:
“Directors of early childhood programs are an amazing lot! I typically see so much dedication, such hard work and creative problem solving. But then that inevitable undertow of deadlines, crises, and illness begins to suck you down. Before long, you're drowning, and with crisis management becoming a way of life, you don't even recognize your vital signs slipping away.” Carter offers a number of strategies directors can use to revitalize and become clear about leadership priorities.
Likewise, in an article in a special edition of the Harvard Business Review, called The Essential Guide to Leadership, Stewart D. Friedman offers this important tip: “Reflect. For each of the domains of your life — work, home, community, and self, reflect on how important each is to you, how much time and energy you devote to each, and how satisfied you are in each. Are there discrepancies between what is important to you and how you spend your time?”
Now is a good time for all of us to take back our time and make purposeful decisions about what we will and won’t do. Crisis mode is not sustainable. Living with intention is.
Here’s to finding ourselves again!
Nancy Rosenow, Exchange
Source: “Be a Better Leader, Have a Richer Life,” by Stewart D. Friedman, The Essential Guide to Leadership, The Harvard Business Review, Harvard Business School Publishing, 2009
Because of the compelling research on the benefits of high-quality programs for young children, Exchange is pleased to be able to offer all Exchange Essential article collections, including Powerful Partnerships with Families, at an exceptional price.
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What a lovely reminder. Thank you so much for this (and for all the timely and inspirational messages you share each day).