No one would have worried about me coming around to the notions of Accounting when I took my first class in balancing a spreadsheet in my Junior year of High School. However, I am struck by the similar place I am in life right now. Approaching a milestone in my educational career gives me pause to think, then almost a Senior in High School – now past mid-career in Education. Past impressing others, really preparing for what comes next.
And I think that I am tired of keeping a balanced ledger in my educational career – let me explain what I mean.
I spent the first half of my career trying to be noticed. I moved between three states before I was ten years into teaching. I felt a need to accelerate the process by which I would be recognized as a leader at my school. I am sure I calculated who was the right person to demonstrate my abilities and ideas to – since I was trying to become whoever I was trying to be. I think back to all the excellent educators I worked with – and the chances which are gone because I was more interested in proving I was worthy to give. Give advice, give my ideas, give instead of taking.
I am done leading. I am done leading in the sense that I don’t want to tell people what to do, what I know, how to do it. I want to learn from everyone else. I want people to explain to me all the ways of doing things that I have never tried. I want people to share with me new ways of seeing the challenges that I have never thought of.
I would be okay being in debt to someone else finally.
I am tired of the kind of leadership which often happens only when someone else is looking, evaluating. I am tired of caring who it is that notices I am a helper – I want to help everyone, because I want everyone to help me. I do not have to keep the ledger always in my advantage, let alone balanced. I can learn from others, praise them for their leadership, and be in debt to them and maybe never repay it – but always try.