As ever, I’m going to start the New Year with the #Teacher5aday reflection and pledge as it’s a handy way to measure, monitor and plan wellbeing whilst getting some support and accountability publicly.
The wonderful #Teacher5aday initiative was started about 5 years ago my Martyn Reah on Twitter as a way of supporting staff and colleague wellbeing in schools -turns out it’s great even if you’re not a teacher!
There are 5 elements to it that support your own or others’ mental health and wellbeing: Learn, Connect, Exercise, Volunteer, Notice.
So, here’s my pledge:
#Learn – in the past year I’ve written a book and my wife and I have started a weaving business using a traditional and vintage loom from the Outer Hebrides. What I’ve learned is that I don’t give myself enough ‘down-time’ to consider what needs to be done and have squeezed too much into too little time. I need to be better at using time. The loom has taught us that we can learn engineering skills by asking friends and a network of skilled individuals for help!
PLEDGE: Use time better and focus more on tasks to stop last-minute panics.
#Connect – we’ve connected with a number of new people and organisations in the past 12 months: new clients, friends, partners and experts across a wide range of subjects. You can’t do it all alone. My Personal Learning Network (PLN) on Twitter is made up of incredible people who want to make the world and the world of teaching a better place using kindness, hope and understanding.
PLEDGE: Continue using kindness as a major strategy for support and teaching.
(Here’s a blog I wrote in December about Hope and how we need to create our own hope and share it widely: https://innovativeenterprise.co.uk/2019/12/17/we-make-our-own-hope/)
#Exercise – 2019 wasn’t a vintage year for exercise. There were a few bike rides, the RideLondon 46 mile ride in August and we walked the Yorkshire Three Peaks in July for Marie Curie Cancer Care – but otherwise there was a lot of procrastination and not a lot of much else.
PLEDGE: Running isn’t really for me but I’m doing RED January (Run Every Day) but taking on my own version which is Run / Ride or Briskly Walk Every Day in January to help get me back into the swing of things and look after the only body I have.
#Volunteer – I delivered a number of unpaid talks in 2019 and will continue to do so in 2020. The Marie Curie Three Peaks was a major piece of volunteering and charity collection (we raised over £1000 collectively).
PLEDGE: In 2020 I will continue to volunteer to speak at events with a theme and conscience and which will help to change peoples’ lives and thoughts. (The first of these is the Royal Wooton Basset Academy Conference on 13thand 14thFebruary. The Empowering Young People to Change The World Conference can be found on Twitter using the #EYP2CtW20 hashtag).
#Notice – we don’t always stop and look, stay still and think. In the past year I’ve spent a lot of time looking up into the sky and then talking pictures of clouds, sunsets and views. (Some of the best ones are on our Instagram account @EnterpriseSBox (the same as our Twitter name)). I love taking this time to notice what nature is presenting us with and sharing it.
In addition, noticing what people are saying and what they mean are often different things.
PLEDGE: In 2020 I’m going to listen more in a less-distracted way and try and notice exactly what people are saying to me. I’m also going to continue taking and sharing pictures of the sky.
What are you going to pledge for 2020?