Energy

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Slice Daily for the Entire Month of March

March Slice of Life Challenge

My energy level and my passion for teaching, ELA, pedagogy and life impact others in several ways. This year several things have happened to heighten my awareness of how what I do and say impacts others, and as a result, I have begun to see myself in a new way–through the eyes of others.

Here are a few of the things I’ve heard:

1. Behavior interventionist (with the task of observing a student–not me) said, “I have never seen a teacher with this much energy. To the students, he said, “Wow, she talks fast, you really have to pay attention.” He went on to tell me later that the energy was a good thing and that sometimes he’s bored when he visits classrooms, but he was not at all bored in my class.

2. A friend after listening to my group HeyTell voicemail one morning said, “Maya, it would be exhausting to be you.”

3. Coworker said, “Maya, you really help me find my Zen.”

Thinking to myself that I had never heard anything like that and how amazing it was that I helped someone find her inner peace I responded, “Really?”

She went on to tell me how she usually felt hectic and frazzled and like a spaz, but when around me she felt so calm. She went on to say how being around me was like being around her boys.

“Wait! You have toddler boys. Being around me is like being around not just one but two toddlers.”

She laughed and told me how much she admired my energy level and that she wished he had the energy I have.

4.  Another friend told me upon hearing the above story that  I’m a good kind of exhausting and that’s what she loves about me.

5. My boss told me that by the time I get to item 2 or 3 I’ve lost him. I think that might be related to my energy, the way my mind runs, and the way my conversation flows.

6. Another coworker told me that he misses me if he doesn’t have lunch with me because he likes to listen to me and that the conversation is dull if I’m not there. He also has compared me to Dory from Finding Nemo.

I could blame this on my energy, blame this on my passion, blame this on a lot of things, or I could just think about when the time is right to just be me and when the time is right to slow down and listen and let things sink in as opposed to when the time is right to do as Dory says, “Just keep swimming.”

This high energy person–I feel like this is my schtick in the classroom; this is partially what makes the person I am “work” as a teacher. This is what helps me engage squirrelly sixth graders. At the same time, this is what sometimes makes adults shake their heads or tune me out.

I will always be this high energy person, but I realize now that sometimes I need to take a step back, slow down, shut up, and gain perspective through listening to others and/or filtering/thinking through my words.

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15 thoughts on “Energy

  1. Yes, life is such a balancing act. I kind of wish I was higher energy, at least in the classroom. It sounds like you are a fun person to be around. And that’s something!! Keep on your search for balance, so you don’t wear yourself out!

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  2. I’ve been a high energy person for years and, mentally, probably still am. Otherwise, age eventually slows you down, tells you to slow down and rest more, take more naps.

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  3. Thanks, Meggy. Writing helps me slow down and make meaning out of the small moments of my life, and I come to realize there is a lot of meaning in the small moments. I love you, too.

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  4. I love your list! You must be pretty amazing lady! Your energy is contagious, for sure! Keep on doing what you are doing…seems to be working for you and many others! 🙂

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  5. Maya, one of the things I love most about you is your ability to self reflect; not in a navel gazing kind of way, but, in a way that has the potential for you to recognize things that work and serve you well and to recognize when/where things can or should be adjusted. Keep doing what you are doing and just by being aware will help you to slow down the “Maya train” when you need or want to.

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  6. Ha–I’ve never heard of this “navel-gazing” sort of way, or at least, I don’t recall. I had to look it up. This year has been one of reflect, adjust, tweak, reflect again, tweak again. I think the “constructive feedback” from my principal really was a sort of stimulus to make me see things in me differently. While I appreciate who I am and celebrate it, too, I do realize that I can be “too much” for people at times. I guess I never stopped to think about that too much before. It’s all good, though, the Maya train does need to slow down every now and then. You know my basketball coach, way back in high school, called me “freight train,” and I think therein lies my next blog, Sedona. Thanks.

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  7. I think the energy you speak of is often missing in classrooms, but it can be a little overwhelming for adults sometimes. I am always high energy and have made myself be even when I don’t feel it. I have 14 years olds to motivate at 7 am. Someone has to channel energy. Sometimes my teachers friends feel that they can’t keep up. I don’t expect them too! I have always been a high energy kid. It makes my students feel like I am passionate about their learning.

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  8. It’s interesting to me that you concluded that perhaps your energy isn’t always good, when all the examples you gave suggest that the person making the comment appreciates your energy. On a different note–I love the craft moves you’ve made in this post–you give sort of a frame for what the post is about, then a lot of examples, and then reflect on what the examples as a whole mean. Sounds like exactly the kind of thinking work we’d love kids to be able to do with texts and their lives. What a great mentor text!

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