In this episode we review what we’ve heard from our teachers and experts this month about trauma in our and our students' lives and I share how I'm using the Serenity Prayer to tackle some drama in my own life. We also dive into what drama sounds like on social media and in real life and ways that you can be strong and vulnerable, and therefore, have the serenity to accept the things you can't change and the courage to change the things you can moving forward in your teaching and personal life.
Let’s review this month’s impactful interviews:
Episode #28 with Lori Desautels - Students either can’t identify and verbalize how they feel because they don’t have the words. Students don’t know how they feel. So using a sensation word can help students to explain
Instead of saying you feel sad or angry, they feel stuck, shakey, teary, edgy, butterflyish or calm
Do you or CAN you verbalize how YOU feel?
“What you can name, you can tame. What’s sharable is bearable.”
So name it! I think that even as adults, we struggle with this, so if you can’t find the right words to describe how you’re feeling when you walk into or think about your school or classroom, make up your own
Smiling and moving on is not the best cure for dealing with major trauma in your life. If you’re doing that and falling apart on the inside, you’ve got to act on your needs. Mental health is nothing to move aside, so acknowledge it and take steps to reach out for help from those who you trust or a professional.
- Give yourself permission and enough grace to admit that you sometimes need professional help. Going through trauma and ignoring the warning signs will not make the traumatic effects of your experiences go away.
Resilience is the ability to thrive through struggle and challenge, so it’s different than survival. It’s the ability to get stronger through the adversity. Any educator needs to cultivate that in order to teach. There will be pain and suffering in life and in teaching.
Pay attention to your disposition - an attitude or way of being -you can be optimistic purposeful… when we can embrace our emotions and we don’t have to suppress them, we’re going to have a different world.
Ask for what you need. Assuming all responsibility for all things on your own is not sustainable. You aren’t weak when you ask for help.
Make time to process the positive. It’s so easy to focus on the negative things that happened especially when we’re in groups. Be intentional about what you choose to focus on. Find time to share the things that went right.
Trauma- an experience that produces psychological injury or pain.
Drama- any situation or series of events having vivid, emotional, conflicting, or striking interest or results
Mental Health- psychological well-being and satisfactory adjustment to society and to the ordinary demands of life.
Disposition-(3) the predominant or prevailing tendency of one's spirits; natural mental and emotional outlook or mood; characteristic attitude: state of mind regarding something; inclination: physical inclination or tendency
Resilience- ability to recover readily from illness, depression, adversity, or the like; buoyancy
Vulnerability- capable of or susceptible to being wounded or hurt, as by a weapon: open to moral attack, criticism, temptation, etc.: (of a place) open to assault; difficult to defend
As defined by Amy Morin in her book, “13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do” here is how she defines mental strength:
“Developing mental strength is about improving your ability to regulate your emotions, manage your thoughts, and behave in a positive manner, despite your circumstances.”
“Developing mental strength requires a three-pronged approach:
Identifying irrational thoughts and replacing them with more realistic thoughts.
Behaving in a positive manner despite the circumstances.
Controlling your emotions so your emotions don’t control you.”
Courage- the quality of mind or spirit that enables a person to face difficulty, danger, pain, etc., without fear;bravery.
Serenity- the state or quality of being serene, calm, or tranquil
13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do - Amy Morin
The Call to Courage - Brene’ Brown on Netflix